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post #1 of 218 Old 03-12-2007, 08:42 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm looking to coat my bar top with some of the thick poly stuff I see in bars / restaurants. I've done a search, but it looks like they've either stopped making the Behr 50(?) that everyone has mentioned, or the typical places don't carry it anymore.

I've used a wood floor poly on my vanity in the bathroom that worked alright, but I'm looking for something thicker & tougher. Suggestions?

Thanks!


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post #2 of 218 Old 03-12-2007, 10:02 AM
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Back in college some friends built a bar in their apartment... they just painted the top with about 20 coats of polyurathane that you can get from Ace Hardware (they got the Ace brand I think). For a very smooth finish, you can lightly sand (fine grit) between coats. It turned out pretty cool (some people said it was over board, but that's what engineers do )
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post #3 of 218 Old 03-12-2007, 11:08 AM
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http://www.bartopepoxy.com/

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post #4 of 218 Old 03-12-2007, 11:25 AM
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We just started to work on our bar in the back of the theater. We are planning on putting a piece of 1/4" glass on top. Might save a few coats

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post #5 of 218 Old 03-12-2007, 01:24 PM
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I have not used it, but you might take a look at

Minwax High Build Polyurethane
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post #6 of 218 Old 03-12-2007, 06:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by y2ks2k View Post

I have not used it, but you might take a look at

Minwax High Build Polyurethane

Thanks! If you look at the bottom of the page, they have a link to Helmsman Exterior Grade stuff. I picked some up tonight and it specifically calls out Bar Tops for uses. Perfect!

I liked the epoxy stuff, but it is a lot more than I want to pay right now. Hopefully this does the trick!


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post #7 of 218 Old 03-12-2007, 06:40 PM
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Cool! Post how it works.
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post #8 of 218 Old 03-13-2007, 08:46 AM
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Envirotex Lite

This works great and can be found at your local craft store (Michaels, Ben Franklin Crafts, ect).

Its made for bartops and projects. "50 coats of varnish in one coat!"


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post #9 of 218 Old 03-21-2007, 06:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinculum View Post

Envirotex Lite

This works great and can be found at your local craft store

I'm assuming you've used this yourself? Is it thick or thin upon application?

I'm currently using the Helmsman product for about 2 thin coats & 1 thick coat. Do you think this could be applied on top?

I've ran into an issue with the Helmsman. Although it provides a beautiful glossy finish, it is very thin. Since I have a wood floor bar top, it does not fill in the grooves, but runs inbetween them. Last night I took a small cup & poured it on which worked great until it started running between the boards, onto the sub-layer then inbetween the sublayer joint & onto the floor!! Glad I have Carpet Tile around the bar! With all of the glue & tight seams I had, there is no way I thought this would have happened - It just shows how thin the stuff is. I was going to try and find a way of filling in some of the grooves with epoxy before proceeding, but if Envirotex will work on top of my existing coats & is thick, I could just use it.


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post #10 of 218 Old 03-21-2007, 08:04 AM
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Yes, I have used this on my own bartop and I'm pretty happy with the results.

I'm not familiar with the Helmsman so I cannot make any comparisons to it. But by the way you describe it, it sounds as thick as standard polyurethane.

The Envirotex has the consistency of honey. So it pours on thick in my opinion, self levels and cures. Its a 2 part epoxy, so it must be used right away after its mixed. The only flaws in my application seem to be some dust that was in the air.

Heres a couple pictures of it on my bartop. Its difficult to get good pictures showing it, but in person it has a ton of gloss and the depth of perhaps a thin sheet of glass. I could have poured more, but I'm happy with the recommended application. It did a nice job of filling in a crack where two wood boards decided to come apart. I put some tape on the bottom side just in case it ran, but it didn't. It cures pretty fast, so I attribute that to the gap sealing abilities.

