Archie Paint Glossary - C

Archie Paint Glossary - C

Paint Glossary The following glossary contains terms used commonly in the paint and coatings industry to describe the characteristics, usage and components of paints and coatings.

Results for "C"
A double-curve or reverse S-shaped furniture leg that leads down to an elaborate foot (usually a ball-and-claw type).

Cadmium orange
One of the basic pigments, cadmium orange is made from cadmium sulphide and cadmium selenide.

When pigment settles hard on the bottom of the paint can.

A water- thinned paint composed essentially of calcium carbonate (chalk) and glue.

Calcium Carbonate
A natural mineral used in lime, cement, and paints as a colorant and a pigment extender. Its common name is chalk.

Calcium Hypochlorite
Household bleach. Effective in killing mildew spores prior to coating.

Carborundum stone
Coarse-grit, silicone-carbide whetstone used to smooth rough-cut edges of ceramic tile. Also called a Crystolon or India stone.

Caulk A generic term for a compound used to fill cracks, gaps, seams and joints.
The framework or body of a cabinet or piece of casegood furniture.

Carpenter's wood glue
Aliphatic resin glue that is the adhesive of choice for bonding wood to wood.

Casegood furniture
Furniture such as bureaus and cabinets (casegoods) designed to contain things in drawers or behind doors as opposed to furniture that stands, such as tables and chairs.

A piece of furniture used for storage, including cabinets, dressers and desks.

Casein paint
An old-fashioned paint made by mixing pigments with milk solids. It is seldom used today except on furniture where a faded look is desired.

Casement window
A window that consists of one framed-glass panel and is hinged on the side. It swings outward from the opening at the turn of a crank.

The trim that is used to line the inside and outside of a doorway or window frame.

A tinge, a slight deviation from the norm in color or appearance. The term is most often applied to color, and refers to a small difference in hue. For example, four pure hues are generally recognized: red, green, blue and yellow. Each is unique and contains no quality of the others. If a blue hue seems to contain some element of green, that blue is said to have a green "cast."

Cat’s Eye
Any discontinuity, bare, or thin spot in a painted area. Also called "cat face”.

A chemical used to change the rate of a chemical reaction. Differs from a curing agent/hardener in that the catalyst is not itself chemically consumed in the reaction while a curing agent is.

Catalytic Coating
A coating that cures as the result of a chemical reaction. For example, a two-part epoxy where a hardener must be added to obtain the required results.

Cathedral ceiling
Angled surfaces of a structure's roof framing that are reflected in the finished ceiling. These are typically found when there is an open floor plan in the first story.

The negative terminal of an electrolytic cell which, in the corrosion process, is protected and not attacked.

Cathodic Protection
The reduction or prevention of corrosion of a metal surface caused by making it cathodic. This is accomplished by using a sacrificial anode (such as in zinc rich coatings or galvanizing) or by using impressed current.

A soft compound for sealing joints and cracks against leaks (of water, air and noise). It may be silicone, neoprene or one of a variety of other synthetic compounds.

A strong base or alkaline material with a pH of 7 to 14.

Caustic Embrittlement
Cracking as a result of the combined action of tensile stresses and corrosion in alkaline solutions (as at riveted joints in boilers).

Caustic Soda
A common name for sodium hydroxide, a strong base or alkali.

A circuit consisting of an anode and a cathode in electrical contact in a solid or liquid electrolyte. Corrosion generally occurs only at anodic areas.

Cellulose paste
Odorless, non-staining paste derived from wood pulp, cotton or other fibrous plant material, used primarily to hang wallpapers made from natural materials such as grasscloths, linens and stringcloths.

Cementitious Coatings
A coating containing cement as a component, held on the surface by a binder.

Center panels
The vertical panels that make up the center partition of a laminated-particleboard storage unit, with holes drilled on both sides to hold adjustable shelving brackets.

The dissecting line through the center of an object, such as a sink.

One hundredth of a poise which is a unit of measurement for viscosity. Water at room temperature has a viscosity of 1.0 Centipoise.

