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Oops! I made a mistake on the finish?

4556 Views 18 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  cobalt
I need some advice please. I recently got a batch of sticks done and applied Helmsman's water based spar urethane finish to them. I did about 4-6 coats each but I'm wondering if I left them a long enough drying time in between which was about 4-8 hours before applying the next coat? The reason I ask is that they have been sitting over a week and I can take my finger nail and scratch the surface and it marks!
Will they set, or should I re-sand? Should I be leaving water based urethane 24 hours between coats?
I checked Helmsman's directions and they said a re-ap can be applied after 4 hours.
Any help greatly appreciated.

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I don't know that I have any experience with water based urethanes, but my experience w. other varnishes, urethane and traditional, is that you didn't wait long enough between coats.

The uncured varnish from the earlier coats is trapped under successive layers of partially cured varnish. I knew some fellows that put multiple coats of urethane on table tops over a period of 10 - 14 days. That was back in the 1970's. The finish took 6 months to harden.

I just read that urethanes cure by exposure to moisture. I would have expected plain air and/or IR, and/or UV. My inclination would be to wipe a small portion of 1 stick w. some distilled water, and see if it firms up after a few days. If firm, might need some buffing to give a nice gloss.
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