Please excuse the rest of my mess in the photos, its a work in progress! The bar sits behind my sofa and doubles as the second row of seating, which works out GREAT. Most people wanna sit at the bar instead of on the sofa where the audio/video is optimized!
LL
LL
LL


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post #11 of 218 Old 03-21-2007, 08:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinculum View Post

The Envirotex has the consistency of honey. So it pours on thick in my opinion, self levels and cures. Its a 2 part epoxy, so it must be used right away after its mixed. The only flaws in my application seem to be some dust that was in the air.

Thick as honey - That is perfect! I'm definitely going to give it shot.

I'm sure it will say on the product, but how much coverage can you get with one package? My bar area is approximately 25 square-feet.


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post #12 of 218 Old 03-21-2007, 10:47 AM
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They have different sized packages. I'd just follow their guidelines for coverage and round up. Best to have more and a little thicker than not enough. Read the instructions on the website. I dont know about the craft stores near you, but around here in Pa. they always have 20% off coupons in the local sunday papers. Its not cheap, so I tried to get the best deal I could.

I'd think it would cover up previous coatings pretty well. Just be sure to clean it before starting and try to minimize the dust in the air. Anything that lands in it will stick and anything under it will stay forever. It will cover imperfections and make a very smooth as glass surface.

Good luck, let us know how it works for you!


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post #13 of 218 Old 03-21-2007, 11:03 AM
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I just looked at the pictures of your theater & bar. Very nice.

It appears the back of the bartop has a raised edge. Perfect for pouring a coating onto. You won't have any edge to worry about. The little gap between the flooring won't pose a problem. I'd put some paper down under it just in case tho. Get plenty of coating and do it all one shot.... I bet it will look like a million bucks!


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post #14 of 218 Old 03-22-2007, 05:03 PM
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http://www.tapplastics.com/shop/product.php?pid=31&

I used to make coffee tables out of hockey sticks when I worked at an ice rink. I would use this for the tops and they came out perfectly. When the two parts are mixed, it creates CO2 bubbles, but they pop by blowing on them (the CO2 in your breath caused them to pop) or by hitting them with a torch set to low (remember, its the CO2, not the heat that pops the bubbles.)

"If I could just say a few words...I'd be a better public speaker." - H. Simpson
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post #15 of 218 Old 03-26-2007, 06:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinculum View Post

I just looked at the pictures of your theater & bar. Very nice.

It appears the back of the bartop has a raised edge. Perfect for pouring a coating onto. You won't have any edge to worry about. The little gap between the flooring won't pose a problem. I'd put some paper down under it just in case tho. Get plenty of coating and do it all one shot.... I bet it will look like a million bucks!

Thanks for the compliments.

I am frustrated! I had a weird feeling like something would go wrong & it did. Got everything all prepped, mixed & poured according to directions but it did not fully work out. Even though I followed the instructions and used a torch, I still have 3 large bubbles. I breathed on it and used the torch for a good 15-20 minutes, but they still formed later.

There are 'craters' between the size of 1 to 2 quarters in some areas. I saw these develop as I was pushing the liquid around with a thick piece of paper, but it just wouldn't cover those spots - almost as if the wood was rejecting the coating in small spots. Even though I had almost 1/8" all over the surface, these pits developed. I don't get it. I hate it, but it looks like the next step is to sand out the bubbles and put down another coat which bugs me because I don't want to spend more money on it.

For the other areas with no pits, this stuff did an excellent job. It is completely smooth, clear & looks wonderful. Wish it turned out that way all the way around!!


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post #16 of 218 Old 03-26-2007, 06:51 AM
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Argh.... I had tiny bubbles, but they all came out just by blowing on them. It sounds as if the surface wasn't clean in those spots. Like it either had a waxy or oily film on those spots? Could it be the coating on the prefinished flooring? Or maybe something that spilled on those spots during use. I hope the repair can successfully mask out the imperfections.