Ceramic tile
Fired clay tile that is hard and may be glazed or unglazed, 1 square inch or smaller to 1 square foot or larger in size, available in a profusion of colors, shapes, patterns and textures.

Deterioration of the surface of an exterior paint upon weathering into a faded, powdery substance. Chalking occurs when the paint’s binder is degraded by harsh environmental conditions. Chalk should be removed prior to repainting. 

Chalk-line box
A tool used to establish a plumb or horizontal line on a wall. Wallpaper installers sometimes replace the line in a chalk-line box with a cloth fishing line for a more refined line and a minimum of chalk on the wall. For wall-paper applications, a light-colored chalk is preferable.

A cord that is rubbed with or drawn through chalk and stretched taut between two points, just above a surface. It is pulled up in the center and released so that it snaps down, leaving a straight line marked on the surface between the end points.

Patterns of short, narrow breaks in the top layer of paint. Checking occurs when the paint loses its elasticity. 

Chemical resistance
The ability of a coating to resist damage by chemicals. 

The lip around the opening of a paint can into which the lid is placed. 

Chain link fence
Prefabricated fence consisting of metal poles and chain link mesh. These fences are durable and provide good security, but no privacy.

Chair rail
A piece of molding that runs around a room about 3-1/2 feet above the floor (approximately the height of a chair back). It evolved from wainscoting.

Chaise lounge
A chair with back support and a seat long enough for outstretched legs.

A square edge cut equally on one or both sides of a piece of wood so as to form a bevel.

Check (in lumber)
A defect in lumber caused by a separation lengthwise between the wood's growth rings.

A loosely woven, coarse cotton gauze used to create different textures as well as to blend and smooth wet paint over a surface.

Cheesecloth distressing
The technique of blending and softening wet paint strokes and colors by pouncing bunched-up cheesecloth over a surface.

Chemical stripper
A paint removing agent. Usually applied with a brush, but may be embedded in a plastic-covered poultice that is laid on a surface then pulled off.

The chime is the area of the lip or rim of a paint can to which the lid seals.

China bristles
Natural bristles used in the manufacture of paintbrushes for solvent-based paints.

The breaking away of small portion of the paint film due to its inability to flex under impact or with thermal expansion and contraction of the substrate. It is usually caused by the use of too brittle a film or poor adhesion to the base material.

Chromatic purity: freedom from dilution with white and hence vividness of hue. The aspect of color in the MunPI color system by which a sample appears to differ from a gray of the same lightness or brightness and that corresponds to saturation of the perceived color. 

Chromated Copper Arsenic (CCA)
A chemical used to treat lumber under high pressure so the wood can resist decay.

That which is perceived as having a hue (not white, gray, or black).

Chrome green
A variety of green pigments made from chrome yellow and iron (Prussian) blue.

Chrome orange
One of the basic pigments, this orange-red pigment is made from lead chromate and lead oxides.

Chrome yellow
One of the basic pigments, this yellow pigment is made from lead chromate combined with lead sulfate.

Circular saw
A hand-held power saw consisting of a circular disk, usually with a toothed edge.

Circular shelves
Rotating shelves that make it easy to reach items in the rear section of a corner cabinet; also referred to as a Lazy Susan.

A white, mined mineral used as an extender - mostly in interior paints.

Clad wood window
A composite window made of wood and encased by vinyl; requires little maintenance and is energy-efficient.

A tool that holds pieces of wood or other items together.

Clamshell digger
A hand tool composed of two hinged, shovel-like parts that loosen soil and then grasp it for removal from postholes.

The characteristic of a transparent material whereby distinct images may be observed through it.

Clay-based adhesive
A starch adhesive that includes heavy solids to enhance holding power. This type of adhesive can stain or cause the ink to flake off many types of wallpapers. Because clay-based adhesive does not dry as quickly as other types of adhesives, take special care to smooth the wallpaper evenly during installation.

The ability of a dry film coat to maintain its original appearance after repeated washing with soap and water.

A detergent, alkali, acid, or similar contamination removing material.

