What is the meaning of the furniture term Shellac?

Shellac is a natural resin extracted from the secretions of the female lac bug. It is commonly used as a wood finishing product due to its excellent properties. Shellac is soluble in alcohol, which means it can easily dissolve and mix with alcohol-based solvents.

One of the popular uses of shellac is as a furniture finish or varnish. It can be applied by brushing or padding the resin onto the surface of the wood. Shellac has a quick-drying time, allowing for efficient application and faster project completion.

The fast-drying characteristic of shellac is advantageous because it reduces the chances of dust or dirt settling on the surface during the drying process. This helps in achieving a smooth and flawless finish. Moreover, shellac creates a hard and durable coating that enhances the natural beauty of the wood.

In addition to its use on wood, shellac is also employed in various applications such as in the production of edible glazes, pharmaceutical coatings, and even in the creation of shellac nail polish.

However, it is worth noting that shellac may not be suitable for every project or surface. Its solubility in alcohol means that it can be easily damaged or dissolved when exposed to certain substances, such as water or alcohol-based liquids. Therefore, it is important to consider the specific requirements and desired results before deciding to use shellac as a finish.

Natural resin soluble in alcohol. May be brushed on or padded on, dries quickly.
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