old black beams

Morning
We have a C17th house, lots of exposed beams etc. In one room they have all been painted black and I was wondering what our options are regardign stripping or recolouring them.
I don't really like the idea old stripping as there are lots of stripped beams in other bits of the house and was wondering about painting them off white with some sort of olde worldy lime wash or something.
How out of charachter is this? It is not as if I'm going to shove gloss paint on them.
Any thoughts or ideas on stipping if we decide to go that way?
TIA
David
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DavidD wrote:

get them blasted with calcium carbonate, and then coat em with danish oil.
Makes a ****ing mess, you need to ape up every crevice with poly sheet, but its the answer to cruddy beams.
I wouldn't paint meself, cos I like to look at wood grain. Just a small pervy tic really :-)

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I would advise against any from of sandblasting or abrasives. The chances are there has probably been (many years ago) some woodworm activity. If you sandblast your beams will end up looking like the inside of a crunchie bar.
If you want to go down the route of stripping, try this link:
http://www.stripperspaintremovers.com/I_want_to_remove.htm
In terms of other finishes and whether they are in character, consult:
www.periodproperty.co.uk and/or www.spab.org.uk
Andy F

all
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Depends what the wood is and how hard. I used an old 2.5cm wood chisel used a scraper on some old (very hard) oak beams and some old pine ones. Once you get the angle right stripping is quite quick and you can control how much you take off in softer areas. It is quite hard work but I reckon its worth it for the good finish
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Peter Scott ________________________________________________________________

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How close can you get a power plane to the beams ?, it may cut the ammout you need to chizel down .........
Rick
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