Something to add on the discussion of Russian Finishes. - Page 3
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Thread: Something to add on the discussion of Russian Finishes.

  1. #31
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    Mr AkMaadi, have you seen my brush strokes on page 1? Believe it or not, that set I finished with testor's model cement thinned with acetone and dyes.

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    Also, I agree to the pigment thing. Even the dyes achieve color the same way, it is a particulate suspended in medium. It would explain why ridges in the brush strokes have much darker color, and the troughs are light. The more powder, the darker the color and more quickly.

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    Wow! Thinned model cement. Never would have crossed my mind. If one was to screw up would that be a reworkable coating? How fast did that set up? Spirit varnish sets up in a few minutes.

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  5. #34
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    Hi Gillan, Even thinned, it sets up extremely fast. Admittedly, it is not very forgiving because it can do the same thing shellac will if you try and brush it to make strokes after its already too tacky. It will drag the finish off the wood and make terrible ripples. This one I like because it's the absolute if not perfect duplication of original russian AK-74 wooden finishes with no more ingredients than lacquer made of glue, acetone and dye. It's best applied in layers to achieve your color, long strokes over fully dried coats to avoid snagging. You are guaranteed to get the brush strokes. The portioning is 2 parts to one - the smaller amount being the acetone. I paid 2$ for each tube of glue and two tubes mixed in the correct proportions is enough for at least two stock sets... Maybe 3; sounds crazy but look at the pictures again. It's economical, durable and nearly if not identical. I will revisit shellac studies once I have the chance and access to copal resin, to prove myself wrong and see if I can't duplicate the results with that.
    Last edited by My Oleg Hurts; 10-31-2015 at 08:27 PM.

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    Ok, gonna move along to shellac experiments now; see if I cannot duplicate the sheen and texture that I'm getting out of the glue type varnish. I spotted some properties that I don't like which can be mitigated but lead me to believe that this method is far too delicate for factory workers to be able to just apply haphazardly. I have a pretty good method in mind to achieve it, and once I do maybe I will throw my hat into the pool of woodworkers for hire afterall.

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    Another thing that is really interesting I have noticed in my experiments, the more pigment I use or the darker color I try to duplicate the less transparent the shellac is... I find that one of the amazing things about the darker Izhevsk finishes is regardless of how dark the color is, it is still very transparent... It has the dark red/garnet color but in bright light, the yellow of the wood pops through... Very hard to duplicate when adding dyes to shellac...

    You said the magic words when trying to replicate factory shellac, the final method used has to reasonably be a process that a Soviet factory cranking out hundreds of rifles a day used... Many products and methods can be used to get close, but what exactly did the factory use...

    Keep us updated on your results... Your finish on page 1 looks great...
    So, if you were to ask did ancient astronauts visit Earth in the remote past, the answer is a resounding "YES"

  8. #37
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    Yes, there is basically zip zero chance that the finish is only shellac, as much as one would hope and imagine it would be this simple from logistics point of view. Looking at the original finishes, they are hair thin, color rich, and very glossy; yet if you reduce the shellac cut it will soak into the wood. Even a normal cut will soak into the wood on the first application. From what is known, it would stand to reason that it is a single top-coat application over a very good sealant. The shellac topcoat needs a hardening and glossing agent to look correct. Copal resin is all I can think of that would give me those results. The real finish even appears more brittle than plain shellac. One of my genuine pieces has the topcoat chipped. Thankfully there is a place nearby that carries it... Weird how I ca find resins but not transtint locally
    Last edited by My Oleg Hurts; 11-06-2015 at 10:21 PM.

  9. #38
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    Bingo! I added copal to shellac, this is much better. I will post a refinished piece soon, I only made a few brush marks for a quick 'n dirty test

 

 
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