Shellac is Not Bug Poop! - Popular Woodworking Magazine

Shellac is Not Bug Poop!

 In Flexner on Finishing Blog, Woodworking Blogs
Shellac finishes

Shown here are three types of shellac in already dissolved form and five colors of shellac flakes for you to dissolve in denatured alcohol.

OK, it’s a small thing, but I still get irritated when I see or hear shellac described as bug excretion. It’s not (think of the related word “excrement.”) It’s a resinous SEcretion (big difference) from a bug that feeds off of plum trees, which are native to South Asia.

The bug secretes the resin to shelter and protect its offspring. The resin is then harvested and shipped around the world. In Biblical times the resin was most highly valued for its reddish color. Now it’s used primarily as a coating.

— Bob Flexner


Shellac finishesFor more information on shellac, download Bob Flexner’s “Film-Building Finishes Understood” at…

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Showing 2 comments
  • bowmandk

    Mr. Gambini?
    Yes, sir?
    That is a lucid, intelligent, well thought-out objection.
    Thank you, Your Honor.

  • shallnot

    “Beetle juice”?

    I’m still trying to get people to call honey “bee barf”.


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