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What is duco?

Duco is an NC lacquer originally meant for the automotive industry. Duco paint is available in opaque colours and as a transparent lacquer too. It can be applied on wood and metal surfaces with the appropriate surface preparation. Duco paint is now phased out in the automotive industry but has found a new life in the decorative segment. High end furniture and interiors are now a days finished with Duco paints.

Giving your furniture a duco finish involves hiding the natural grain of wood and covering it in a layer of opaque paint. Duco, when done well has the ability to give a luxurious and expensive look to any ordinary furniture. It is mainly applied on the furniture by spraying it.

Duco being an NC Lacquer has the following properties:

Fast Drying, High Solid content, Excellent Water Barrier, Excellent Self Levelling properties, takes very well to buffing to give a high sheen, Smooth and Hard finish.

Areas of Application:

  • Automobile body
  • Plywood and MDF
  • Sheet Metal
  • MS angles and flats
  • Architectural and Industrial metal structures

The different surfaces require different preparations. Let us look at the application methods for each of the surfaces mentioned above.

Application method:

Materials required are compressor capable of delivering 30-40 psi pressure consistently, a good quality spray gun – preferably HVLP type, Safety Equipment – Mask, Glasses, Gloves and Overalls, Degreaser solvent, Degreaser Cloth, Duco Oil Primer / MRF Etch Primer.

Tak Cloths – to remove sanding dust.

Duco Primer Surfacer – Grey / White – depending on the top coat colour you choose. For Lighter coloured top coats, use Primer Surfacer White and for darker topcoats, use Primer Surfacer Grey, Cotton Waste

Apply 2 coats of Duco NC Lacquer thinned with Duco Thinner in the ratio 1:2 of the selected colour. Allow flash off interval of 15 minutes between coats.

Leave to dry overnight.

Wet sand flat (remove gloss) carefully with emery grits 600/800and apply one mist coat thinned 1:3 with Duco Thinner.

Allow to dry overnight and polish the surface using 3M 1Step Rubbing compound.

For a higher gloss polish use 3M Premium Liquid Wax.The finish thus obtained is long lasting and durable.

Duco has the following limitations:

Requires elaborate equipment to apply – compressor and spray guns are the basic requirements.

Colour stability on exposure to sunlight is average – easily yellows.

Attention to surface preparation is required before application – needs a skilled workman.

Duco is sensitive to the atmospheric conditions during application – A change in temperature can affect the finish.

Being solvent based, it is not environmentally friendly and precautions must be taken against the health hazards during application. At minimum a respirator mask, gloves and glasses are required. Body overalls are highly recommended. An exhaust system must be in place to extract the solvent flashing off the surface.

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