This section is from the book "A Treatise On Architecture And Building Construction Vol4: Plumbing And Gas-Fitting, Heating And Ventilation, Painting And Decorating, Estimating And Calculating Quantities", by The Colliery Engineer Co. Also available from Amazon: A Treatise On Architecture And Building Construction.
Furniture Varnishes. One of the simplest of these varnishes may be prepared by dissolving 1 1/2 pounds of shellac in 1 gallon of naphtha, or dissolving 12 ounces of shellac and 3 ounces of copal, or an equivalent of copal varnish, in 1 gallon of naphtha.
Table varnish is a fine quality of furniture varnish, and is prepared as follows: 1 pound of dammar is dissolved in 2 pounds of spirits of turpentine; 200 grains of camphor are then added, and the mixture permitted to stand twenty-four hours, when the clear portion is poured off, fit for immediate use.
White furniture varnish: Dissolve 6 ounces of white wax in 1 pint of oil of turpentine by gentle heat; or white wax 6 parts, petroleum 48. It must be applied to a warm surface, which is then allowed to cool, and afterwards polished by rubbing with a coarse cloth.
82. Dark varnish for light woodwork: Shellac, 16 parts; gum sandarac, 32; gum mastic, 8; gum elemi, 8; dragon's blood, 4; anatto, 1; white turpentine, 16; alcohol, 25G. Dilute with alcohol as may be required.
83. Mahogany varnish: Gum sandarac, 2 ounces; shellac, 1 ounce; gum benjamin, 1/2 ounce; Venice turpentine, 1 ounce; spirits of wine, 1 pint. Color red with dragon's blood, or yellow with saffron. Place the vessel with these ingredients in a warm spot, until the gum has dissolved, then strain for use.
84. Turpentine varnish is not very durable, will not stand washing, and should be used only for varnishing wall papers. It may be prepared by dissolving, in 1 pint of oil of turpentine, 10 ounces clear powdered resin; which is then boiled for half an hour, or until the resin is dissolved. When the mixture has cooled it is ready for use. Another paper varnish consists of 4 pounds of dammar, dissolved in 1 gallon of turpentine, with moderate agitation or gentle heat. It is suitable for paper hanging and like purposes.
85. Water varnish consists of lac dissolved in hot water, with just so much of ammonia, borax, potash, or soda, as will dissolve the lac. The solution makes a varnish that will just bear washing. Alkalis darken the color of the lac.