In stock
Wipe on with a cloth or apply with a foam brush for a hard, durable satin-sheen topcoat.
Grouped product items
Product Name Price Qty
Satin Arm-R-Seal Pint
Satin Arm-R-Seal Pint Item #: 56598
In stock
Satin Arm-R-Seal Quart
Satin Arm-R-Seal Quart Item #: 56606
In stock
Satin Arm-R-Seal Gallon
Satin Arm-R-Seal Gallon Item #: 56614
In stock

General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin

Item #
94% of 100
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin

Arm-R-Seal topcoats are made with only the highest-quality urethane resin, making them extremely durable and long lasting.


  • For simple 2-step finishing, wipe on General Finishes Seal-A-Cell for a lustrous finish. After drying, wipe on or use foam brush to apply Arm-R-Seal for a hard, protective finish
  • Formulated to be wiped on with a cloth or applied with a foam brush, eliminating drips and sags
  • Penetrates to provide protection and a natural look
  • Gallon sizes come in convenient jug instead of a can
  • Choose from Satin, Semi-Gloss and Gloss
  • Available in Pint, Quart and Gallon sizes
  • Shipping Restrictions: Ground Transportation Only.
(1) General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
More Information
Brand General Finishes
Tech Spec
  • Coats: Normally 3
  • Cure Time: 2 Weeks for optimal water resistance
  • Dry to Recoat: 12-24 hours
  • Suggested Application: Natural bristle brush, foam brush, wipe on, spray or pad applicator
  • Suggested Surface Prep: Clean, bare wood sanded with 150 or 180 grit paper.
  • Clean-up: Mineral spirits
Technical Documents
Dry Time 24 hrs
Finish Satin
Size Gallon, Pint, Quart
4.7 / 5.0
181 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
Walnut Table Finish
A good friend made a new walnut dining room table for me and left the finishing to me! I took a class at the local Rockler store and decided to use Arm-R-Seal in satin. This finish is the easiest finish to get great results! I have been finishing all types of wood trim and furniture for over 30 years and this is the absolute best finish for furniture. Easy to apply and beautiful results. Durable too!
March 25, 2019
1 month ago
great coating with a durable finish
Have used the product for years with great results
March 10, 2019
1 month ago
Woodworking Experience:
Great product. Goes on smoothly. Easy application for multiple coats. Used on live edge fresh cut slab. Brought out the natural color of the wood beautifully without giving it that 'yellow' tinge I have had with other products. Anxious to try the Gel stain.
February 23, 2019
3 months ago
Woodworking Experience:
General finishes
I have it on all the cabinets in my house and I use it on about everything. Sand to 180 or 220, wipe it off good to prepare. The first coat sucks in the most, but keep working it in for about 10 minutes, then wipe it off basically. Nest coat fiber sandpaper and this time a little bit goes a long way, but take your time . 3 coats minimum. I use wax over the last coat on fiber pieces
February 22, 2019
2 months ago
Woodworking Experience:
Rockler the one stop for finishes.
I used this product on a table built last year. I found it easy to use and of high quality. Since my wife wanted it to match the cabinet in the room next to it, General Finishes makes various stains and dyes to accomplish the finishing part of the project.
Completed dining room table I used General Finishes ARM-R-SEAL Satin varnish.
This I the table top during the application of the satin varnish. 
I wiped the varnish on the top.
February 8, 2019
3 months ago
Best product for a great finish. Usually no need for more than three coats, apply with soft cloth. Sand with 220 grit before last quote, steel wool after final coat, buff.
Best finish ever
User submitted image
January 24, 2019
3 months ago
Woodworking Experience:
Great finish
Have used this product on multiple different projects. It never fails to produce. Easy to apply, easy to finish.
November 27, 2018
5 months ago
Woodworking Experience:
Easy to apply, beautiful finish.
User submitted image
Added Oct 20, 2018
October 20, 2018
6 months ago
Great Product
Used Arm R Seal for the first time to seal/finish the top of a live edge/slab coffee table I was building. Per the recommendation of the staff at Rockler, I first used Seal A Cell (also by General) as a base layer to bring out the grain of the wood. Followed with 3 coats of Arm R Seal (Satin). Was easy to apply with a foam brush, and produced an outstanding, smooth finish. Per the directions, I stirred the product often to make sure that whatever they add to damp down the sheen in the Satin product stayed in suspension. Way better than the straight Polyurethane finishes I have been using. I will use this product whenever I need a durable finish in the future.
