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Golden GAC 400 Fabric Stiffener

Golden's GAC 400 Medium can replace rabbit skin glue as a canvas primer. Traditionally, rabbit skin glue (also known as hide glue) was used to reduce the flexibility of canvas before painting. Although it reduces flexibility, it is extremely brittle.

Rabbit skin glue is hygroscopic, which means that it always remains water-soluble. Even when completely dry, high humidity will re-introduce water into the film, causing it to soften or swell up. Over time, this constant swelling and drying of the film can cause severe paint-film cracking and delamination.

GAC 400 can be used in a similar fashion for stiffening canvas. Although GAC 400 does not quite achieve the stiffness of rabbit skin glue, it does not remain water-soluble. Apply one or two coats directly into the raw canvas, coating both front and back for maximum stiffness.

GAC 400 must be applied directly to raw canvas. It is ineffective over any other medium. Used over other mediums, it will flake off and cause delamination of subsequent paint layers. Since it is an acrylic polymer, it is not hygroscopic. However, neither rabbit skin glue nor GAC 400 is completely effective against oil penetration, and the use of GAC 100 over GAC 400 is recommended for oil painters.

Note — Since GAC 400 is brittle, canvas or fabrics treated with GAC 400 should not be rolled tightly or bent backward. This will cause cracking of the polymer film and may transfer cracks into additional paint layers. This is especially a risk with cured oil paints.

® Golden is a registered trademark of Golden Artist Colors.

Conforms to California Proposition 65

CA Prop 65

GAC 400
GAC 400
 (enlarge)
GAC 400
Example Artwork by Julie Swanson Davis
Example Artwork by Julie Swanson Davis

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Purchase Items SAVE 40% off List! 
Item No. Description Size     Price Prices, promotions, and availability may vary by store, catalog, and online. Qty MSDS 
00628-4005 3940  GAC 400 Medium  8 oz    List $15.99 $9.59BLICK everyday sale price! - additional discounts will not apply to this item (click for more details) Material Safety Data Sheet availableProp 65
00628-4006 3940  GAC 400 Medium  16 oz    List $27.19 $16.31BLICK everyday sale price! - additional discounts will not apply to this item (click for more details) Material Safety Data Sheet availableProp 65
00628-4009 3940  GAC 400 Medium  128 oz    List $103.49 $62.09BLICK everyday sale price! - additional discounts will not apply to this item (click for more details) Material Safety Data Sheet availableProp 65
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  • Dick Blick Art Materials
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  • P.O. Box 1267
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  • Galesburg, IL 61402-1267
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  • Toll-free Phone (800) 828-4548

  • International Phone +1-309-343-6181 ext. 5402
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  • Fax (800) 621-8293

Dick Blick Art Materials®, Blick®, Blick Studio®, and Artists Pick Blick® are registered trademarks of Dick Blick Holdings Inc. © Copyright 1999-2014 Dick Blick Holdings Inc. All rights reserved.

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