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» The Letterville BullBoard » Letterhead/Pinstriper Talk » Acrylic Graphics on top of Cured Marine Varnish

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Author Topic: Acrylic Graphics on top of Cured Marine Varnish
John Smith
Resident


Member # 1308

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I was wondering what the procedures are for lettering with Acrylic (not latex) on top of fully cured (oil based) Marine Spar Varnish - - - without clear-coating over the acrylic.

[ June 04, 2022, 04:41 PM: Message edited by: John Smith ]

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John Smith
Kings Bay Signs (Retired)
Kissimmee, Florida

Posts: 835 | From: Central Florida - The Sunshine State | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
John Arnott
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Don't even try...use proper materials like a professional.

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John Arnott
El Cajon CA
619 596-9989
signgraphics1@aol.com
http://www.signgraphics1.com

Posts: 1449 | From: El Cajon CA usa | Registered: Dec 1998  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
John Smith
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Member # 1308

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I know John, but, this question isn't for my work. It is for a budding young artist that has already pumped out dozens and dozens of hand-routed signs using this method. I'm just trying to gather some ammunition from other professionals to assert my tutoring. She insists on doing it her way. At least I got her away from that Helmsman stuff. I guess when she starts getting Call-Backs on her work, she'll see the light.

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John Smith
Kings Bay Signs (Retired)
Kissimmee, Florida

Posts: 835 | From: Central Florida - The Sunshine State | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Bob Kaschak
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Hi John,

I think I see what you are looking for. If you need some information about sign paint to pass on to a young sign maker, here is my input after 30 years of sign painting:

This applies to the type of signs I make, which are dimensional, carved, gold leaf type signs, with painted borders and pictorials, made from High Density Urethane. In the early days I used redwood, and cedar.

In the early days, I used One Shot and Ronan, as they were the standards. About 20 years ago, I switched to 100% Acrylic Latex Paint and I have not looked back. They are easier to work with, last longer, tons of colors, and water clean up. Just far superior in my opinion. As far as sheen goes, the glossier the paint, the longer it will last.

There will be debates forever about water based vs oil based, but I leave that for those who have not tried both. I have used both, and I will use Acrylic for signs, and save the oil based paint for steel brackets and such.

As far as a clear varnish over a sign, I would never do it. There is no need to clear coat paint for protection. The paint by itself is just fine.

I use 100% Acrylic paint for all of my work, including my simple pictorials and such. I do gold leaf work right on it also.

I also recommend some good water based brushes, as they make a big difference.

As I believe Gary Anderson said many years ago, "Jump in, the water's fine!"

I hope this helps,
Bob

www.artisansignanddesign.com

[ June 08, 2022, 07:42 AM: Message edited by: Bob Kaschak ]

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"The 3-4 minute mark of "Freewill" by Rush.

Bob Kaschak
Artisan Sign And Design
Peru New York

Posts: 1938 | From: Upstate NY | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Rick Sacks
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Member # 379

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I still have not found the water based brushes that feel comfortable to letter with. They get soggy and loose shape after a few letters. Can you help me here?

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The SignShop
Mendocino, California

http://www.mendosign.com

Making the simple complicated is commonplace;
making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that's creativity. ó Charles Mingus

Posts: 6950 | From: Mendocino, CA. USA | Registered: Nov 1998  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
John Smith
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Thanks for your time, Bob, YES, that helps a lot. I switched to "house paint" back in 2004 and became very comfortable with it and never put a clear on any of it. Like Rick says, finding that "just right" brush is a journey in itself. I have different brushes for different applications that fit me best.

This is one of my Covid-Projects last year just to keep busy. It is a combination of HDU, PVC and Wood. Mostly Acrylic Paint with some HOC gold enamel for the lettering (over acrylic). I know how to paint. I just don't have any experience with painting on cured varnish with latex. Thus, I am not in my element when it comes to providing advice on the topic for those that want to.
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[ June 08, 2022, 09:55 AM: Message edited by: John Smith ]

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John Smith
Kings Bay Signs (Retired)
Kissimmee, Florida

Posts: 835 | From: Central Florida - The Sunshine State | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Bob Kaschak
Resident


Member # 3146

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Hello John and Rick,

Yes, it seems hard to find a good brush that works well with exterior acrylics. The brush needs to be soft enough to give a good finish (as acrylic dries fast), yet the brush still needs some snap.

I like the Mack Water based 2962 Series. Particularly the 3/8", 5/8" and 1".

