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Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based topcoat


The local retail store I usually get my finishing products was out if my usual solvent based sealer, but they had the waterborne variety sealer. Is it OK to use the waterborne sealer with standard solvent based topcoat? Brand is Gemini for both sealer and topcoat.

6/5/15       #2: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...
Leo G


6/5/15       #3: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...

Leo, can you share your thought process?

6/5/15       #4: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...
Leo G

Only thought process I have is no way in heck would I do it.

I did the opposite once, Used Krystal and then put a coat of Target on it, peeled off like a sheet of paper.

The solvent base would probably wrinkle the waterborne sealer.

6/6/15       #5: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...
Paul Snyder  Member


If the manufacturer does not specifically say it's okay and provide the guidelines for proper application, then you'll have to test it yourself. It may work... or it may not.

As an example, I have tested Zolatone SP97 water-base acrylic primer on laminate (without sanding) and top coated it with everything from latex paint to catalyzed polyurethane and it performs extremely well. For best results I've learned not to thin it at all (it gets mud-cracking), apply a thin even coat (3 mil wet), and allow it to dry over night before scuffing and top coating with a catalyzed finish. I needed to be able to paint laminate and avoid peeling and this system does the job.

If you make some samples and don't get wrinkling or other obvious problems, let it sit for a few days and do a cross-hatch adhesion test. I've had some hybrid finish systems become easy to peel once they starting curing more thoroughly.

6/7/15       #6: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...

I would definitely do samples first, but typically, you can spray a lacquer over a water based sealer, just not vice versa. It's technically no different than spraying lacquer over casein or an old school crackle.

6/7/15       #7: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...

can't you thin down your finish and use it as a self sealer?


6/7/15       #8: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...

As Paul says, it's up to the manufacturer to dictate what can be done or not. I have used both systems both ways. What I didn't like is the water based sealer making the wood rough as compared to the solvent. The best in my opinion is to use solvent/vinyl sealer and then a water based topcoat.
But if you want, you should be able to self seal using the topcoat as the sealer. They don't always sealer sand very well but it should be ok.

6/7/15       #9: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...

Well to eliminate uncertainty I simply went with the waterborne top coat - flat. It took a little time to get the hang of spraying as I am used to solvent based products, but I like the way it turned out. I wanted a certain low luster, waxy looking finish and that is what I got. Now I got to figure out how to lift the top insude.

View higher quality, full size image (530 X 945)

View higher quality, full size image (530 X 945)

6/7/15       #10: Waterborne sealer w/ solvent based ...
Leo G

That was the correct move. Glad it worked out.

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