Waterbased On-Site Finishing Techniques

Recently Peter Brockman and I attended a seminar on low odor, water based finishes for on-site furniture touch up and finishing.  The two day event was sponsored by the Professional Refinishers Group and was hosted by Steven and Carye Weber at the Excel Shop in Louisville Kentucky.  Our instructor was Gregory Williams, a finish columnist for Wood Shop News and a retired lead instructor for Mohawk Finishing Products.  Greg has over 40 years of experience in doing on-site repairs and he shared his many techniques for doing repairs on-site.


Touch up seminar classroom


Instructor Greg Williams

The class featured Mohawk’s Finish Up water based polyurethane repair finish.  Finish Up is low odor, dries quickly and is compatible with most furniture finishes.  We also learned that this waterbased touch up system has many advantages over the shellac and lacquer based touch up systems that have been the mainstay of furniture repair for the past 100 years.

Greg told us that we needed to “unlearn” the techniques we use in the lacquer/shellac touch up system and he predicted that one person in our seminar would be the quickest study. He was right. The upholsterer with no finishing experience was doing beautiful repairs on the sample boards while us “old timers” were trying to relate the new materials to the products what we already knew.


Finish Up Applicator


Pete testing Finish Up

In the end we were able to learn the new waterbased touch up techniques and we have integrated these materials and techniques into our daily work. .