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Varnish, Ethyl Alcohol and Permits


chronos
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I wonder, after reading about the use of pure Ethyl Alcohol in the making of spirit varnish and learning that many governments require people who purchase this stuff to obtain a permit, might the authorities deny such a permit to non-professional makers?

[This message has been edited by chronos (edited 04-12-2002).]

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The price of Everclear is still pretty reasonable, compared to the cost of other varnish materials like spike oil (yes, I know you use a lot less.) As for pure ethyl alcohol, (known as Absolute [anhydrous] Alcohol) it is a laboratory product that confers no advantage over Everclear for this purpose--the tiny bit of water that is left in Everclear is entirely miscible and shouldn't affect your results.

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I like Mark don't find difference working with both absolut ethyl alcohol (99,8%)and the other brand of 96-98% sold in the stores for chemical products here.But the price of the absolut alcohol is about $6,5 .

The dealers in the stores obtain the licence for dealing with alcohol so we don't need such a licence like Mike sais.

Yes the ethyl alcohol is drinkable and is easy to make Vodka or Gin instead of methyl alcohol what is poisonous ,but also stronger solvent than the ethyl alcohol.

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I work in a research laboratory and our pathology department uses pharmaceutical grade ethanol as a reagent. The concentration on the label is only guaranteed for an unopened container as it is quite hydroscopic. The affinity to absorb water is why ethanol (as diluted in your favorite whiskey) burns your throat. It literally takes the moisture out of the throat tissue it comes in contact with. I'd imagine that pure ethanol would choke you if you drank it.

Unless you open and use ethanol in controlled laboratory conditions it is not possible to predict how much water it will absorb from the air that it comes in contact with. With that said I can't imagine any advantage that the extra 2 to 3 percent would have to make the hassle worthwhile. In this application it is merely a solvent.

We also use methanol in other departments & applications. If you use it be careful, it is more flammable and classified as a suspected carcinogen. In a commercial application a very small percentage of methanol in a liquid waste gives it a hazardous waste classification.

From my own experience, comparing both as solvents, I prefer ethanol but the smell does take some getting used to.

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Thanks all for the info.

I wonder what it's like for people who live in places where Everclear is not for sale. Get a permit or burn down the neighborhood making oil varnish? To those of you who make your own oil varnish: what safety precautions should be taken when preparing this stuff?

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You can get a table-top still from William Sonoma and distill your own cognac from cheap wine. These spirits are acceptable, and I prefer them to store bought ethanol, or de-natured ethanol. The hydroscopic nature is nice because it will slow the drying time down somewhat as the wine spirits absorb water.

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