Clear spray for inkjet printable CD/DVD

I am just wondering what kind of results you guys are getting by spraying your inkjet printable DVD’s?

I purchased some clear gloss protective spray by Rustoleum (it says it works on plastic). It seems clear and it is not yellow, but it gives the gloss on the disc a mottled appearance.

Is this what I should be expecting or is there a better method or product that will give me a smoother result?

Most any clear acrylic will do, finishes vary by product. Yours looks like it could use another coat. Krylon makes a whole range of clear acrylics. Best results are usually obtained by applying 2 or more thin coats.

To me that’s already too much spray. Don’t try to put a real “layer” on there, but rather a light film or screen or whatever you want to call it. Just enough to cover the disc evenly and accentuate the colours. Use multiple layers, spraying just a couple of seconds at a time and let it dry for 5 or 10 minutes in between (use a cover to protect against dust when drying). I use a matte fixative spray from the crafts & arts section in a DIY store.

I have done some more tests and it appears that the matte finish is much better than the gloss. The paint seems to have a tough time spreading out on the surface of the disc…almost like it wants to bead together because of its surface tension or something, hence the mottled appearance. It still does this with the matte paint and you can clearly see that when it is still wet, but when it dries the effect almost totally goes away. The gloss paint seems to show - even magnify - these imperfections and it also makes the label hard to read because of the sheen.

In the picture I posted above I used only 2 light coats, so it wasn’t a case of too much paint.

I have found that you do have to put 3 light coats on the disc to make it totally waterproof. If you do not there will still be pinhole sized spots that are unprotected, so if you get the disc wet and rub it off you get a spotted effect on your disc. I’ll post some more pics of what I mean later today.

There seems to be a lack of information on this topic and I spent a couple hours trying several things last night so I will post it here for others future reference.

You just need to use a different spray. Try the Krylon clear acrylics.

The matte spray I am using is a Krylon product; "Krylon® Matte Finish ".

What is the exact name of the one you are using?

Anyone have any long term info on how these sprays affect dye stability? Do you use pigmented inks?

No, the IP4300 uses dye based inks for photographs. If you are concerned about dye stability you can check out the Krylon® Preserve It!® Digital Photo & Paper Protectant. (

It is marketed specifically for digital prints. I am not sure what differences there are between that one and the one that I am using though, but I don’t think there is much of a difference. If anyone has used it and has any comments I’d be interested to hear them.

I stopped using sprays when I got TY watershield discs. I’ve used several Krylon sprays, and they all seem a little different in terms of the finish. The one I have used the most of is “UV Resistant” clear glossy.

I use Patricia Nomick’s (Wal-Mart Arts and Crafts) to coat my discs…

I tried that at one time and found it to be very slightly cloudy and less glossy than plain clear acrylic. Not an objectionable finish, just different, but slightly cloudy. Some of the cloudiness went away after drying.

I did about 30 TY watershield discs and sprayed them immediately after printing
with a clear laquer spray can. The results have to be seen to be believed

Here is what I meant.

Anyone care to post pics of their results, along with what brand of acrylic you are using?

as soon as I can get my hands on a decent camera, I’ll send some pics of a dvd
cleared with laquer. I was fooling around with different media and didn’t have much luck until I used the TY watershield discs. The quality of the prints are really good and don’t really need a protective coating. I sprayed some laquer onto one of them
to see what would happen and was amazed with the finish. I printed the disc and then immediately clear coated it with laquer - one heavy coat - laquer really shrinks as it dries and if you don’t completely hammer the disc in one shot, you’ll get dry spots.

This is the type of laquer I used:

best shot I could get with current junk camera;

FYI, lacquer paint can melt polycarbonate and inkjet printable coatings as well.

I have changed my mind on the Krylon® Matte Finish. It sufferes the same fate as the other glossy version I was using, with a mottled appearance, although it is harder to see. However not only does it suffer from that, it also makes the print kind of cloudy since it is a matte finish.

So, today I tried some clear polyurethane spray and the results were poor. It does not adhere to the disc at all, and when I rubbed it it all came off. On the plus side it was low odor…

I also tried some clear gloss from the automotive aisle and it sufferes from the same mottling problem as the others I have tested.

I did some reading and found that the Krylon Latex Enamel is supposed to work excellent and it is also low odor (which is a definate plus).

So I will try that hopefully today.

I use Patricia Nimock’s PLAID (Wal-Mart Arts and Crafts & Others) to coat my discs as well. I have not had any issues with cloudiness as another poster suggested; maybe he got a bad can of spray?

I have used both matte & gloss. Gloss is nice, except if there are any specks of dust or flaws present on the disc, it really shows them up. I use a couple light coats, just enough to “seal” the ink. I would say at this point that I really don’t have a preference, gloss or matte…

Another thing that I would mention is that, I feel better results are obtained with the white printable media, rather than the shiny silver type. The colors are more “vivid” on the white media, (more contrast, detail) & the colors are more “reflective” on the silver media…if that makes sense!

I tried the Latex Enamel gloss version and it has the same problems. It seems that with the gloss finishes you need to put a lot of it on for it to self-level (giving you that smooth finish), but when you put so much of it on it takes forever to dry and usually ends up wrecking the data surface. So it is just not an option for me.

I think I have given up on a gloss finish. I guess maybe I was expecting too much from it. It just distracts from the label and highlights the imperfections in the paint job. I tried everything, from changing the distance I spray to heating the can of paint and I can’t get good results.

I have purchased the Krylon Matte latex enamel and am in the process of trying it out. Not to make the disc look better, but just to protect the surface. I’ll try and post some pics of the result later when it dries.