August 9, 2018
9 months ago
Woodworking Experience:
This is my favorite go to finish. Wipes on so easy, builds slowly but makes a smooth beautiful finish .
August 4, 2018
9 months ago
Woodworking Experience:
Start typing your question and we'll check if it was already asked and answered. Learn More
Browse 51 questions Browse 51 questions and 129 answers
Why did you choose this?
Rockler Store
Used before
Roy M on Aug 17, 2018
Ordered this based on the excellent on-line reviews of it!
Dawn M on Aug 9, 2018
Used before
Roy M on Aug 17, 2018
Used it before and like the results
FJ K on Aug 14, 2018
Ordered this based on the excellent on-line reviews of it!
Dawn M on Aug 9, 2018
Tried and true. My favorite finish for projects when I don't want to spray.
Ben B on Aug 7, 2018
great on this product and im looking for a harder finish but without a high gloss. your product delivers that and based on photos I saw on your page using this project that's the look I desire to achieve.
Thomas P on Aug 6, 2018
Recommendations made on online forums.
James B on Aug 5, 2018
Using on counter tops we made and after researching looked to be the best for us. Was highly recommended
Jean H on Aug 1, 2018
A proven winner. I have had great success with this product when just wiping it on with a rag made of T-shirt material. Three to four thin coats each sanded at 400 between coats. Works great for someone without a spray booth set up but who still cares about trying to get a high quality finish.
joel p on Jul 25, 2018
A re-order. Used previously, with great results!
DOUG H on Jul 17, 2018
Very professional durable finishl
James M on Jul 17, 2018
One of your guys recommended it to me on the phone. I am happy with it.
Isaac G on Jul 17, 2018
Looks great on oak
Thomas W on Jul 16, 2018
It's my go-to oil based finish. I'm restoring a vintage walnut chair and this won't have the plasticky look of some of the water-borne finishes that weren't around in that era.
Kathleen S on Jul 3, 2018
Quan D on Jul 2, 2018
I saw a post on Pinterest.
Marla S on Jun 18, 2018
Seams that most of the "Experts" like this product, so who am I to argue with that?
Milo H on Jun 8, 2018
good stuff use it all the time
Gerard M on May 30, 2018
I like the richness of oil base and this is the General Finish oil topcoat recommended for kitchens in the videos.
Barbara W on May 23, 2018
Family Handyman article
Dan H on May 11, 2018
heard its the best top coat for our gel stain
Jennifer M on May 11, 2018
Recommended by your website so decided to try it.
Dennis E on May 10, 2018
Good product have been using this for years
Gary P on May 10, 2018
it works if it works DONT FIX IT !!!!!
correct top coat for gell stain
Darren C on May 5, 2018
Good review by Youtube show "the Wood Whisperer"
Randal H on May 4, 2018
We have used it and love it.
Nicole G on Apr 21, 2018
Used it before
Fred M on Apr 19, 2018
I have used it before and love how you can apply thick coats and it self levels. Three coats over stain is all you need.
Dario M on Apr 13, 2018
I am anxious to try this sounds like it will be easy to apply and i love to put a durable finish on my refinished items!!
Helen H on Apr 10, 2018
Watching WoodWorks with David Marks. Been using general finish products for several years now and love the results.
John A on Apr 3, 2018
I’ve used it before with excellent results
Charlie M on Mar 24, 2018
Best finish that I have used so far.
Thomas S on Mar 20, 2018
This is the second step in refinishing a dresser. I am using this to add durability to the finish and seal it for use in my home.
Rodney J on Mar 14, 2018
works well with gel stains
DWAYNE F on Mar 14, 2018
Recommended with gel stain
Robert K on Mar 9, 2018
Have been using this same product for many years, easy to apply, easy cleanup, satin finish looks terrific, brings out beautiful woodgrain and lasts and looks great for many years. Used on different exotic hardwoods, (favorite is Canary wood), for long lasting protection.
Berton V on Mar 9, 2018
trying over gel stain on new front door
carol k on Mar 5, 2018
Good finish, good price
Mark F on Mar 1, 2018
Easy finish to apply
Mike T on Feb 28, 2018
To cover and protect the gel stain
Ray J on Feb 21, 2018
Finish Walnut Table
Terry H on Jan 28, 2018
I need this for my cabinets. It has very good reviews.
