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This is really a one-and-a-half part question.

I know that when paint is mixed with a solvent or used with a primer, it sometimes wrinkles. As I understand, a key physical phenomena here is a non-uniform evaporation of the primer or solvent that gives rise to different evaporation rates at the paint surface. This can create a non-uniform temperature difference. This in turn can create a thermocapillarity (surface tension effects due to non-uniform temperature distribution) or solutocapillarity (surface tension effects due to non-uniform solvent/solute concentration) effects that wrinkle the paint surface.

So is this a solvent problem or a primer problem? Am I understanding the physics right but the nature of primer and solvent wrong?

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closed as off topic by Sklivvz, Waffle's Crazy Peanut, David Z Jan 16 '13 at 21:25

Questions on Physics Stack Exchange are expected to relate to physics within the scope defined by the community. Consider editing the question or leaving comments for improvement if you believe the question can be reworded to fit within the scope. Read more about reopening questions here.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

I'm unclear on what you are asking... the physics you propose appears to attribute wrinkling to non-uniform evaporation of solvent and of primer. So you seem to be implying that the physics is the same regardless? So what confusion is there about their nature? And what do you mean by "solvent problem" or "primer problem"? – tpg2114 Jan 16 '13 at 19:11
@tpg2114 The primer, I understand is a first coat on which paint is applied. The solvent on the other hand is mixed with the paint to reduce it's viscosity. So what contributes more to the wrinkling? The solvent or the primer? I gather where the confusion may have been. – drN Jan 16 '13 at 20:16
I think that may knock this out of the realm of physics and make it OT unfortunately. Plus I'm still not entirely clear -- you are supposed to let the primer dry completely before painting over it, so there shouldn't be an evaporation differential due to the primer. – tpg2114 Jan 16 '13 at 20:31
@tpg2114 I was not aware that I'd have to let the primer dry completely. forgive my ignorance! :) Having said that I put this question in physics.stackexchange rather than, say, chemistry.SE because engineers (like me) and chemists have a varied perception of things. However engineers and fluid physicists share a commong outlook! – drN Jan 16 '13 at 20:36