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post #17 of 218 Old 03-26-2007, 09:31 AM - Thread Starter
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I had 3 coats of Helmsman Poly on it and it really has never been used. Before applying the Envirotex I sanded the top and cleaned it thoroughly with a damp rag using mineral spirits just like when I poly coat. I then wiped it down again with a damp rag to make sure it was free of the spirits & then let it dry thoroughly . The only thing I could think of if there was a hint of the mineral spirits left over.

This time I'm only going to sand out the bubbles and that will be all that I touch it.


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post #18 of 218 Old 03-27-2007, 09:22 AM
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Your preparation doesn't appear lacking. It is a strange anomaly tho.
I hope to see some pictures of happy results after the sanding & recoat.

Dr V


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post #19 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 06:37 AM - Thread Starter
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ALRIGHT, Finally done.

Here are pics of the 1st coat that went wrong.

I had about 3-4 large bubbles that formed long after I had poured the top:


There were craters where the epoxy was rejected or repelled from the surface. It is about 1/8" thick surrounding the crater. These were all over the bar top:




Here is the bar before:


And here it is after the 2nd coat of epoxy:




It is glass thick & smooth all the way across. The second coat filled in all of the bubbles and craters and you can never tell they were there. However, in certain spots, when you look at it with the glare, you can see what looks like colorful oil rings. Not sure what is causing this. It should be fully set & useable here shortly and I will see if they can be wiped off. It's not real noticeable, you have to point it out, but it still annoys me b/c I know it's there.


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post #20 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 06:43 AM
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That came out looking amazing!
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post #21 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 06:48 AM
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Looks GREAT! Much better than those ridges from the planks.

After its good and cured, just clean the top with a mild cleaner and rag. I used some sort of orange based cleaner and it took 99% of those oil marks away.


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post #22 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 07:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks guys!

I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one to get those oil marks & that they can be removed. I'm relieved & finally relaxed with the results.


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post #23 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 10:03 AM
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The Envirotex DOES look amazing.

Hmmm....I'm thinking DIY Shuffleboard table for next winter's project...
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post #24 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 01:47 PM
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Great job! That looks amazing!!
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post #25 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neuner View Post

I liked the epoxy stuff, but it is a lot more than I want to pay right now. Hopefully this does the trick!

Well, this is now funny. For the first coat I used 3/4 of a gallon at $80 from Michaels and then I paid another $54 for a 1/2 gallon of the second-fix coat. So overall it cost $134, and here I was trying to avoid the $104 cost of the Bartop Epoxy


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post #26 of 218 Old 04-02-2007, 02:18 PM
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That's how it ALWAYS works!!!
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post #27 of 218 Old 04-03-2007, 08:24 PM
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Neuner,
You Bar top looks fantastic!

How did you apply the Envirotex to the bar rail and keep it from running down the side?

- Scott
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post #28 of 218 Old 04-04-2007, 05:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottJ0007 View Post

How did you apply the Envirotex to the bar rail and keep it from running down the side?

I only applied Envirotex to the bar top (Wood Floor) area. I coated the rails & backside trim with Helmsman Glossy Polyurethane before pouring the Envirotex. You can't tell the two apart with exception to the thickness in coating.


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post #29 of 218 Old 04-09-2007, 02:10 PM
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Looks sharp!

The biggest problem I had when I was doing my bar top was that I had a hole cut out for my drip tray. I tried using tape to keep the epoxy from dripping off the edge but the tape was no match for the heavy mixture. If I had done it again I would have tacked some small trim in there to keep it from dripping. I used a heat gun (high powered hair dryer basically) to get the bubbles out and that worked great.

Just picked up the lumber to frame in my basement and add in an official home theater. I'm psyched!
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post #30 of 218 Old 06-13-2007, 06:12 AM
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Neuner - Did you decide to go with the Envirotex because you had the gaps between the floor slats to deal with?

I'm considering going with just a plywood veneer for my bartop, so I think the Helmsman product would probably be sufficient.
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