Notebook, 1993-

MATERIALS & METHODS - Painting - Oil Painting - Binders and Diluents - Thinners and Solvents

Characteristics - Painting Methods & Techniques - Materials and Equipment - Work Space & Storage - Manufacture of Pigments - Protection of the Picture

From: Kay, Reed. The Painter's Guide to Studio Methods and Materials. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1983.

Binders and Diluents
Thinners and Solvents

The following materials are used to dilute various types of paint. Some are used to dissolve solid resins in varnish manufacture. They dry by evaporation--that is, they are absorbed into the atmosphere and on drying leave little or no trace in the paint film. Artists use them to thin paints to a desirable working consistency and to clean brushes, equipment, and themselves of traces of paint. They should be aware that some are extremely poisonous and that some are highly flammable...

The fire hazard associated with each solvent is indicated by its flash-point figure--that is, the lowest temperature at which the material gives off vapors that can be ignited. A liquid with a flash point below 150ÁF. is considered flammable; that with a flash point of below 80ÁF. can be ignited at room temperatures, if exposed to open sparks or flame, and should be handled and stored with appropriate caution; that with flash point below 40ÁF. is considered extremely dangerous. Flammable liquids should be kept away from sparks or open flame. If they must be heated, it should be done in non-breakable vessels (metal, not glass), a double boiler being the preferred container system. An electric hot plate should be used rather than an open flame. The type of electric stove that has its heating coil shielded by a metal cover is to be preferred to one that has its wire element exposed. [p. 38]

NOTE: Because many of the names of the volatile solvents are ambiguous, or at least very similar to each other, a short list of the important solvents follows, grouping the various materials according to their source and listing the approximate flash point and distillation boiling range of each. In the column headed "Fire Hazard," the solvents are rated from 0 to 4. Those that are considered extremely dangerous are rated 4 [flash points below room temperature of 70° F.]. Those between 70° F. and 100&° F. are rated 2, highly flammable. Those between 100° F. and 150° F. are rated 2, somewhat flammable. Those that have flash points over 150° F. are rated 1, slightly flammable. Solvents rated ) are not flammable. See Table document [Table 2-1 on p. 44 in book]. [p. 43]

I N D E X :



Aliphatic Hydrocarbons - Petroleum Products

Aromatic Hydrocarbons -Petroleum and Coal-tar Products

Chlorinated Hydrocarbons

Alcohol - [Spirits of Wine, Spirits of Cologne]


[Kay, Reed. The Painter's Guide to Studio Methods and Materials. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1983.]



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