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Home Improvement Question

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:51 pm
by Blake NWR
So, last summer I bought an 89 year-old house in good shape. The previous owner had painted the entire interior white... including the door and window trims. I decided to experiment with the spare bedroom and strip the paint from the trims with a heat gun to expose the natural wood, and so far so good -- got through three layers of paint in a matter of minutes.

Problem is, now there's leftover residue on the wood that I don't know how to get off. Some of it is paint, some of it looks like old varnish. Mostly, it just looks like a whitish residue. The wood looks really good otherwise.

I'll post a picture in a couple of days when my new camera arrives, but 'til then does anyone here have experience with this kind of stuff? Sanding doesn't seem to be helping much yet, but I've only tried a small test spot.

Thanks in advance.

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 6:17 pm
by Morbid
I immediately thought of sanding since over Summer my Dad repainted a wall in our bathroom, and there were some spots he had to sand over. Try that out a little more, and I'll see if I can soak up any thing else you could do.

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 6:30 pm
by Adremelech
I don't remember what it's called, but I believe it's paint stripper. It's a nasty liquid you brush or spray on... let it sit for a few minutes, and then run a putty knife over it to scrape it all off. It THOROUGHLY dissolves paint that's on there. I refinished an old table that had been painted. The paint stripper totally ate the paint off that was on there.

Might be worth a shot. :-)

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 7:34 pm
by Morbid
Adremelech wrote:I don't remember what it's called, but I believe it's paint stripper. It's a nasty liquid you brush or spray on... let it sit for a few minutes, and then run a putty knife over it to scrape it all off. It THOROUGHLY dissolves paint that's on there. I refinished an old table that had been painted. The paint stripper totally ate the paint off that was on there.

Might be worth a shot. :-)
Solvent?

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 8:06 pm
by Adremelech
Morbid wrote:Solvent?
It's definitely solvent based. It gelled up a bit, if I remember correctly, so there's other things in there too. I think it was just called paint stripper.

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 8:08 pm
by Blake NWR
Adremelech wrote:It's definitely solvent based. It gelled up a bit, if I remember correctly, so there's other things in there too. I think it was just called paint stripper.
Yeah, that's what I started with before I got the heat gun. The stuff I got is citrus-scented and rated safe for indoor use, which is rad. I haven't tried it yet on this residue stuff, though. I'll give that a shot tomorrow. Thanks! :cheers:

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 8:34 pm
by soundguy
Adremelech wrote:It's definitely solvent based. It gelled up a bit, if I remember correctly, so there's other things in there too. I think it was just called paint stripper.
It's pretty much just Crystal Drano in gel form. (lye - caustic soda) Nasty shit, but it's water-soluble so it cleans up easy. I'm a big fan of rubber gloves when using caustic solutions. Used to be a machinist and left a lot of skin in and around the hot tank before I wised up :D

Posted: Sun Jan 04, 2009 10:52 pm
by Six6VI
I've worked with paint strippers before and I have to say that it was more mess than it was worth (there's a joke in there somewhere ;) ). Anyway, my best advice is hand sanding with a very fine grade of sand paper. If it's too fine to do any noticeable work bump up to the next grade. Just be sure that you're not sanding away large portions of wood. You can always go back to the fine to smooth it out.

Lee

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 4:05 pm
by Frank the Hammer
With all the work already mentioned, heve you thought of ripping it out and replacing?

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 5:19 pm
by BigHurknFrontman
Frank the Hammer wrote:With all the work already mentioned, heve you thought of ripping it out and replacing?


Or, depending on how delicately you want to operate, bust it out so you can get beter strokes with the sander? I've had to do exactly what you're talking about on my old house, and your best bet is TOLUENE. It's not environmentally friendly by ANY means, but judging by the age of your home, the paint you're trying to remove is probably lead-based anyway. Get your heavy gloves, a box of masks and get busy! :)

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 6:32 pm
by Blake NWR
Frank the Hammer wrote:With all the work already mentioned, heve you thought of ripping it out and replacing?
Yeah I did, but I really want to preserve the original wood. Plus, the walls are plaster and I don't want to risk cracking them. So far it's been turning out great.

BHF - I think at least two of the three layers are lead-based. I'll check out toluene if the stripper doesn't do the job I want. According to Wikipedia, that shit's pretty hardcore. :D

Posted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:34 am
by BigHurknFrontman
Blake NWR wrote:According to Wikipedia, that shit's pretty hardcore. :D

That's a NICE way to put it!

Posted: Fri Jan 09, 2009 4:13 pm
by Ciaran
Did Lee say something about painted strippers?

Posted: Fri Jan 09, 2009 4:48 pm
by Blake NWR
Yeah, they're messy. :D