Cleanup center
The area of a kitchen where the sink, waste disposer, trash compactor, dishwasher and related accessories are grouped for easy access and efficient use.

A grade of redwood that is free from knots and may contain sapwood. Clear wood is recommended for highly visible applications where the wood is not subject to rot.

Clear finish
Any of a number of wood finishes that allow the wood grain and color to be seen.

Clear Coating
A transparent protective and/or decorative film; generally the final coat of sealer applied to automotive finishes.

Clear grade
A grade of lumber or trim that has no knots or other visible defects.

Clear top coat
A transparent finishing layer of protection applied over a decorated surface.

Closed riser
A kind of staircase with risers installed between treads.

Closed-grain wood
Wood such as maple and birch that has small, tight pores and a smooth surface when sanded.

Cloudy, Clouding
When a finishing material is turbid (cloudy), due to the suspension of finely divided solid particles.

Coal Tar
A dark brown to black bituminous material produced by the destructive distillation of coal.

The formation of resinous or polymeric material when water evaporates from an emulsion or a latex system, permitting contact and fusion of adjacent particles. The fusing together of an emulsion film upon evaporation of water.

Coalescent Aid
The small amount of solvent contained in latex coatings. Not a true solvent since it does not actually dissolve the latex resins, the coalescent aid simply helps the latex resins to flow together (coalesce).

The paint applied to a surface in a single application to form a film when dry.

Coating System
A number of coats separately applied, in a predetermined order, at suitable intervals to allow for drying and curing, resulting in a completed job.

The tendency of spray paint to form strings or strands rather than droplets as it leaves the gun, causing a spider web effect. May be caused by too volatile a solvent or too little air pressure.

Coefficient of Friction
The measure of the relative difficulty with which the surface of one material will slide over an adjacent surface or another material.

The attractive force between like molecules. It is the force that holds the molecules of a paint film or other substance together.

Cold Checking
Checks or cracks which appear in the dried film when it is subjected to repeated, sudden, and appreciable reductions in temperature.

Cold chisel
A heavy, blunt-edged chisel used in masonry work, typically for chipping or breaking up brick, stone, concrete, ceramic tile and other masonry materials.

Cold Rolled Steel
Low carbon, cold-reduced, sheet steel. Differs from hot rolled steel by the absence of mill scale.

Material composed of ultramicroscopic particles of a solid, liquid, or gas dispersed in a different medium which can be a solid, liquid, or gas.

Colonial style
An early-American architectural and decorative style during the Colonial period that was influenced by design ideas brought by settlers from Europe, particularly England. This basic and functional style initially featured a minimum of ornament but became more elaborate with the prosperity of the Colonies.

A generic term referring inclusively to visible lightwaves in the spectrum, and white and black. Color is described by three properties: hue, lightness, and saturation:

Color Difference
The magnitude and character of the difference between two object colors under specific conditions

Color Fast
Non-fading in prolonged exposure to ultraviolet radiation.

Color Float
When one or more colors, different from the original color, appear on the surface after the finishing material has been applied, it is said to have a color float. This is different from in can float.

Color intensity
Strength of a color.

Color Rendition Index (CRI)
Measures the way a light source renders color. The higher the index number, the closer color resembles how it appears in sunlight.

Color Retention
The ability of paint to keep its original color. Major threats to color retention are exposure to ultraviolet radiation and abrasion by weather or repeated cleaning.

Color scheme
A group of colors used together to create visual harmony in a space.

Color uniformity
Ability of a coating to maintain a uniform or consistent color across its entire surface, particularly during the weathering process.

Color value
The lightness or darkness of a color.

Color washing
The technique of applying layers of heavily thinned glaze to a surface to produce a faded, transparent wash of color.

Color way
The different color schemes that are manufactured using the same wallpaper pattern. Manufacturers usually print a wallpaper pattern in two or more different color ways.

Color wheel
A pie-shaped diagram showing the range and relationships of pigment and dye colors. Three equidistant wedge-shaped slices are the primaries; in between are the secondary and tertiary colors into which the primaries combine. Though represented as discrete slices, the hues form a continuum.

