Using Dorlands wax medium
  • Some questions:
    1) can it be used straight out of the container, trowled over a textured dry acrylic surface to achieve flat surface?
    2) does it shrink like most acrylic gels and mediums?
    3) can the surface be sanded or scraped into once it is dry? and then can another layer of medium be put on?
    4) can it be melted in a tin and painted on a panel like encaustics? What temp. can it be safely melted to?
    5) can it be mixed with encaustics
    6) is it toxic to melt it once it is on the support with a torch? heat gun?
    7) How transparent is it used straight out of the container?
    8) I know you can mix oil paint with it...can you mix fluid acrylics?
    9) Can you layer the medium with itself?
    10) How long does it take to dry and how do you know it is completely dry?
    11) When mixed with turp. does it dry faster?
    I know this is allot of ?s. I just discovered this product and am excited to use it, but can't find the answers to these questions. Thank you.
  • Sage,

    Thanks so much for your inquiry -

    1) can it be used straight out of the container, trowled over a textured dry acrylic surface to achieve flat surface?
    Yes
    2) does it shrink like most acrylic gels and mediums?
    No
    3) can the surface be sanded or scraped into once it is dry?Yes, and no - see #10
    and then can another layer of medium be put on?
    Yes
    4) can it be melted in a tin and painted on a panel like encaustics?
    Yes - see below for safety considerations.
    What temp. can it be safely melted to?
    Dorland's is liquid at about 75 degrees F - we don't recommend heating it beyond this point. Because it does contain solvents you should use a double boiler or appliance specifically for melting wax type products for heating. Good ventilation is recommended.
    5) can it be mixed with encaustics
    If you are asking, can it be mixed with other waxes...Yes
    6) is it toxic to melt it once it is on the support with a torch? heat gun?
    We recommend using a respirator when heating in this manne - also, if you are using heat lamps to aide with drying it is a good idea to be sure your work area is well ventilated. Your respirator should be fitted for use with aliphatic solvents or oderless mineral spirts.
    7) How transparent is it used straight out of the container?
    Depends how thickly it is applied. A very thin layer will be transparent, thicker layers will be translucent.
    8) I know you can mix oil paint with it...can you mix fluid acrylics?
    No, it's the old water and oil thing.
    9) Can you layer the medium with itself?
    Yes
    10) How long does it take to dry and how do you know it is completely dry?
    Drying time depends on ambient environment - temps, humidity, etc. & the thickness of the wax. Completely dry?...because Dorland's is a wax & solvent mixture it is never going to be dry enough to sand, for instance. Drying it to a point where you can polish it does work.
    In general you can expect it to take days to weeks for the Dorland's to 'dry'.
    11) When mixed with turp. does it dry faster?
    Not necessarly, although the thinner the dorland's the quicker it will dry.

    Hope this helps.
    anet
  • You say that it is liquid at 75 degrees F. Won't it just melt off of painting if the room temp. reaches above this point?
  • Hi Sage,


    Once the wax is dry that won't be a problem. The reason the wax melts at 75 degrees is due to the high solvent content. The drying is essentially the evaporation of the solvents.

    anet
  • Question about using Dorland's wax to seal a watercolor on Arches rough wc paper. A friend tells me he seals his too-large-to-frame watercolors with Dorland's wax; he puts matt acrylic on the back to keep the wax from 'migrating' thru the wc paper and loosening the tape or labels that might be on the back of the painting. This seems to work well for him; I'm just wondering if you have more information or cautions about using wax to seal watercolors on rag paper.
  • Hi Joan,

    I'd go with your friend's information.

    annette
  • thanks, annette...one more question: if i do decide later to frame the paintings under plexiglass, will the wax be likely to rub off on the glass? especially if i'm just framing it for a few months without spacers, to be in an exhibit? thanks again for your help!
  • Hi Joan,

    If the Dorland's has dried completely that shouldn't be an issue.

    annette
  • I paint watercolors on Arches 300lb paper as well as on claybord. I have recently learned about Dorlands wax medium and would like to know how to use the product. Secondly, is it a permanent finish or will it need to be reapplied after a period of time?
  • Hi Carol,

    There is good info on the website: http://jacquardproducts.com/dorlands-wax.html

    let us know if you have more questions.
    annette
  • Error: "Dorland's is liquid at about 75 degrees F." Did you mean to say 175 F or 75 C?
  • (If it were liquid at 75 F most of us would never see it solid.)
  • But maybe this means it will liquefy on the support at 75F? That seems right.
  • Because at an ambient temperature of 75, the energy of rubbing the wax medium on would increase the temperature of the wax medium.
  • I would like to create depth in oil paintings thru layers of oils and wax on board. Is Dorland's the wax I should use for this? I have never tried this but I thought it would be interesting. Would bleached bees wax be better?
  • @Hovawart2 Yes 160 degrees F is more accurate. Safety considerations say do not heat above 160. It is not liquid at 75, but is very pliable.

    @adacular You can do this, but the important thing to know about Dorlands is that it is considered teh fattiest layer. If you plan on doing many layers, you cannot put oil and dorlands mixed together over a pure Dorlands layer. Keeping strictly to the fat over lean principle sunsequent layers of wax medium should contain less and less oil paint. Pure Dorland's should only be used as a final layer.

    The only thing I know that will stick to the wax is alcohol inks like our Pinata.

    It is a matter of taste as to which wax to use, but Dorland's can be used right out of the container with no heating.
  • When heating up the cold wax mixed with oil is it safe or there's risk of fire?
  • Can cold wax be varnished once dried with gamvar?
  • Hello Hawk6560

    Heating is ok, but you don't want to use a heat gun too closely and get the temp above 170 degrees. There is a slight risk of burning at temps above that.

    It is difficult to coat the wax medium in anything else. If you are following the fat over lean principle, the Dorland's wax is considered the very fattiest layers. The only think I know of that sticks to the wax med is our Pinata inks.