Gregory, Just a word of warning, I tried spraying with shellac in my basement and I thought I was going to have to move out for a day. Even with its own room it was not a viable option. I would do it outdoors, especially with laquer.
My most reliable finish for high gloss pieces is Minwax oil based Wipe-on Poly. To start, I soak it by pouring it into the bowl and swishing it around. After a coat or two, and on the outside, I use a simple folded paper towel to apply it. Sand down the nubs with 320 after each coat, wipe it with your tshirt and put another coat on. Each coat takes less than a minute, and I can usually get two or three coats on per day. I do several pieces in batches usually. I typically will put about 7 or 8 coats on. After the final coat (and several days to cure), get out the white diamond wheel and give it a buff. You may be pleasantly surprised at how great it looks.