Wainscoting a curved wall

I have a curved wall near the entry door on a rental condo that is often getting scratches and dings. I would like to put wainscoting up, but I'm not sure it can be done. The curved wall is sheetrock, and looks nice in the small condo hallway, so I'd like to keep the effect. The curve replaces what would be a normal 90 degree corner. The wall is about 8 feet long, then curves left into a bedroom doorway. The other side of the curve is a typical slider door closet about 2.5 feet deep.
Can it be done? I'm thinking that wood will not bend to this angle. I took a scrap piece of chair molding and cut groves 50% deep on the underside every inch with my table saw, but that wood just does not bend like I would need.
Any suggestions? Just plan to patch & paint often?
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They make stuff just for the purpose you describe. Its synthetic but will paint up and match the profile of the straight runs with stock molding. Do a google search on flexible molding and you will get a lot of options.
The first hit is http://www.ultraflexmoulding.com /
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The wainscotting should be easy, just use a whole bunch of verticals. It's the chair-rail and toe-kick thats the hard part.
The three options I know of are: (A) use plastic molding (B) steam the molding and bend it to fit (C) mill the molding out of wider boards laid flat.
I suppose you could use plaster, but I've only ever seen that as crown molding, and it would get damaged pretty quickly. Maybe bondo?
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Goedjn wrote: ..

Note: My prior response applied to just the chair rail. Goedjn is right about the actual wainscoting.

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Joseph Meehan

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Paulaner wrote:

It can be done. I suggest two methods.
You can steam the wood and it becomes flexible. You will want to secure it in the shape you will need as it cools and dries.
You can also build up the molding from several layers of thin molding that will allow you to bend it.
You can also use a combination of both.
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Paulaner wrote:

Use flexible stuff: Lineolum. Formica. Even carpeting. For the molding, there's lots of things that will bend: Metal, like Aluminum. Plastic. Even wood, if you soak it an slowly tension it to a jig cut to the desired shape.
Heck, the material you use doesn't even have to bend! Think mosaics - that'd be pretty! And different!
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So you'll put all this work or money into wainscotting, and then they'll scrach and dent that to heck.
And for a rental?
Just spackle and paint after each tenant moves. Keep track of what color paint you use so it will match whatever else is painted the same color.
More below.

It's their responsibility until they move, when you should be able to charge them for unreasonable damage.
However, recognizing that everyone seems to damage this part, maybe you should usually call it normal wear and tear. Without seeing it, I can't say.
...
OK the synthetic might be easy and cheap, and the things Heybub suggest might not get damaged easily, except for aluminmu.
Remove NOPSAM to email me. Please let me know if you have posted also.
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Thanks for the great suggestions. It's a weekly rental condo and just moved into off-season, so I'll have some time this winter to try. I'll let you know how it goes.

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