Paining NEW Cabinets

We acquired a set of slightly used display cabinets to use as a desk. The problem is that where we are using these cabinets, the wood doesn't match, so we want to paint them. These are KraftMaid maple cabinets with a clear finish on them. After talking to a few people about painting them, we decided to give it a try. We tried two different techniques. 1 - Rub the test door down with Wilbond and then paint with primer from BenMoore. After drying for over 24 hours, the primer scrapes right off, not a good thing. So we tried #2 - Sand the surface with 220 grit and prime. Unfortunately, we got the same results, the primer just scrapes off with a finger nail.
Are we being too hopeful or anxious in our attempts to make sure the paint stays affixed to the doors? We are planning on putting on a enamel black finish.
We are using a Craftsman Detail and Touch-up Spray Gun to do the spraying. http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00915002000P?vName=Automotive&keyword=spray
Can anyone help with this endeavor?
Thanks Ken
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Almost without doubt your cabinets have a heat set precat lacquer on them. They may also have dirt, detergent residue left from an occasional cleaning, silicones left behind from a dusting agent, and maybe wax from an attempt to spruce them up.
If it was me, I would start this way:
- Wash them down with a wet, sloppy rag full of lacquer thinner, changing the rag often
- Sand every surface to be painted, and wash again with the lacquer thinner. Be careful how you handle the cabinets while you are working on them as you can leave leave fingerprints of sanding dust (like from the back where you arent' going to paint, but still have the dust on them) in the newly washed areas
- Apply a generous coat of Paso, or any other kind of solvent based liquid sander. It doesn't really sand, but it does etch and will do some cleaning
- Prime with a SOLVENT based primer like Bullseye sanding sealer. Your luck with adhesion using the "white stuff" probably won't be that good as it won't penetrate the wood surface since it was sealed with the precat
- Paint with a solvent based finish
That should do it. BUT.... to be absolutely sure, you could strip them and start fresh. If it was only a few cabinets, it should take long to do that. Strip, sand, prime, paint.
Robert
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