Concentrated color that can be added to paints to make specific colors.

A wood or metal vertical support member.

Any paint technique that involves marking narrow lines of color on a surface. Also called "striƩ" or "dragging." Combing techniques that specifically intend to imitate wood are called wood-graining techniques.

Combustible Liquid
Any liquid having a flash point between 100° and 180°F.

Ability of two or more materials to mix with each other without separation or to adhere properly to other surfaces without detriment.

Complementary colors
Hues directly opposite each other on the color wheel. As the strongest contrasts, complements tend to intensify each other. A color can be grayed by mixing it with its complement.

Complementary Harmony
A color scheme produced by using complementary or contrasting colors, sometimes in combination with their tints and shades.

Composite board
Panel material similar to plywood but made up of reconstituted wood particles at its core and sometimes softwood veneer on its faces.

Compound miter
A cut that angles in two directions simultaneously.

Compound miter saw
A power saw that can cut angles in two directions simultaneously.

Compressed air sprayer
An electric sprayer that emits a fine mist of paint by forcing air through a paint reservoir.

Concentration Cell
A cell involving an electrolyte and two identical electrodes, with the potential resulting from differences in the chemistry of the environments adjacent to the two electrodes.

Concentration Polarization
Polarization of an electrode caused by concentration changes in the environment adjacent to the metal surface.

Concrete consists of a mixture of cement, sand, aggregate and water. Concrete continues to harden over a long period of time and becomes harder and stronger with age, although it is subject to cracking under the pressure of heat, cold and water.

Concrete block
A masonry unit which consists of an outside shell with a hollow center that is divided by two or three vertical webs. The ends of the unit may have flanges that accept mortar and join with adjacent blocks, or they may have smooth ends for corners and the ends of walls.

Concrete pavers
Commonly used for patios and walks, concrete pavers come in a number of shapes and colors and are designed to be laid in a sand base without mortar; some interlock to form repeating patterns.

Moisture that forms when warm, moist air comes into contact with a cool surface. Usually found on windows and skylights, condensation is only a problem in heavy amounts, when it can lead to leaks.

A coating additive that increases flow, adhesion and coverage without altering the color or durability of the coating. Used especially when spraying.

Conical Mandrel
An instrument used to evaluate a coating's resistance to cracking when bent over a specified radius.

Relative stiffness, body, or resistance to agitation or deformation of a coating composition in bulk; the property may be a composite of plasticity, viscosity, yield value, and thixotropy.

Contact cement
A rubber-based liquid glue that bonds on contact; often used for applying veneers.

Any modern design (after 1920) that does not contain traditional elements of the past.

Contemporary style
A style of decoration or architecture that is modern and pertains to what is current.

The art of assembling colors with different values and intensities and in different proportions to create a dynamic scheme.

Contrast Ratio
A measure of opacity. The ratio of the luminous reflectance of a specimen backed with black material of specified reflectance to reflectance of the same specimen backed with white material of specified reflectance.

Contrasting color scheme
A combination involving choices from opposite sides of the color wheel. Strong contrasts create dynamic schemes, though muted or tinted versions are more harmonious.

A material having a known history, the performance of which has been established previously, and which is used as a standard of comparison.

Conventional Sprayer
A power paint sprayer which uses compressed air (produced by an air compressor) to force paint onto a surface.

Conversion Coating
A metal surface layer intentionally developed by chemical reaction for the purpose of protection or looks.

A unit containing a group of burners, gas, electric or magnetic-induction and perhaps a grill or ventilator.

Cool colors
A loose division of the color wheel that includes the range of blues, greens, blue-greens and blue-violets. Cool colors, particularly when pale, tend to be retreating colors.

Coordinating wallpaper
A wallpaper that blends with another wallpaper, whether by color, design or other factors. Coordinating wallpapers can visually tie together two rooms or adjacent walls in the same room. Sometimes they are used over and under chairs rails as companions.

Stones, bricks or other individual masonry units used as a finished edging around the pond perimeter. Coping can be set loose or mortared in place.

