Strategies for Getting Top Results with your StopLossBags®

  • Before filling the bag, write the type of finish and the date in magic marker on the information area on the front of the bag. Magic marker wipes away immediately by rubbing it with alcohol.
  • Dispense what you need from the bag into a wide container. We have found the 24 oz plastic storage container (also available from the supermarket) to be a good choice. They are made of polypropylene which most finishes will not stick to. After several uses the accumulated finish can peeled off the inside surface.
  • To extend the life of your filler & adapter tubes, remove them from the funnel so the flexible plastic can “relax” during storage. Some users report good results from keeping brush cleaner or solvent in a small jar to dip them in, then standing them upright on a paper towel to wick away liquid as they dry.
  • Hint: a light coating of wax on the threads of the cap make it easier to remove.
  • The grooved ridges at the base of the spout help collect drips. This finish is most easily removed from the ridges after the finish hardens.
  • If a bubble of air is left in the neck, some oxidation can occur. Over time this can lead to a ring of partially jelled finish forming in the spout. While this can normally be removed with tweezers, etc. it is best to prevent jelling in the first place. If you are unable to squeeze out all the air you may use the strategy of laying the bag flat so the bubble comes to rest in the center of the bag. While oxidation will indeed occur, a small bubble will have little effect on the remaining varnish. Caution: if the bubble comes to rest against the edge of the bag, it can cause localized jelling. If you suspect or see evidence of jelling, the use of a strainer, such as our 125 micron strainer is recommended.
    If you purchase multiple StopLossBags® you may want to consider keeping solvent for your finish in one of the bags to flush out a just-completed bag. A third of a bag of solvent will do the job well, and it allows the bag to easily be squeezed to move the solvent around the inner surfaces to dissolve and clear away remaining finish.
  • When you use the last of the finish in a bag it should be flushed immediately. Any air that may get into the bag can quickly oxidize with the small amount of finish which clings to the inner walls and corners of the bag. We recommend that you flush the bag several times by adding solvent and emptying it into another vessel (or bag) and using a strainer with each transfer. As you use the StopLossBag® you will develop a sense of the amount to decant for brushing. If you initially pour too little it’s easy to add just a bit more. If you find you have dispensed too much it may be beneficial to have a second project nearby that may need some modest amount of finish (ends, edges, smaller sides, etc.) to use up the extra finish. We do not recommend returning finish to the bag, but if you do it should always be strained.
  • Semi-gloss, satin, and matte finishes should be well stirred in the can before transferring to the StopLossBag®. As the bag sits the matting agents will begin to settle in the lower part of the bag, but this is easy to correct. By squeezing the bag, and inverting, rotating it, etc. you will be able to see these agents go back into suspension.

“May you never again need to throw out a can of skinned-over varnish”™

StopLossBags® by Finishing Solutions, Llc.