I am brushing on lacquering to 50 small walnut plates. My first coats were a bit of a learning curve and I had produced some small bubbles. My understanding is that new coats of lacquer will dissolve into the previous coats fixing small imperfections. After my 2nd coat of Watco's clear finish dried for 2 hours (as label recommended), I applied my 3rd and anticipated final coat. No new bubbles, but the previous ones are still present. Isn't lacquer re-coats supposed to dissolve/remove pinhole bubbles?

Should I.....
1. Sand with 400 grit and apply another coat
2. Rub out and see if its enough
3. Apply a bit of lacquer thinner +/- lacquer and re-coat.

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    – FreeMan
    Aug 14, 2020 at 17:49

1 Answer 1


As you have found, a further coat does not dissolve dried bubbles in a varnish coat.

You will need to sand it back and recoat, but 400 grit? I would suggest much finer.

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