Anthony M on Jan 28, 2018
My brother uses this and said it was a wonderful product. This is my first time trying this.
Kerri S on Dec 31, 2017
For a smooth finish!
Kyle K on Dec 27, 2017
best product for application
william a on Dec 14, 2017
Excellent finish, repeat user. This top coat is extremely easy to apply with a cotton cloth. By far the best sealer I have ever used. The product is self-leveling with no drag marks from applying to the project. Projects made from 2-3 years ago to date show no yellowing or cracking of finish.
Micky on Dec 14, 2017
Started using it a few years ago and won't use anything else. Easy to apply with no brush marks. Sand between coats and you can build up a great finish with real depth.
James L on Nov 4, 2017
Superior protection
Todd P on Nov 1, 2017
Have used this finish exclusively for many years and find it to be the best all around finish on the market.
Michael J on Oct 15, 2017
have not used before-have been using varathane 3x and am not happy with it--wanted to try something better.have used other GeneralFinishes products in the past and liked.
Rick S on Oct 10, 2017
Used it before and like the results
FJ K on Aug 14, 2018
Tried and true. My favorite finish for projects when I don't want to spray.
Ben B on Aug 7, 2018
I'm going to fill a void (up to 3" wide and 3 feet long) with rocks/epoxy. The green ash live edge dining table currently has an Arm-R-Seal satin top coat over Seal-A Cell clear. How should I prep the epoxy when I am ready to refinish the entire table top?
Mel C on Mar 28, 2017
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Original Seal-A-Cell Clear
General Finishes Original Seal-A-Cell Clear
I'm using the Java gel stain on my kitchen cabinets, what is better to use as a top coat, this product or the gel topcoat? What's the difference between the two? Thanks
Tanya on Feb 24, 2016
BEST ANSWER: I have always used the arm r seal over gel stain on my projects
Will arm r seal yellow over a light colored paint ?
Pat P on Oct 5, 2015
BEST ANSWER: It will give an amber cast to light wood such as maple. I don't think it's appropriate over pigmented finish. It is meant to penetrate on the first coat the build lightly.
We are staining a fireplace mantel and wanted to know what is the best sealant to use since it will be exposed to varies levels of heat? Thanks!
kim H on Feb 25, 2017
Can I apply this over Waterlox Original as a top coat?
Thomas T on Jun 16, 2016
Why do I have white places on my finish?
ted e on Aug 11, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Elsewhere I read this is because it wasn't completely dry when you applied the next coat. Gotta sand off and start again and have longer drying time
I need to finish a unfinished dining table made of rustic, reclaimed, whitewashed oak beams. Is this + seal-a-cell a suitable combination? Would like to avoid any shininess and preserve the original color of the wood (slightly faded white).
Blueblurrie B on May 25, 2016
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Original Seal-A-Cell Clear
General Finishes Original Seal-A-Cell Clear
BEST ANSWER: Normally a table would want good moisture resistance and the combination of sealer and topcoat would work fairly well. A spar varnish is best. Oil based Polyurethanes have a golden color that might not want. A water based poly is more clear. Might want to steel wool between coats to get a smoother finish. I have used the sealer without topcoat to get a flat finish but it's not a great moisture barrier alone. Steel wool (#0000) will even it out because the sealer has some poly in it (where tung oil does not).
I'm planning to use Armr-seal on a large wood slab. The wood has some voids that I need to fill (about 1/2 inch wide) and want to know whether I can use a 2 part epoxy filler or would it be better to use something else (i.e., will the Arm-R-seal react badly)? Thanks
DIANA O on May 11, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Definitely use an an epoxy. If you apply this finish over the epoxy it creates a great clear area in the slab. It looks awesome in knots in rustic furniture.
I'm finishing a redwood slab dining table (indoor use) and want to end up with a satin finish but I've read that it's best to get the gloss finish and then buff out the top coat with 0000 steel wool?
DIANA O on Apr 16, 2015
BEST ANSWER: I just made a cherry and walnut computer desk and used this finish generals satin, and I used the 0000 after very lightly sanding wth a 320 grit paper I didnt sand until the 2nd coat was dry then appkied 3rd coat and it turnd out great the colors are vibrant and the grains looks awsome and the smell went away after 8hrs it smells great after 24hrs.i used a foam brush too. After trying a shirt and reg brush the foam applied it the best.
