Restripping oak door slab vs. buying a new slab

I asked last week on how to strip my 6 panel oak front door. I found a furniture restoration place about a mile away from me that can strip a door down in one day. If I dropped it off in the morning, it would be done in the afternoon. They charge $325. Just to compare, I called around to a few places to price a new 6 panel oak slab, and they seem to range from $515-$550. Of course I would have to drill the deadbolt and lock holes, plus mortise out the hinges.and if necessary trim the door. So I'm trying to think now is it worth the $325 to just get the original door stripped.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I haven't seen your door, but have you ever stripped one? Some are easy and kinda fun, and somewhat satisfying. Others... not so much.
Stripping a door by hand can take hours, or days, depending on the material to be stripped and your level of anal retentive tendencies.
A real cost assessment is in order. If you have the tools to easily install the new door you could knock it out in, what, an hour? If not, it's going to take... longer.
What's your time worth? Can you get $100 for your old door?
It depends on how many variables you want to consider. -----
- gpsman
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

With no picture its hard to say, Ive worked on many $1000+ oak doors, houses and churches, in 90 one walnut pair of doors I redid for $1500, the lady was offered 14,000.00 before I refinished the pair, they were from the Pullman estate, the train guy. Go price one. If it sanded to new wood its cheap at his price, restoring an old oak door and frame today would be near 1-3000, and thats what a new one would cost of real quality. After its stripped you still have to get to good wood by sanding, unless its veneer. A new door will have to be hung and locks installed. If its real quality refinish yours, but you need pro advise like the furniture guy.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mikepier wrote:

A gallon of paint remover costs about .... $25? Can of varnish....$8? Steel wool, $3, mineral spirits, $7, sandpaper, $3.
Is the wood damaged? Got a photo?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

A quart of P&L Marine Varnish might cost 25- 40$....After all a boat is just something floating that sucks your money down., Labor is what costs to make a 80 yrs old door look new again. and 3$ worth of sandpaper will only make the finnish of 5 coats.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mikepier wrote:

I'd try to do it myself first. A can of stripper is about $7.00. A can of paint thinner (to clean off the stripper remains) and other few bucks.
You'll also need a scraper, rags, toothbrush, disposable paint brush, possibly rubber (not latex) gloves, open air, sandpaper, and a few hours.
The worst that can happen is that you muck it up - but the commercial place won't care.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Here are some pics. Unfortunately these were taken after dark tonite, but you can get an idea. http://picasaweb.google.com/mikerock92/FrontDoor
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Its definatly worth refinishing, it may need major [ minor to me] sanding, unless its Veneer, it looks covered by an overhang which protected it from UV rays, Strip it, sand to new grain, stain it and use a Marine finish, a stain will be an issue unless you do the frame. post better pics
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Looking again, it is a job, its not very bad, but only a wood pro will do you right. It could be a 9- 1200$ job, a new door fit and finished will be at least 1000- 1500. Figure new hinges, and instaling everything. Doors need maintenance, I would fix it, the factory finish may have been junk
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Reading this thread, I thought you were talking about stripping paint off a door. Stripping varnish is easier and faster than stripping paint.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Stripping varnish is very easy, its the sanding that if the wood is greyed from weather and sun, that can be days of labor to get to new wood.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
your old door is likely from older slower growth trees.
todays farm raised trees grow fast, have large growth rings and arent nearly as strong.
i would try stripping the old door, first
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mikepier wrote:

They aren't closeup enough to tell for absolutely sure, but from the grain characteristics I see, it's highly unlikely imo that the door is oak. Looks more like a stained pine or fir; outside possibility it's another hardwood but it doesn't look at all like oak.
Unless it's solid (that is, not veneer over core) I'd not take it to a dunk-type commercial stripper--their process is liable to lift the veneer.
As someone else says, varnish stripping isn't that bad compared to paint--there are quite a number that are good for the job.
Overall, this doesn't really look like that tough a job other than time fiddling around the panels, etc.; it isn't _that_ weathered from the picture I looked at.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Based on what I can see in your photos, since you didn't post any close- up photos, I can't say much about the current condition of the finish. I wouldn't bother stripping the door. I would give it a good sanding, then put on a couple of coats of spar varnish.
Yeah, the sanding's a bitch of a job, but you won't have to do it again for another three or four years. There's no such thing as a permanent finish for outdoors. Ultraviolet light destroys every finish we've been able to invent. Since your door is behind a storm door, the heat in there makes the finish degrade even faster. My church has 10-foot tall solid oak doors that face west. The best I've been able to suggest to them is to replace the polyurethane with some kind of penetrating oil finish, then put a new coat on every six months.
--
Steve B.
New Life Home Improvement
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Well ,I just got back from the paint store with all the stuff I need to strip it: Rock Miracle, small wire brushes, drop clothes and sandpaper. I'll be spending some time in the backyard. Hopefully it will go well. I'll post pics when I'm done. Thanks for everyones help.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mikepier wrote:

I would be reluctant to use wire brush on wood for fear of scarring it. It would make more sense if you plan on pretty serious sanding. I'm not familiar with Rock Miracle, but with methylene stripper I use old toothbrushes and wooden picks to get the gunk out of fine crevices. Good luck.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

What is included in the price other than stripping? Is the stripped door prepared for refinishing - washed down, sanded, cleaned, etc.? As others have stated, stripping all the finish out of the crevices requires patience and effort. My guess is that the stripper you contacted has a special tank for stripping doors so it takes little time compared to other options.
Good Luck.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Baron wrote:

Cooks the daylights out of the wood, and may loosen glue joints.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

We had several doors in our house done by a stripping service. That was years ago so mentioning the price now is meaningless. What you were quoted was a tad high, but if the results were like mine, it is worth it. The doors came back spotless, ready for refinish with a few quick sanding swipes. The real time saver was being able to simply screw the hardware back on and set the doors in place with the hinge pins. It took the most time for the drop off and pick up of the doors. Definitely recommended.
Joe
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

subject to the door's fit, i would pay them to refinish it too, hanging new doors is honestly beyond my skill level.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.