SIMSCal Meeting – Teaser

Pencil in a SIMSCal meeting for May 16th at Rockler in Orange.
We are looking to have a lead-and-follow, hands-on demonstration of Royal Lac and Seal Lac, innovative products from Shellac Finishes (
Royal Lac is a combination of shellac and thermoset polymers that has the look of shellac, but cures hard enough to resist water, heat, alcohol, sweat, etc. It comes in both gloss and satin finishes.
Royal Lac can be wiped-on, brushed-on, or sprayed-on. There is also an aerosol version in the works, as well. Hopefully, by the time of the meeting we will see that, too.
We are planning on room for about 20-or-so members to brush-on / wipe-on Royal Lac on test boards, 3 or 4 (maybe 5) light applications 15 to 20 minutes apart.
Dedicated guitarmakers who want to really see how Royal Lac performs will need to put on more applications on Sunday and/or Monday, maybe Tuesday, too. This calls for gentle scuff / level sanding at the beginning of each day. Watch how Robbie O’Brien does it on Luthier Tips du Jour – Royal Lac (also on the Shellac Finishes website):
Here’s the fine print: Royal Lac takes about 30 days to fully cure.
So, if we add a little finish sanding and polishing 30 days down the line, then we can compare finishes at the next SIMSCal meeting. Maybe this is something that can be done at the next meeting. Something to think about.
The goal for this whole process is to be done with our test / evaluation in time for the newbie guitarmakers to have another finish option for their guitars.
That’s the plan, as it stands today.
More details to follow.
Larry McCutcheon
President, SIMSCal
Seal Lac is an alcohol-based thermoplastic sealer that cures through evaporation. Thermoplastic means that subsequent applications “burn-in” to previous applications to form a single homogenous layer.

Royal Lac is a shellac-based thermoset polymer that also cures through evaporation. Thermoset is different than thermoplastic. Thermoset means that there is a limit to the time that subsequent applications combine with previous applications. For Royal Lac, additional applications will combine with previous applications for about 14 days; after that, the finish is more polymer than shellac and will sit on top of the previous finish – as varnish does – rather than combine with it.