Expert advice from Bob Vila, the most trusted name in home improvement, home remodeling, home repair, and DIY.

Bob's Bloggers

A community of bloggers who live and die to DIY

diy, paint, furniture

Extreme Measures in Paint Stripping

By Alchemy Fine Living on Aug 02, 2012

My mom and I just finished working on a bedroom set for a client. The pieces had a really thick paint, almost like plastic, that was obviously baked on at the factory. It was not simple to strip the top. The usual chemical striper didn’t even phase this stuff. We found a way to do it though…. a blow torch!

My mom very carefully held a blow torch to the top until the paint would bubble up. Then used a plastic spatula to scrape the paint off. We usually use plastic for these types of things, rather than metal, to avoid scratching or damaging the wood.

Even after all of that there was a bit of residue left behind, so the next step was lacquer thinner and steel wool. My mom scrubbed and scrubbed to loosen up anything that hadn’t already been removed. Finally a clean cloth soaked in lacquer thinner was used to wipe the piece clean. 

We had to sand the top with 100 grit sandpaper to eliminate a few areas where my mom got overzealous with the torch and brunt the wood a bit. Followed by a lot of sanding with 220 grit sandpaper to smooth it out and make it perfect.

 Last, but not least, the top was stained with a mixture of ebony and dark walnut Minwax stain. Our client wanted the base to have a hint of grey to it, so we used ebony stain to age the body and drawers that had previously been painted with a fresh coat of Swiss Coffee.

Visit Alchemy Fine Living »

blog comments powered by Disqus