What is oxidative drying?
Oils need oxygen in order to cure, hence "oxidative drying".
The oil gets oxygen from the air. The oxidative drying process is fundamentally different to the UV process where the finish is cured by ultraviolet (UV) light.
How oils cure – it's all about the links
Oxidative drying is the term generally used when finishing parquet and wood floors with one-component oils, but the chemical hardening process is better described as oxidative cross-linking, because oil molecules cross-link with each other (or "resinify") during the drying stage. In this process, the molecules can no longer move from the spot they impregnated, which means the impregnation is stable and fixed.
So oxidative drying is a special type of chemical cross-linking, where the individual binder molecules bond together using atmospheric oxygen as a catalyst.
The following factors are guaranteed to speed up oil drying:
• Higher temperature
• Lower humidity
• Lower coating thickness
• Better ventilation
For more background information on drying oxidative coating systems, see our technical tips and tricks.
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