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Old 07-17-2005, 01:32 AM   #1
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Need advice on how to finish a DIY stand

I'm doing a stand project for my 75g and i'm going to cover the stand frame with MDF. But i'm wondering what kind of finish to apply to the MDF. I want it to be black in color but i'm worried about moisture getting to the stand. What kind of finish do i need to apply to insure my stand is protected against moisture?

Do i use a lacquer, varnish, or some other sealant?
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Old 07-17-2005, 02:47 AM   #2
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I would say any polyurathane would do..
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Old 07-17-2005, 02:57 AM   #3
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well i built some work tables a couple of years or so ago, and i used mdf - the kind meant for underlay flooring for the work surface and i used a can of black spray paint for color, then used straight polyurethane (thinned down with paint thinner/mineral sprits in 2:1 mix) the consistency was similar to hot maple syrup and just applied 1 regular coat after the paint dried. the tables repel all liquids and the sheen is pretty minimal. they remind me of a bit of the tables used in high school biology /chemistry class.
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Old 07-17-2005, 05:45 PM   #4
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I would use poly. You can get the kind that does not have a big shine to it and if you apply a few coats and sand each coat (be sure to use a tack cloth after sanding) the shine should be even duller.
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Old 07-17-2005, 06:23 PM   #5
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well most polyurethane directions state you should thin it down with paint thinner to seal the wood/water proof, if it won't be used on a high traffic area (like a kitchen table for example) thats what i did.
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Old 07-17-2005, 06:49 PM   #6
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i really don't want it to shine at all. I suppose that's impossible if you need to waterproof.

What do you think about those rattle can deck sealers?
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Old 07-18-2005, 06:20 AM   #7
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like thompson's water seal? it will wear off after 6months to a year (maybe quicker if you have a sump) and need to be reapplied which would be almost impossible once the tank is up and running. you can take some very fine steel wool (#000) and brush that over the cured finish and it should take off most of the sheen. after the brushing blow the stand with compressed air (either from shop vac, or air compessor) or just use a tack cloth, i usually like pulling out the 5hp shop vac to blow projects clean myself but probably a tack cloth is much better idea.

if you use a the thinned polyurethane and steel wool you should have very little sheen left. also they do make some dulled polyurethane mixes (no shine or limited shine). if you are just using it to as a water - proof additive i would advise you against using it straight, it is pretty much wasteful if you it will never be used in a high traffic area.
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