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Old 11-04-2004, 05:43 PM   #1
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canopy sanding

I have cut my wood and was wondering if I need to sand before or after adding the water sealer? Also what kind of sealer should I use and what kind of paint should I use on the inside of the canopy? This is my first time doing a diy for my aquarium and don't want to mess it up toooooo bad.

Thanks for any and all the help you guys give to the newbies like me.
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Old 11-04-2004, 06:02 PM   #2
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I'm moving this to the DIY section since it'll get more responses there.

A light sanding isn't a bad idea, just be sure to get the sawdust off afterwards so it doesn't get into the paint/varnish and cause problems (rough textures).

I don't think you need a sealer..at least not a thompson's water sealer type sealer.
First, I suggest you prime the inside before painting. I use water-based Kilz primer. I followed that with a coat of oil-based enamel, gloss white paint (it has decent reflectivity to help maximize any stray light).
On the outside, you could paint (again prime and use oil-based) or stain it and do a few top coats of polyurethane or varnish (i'm a big proponent of poly-urethane).
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Old 11-04-2004, 09:59 PM   #3
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always do a light sanding before applying sealers, stain, paint ect. after the sanding, use a tact cloth, or an air gun (attached to an air compressor) to remove any left over saw dust.

minwax makes a great polyurthane/stain mix, i used that on my stand, and not only was it cheaper (than buying stain and poly seperate), but it looks very nice, and it comes in a fairly wide range of colors to suit almost any decor.
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Old 11-06-2004, 01:07 AM   #4
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For best looking paint or stain job, sanding is a must.

I always sand all my wood parts before assembly (much easier) to 100 grit or so -skip this for plywood - the tops should be pre-sanded already.

After assembly, I get rid of all glue by scraping & sanding, fill gaps if needed, then sand everything smooth as needed.

If you use water based stains or paint, there will be raised grains that will need to be sanded down with 200 or 300 grit paper (lightly, not to cut through paint).

After the base coat, you can add the top coat. I like polyurathane myself. For satin finish, I usually use 2-3 coats, sanding lightly with 300 paper between coats. If you want a mirror smooth gloss finish, you'll need to sand with 600 grit or higher paper before the final coat.

It is actually quite a bit of work to get a really good finish on wood. However, all that is just for look. If you don't mind a less than perfectly smooth finish, you can skip all the fine sanding. The poly will protect the wood from water just as well even if it is rough! <For me, I only go to the trouble of 300 grit sanding on the outside ... all hidden, inside surfaces get just a quick 100 grit initial sanding.>
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Old 11-06-2004, 02:41 AM   #5
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personally, i use grade: 00 steel wool, and 000 steel wool for sanding between coats of poly. i have tried the 600grit, and softer sandpapers but prefer the steel wool. i have a buddy who worked at a paint shop, doing mostly industurial poly'ing, and has always told me, that you sand between coats of poly because it needs a rough surface to cling to, and using that really fine sandpaper doesn't scuff up the last coat enough i have found.

just my 2cents.
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Old 11-06-2004, 11:30 AM   #6
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Steel wool is an alternative to fine sandpaper. However, I like using water based poly (less smell), and steel wool won't work too well - as any little bits of steel left after sanding will rust in a water based finish & give you little brown spots.

So I'd use steel wool only for non-water based finish.
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