A chemical formed by interaction of two or more different types of molecules. Large molecules obtained by simultaneous polymerization of different monomers, as in vinyl copolymers.

Often called catalyzed or two component urethanes, these cure by the addition of a co-reactant (catalyst) to the isocyanate-containing component. Mixing, induction time, and pot life vary according to the type of isocyanate and catalyst used.

Used as an additive in anti-fouling paints, copper kills marine animals and plants that attach to boat hulls, docks and other below water level objects

Copper Staining
Usually caused by corrosion of copper screens, gutters or downspouts washing down on painted surfaces. Can be prevented by painting or varnishing the copper.

Corner guard
Trim that protects the outside corners of drywall or plaster in high-traffic areas.

The decorative wood box or molding affixed over a window. It may be painted, wallpapered or covered with fabric.

Correlated Color Temperature (CCT)
Compares the warmth or coolness of light as it is produced, or the source as it appears to the viewer.

The decay, oxidation or deterioration of a substance due to interaction with the environment or chemical reaction.

Corrosion - Erosion
Corrosion which is increased because of the abrasive action of a moving stream; the presence of suspended particles greatly accelerates abrasive action.

Corrosion - Filiform
A special type of corrosion that occurs under coatings on metal substrates and is characterized by a definite thread-like structure and directional growth.

Corrosion Fatigue
The combined action of corrosion and fatigue (cyclic stressing) in causing metal fracture.

Corrosion Potential
The potential that a corroding metal exhibits under specific conditions of concentration, time, temperature, aeration, velocity, etc.

Corrosion Rate
The speed (usually an average) with which corrosion progresses; often expressed as though it was linear, in units of mdd (milligrams per square decimeter per day) for weight change, or mpy (mils per year) for thickness changes.

Corrosion Resistant
A paint or primer that aides in the prevention of corrosion. Commonly applied to metals. An insulator against water vapor and airborne contaminants such as chloride compounds. Coatings that do this usually contain a corrosion inhibitor. 

Corrosion inhibitor
Any material used to prevent the oxidation (rusting) of metals. May be a paint undercoat, an additive, a pigment, or a coating applied to the surface. 

An acidic material with a pH of 0 to 7.

Cottonseed oil
A semi-drying oil obtained from the seeds of many types of plants of the genus Gossyprum. As oil, rarely used in paint, but fatty acids used in manufacturers of alkyd resins.

The work surface of a counter, island or peninsula, usually 36-inches high. It may be wood, plastic laminate, ceramic tile, marble, slate or solid surface (acrylic).

Countertop trim tile
Tile that is set on the outside edge of a countertop. It has a raised lip to prevent liquids from spilling over the edge.

A cell developed in an electrolyte resulting from electrical contact between two dissimilar metals.

1. A built-in recess in a wall or ceiling that conceals an indirect light source. 2. A concave recessed molding that is usually found where the wall meets the ceiling or floor.

Cove base tile
Trim tile that makes a smooth joint between a wall and a floor or other surface.

Cove molding
A molding with a concave face used as trim or finish for interior corners.

Cove tile
A trim tile that creates a smooth joint between adjacent walls. A trim tile that creates a smooth joint between adjacent walls, a wall and a floor, or other surfaces.

Coved ceiling
A ceiling formed in an arched manner at its junction with the side walls.

An organic solvent used in latex paints that acts as a temporary plasticizer, to aid in film formation. It helps the binder form a continuous film when applied, particularly at the low end of the application temperature range recommended for the coating. 

Coalescent Aid
The small amount of solvent contained in latex coatings. Not a true solvent since it does not actually dissolve the latex resins, the coalescent aid helps the latex resins flow together, aiding in film formation.

A bonding together of a single substance to itself. Internal adhesion.

Color Retention
The ability of paint to keep its original color and resist fading.  Major threats to color retention are exposure to ultraviolet radiation and abrasion by weather or repeated cleaning. This term is generally applied to exterior paints.

