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Frequently asked questions for

Wood and Furniture Coatings

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions with their answers from Wood and Furniture Coatings.


I am utilizing different types of untreated and treated silica based matting agents to reduce gloss for my water-based parquet lacquers as well as water-based furniture coatings. In many cases, I face severe issues to homogeneously disperse them at high loading in these water-based systems. Do you have any suitable wetting & dispersing additive to recommend?

DISPERBYK-2012 as well as DISPERBYK-2013 have shown superior performance in dispersing untreated and treated silica based matting agents for water-based systems compared to other conventional wetting and dispersing additives. We recommend to apply an additive dosage of 5.0-10.0% solid on matting agent.

We are looking for a solution to achieve a good haptic (silk/soft-feel) in various systems (solvent-borne, aqueous, and radiation-curing).

Due to the versatility of our micronized wax additives the recommendation would be to use either CERAFLOUR 1000; CERAFLOUR 994 or CERAFLOUR 988. CERAFLOUR 1000 is a micronized wax additive based upon a biodegradable polymer and, thus, fulfills the additional need for renewability. CERAFLOUR 994 is a micronized additive based on an amide wax which helps to achieve this haptic appearance. CERAFLOUR 988 is a micronized, amide-modified polyethylene wax with outstanding dispersibility in solvent-borne and radiation-curable
systems. Besides the disired haptic effect the additive improves the scratch
and abrasion resistance.In aqueous respectively solvent-borne systems the dosage should be around 2% on total formulation. For solvent-borne radiation-curing systems the dosage should be around 5% on total formulation due to less and/or no shrinkage of the system to get the satisfactory effect.

We are facing issues with proper leveling in a solvent-free radiation-curing system but need to formulate silicone-free.

BYK-UV 3535 (100% active substance) is especially designed to improve the leveling in solvent-free radiation-curing systems. The product is highly compatible and does not cause any haze in the final coating system. Due to the multiple acrylic functionality BYK-UV 3535 reacts with the radiation-curing system which leads to a long-lasting effect without any migration. Recommended additive dosage is 0.1-0.3% additive (as supplied) based upon total formulation (in exceptional cases up to 0.5 %).

We have applied different water-based systems via airless spray application. Dependent on the resin used, some systems can be easily applied without any issue but other systems show severe micro foam in the final coating. We have tested different defoamers but did not find any solution.

BYK-1786 (0.3-1.0% as delivered on total formulation) is recommended for a broad range of water-based systems which are applied via airless or airmix spray application. This defoamer shows excellent efficiency for clear, matt, and pigmented water-based wood coatings without negative impact on the crater formation, transparency in clearcoat systems or matting agent orientation in matt systems.

I have formulated a matt solvent-borne 2-pack polyurethane system by applying an untreated silica based matting agent to reduce the gloss. When sprayed on wood panels the surface appears patchy and inhomogeneous. How to improve the matting agent orientation?

BYK-320 and BYK-323 are less active silicone surface additives which equilibrate the surface tension differences within the coating during solvent evaporation and, thus, improve significantly the matting agent orientation without showing any tendency to stabilize foam. Recommended dosage is 0.2 - 0.5% on total formulation.

Currently, we are formulating a new tannin blocker system based on a cationic resin and we are seeking for the right choice of wetting and dispersing additive to disperse the titanium dioxide and the fillers properly. Is there any specific recommendendation for this request?

The right wetting and dispersing additive choice for cationic resin systems is challenging since conventional products show usually compatibility and stability issues with this kind of resins. However, DISPERBYK-2012 is perfectly tailored to the needs of water-based cationic resins. The recommended dosage levels are 0.5-1.0% solid on fillers and 1.5-2.5% solid on titanium dioxides.

We are currently seeking for any technical solution to achieve special texture effects for our solvent-borne wood finishes. Is there any additive recommendation?

There are different micronized wax additives available to achieve surface finishes from very fine texture (CERAFLOUR 913, and CERAFLOUR 914) to medium texture (CERAFLOUR 915) or even coarse texture effects (CERAFLOUR 916). Due to the delivery form as micronized powders, these wax additives can be applied to both, solvent-borne and aqueous systems.

I am developing a water-based parquet lacquer. Initial defoaming looks promising but after certain time my standard defoamer loses its efficiency. What do you recommend?

BYK-028 is a versatile defoamer with excellent long-lasting efficiency at high and low storage temperature. This defoamer provides a broad application profile. Compatibility (less defects such as craters or turbidity), easy incorporation, and applicability as post addition complete its profile.

I am currently encountering a big challenge to disperse titanium dioxides for different solvent-free radiation-curing systems. In particular, viscosity reduction and long-lasting storage stability are not satisfactory at the moment.

DISPERBYK-111 is a solvent-free wetting and dispersing additive which is perfectly tailored to disperse titanium doxides. Excellent viscosity reduction, highest gloss and opacity, and long-lasting storage stability can be achieved at an additive dosage of 1.5-3.5% solid on pigment. Its delivery form and chemical product composition make DISPERBYK-111​​​​​​​ perfectly suited for solvent-free radiation-curing systems.

