Refinishing woodwork - easy way to prep wood?

I'm in the process of refinishing the woodwork in my house. The woodwork was originally painted with an alkyd paint which has significantly yellowed and darkened. I don't ever want to go through this effort again, so I'm using a latex enamel.
Prior to painting, I've roughed up (ie, de-sheened) the woodwork using sandpaper. This sanding prep work is really tedious and has to be done by hand (eg, the baseboard has 5 faces, two of which are curved, and 3 very small ledges where faces join).
I don't know how much more of this prep work my hands can endure. Is there some sort of magic non-toxic goop I can apply to the woodwork to minimize the amount of sanding I have to do? (Note: I do not want to totally strip the woodwork of paint, I just want to rough up and de-sheen the surface so the new paint can grab.)
Thanks,
Jean
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Jean wrote:

hehehe...wait until you try to prep *that* _____________

TSP (trisodium phosphate)
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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Good, fast, cheap. Pick any two.
I will assume that the existing paint really is oil and that it is not pealing or cracked. To keep the latex from pealing, you must do a good prep job. This means sanding, deglossing / softening, and priming. To make the sanding easier, try one of those sanding blocks that degrades until it fits the profile of what you are sanding. There are also clays that you can fit to the baseboard which then harden. You can then fit a piece of sandpaper to the hardened clay and you have made yourself a custom profile sander. Once sanded, you can use something like Liquid Sandpaper which will also soften the oil ever so slightly. Traditionally, an oil base primer is then used but I have heard of some water based primers that can be used in this situation. The best thing to do is to follow the directions on the latex can or to ask someone in a paint store. You may not get good information in a big box store.
Good Luck!
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Baron wrote:

Wow! Those are excellent suggestions - especially the one about making a mold of the baseboard. I've never heard of "liquid sandpaper" - is it non-toxic and generally available (like at Home Depot)?
I asked the folks at several stores (Benjamin Moore, Sherwin-Williams, Lowes, Scotty's) about what was necessary to paint over oil-based with latex. I was told that all I needed to do was sand the old paint to roughen up and degloss the surface, and that no primer was needed. So far this approach has been very successful and the latex has adhered very well (...Well enough that when I was moving furniture back and accidently whacked the baseboard with a bookcase, the bookcase got scuffed but the painted baseboard was undamaged).
Thanks,
Jean
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Jean wrote:

Liquid Deglosser, aka liquid sandpaper, is pretty nasty stuff. I've never run across one that wasn't quite noxious. http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&q=liquid%20deglosser
R
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RicodJour wrote:

Good link - it shows lots of products that supposedly do what I want. I'll ask some paint stores which of these products they recommend. Thanks
Jean
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You can get a product meant exactly for this from places like WoodWorkers Supply.
I've never heard of "liquid sandpaper" - is it

Liquid Sandpaper is a mixture of ethanol, acetone and toluene. Not great to inhale but probably not much different than nail polish remover. You should call around to your local Big Box, hardware, and paint stores. A paint store may have an alternative product that accomplishes the same thing.

In theory, only sanding / deglossing should be necessary. In practice, applying the proper primer over sanded / deglossed oil paint will ensure that there will be no problems in delamination down the line. I know that I don't like to spend all that time painting only to realize that taking a shortcut caused problems.
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Baron wrote:

In theory, I agree that priming is best ...but I have over 300 feet of baseboards to do, and 11 doors & door frames that I want to repaint. With all that woodwork, I'm willing to take the easier road (thoroughly sand and repaint) versus the optimal path (thoroughly sand, prime, very lightly sand and smooth primer, repaint).
Jean
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There actually is a product called "Liquid Sandpaper" and other similar cleaner/deglossers. I've had mixed results with them, but if all you are doing is trying to knock down the gloss so the paint sticks well (and not removing a lot of loose or rough paint), one of the liquids will probably do the trick. Ask at a good paint store and give it a try. If it doesn't work, you're only out a few bucks.
HTH,
Paul
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