Adding 844 Colorants to Conversion Varnish

Advice on adding dye and pigment concentrates to varnish for use as a toner. April 18, 2010

Can a little bit of this stain be added to CV to make a toner? My supplier added some 844 and 824 colorants to tweak a standard Chemcraft walnut base. He said 824 should not be added to lacquers. CV is Global Plus. In the past I've added 844 directly to CV with good results. Does anyone have any thoughts?

Forum Responses
(Finishing Forum)
From contributor G:
The UTC 824 series are long oil alkyds suitable for making stains and tinting linseed oil based paints. 844ís are acrylics and much more versatile and useable with urea formaldehydes such as conversion varnish. Check out the Knowledge Base article below for more information that may help you.

UTC Colorant Compatibility

Is there any reason why your supplier can't make you a toner using the correct tinters?

From contributor S:
You can use the stain to make a toner. Catalyze a measured amount of CV then add the stain to the thinner before you add it to the CV. Adding the stain to the thinner will dilute it so that it blends better with the CV.

I often like to use a highly thinned finish for toner and then apply a normal coat of clear over it. For example, I will mix up 8 ounces of CV in one cup and in another cup I'll mix 1 or 2 ounces of stain with 20 ounces of lacquer thinner. Then mix the two cups together. That gives you about a quart of toner with 1-2 ounces of stain in it. Just use the same measurements if you need more of the same toner.

This thinned toner atomizes really easy at low pressure which helps to spray it into corners and profiles. It also adds very little build to the finish so that you could use a second coat of toner if needed to adjust the color. You avoid exceeding the dry mil film thickness limit by keeping the toner coat(s) very thin. Immediately after spraying the toner, you can go right over it with a regular coat of clear. This will provide a layer of protection over the color.

From contributor J:
844 colorants will work although Valspar probably will recommend 866's because thatís what they use in their distribution line for tinting. I prefer to use dyes myself when possible rather than stains or pigments - better clarity and compatibility issues are nil. In any event, CYA and talk to your Valspar Tech rep before doing anything.

From contributor W:
Yes you can add stain into lacquer. Mostly stain is contain pigment, either organic pigment (dyes) or non organic pigment and be able to add to the lacquer. I prefer to avoid using toner for coloring. I prefer to add color over sealer or top coat using a stain, rather than recoat with lacquer or sealer. It will be easier to control the result.

From contributor T:
Yes you can use 844 tints with a conversion varnish or precat. You can also use up to 5% in the topcoat or sealer as a tinted sealer or toner. Anything more as a percent would result in poor adhesion.