We are producing matt top coats for dark wood. Actually, the appearance of our coating systems is very turbid and we are facing issues with embedded foam bubbles.

CERAFLOUR 1000 is perfectly suited for your request. This wax additive provides excellent matting properties combined with high transparency and smooth surface touch. Even when utilizing higher levels of CERAFLOUR 1000, the coating viscosity is stable and Newtonian flow properties are observed. CERAFLOUR 1000 is a micronized wax additive based upon a biodegradable polymer and does not cause any foam stabilization in radiation-curable coatings.

I am seeking for a broadly applicable surface additive which provides excellent surface slip without any negative side effects in solvent-borne as well as aqueous wood finishes.

BYK-3760 is a solvent-free surface additive based upon a polyether-modified polydimethylsiloxane. Due to its delivery form and tailored compatibility BYK-3760 can be used for solvent-borne, water-based, and even radiation-curing wood coatings and achieves excellent surface slip properties at even low dosage of 0.05-0.2% as delivered on total formulation.

I have evaluated many different commercially available wetting and dispersing additives to disperse titanium dioxides and to develop white pigmented water-based furniture coatings but I always face severe issues with resistance for coffee, red wine, or tea stains. Do you have any suggestion?

I have evaluated many different commercially available wetting and dispersing additives to disperse titanium dioxides and to develop white pigmented water-based furniture coatings but I always face severe issues with resistance Conventional wetting and dispersing additives are known to have negative impact on stain resistance so that DISPERBYK-2080 and DISPERBYK-2081 have been developed. These wetting and dispersing additives provide excellent dispersion of titanium dioxides, inorganic and some organic pigments along with strong viscosity reduction, high gloss, and excellent opacity without any negative impact on stain resistance of the final pigmented coating formulation. We recommend to apply DISPERBYK-2080 and DISPERBYK-2081 at a dosage of 1.5-2.5% solid on titanium dioxides and 4.0-7.0% solid on other inorganic pigments.for coffee, red wine, or tea stains. Do you have any suggestion?

We are currently using a fluorine-containing leveling additive to formulate our aqueous wood coatings. This particular product is no longer available. What is your recommendation for substitution?

Due to environmental aspects many fluorine-containing products are withdrawn from the market and legislation restricts their use. It is common practice to use additive combinations to achieve substrate wetting and leveling performance at the same time. BYK-3455 or BYK-3456, however, combine excellent substrate wetting with good flow and leveling properties in one stand-alone product with particularly low foam stabilisation. In our application tests, we have observed improved flow into wood pores, reduced picture framing, and elimination of fish eyes.

While formulating a new solvent-free radiation-curing clear top coat we were facing foam issue during manufacturing and application. What products would you recommend to get rid of the foam?

BYK-1788, BYK-1790, and BYK-088 are defoamers which are perfectly suited to the needs of solvent-free radiation-curing high gloss clear coat systems. They provide excellent defoaming without any negative impact on transparency or any formation of craters. The recommended additive dosage is 0.1-0.4% as delivered on total formulation.

I am currently formulating a deep matt solvent-free radiation-curing coating which will be applied via roller coater to wooden substrates. I have not found yet any efficient defoamer for initial defoaming and, in particular, for defoaming during the material circulation in the roller coater equipment. What is your recommendation?

We recommend BYK-1799 for this particular application. This defoamer shows excellent defoaming of deep matt solvent-free radiation-curing coatings which are applied via roller coater at dosages of 0.2-0,5% as delivered on total formulation.

We receive more and more requests to formulate pigmented solvent-free radiation-curing coatings but are facing challenges to select a well suited wetting and dispersing additive for this purpose.

DISPERBYK-2013 and DISPERBYK-2155 are solvent-free wetting and dispersing additives which provide excellent viscosity reduction, long-lasting storage stability of the pigment dispersions, improved color strength, transparency, and gloss. Their broad compatibility makes either product applicable to a variety of different commonly used oligomers and monomers. The recommended additive dosage for inorganic pigments is 2.5-8.0% solid on pigment and for organic pigments and carbon blacks 15.0-60.0% solid on pigment.

Frequently, we face settling or sagging issues for our matt or pigmented aqueous wood coatings. How to improve the formulations?

Anti-settling or anti-sagging properties for matt or pigmented aqueous wood coatings can be achieved by applying associative low-shear thickeners. These products generate pseudoplastic flow properties and, thus, help to keep the matting agents or pigments suspended in the liquid media. First recommendations for aqueous wood coatings are RHEOBYK-H 6500 VF, RHEOBYK-H 7500 VF, and RHEOBYK-H 7625 VF which are usually applied at levels of 0.5-1.8% as delivered on total formulation.

We formulate a broad range of clear and pigmented water-based wood coatings and we are currently seeking for a broadly applicable rheology modifier which can be used to adjust the in-can viscosity.

