Stripping Paint on Exterior Shutter

My wood exterior shutters (new house) are badly in need of repainting. They're on the second floor windows.
Can anyone recommend a good way to strip the paint prior to repainting? A lot of it is blistered or peeling off. Because of the slats, I'm reluctant to go the old brute force sandpaper and scraper route that I've used on garage doors.
Are the attachments on power drills a good choice? Chemical removers aren't my first choice, partially because of the variability of the weather here, and trying to do the cleanup of the goo at 15' up isn't something I really want to do. I'd also prefer to do the work in place, since wrestling a bunch of shutters up and down a ladder isn't something I'm looking forward to.
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2 words: Vinyl shutters

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Daventia wrote:

Short of removing the shutters, the best solution I've found is a sort of flap sander/stripper that can be inserted into a power drill. The attachment has a number of 3" long thick wires that are spun out as the drill runs that will strip paint fairly well, even if the material is not entirely flat.
That said, if your shutters are a soft wood, I think any kind of mechanical stripper will damage them pretty badly. In that case, I think your only choice is careful hand stripping, or removing them and dipping them in solvent.
You might start by climbing a ladder and hand stripping a shutter. In my experience, I'm pretty uncomfortable about standing 12 feet in the air. If it were me, I'd remove the shutters and do the work on the ground. Each shutter can't be more than 20 pounds anyway.
Randy
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<< . I'd also prefer to do the work in place, since wrestling a bunch of shutters up and down a ladder isn't something I'm looking forward to. >>
Time for a reality check here. If ladders make you uncomfortable, rent some scaffolding, it make the work go many times faster and safer. If the price makes you break out in hives, grit your teeth and resign yourself to ladder work. Find a shop that does furniture stripping. Get prices per shutter. Take down one shutter. Slop on the paint stripper, check the time and start scraping. When all the old stuff is off, wash with lacquer thinner and you're ready to do a light sanding, Check your time. Over 2 hours, right? Multiply that times the number of shutters. If the stripping shop says $10 a shutter, you're paying yourself $5 an hour with no benefits. So it is obvious that the fastest, neatest way is to let the specialists do their thing and you do yours. So take down the rest of the shutters, throw them in your Lexus SUV and off to the stripper's shop. Sand, paint and reinstall and you should have an outstanding result. Good luck.
Joe
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Joe Bobst wrote:

fasteners. I still remember when about a dozen years ago I made the mistake of using the College Pro group to repaint my two story home.
There was nothing wrong with the painting they did, but the damn fools tacked every one of our wooden shutters back up with common nails which only went in about 3/4" into cedar siding. When the wind started picking up in the fall our shutters started coming down with the autumn leaves.
By that time the college boys were long gone and it was easier to fix things myself than try and chase them over it. I repaired a couple of shutters which suffered damage when they landed on the driveway paving and secured them all to the house with 2-1/2" coated deck screws. They were still all hanging up fine when I removed them three years ago to repaint the house (myself that time).
I can certainly understand the practicality of vinyl shutters, but I'm not yet emotionally ready to use them on my own home. Don't ask me why, because if I really wanted to do things right I'd be installing real hinged shutters of the proper width to suit the windows, and with the correct louvre orientation.
I always chuckle to myself when I observe that close to all of the houses I see here in Red Sox country have shutters which are far to narrow to look "real" and they're almost exclusively installed with the louvres angled the "wrong" way.
Just my .02,
Jeff
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Jeff Wisnia (W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)

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Heat gun. Works great.
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Please try the silent paint remover (www.silentpaintremover.com) It is an ultra-violet light that removes the paint faster and without much risk of burning the wood, and does not cause chemicals/paint dust/possible lead to fly into the air. For small work like what you describe, you can rent it for $22 a day. I am about to buy one to work on the outside of my house, after reading good reviews (also look at "breaktime forum" on finehomebuilding magazine website; fine woodworking; houseinprogress.com.
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Look into new shutters, less work in the long run.
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