We have a 1929 house, and we're trying to save money wherever we can. I
personally like our cabinets, because they have that "panel" on the inside
that actually creates a seal when the door is closed. When you close one
cabinet real fast, the other one opens because there's such a good seal.
Haven't been able to find cabinets like that on the market lately.
Anyway, I stripped and sanded and sanded and sanded one door to see what we
had to work with, and the paint seems to be just completely seeped down into
the grain itself (it's white)/
Does anyone have some kind of tips on how to address this? Anything that
might "draw" the paint out, or some ways to re-finish that would mask this?
Or should I just slap another (tenth or eleventh) coat on the top, and give
up the idea that we could make them look like wood again?
Thanks for any input.
Oak? Slap on paint remover, let it set for about 30 min., scrub with old
toothbrush. I've never found wood
that I couldn't get the paint out of. If you still have traces of
white, you could wipe on thinned dark
brown or black paint to fill the grain and wipe off when it begins to
Ditto Norminn's comments. Also, some strippers for a film and are peeled
off in a sheet, pulling paint from the grain. Some of these products are
even 'green' which gets around the toxicity factor. Sorry that I can't help
with the product names but I haven't done this in a while. Standing at the
hardware store and scanning the shelves made it obvious which were which.
An easy find. Best of luck for a great outcome!
Strypeeze was my favorite for wood - semi-paste, NOT water washable.
Last time I used paint
remover, it seemed the formulations had changed some.. I haven't tried
the citrus stuff. Removing
paint from wood is a really messy project, but worth it. I did an
entire kitchen, so it can be done.
It takes 2 or 3 appl. Put it on thick and then let it work without
brushing it out. Scrape (gently).
Repeat appl., then scrub after it's worked a while. Toothpicks,
toothbrushes, steel wool to get
into stubborn spots. After the last appl. and all paint is gone, clean
up with steel wool and mineral
spirits scrub to get last of the p.r. off. Semi-paste has a little wax
in it to thicken, and you don't
want any traces of that remaining on the wood. After m.s. scrub, wipe
with paper towels and
let it dry.
Are you really going for a bare wood look or simply a smooth surface to
repaint? I'm suspecting from your question that you are trying to go to
bare wood to varnish - I don't know that that is possible. But before
you give up, try steel wool, it's more conformable than sandpaper. If
that doesn't work, it's entirely possible that the primer coat was thin
enough to actually penetrate the wood slightly, and you're screwed. But
if you paint them, they'll look a hell of a lot better than if you
didn't strip them, so it's not a wasted effort.
I understand your desire to keep the old cabinets... they really don't
make 'em like they used to in some ways, and I find flat doors much more
appealing than ones with lots of surface detail to catch dust and make
them harder to clean.
replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
Nobody else said it, so I will- if these are the original 1929 cabinets,
they probably did NOT have a clear finish in the first place. Quick
check- are these prefab cabinet sections (vertical walls between each
cabinet), or one continuous run behind the doors? Most cabinets were
built on site back then, <maybe> using premade doors and fronts from a
catalog. Almost always painted white, often with bare wood interiors.
And being painted, wood was usually not cabinet-grade like the built-ins
in the dining room. Bottom line is- even if you get them stripped
completely, you probably won't like the look of the wood.
If it was my kitchen, I'd do one round of stripping, to get off all the
cruddy layers, and then use filler to even out any visible gouges and
stuff, spot-repair any bad wood or loose joints, and then carefully
sand, prime, and paint with the best paint I could stand to pay for.
(I'm no paint expert, but a Google on 'restoring painted furniture'
should give good instructions.) That and fresh period-appropriate
hardware should make them good for another 79 years or so.
First of all, thank you for saving the old cabinets rather than
ripping them out and throwing them away only to be replaced by
particle board crap from HD. I'm sure you will be much happier in the
long run by refinishing the existing original cabinets. (I only wish
the original cabinets were still in my 1925 house...)
Second, aemeijers has it absolutely correct. Those cabinets were most
likely painted right from the start, so you will never get all the
paint out of the grain no mater what kind of paint stripper you use.
The best thing you can do is strip the paint off using some chemical
stripper, sand lightly to get the surface smooth, and then prime and
repaint in whatever color suits you. If the hardware is thoroughly
painted over too, you can strip that off with chemical stripper too -
I do it all the time, comes out just fine for my taste once you polish
it up a bit after stripping. Its certainly a lot cheaper than
replacing a whole kitchen's worth of hardware. Its deceptively
expensive to replace every handle, knob, and hinge in a kitchen.
If you want to gamble, take one door to a commercial furniture
stripping shop. We have a local one that does some awesome work, even
on Victorian woodwork restorations. Doesn't seem to have that much of
an effect on old stained pine so far as the stain removal is
concerned, just lightens it u a good bit. I f the results are what you
want and the price is OK do the remainder and refinish all at once.
Post a follow up when you are done. HTH
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