RHEOBYK-H 3300 VF and RHEOBYK-M 2600 VF are associative mid-shear thickeners which are highly recommended to adjust the in-can viscosity and the "body" of clear and pigmented water-based wood coatings. These rheology modifiers work pH independent and do not have any negative impact on gloss or transparency of the final coating system. Recommended usage levels are 0.3-2.0% as delivered on total formulation.

We are facing issues when formulating deep matt solvent-free radiation-curing wood coatings. To reduce the gloss level below 10 units, we have to utilize a high loading of silica based matting agents which lead to tremendous viscosity increase. As a consequence, the coating is not applicable anymore or if applicable leads to roller marks when applied via roller coater. How to get rid of this issue?

We recommend the usage of a wetting and dispersing additive to disperse the silica based matting agents in your solvent-free radiation-curing coating. DISPERBYK-2158 and DISPERBYK-2008 are specially designed wetting and dispersing additives for this particular purpose. They provide tremendous viscosity reduction with Newtonian flow behaviour even at higher matting agent loadings, achieve homogeneous distribution of the matting agents within the coating and improve the leveling and the surface smoothness of the coatings when applied by roller coater. DISPERBYK-2158 and DISPERBYK-2008 are suggested to be used at additive levels of 2.5-10.0% solid on matting agent for both treated and untreated silica based matting agents.

I would like to achieve best anti-settling and anti-syneresis properties for a new matt aqueous furniture coating I am currently developing. Conventional associative and acrylic thickeners do not give the required performance. Is there any other option to consider?

LAPONITE-S 482 and LAPONITE-RD are synthetic clay based rheology modifiers for aqueous systems. These products achieve a very strong network formation once swelled and delaminated in the aqueous coating and, thus, create excellent anti-settling properties and improved storage stability. Additionally, LAPONITE-S 482 and LAPONITE-RD show strong synergistic effects with organic thickener types.

I am actually formulating a pure acrylic water-based wood coating and I am seeking for product recommendations to improve the anti-blocking properties of this particular coating system.

The anti-blocking properties of water-based coatings can be significantly improved by using AQUACER 539 at dosage level of 1.5-2.0% solid on total formulation. Due to its very small and narrow particle size distribution AQUACER 539 does not affect the transparency or the gloss of high gloss water-based clear coat systems.

We have formulated different aqueous parquet lacquers which show poor applicability and leveling when applied by roller application. We have tested many different rheology modifiers but did not see any improvements.

Associative high-shear thickeners are used to achieve Newtonian flow properties in aqueous coatings. As a result, improved application viscosity is achieved and enhanced leveling can be obtained. First recommendations to adjust the high shear properties of aqueous wood coatings are RHEOBYK-L 1400 VF and RHEOBYK-T 1000 VF at usage levels of 0.3-2.0% as delivered on total formulation.

We would like to formulate a water-based pigment concentrate series based on a wide variety of inorganic and organic pigments to be applied to water-based furniture coatings. Is there any specific product recommendation available?

DISPERBYK-2015 is a broadly applicable VOC-free wetting and dispersing additive for water-based pigment concentrates and coating systems. It achieves superb stabilization of inorganic and organic pigments, provides strong improvement of color development, improves transparency and gloss, and offers excellent color stability.

We are currently running a project to develop a new aqueous wood coating which will be applied by curtain coater. We are facing some foam issues and an insufficient curtain stability during application.

BYK-025 is a pretty compatible but nevertheless effective defoamer for aqueous wood coatings which are applied via curtain coater. In general, the best defoaming properties are achieved at dosages of 0.3-1.0% as delivered on total formulation without any negative impact on curtain stability. If, however, improved curtain stability is requested, BYK-307 is highly recommended. This solvent-free surface additive improves curtain stability significantly and can be also post-added during the application process. For applications with a higher regulatory demand such as IOS MAT 0066 compliance we recommend the usage of BYK-3762 which has a lower content of cyclic silicones (D4-D6).

I am currently looking for the right additive choice to disperse matting agents for my different solvent-borne wood coatings. Are there any specific product recommendations?

The dispersion of untreated or treated silica based matting agents in solvent-borne 2-pack polyurethane, NC, alkyd, acid-cured, or radiation-curing systems can be significantly improved by using DISPERBYK-103 or DISPERBYK-2159 at dosage levels of 5.0-10.0% solid on matting agent.

We have to eliminate aromatic solvents from our formulations in near future and are looking for an alternative wetting and dispersing additive for our solvent-borne pigment concentrates.

DISPERBYK-2155 is a solvent-free wetting and dispersing additive with a unique hyper-branched structure. It offers a broad compatibility with various grinding resins and letdown systems as 2-pack polyurethane, NC and alkyd without any influence on pot-life or drying. DISPERBYK-2155 provides excellent viscosity reduction and superb deflocculation and stabilization of inorganic and organic pigments.