How long should armour seal dry between coats?
Isabelle H on Oct 25, 2016
BEST ANSWER: I generally recoat the next day. Sometimes if humidity and temperature are just right it will dry a lot quicker than that. after dry I wipe down with a scotchbrite type of pad (you can get them at paint stores) before recoating. I've had a kitchen table with this on it for 5 years and it stilllooks great (3 coats).
Does the Arm R Seal satin finish need to be lightly sanded between coats? Applying over GF Java stain.
Brenda C on Feb 16, 2016
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
Gel Stain - General Finishes - Java
Gel Stain - General Finishes - Java
BEST ANSWER: Yes, it is best to lightly sand between coats. I finished a solid oak table top and applied the Arm R Seal with a clean cotton rag (I cut up old t-shirts). It applied very well, but by sanding between coats you can achieve a glass like top that is extremely smooth. Between the last couple of coats I used 0000 steel wool (ultra fine) between coats. That worked great. Also, be sure to vacuum and tack cloth after sanding each time.
Can I spray this product?
randy g on Oct 20, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Yes, it sprays very well. I use a HVLP sprayer with no thinning required.
Can I use Arm-R-Seal as a top coat for a hardwood floor stained with general finishes gel stain?
Vickie K on Nov 19, 2016
BEST ANSWER: You could, I suppose, but General Finished indicates as long as 30 days to be completely cured. Until then they recommend against putting heavy object on its surface. I'd probably look for another product that better suits your needs. This product is great for table tops and furniture...
What is the difference between the General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat and the General Finishes Gel Topcoat? I have used the Rockler Polyurethane Gel Wipe-on Satin Clear Coat in the past but it seems the product has changed in the last 15 years. Thanks.
Kim H on Feb 7, 2018
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Gel Topcoat
General Finishes Gel Topcoat
Tammy on Sep 29, 2018
BEST ANSWER: In my experience hot pans will leave a mark on this finish. I don't know of any finish that wouldn't be affected by hot pans. Use a trivet. That said, it is fairly easy to repair damaged finish by sanding it out and re-applying new coats of finish. There will be some color difference in the sanded out spot because of the UV darkening of all wood.
Is it safe to use ARM R SEAL on cutting boards?
Ed M on Nov 29, 2015
BEST ANSWER: No. The application instructions specifically prohibit using this on any food surfaces.
You'll need to use the salad bowl finish:
Can I use Arm-R-Seal as a finish coat over GF Gel Topcoat?
Scott P on Dec 14, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Yes I used Arm-R-Seal as a finish coat over GF Gel Topcoat on a very old pie safe and it turned out great.
Is it necessary to sand between Arm r seal coats? Are multiple coats really even necessary?? (This if for a set of dining room chairs that I have stained with oil based stains)
Mary W on Oct 16, 2017
BEST ANSWER: It is my experience to follow the directions on the can. These guys know the product and when used as directed it performs great. Word to the wise NEVER take short cuts on finishing from prep to applying the finish to rubbing it out.
Should this product be used for a covered front porch door? Rain is not a problem but we do have fog in the winter.
Martha R. on Jun 22, 2017
I use this all the time on indoor projects, but have never used it outside. General does have products for outdoor use. I suspect they will have the same high quality as Arm-R-Seal.
Can I use the arm r seal on a kitchen table? Uses gf brown mahogany gel stain and want to seal it. I want to able to wipe off table after meals. Please advise.
Karen G on Sep 30, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Yes. In fact, on the General Finishes website, this is one of the recommended top coats for their gel stains. Both the gel stain and this urethane are oil-based, so there aren't compatibility issues.
I have a friend who wants to use General finishers gel stain. The area I live in does not allow oil urethanes. What are his options as a top coat?
A shopper on Apr 22, 2015
BEST ANSWER: I talked with general finishes about this and they said you can use their waterborne High Performance Topcoat finish over it. Making sure it's dry first is important, 48-72 hours dry time. I haven't put the topcoat on yet since I'm waiting for it to dry right now, though I've used it over wood dye and it goes on really well and dries quickly.
General Finishes EF High Performance Polyurethane Top Coat - Flat
General Finishes EF High Performance Polyurethane Top Coat - Flat
Can I use this over top of chalk paint?
