Giving a box a good shellacking

Discussion in 'Fettling Forum' started by Tony Press, May 24, 2020.

  1. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    Over at Classic Camp Stoves a while ago, there was a discussion that wandered onto the subject of shellac.

    I pointed out that it was a fairly common practice in Australia when I was growing up to use shellac to waterproof cardboard boxes.
    Canadian Coleman 431 Easi-Lite stove 1988 date

    I decided that I’d give it a go on an old mouldy Austramax carton, that I will now use as a transportation box:

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    "Corrugated Fibre Container Pty Ltd North Melbourne"
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    As it came: soft and mouldy.
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    Drying in the sun.
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    With an Austramax inside.
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    Cheers

    Tony

    @presscall
     
  2. MikeO

    MikeO Subscriber

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    Coleman used to include that idea in their instructions. First time I've seen it done and it looks like it works quite well!

    Mike.
     
  3. podbros

    podbros United Kingdom Subscriber

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    I had heard of Shellac but wasn't too familiar with it, so had a look on Wikipedia... interesting stuff

    Did you give it just one coat, Tony?

    I have never used Shellac myself, I don't know how it comes, whether you mix it yourself with the alcohol or if it's already mixed?

    Did you glue some brown paper on as repairs as well? Or can Shellac be used like a glue, at all?
     
  4. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    @podbros

    It's cheaper to buy shellac flakes and mix your own (with alcohol).

    I did use brown paper tape for some repairs on the box, then applied shellac over the tape.

    I did two coats over the outside, and one coat inside the box.

    Cheers

    Tony
     
  5. podbros

    podbros United Kingdom Subscriber

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  6. Wim

    Wim Subscriber

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    Lovely kettle too!
     
  7. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    @Wim

    It is a nice looking kettle, but made with leaded solder and is not tinned inside, so it is used for watering the pot plants.

    Tony
     
  8. Wim

    Wim Subscriber

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    That's to bad @Tony Press ! But I'm afraid common practice in the "good old days". Lead was always a lot cheaper than tin...
    But the plants won't mind being watered with such a fine kettle! :D/

    Wim

    PS., just for the record, I also like the shellacked box! ;) Might try this with clear lacquer one day.
     
  9. WimVe

    WimVe Subscriber

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    Shellac, brings me back to my fathers workshop, as a carpenter, he used it in the repair antique furniture.
    But I can't think where to buy it now.

    I am guessing the Action would not have it. Can ask but that would more be for fun then result.
    And the old (family) pharmacy shops are already long gone.
     
  10. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    I bought mine from a local hardware store: cheaper than the Bay of Evil.

    Tony
     
  11. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Evidently until relatively recently. It was me spotting the suggestion in the instruction sheet with my Canadian Coleman 431 Easi-Lite from 1988 that prompted that contribution from @Tony Press Cheers Tony!

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  12. X246A

    X246A United Kingdom Subscriber

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    @Tony Press

    Two questions if I may?

    1) Do the top flaps on the box still fold or do they crack?

    2) What sort of concentration mix do you use for the cardboard?

    Many thanks.

    Regards Jeremy
     
  13. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    Jeremy

    I only had 1 1/2 top flaps so I took them off and used them to reinforce the base. I’ll make a new top to slide over the box.

    The basic recipe is 200g shellac flakes to 1 litre of pure alcohol, but you can make it thicker or thinner once you get the feel of it.

    Tony
     
  14. X246A

    X246A United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Thanks Tony.

    Regards Jeremy
     

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