Just to come back to iso-propyl alcohol as dissolvent for a 2# cut of dewaxed shellac. When used on a black walnut desktop organiser, the result was quite depressing (please see photo). The surface became quite too shiny, I think. There were build-ups along the edges, and “lumps”, even when applied very thinly, and I had to wait more than ten minutes between layers. To add insult to injury, there was residual not fully dissolved flakes at the bottom of the jar.
Six months later, I now have finished a small chest (modelled from the tool chest project). The shellac flakes were at last fully dissolved, and using methylated 190-proof ethanol I brought the cut down, first to 1.5 and then to somewhat above 1. The former still gave a distinct shine, less build up, and both seemed “lumpy”. A 125µ lacquer filter removed the lumps, and using the around 1# cut I had a pleasant time applying a rapid drying shellac mix to the chest (a thanks for being vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2).
To sum up: methylated alcohol and thin cuts, and get som 99% ethanol for a 2# cut, should French polishing be called for.