Options for a Glass-Like Finish

Finishers suggest products that will supply a deep, high-gloss finish. September 11, 2006

I need a product and process that would produce a glass-like finish on a new product I want to produce. The product is small in size, 8 inches long and 1-1/2 inches in diameter made of cedar. I don't know much about wood finishing so the process needs to be relatively simple if possible. Any suggestions?

Forum Responses
(Finishing Forum)
From contributor A:
It depends on your setup. If you are working out of a garage with little or no spray setup, you will want to use a product called Mirror Coat. Two part epoxy. I've never used it but I've seen products done with it.

If you are a pro with all the spray setup and everything, spray the thing with 3-5 coats of conversion varnish or two-part polyurethane (the 2k poly being the preferable choice). Sand it back hard with a good 220 paper to get a good grain fill. Use gloss. Let it cure overnight (give CV 48 hours). Use a rotary buffer (car buffer) with the polishing compounds used for buffing automotive paint.

From contributor B:
Most cedar is tough to finish because of all the fine hairs that stand up. I have had good luck with precat lacquer. Standard lacquer does not seem to cover well enough. If you are not concerned about money, then I would recommend OP385G90 from ICA. It is tough, high in solids and self sealing. I sell plenty of this to limo builders. Works really well but has a short pot life (5-6 hours).

From contributor C:
You may want to look at outsourcing it to a company that has a UV roll coater. You can get a very high build and quick turn around. Then you can buff it out if you need a higher sheen.

From contributor D:
Just use a high quality waterborne lacquer, let it cure and then polish it with automotive compounds, like the picture below.