Red lacquer is a refined lacquer, much more so than basic lacquer. It is about 75% urushiol compared to basic having about 60%. The water content is about 15%, compared to about 30% for basic. The urushiol contains an enzyme called laccase which is the catylist for converting the lacquer into a natural polymer, combining with oxygen in the humid and warm air of a drying box. If the temperature is too warm the laccase will ‘die’ and the lacquer won’t cure.
95% of the lacquer used in Japan is manufactured in China. Japanese made lacquer is of a much higher quality and is far more expensive than Chinese, at least double the price, often times 4 times more expensive.
Lacquer is a difficult and complicated medium to use and understand. In addition to different names for the same lacquer there are regional names used along with names that differ for the same lacquer depending on the trade it is used in. I know of at least 64 different types of lacquer and of those 15 are basic types.
Red lacquer is used in kintsugi for a substrate for metal. It is a good quality lacquer that can be polished out to a high sheen and is harder than middle lacquers.