The Steve Kafka Short Handled Scroller brushes are my go-to brush for outlines, borders, stripes, etc. They have short handles that are super comfortable, they have long bristles (the #5 has 2" long bristles). They hold a ton of paint, and are soft, yet have great snap. They come in 0, 1, 3, 5 sizes. I wish they made a 7, or a 9.... I cannot say enough good things about these brushes.

A few wraps of hockey tape around all of my brush handles makes them a bit fatter, and easier to grip.

I also use a lot of my regular #8 quills and such if they have snap.

For wall mural work, I like the Artist Loft Firenze brushes with the long green handles (which I cut back a bit). I believe they are at Michaels.

Also for Mural work, or large letters, I really like Zibra Sash Brushes (UPC No. 875081001044) and Zibra Flat Brush (UPC No. 875081003109). They have white soft bristles with a lot of snap. Nice clean edges. They also make a nice corner brush. I think I got them at Lowes.

Wetting the brush with water before every use and cleaning them carefully with a bar of Ivory soap and water works great. A gentle squeeze of the bristles near the ferule with a dry paper towel after cleaning, would reveal any color if the brush was not cleaned well enough. If the brush ever feels stiff the next day when it is dry, then I have not cleaned it well enough.

Once again, I hope this helps.

Peace,
Bob

www.artisansignanddesign.com

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"The 3-4 minute mark of "Freewill" by Rush.

Bob Kaschak
Artisan Sign And Design
Peru New York

Posts: 1938 | From: Upstate NY | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
George Perkins
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Member # 156

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Oil based paints go over water based paints just fine. Water based paints don't adhere to oil based paints well at all, which is the case you are asking about.

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George Perkins
Millington,TN.
goatwell@bigriver.net

"I started out with nothing and still have most of it left"

www.perkinsartworks.com

Posts: 4329 | From: Millington, TN. USA | Registered: Nov 1998  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Alicia B. Jennings
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I prefer tortillas made with lard and oil based lettering enamels,uretahnes,,,my two cents

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Signs by Alicia Jennings (Mudflap Girl)
Tacoma, WA
Since 1987
Have Lipstick, will travel.

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Duncan Wilkie
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I didnít think I could letter with anything but 1-shot. Iíve tried some so called lettering brushes made for water based paint, and I thought, ďif this is what I have to endure, then maybe itís time to hang it up.Ē Thankfully I found John King. If your serious about acrylic sign painting I heartily recommend his brushes. Of course they work equally well in enamel, but Iíve got lots of quills for that purpose.
https://johnkingletterart.com/collections/brushes?fs=e&s=cl

[ June 12, 2022, 11:13 PM: Message edited by: Duncan Wilkie ]

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Duncan Wilkie
aka signdog
http://www.comsign.ca
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

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Rick Sacks
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Duncan, which of these lettering brushes would most closely resemble lettering with a #5 quill and enamel experience with acrylics?

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The SignShop
Mendocino, California

http://www.mendosign.com

Making the simple complicated is commonplace;
making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that's creativity. ó Charles Mingus

Posts: 6950 | From: Mendocino, CA. USA | Registered: Nov 1998  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Bob Kaschak
Resident


Member # 3146

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Thanks Dawg!

They look like nice brushes.

I will order some quickly.

Hope to see you again sometime soon!

Peace,
Bob

www.artisansignanddesign.com

--------------------
"The 3-4 minute mark of "Freewill" by Rush.

Bob Kaschak
Artisan Sign And Design
Peru New York

Posts: 1938 | From: Upstate NY | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Mark Casey
Visitor
Member # 650

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Howdy Lettervillians. I had always assumed that Ronan's AquaCote "water based bulletin enamel" would be the ideal hand lettering formulation for sign painters wanting to work in acrylics. I've painted dozens of signs with it, but the opacity is disappointing. House paints seem no better once they're thinned to a brushable lettering viscosity. That said, AquaCote makes for great distressed signage where the goal is to make the lettering faint enough to see the signpainter's brush strokes. I'm looking forward to trying the paints and brushes mentioned here. Thanks. I never jumped on Gary Anderson's bandwagon because he always seemed to be painting on raised sandblasted letters, not doing what I do - flat freehand lettering on wood and metal panels.
Anybody old enough to remember painting showcards all day with sable brushes, Rich Art watercolors, on colored Crescent board?

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Mark Casey
Casey Sign Co., Inc.
Berkley, MI

Posts: 77 | From: Berkley, MI, USA | Registered: Mar 1999  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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