Corrosion Inhibitive
A type of metal paint or primer that prevents rust by preventing moisture from reaching the metal. Zinc phosphate, barium metaborate and strontium chromate (all pigments) are common ingredients in corrosion-inhibitive coatings. These pigments absorb any moisture that enters the paint film.

A paint, varnish, lacquer or other finish used to create a protective and/or decorative layer. Generally used to refer to paints and coatings applied in an industrial setting as part of the original equipment manufacturer's (OEM) process.

Color wheel
A circular chart with wedge-shaped segments of different specific colors. Used in color decorating.

Concentrated color (dyes or pigments) that can be added to paints to make specific colors.

The ability to maintain color and not fade excessively under normal conditions. 

Refers to any liquid with a flash point at or above 100 degrees F (37.5 degrees C). 

Ability to mix with or adhere properly to other components or substances. 

Complementary colors
Two colors directly opposite one another on the color wheel. 

The thickness or brushability of a paint. 

Contrasting colors
Colors separated by at least three others on the color wheel. 

A process whereby nails are pounded or screws are tightened so that they sink just below the surface. 

The spread rate of a paint or coating, usually expressed in sq. ft./gal. or m 2 /l (sq. meter/liter). With pigmented coatings, it can refer to applied hiding power. 

Splitting of a paint film usually as a result of aging. Fracture of a metal in a brittle manner along a single or branched path. It can also be caused by subsurface expansion under a brittle topcoat.

That defect in a coating application which results in craters or "fish eyes." Often caused by the presence of grease, oil, silicon polishes or other similar contaminants on the surface.

Crawl space
A low space above or below the house, just tall enough to permit such work as jacking up a sagging ground floor from below or installing ceiling fixtures above.

The tendency of a liquid to draw up into drops or globules as a result of an abnormally high degree of surface tension.

A mild form of alligatoring, characterized by small cracks in the finish.

Creasing technique
The act of making a crease in wallpaper using a trimming tool or putty knife. Creasing is useful to establish a trim mark in tight places, such as around a door frame or along a ceiling line lacking crown molding.

Spontaneous spreading of a liquid on a surface. In the case of applied paint, or other coating, it refers to the spread of the wet film beyond the area to which it was applied.

A liquid coating made from coal tar once used as a wood preservative. It has been banned for consumer use because of potential health risks.

Crevice Corrosion
Localized corrosion resulting from the formation of a concentration cell in a crevice formed between a metal and a nonmetal, or between two metal surfaces.

Cross Coat Spraying
Spraying the first pass in one direction and the second at a right angle to the first, providing more even film distribution.

Cross seaming
The lattice-type arrangement that results when you install a wallpaper liner horizontally and a decorative wallcovering vertically.

A straight cut that runs across the grain of the wood. Because the grain of trim runs along the length of the piece, a crosscut would be made across the width of the trim.

Crosscut saw
A saw used for cutting across the grain of wood.

The setting up of chemical links between molecular chains to form a three dimensional network of connected molecules.

Crown molding
A decorative molding attached to a wall at ceiling height, usually used in conjunction with paneled walls.

Solid matter that forms in an adhesive when the temperature falls below 50 degrees F. Crystallization can also result from installing wallpaper over a porous wall.

A distortion in wood across the grain caused by warpage.

The period of time that concrete, tile adhesive or grout must be left in order for it to reach full strength.

The process by which concrete becomes solid and develops strength. Proper moisture reduces cracking and shrinkage.

Curing Agent
A hardener or activator added to a synthetic resin to develop the proper film forming properties.

Curing-out period
The time it takes for a primer-sealer or wallpaper adhesive to completely dry.

Long horizontal runs in a coating film that occur on vertical surfaces when a coating is applied too heavily.

Custom-built storage systems
Shelving and storage systems that are built to order.

To dilute or thin a paint, varnish or stain with solvents (or waters).

Short, stiff-bristled brushes used to cut in lines, such as in corners and around trim.

Custom color
Special colors that are made by adding colorant to paint or by intermixing paints of different colors.  
Cutting in
To carefully paint a clean edge, usually a straight line, which is parallel to an adjacent surface. For example, painting the frame of a window but not the glass. 

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