We are preparing to prime kitchen cabinets that had past nicotine stains, and want to completely block any future bleed-through of those stains. We hesitate using the Shellac because we aren't sure it can be sanded in the event we get a drip or debris on the surface. Does anyone know from experience if it can be sanded?


Pigmented Shellac like Bins is a great stain blocking primer. We use it for many purposes, bare wood, worn wood cabinets smoke and water damage etc. Bin's is very sandable and should be sanded between coats. When you apply it, work fast, get it on as even as you can, but do not try to over work it. It flashes fast and trying to overbrush partially dried bin's will cause it to curl and drag. Shellac sands very easily and boo boos can be fixed, no problem. I often use two or even three fast coats of Bin's on old wood cabinets, sanding lightly between coats. If you feel the surface before and after sanding gently with 400 grit paper, the difference is amazing. Sanded shellac will be extremely smooth and a great base for cabinet grade latex paints. Don't use cheap paint, get a cabinet grade, it makes all the difference in the world with filling and smoothness. So use Bins, sand it and you will get great results.

  • Can Alkyd paint be successfully applied over this Shellac product also? – RET Feb 27 '14 at 3:58
  • Since you are such an expert can you answer this for me: What size sprayer tip should be used to spray Shellac Primer onto cabinets (using a Titan 440 sprayer)? – RET Feb 27 '14 at 4:03
  • I am not familiar with your particular sprayer, but the tip sizes are usually labeled in similar fashions. I have had good results on cabinetry using a 415 tip on my Graco airless sprayer. Avoid a tip with a wide pattern or designed for heavier paints. – shirlock homes Feb 27 '14 at 13:13

I sand it. I have used it on window sills to hide knots. Can't think of a reason why it wouldn't be sandable. When you put shellac on wood as a finish, you're supposed to sand between coats. You should good. Make sure you have alcohol on hand for cleanup.


We own a wedding business in Western Australia and use Zinsser B I N exclusively as a primer for all our wishing wells and hire furniture. We recently purchased a reproduction French hall table and sweetheart chairs to add use for signing the marriage certificate. We painted them with the BIN aerosol paint and achieved the same velvety texture as chalk paint. To seal the paint, we used furniture wax which resulted in a satin sheen. To add the perfect finishing touch, we then used decorative furniture appliqués and French provincial drawer pulls, also painted with BIN. Now completed, the result is a smooth velvety texture and a flawless finish that anyone can achieve. Zinsser BIN is simply the most versatile paint we have found and is the key to achieving the perfect finish every time.

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    That's wonderful, but you haven't said anything about whether or not it can be sanded, which is what the OP wanted to know. Please update your answer to address the question. Thanks! – Niall C. May 25 '15 at 20:34

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