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homogeneous solution of gum or of natural or synthetic resins in oil (oil varnish) or in a volatile solvent (spirit varnish), which dries on exposure to air, forming a thin, hard, usually glossy film. It is used for the protection or decoration of surfaces and may be transparent, translucent, or tinted. For oil varnishes a hard gum or resin, often a fossilized plant exudation such as kauri or copal, is dissolved in oil (commonly linseed oil or tung oil) and is diluted with a volatile solvent such as turpentine. Spirit varnishes are commonly made of soft resins or gums, such as shellacshellac,
solution of lac in alcohol or acetone. In commerce the name is applied to the resinous substance (lac) itself rather than to the solution. It ranges in color from orange to light yellow depending upon the extent to which it has been purified; the darker shellacs are the
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, dammer, mastic, or sandarac, dissolved in a volatile solvent, e.g., alcohol, benzene, acetone, or turpentine. Enamel is varnish with added pigments. Lacquer may be a cellulose derivative dissolved in a volatile solvent, or it may be a natural varnish made in the East from the sap of trees. Among the varnishes named either for their constituents or for the proposed use are japanner's gold size, cabinet, carriage, bookbinder's, patent-leather, insulating, photographic, shellac, and copal picture varnish. Varnish has been known from antiquity; the Egyptians coated mummy cases with a pastelike form made of soft resins dissolved in oil and applied when warm. Another early use was for coating oil paintings. Stradivarius and other violinmakers used a slow-drying linseed oil varnish on their instruments.


See Oil & Colour Chemists' Assoc., Paint Technology Manual (2 vol., 1961, 1962); C. R. Martens, Technology of Paints, Varnishes, and Lacquers (1968).

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A resin dissolved in oil or spirit, which dries to a brilliant, thin, protective film.
Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Copyright © 2012, 2002, 1998 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved


A transparent surface coating which is applied as a liquid and then changes to a hard solid; all varnishes are solutions of resinous materials in a solvent.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


A clear, unpigmented preparation consisting of resinous matter dissolved in alcohol (spirit varnish) or other volatile liquid, or in oil (oil varnish); when applied as a thin coating on a surface, it dries leaving a hard, smooth, transparent, glossy protective film.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


1. a preparation consisting of a solvent, a drying oil, and usually resin, rubber, bitumen, etc., for application to a surface where it polymerizes to yield a hard glossy, usually transparent, coating
2. a similar preparation consisting of a substance, such as shellac or cellulose ester, dissolved in a volatile solvent, such as alcohol. It hardens to a film on evaporation of the solvent
3. the sap of certain trees used to produce such a coating
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
But perhaps we shouldn't be surprised by the unhygienic state of our cars, as an earlier Simoniz survey found 46 per cent of Brits only clean their car on the inside when it gets really dirty and 24 per cent admitted they let rubbish pile up for weeks on end.
Simoniz's Gripcoat anti-slip floor care system not only provides 25% more slip resistance than OSHA requirements, it requires less scrub and recoats and extends the normal recoat application 2-3 times, according to Bryan Cope of Sirnoniz.
SAS is currently extending the Simoniz product line with an item called Simoniz Magic Maid, a microfiber washable mop with a rubber broom as well as a duster attachment.
Among other new automotive items: Simoniz's Prism car polish, which is rinsed off rather than wiped off; Marlenn air fresheners with "designer" fragrances; and a $2.95 weatherproof chemical light that lasts 12 hours, designed for night emergencies.
91 -S, Crystal Aire Products 680 Fabric Protector, Falcon Labs Spotless Fabric Protector, Quiltprotect Spray, Robbie's Fabric Shield, Showcar Fabric Protector and Simoniz System 5 Stain Sentry Fabric Protector.
Comma is a good alternative for the rims, and you will not be disappointed in Simoniz's Back to Black Tyre Shine.
SAS has already experienced success with its Simoniz Instant Scratch Remover for Wood.