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Each finish starts with a base stain which will then be shaded using an aniline dye or a glaze. The top-coat is a pre-catalyzed lacquer.
Care and protection of your new lacquer finish

Lacquer finishes have been used as protective coatings for over 70 years. They protect wood furniture against oil and water stains, scratches and abrasions, and premature aging. While nothing lasts forever, with proper maintenance your new finish will last a long time.

At Ackerman & Sons we use Magnamax catalyzed lacquer, by M. L. Campbell. Magnamax is a very dense finish, with molecules that bond to each other in such a way as to prevent penetration by water and chemicals for up to 2½ times longer than standard lacquer. It is one of the few lacquers that meets or exceeds the Kitchen and Bath Association standards for moisture resistance.

Rule number one: Less is better. Too many finishes are ruined by over applying polish, wax, and oil. Everyday dusting is best done with a slightly dampened rag. If grease or grime is present, a good quality polish should be used to clean and add luster to the finish. Polish should be used once a month. We recommend Guardsman polish. We do not recommend any oil.

Rule number two: No waxing. Polish can be used on your new finish at any time after delivery. Wax, on the other hand, cannot be. Wait a minimum of one month after delivery before waxing or using any product containing wax. Waxing too soon will prevent the finish from completely curing.

Rule number three: Don’t leave anything heavy, such as a lamp or center piece, on top of your newly finished furniture for the first 30 days. Your new finish is at 85% of its total strength as delivered, but will continue to cure and strengthen during that time. Feel free to use a table immediately after delivery, but clear the table afterwards. Remember, anything harder than your finish (Glass, ceramic, or metal) will scratch it, especially during the first month.

Rule number four: Plastic and rubber surfaces can outgas, etching into lacquer finishes. This is most likely with newer finishes, but sometimes happens with fully cured finishes as well. For this reason we recommend that telephones, televisions, radios, plastic place mats and plastic tablecloths, etc. be kept from long-term contact with any finish.

Rule number five: Enjoy your newly finished furniture!