Ondrearene4 on Mar 15, 2018
BEST ANSWER: I really don't know for sure. I believe it is for use over natural or stained wood, which is the way I use it. Your best bet would be to go to the manufacturers website and ask them.
Has anyone had experience using this on brick pavers?
Willson W on Nov 24, 2017
BEST ANSWER: No. I have only used it on wood as a top coat. Worked OK. For wood, I did find a better product.
I have a large slice of a tree stump that I purchased to use as a table top. My father in law, who is an accomplished woodworker, applied a two coats of the arm r seal oil and urethane topcoat and it looks cloudy and streaked. I'm not sure what caused it. What would be the best way to fix it? Sanding back with 400 grit and recoating? Would steel wool be better or using laquer thinner to strip it off?
Ezra E on Sep 12, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Streaking sounds like applying
Too thin. I'd sand with 400 and apply good coat with a foam brush. If still cloudy then I'd check for the product quality or application conditions
What is the appropriate recoat time for the subsequent coats? All I see is that it dries in 12-24 hours. Thanks!
Jimbo on Jul 11, 2016
BEST ANSWER: I will normally try to time my finish coats for the end of the day and wait overnight to recoat. Part of my reasoning is that, in my small shop, dust can be a real problem and I try to avoid any operation that is going to throw up dust while my finish is drying. That being said, depending on temperature and humidity I've recoated after about 6 hours before, but that is a really tough call. Between coats I use a really find wet-dry paper (I like 600 grit best) and do a really light sanding. The key to me has always been that if my sanding is anything other than totally clean and not gummed up, I'm ok to go on the second coat. I do really prefer overnight, but we can't always have the amount of time that we like.
I have a dining room table that has had two coats of Liberon FInishing Oil applied to the surface. I want to go over that with a more protective top-coat. Can Arm R Seal be applied over a well-cured oil finish?
Eric H on Mar 21, 2016
BEST ANSWER: I have not applied Arm R Seal over a previously existing finish. I built a new Kitchen table and applied oil based stain to the top and then applied many coats of Arm R Seal and it turned out beautiful. I would think if you sanded your existing finish first with 320 grit sandpaper (by hand and with the grain) that you could apply the Arm R Seal wipe-on finish then. This product is an oil based product so it should work. I used old cotton tshirt pieces to wipe this product on and it turned out well. You will want to lightly sand with 320 grit paper between coats and as you approach the final coat, I was sanding with 0000 steel wool to get an ultra smooth finish. Good luck on your project!
I have 2 in thick walnut table top just completed for mg dinning room table. I'd like to NOT apply a stain to the beautiful wood, but want to protect it and brighten if without a high gloss shellac look. What is the best product or combination of products to use?
tiff r on Dec 30, 2015
BEST ANSWER: My personal preference is to use General Finishes Satin urethane. I finished my dining room table with it by thinning with 15% mineral spirits, then applying as a wipe on finish. It took about 7 coats to achieve the look that I wanted, but the results were worth the effort. It has stood up well for 10 years of daily use with no problems. Good Luck with your project.
Is spraying it on a option? Bought the Earlex sprayer from Rockler and want to try it out.
randy g on Oct 19, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Hello Randy, i have used my HVLP sprayer successfully multiple times with this product. You just have to find the happy medium of not too heavy of a coat and not to light of a coat. The claen up to me was the biggest issue for me. i hope this helps!
I refinished my bathroom with gel stain, is it recommended to use Arm-R-Seal as a topcoat?
Kim B on Jun 23, 2015
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat-Satin
Gel Stain - General Finishes - Brown Mahogany
Gel Stain - General Finishes - Brown Mahogany
Yes, you absolutely want to use the Arm-R-Seal as a topcoat. You'll want to choose the sheen (satin, semi-gloss, gloss, etc.) to determine how "shiny" you want the finish. I put 3 coats normally and it's very protective; it also really brings out the grain in the wood.
what do you use to thin this ?? And is their product ' seal-a-cell' which many use prior to this product similar or the same thing as de waxed shellac (zinsser brand)??
mary l on Apr 29, 2018
BEST ANSWER: I did Not thin it . . . I brushed a thin coat on then rubbed it off with a cloth. Let it dry a couple of days then just rubbed another coat on
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