Looking for advice on stripping and refinishing wainscoting

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Topic: Looking for advice on stripping and refinishing wainscoting

How To January 26, 2013 at 11:33 am

Looking for advice on stripping and refinishing wainscoting

My wife and I are stripping the paint from some beadboard wainscoting. If any of you could address some questions, it would be greatly appreciated:
-We’ve stripped the paint (using Smart Strip) and, as you can see from the picture, there are small areas of stubborn bits of paint still hanging on. What would be the best way of removing these last bits? I’ve done a bit of experimenting with denatured alcohol, a rag, and a ton of elbow grease! But I’m wondering if there’s a better way. (Also, I’ve read that the best way to get into those small areas is with dental tools.  Is there anywhere in NYC where I can purchase a set?) Any tips on tackling the chair rail and the baseboard?
-Is it advisable to do any hand sanding once the paint is completely gone?
-Once we finally get all the paint completely off, we’d like to refinish the wood.  Is there any type of treatment to give the wood before applying a stain/finish? Any suggestions for the type of stain/finish to use? We’d like the two-toned woodwork to stay visible.
-Anything else to keep in mind?
Thanks in advance!

2 Replies Add Reply

sometimes we find that if you coat the wood with shellac, and then strip it, you will get all the remaning residue off. Shellac binds with most anything, and it’s easy to apply. Also, you might consider a standard paint remover, or other solvent to get the wood clean. Smart Strip doesn’t seem to be ablt to do that. We also use metal bristle toothbrushes to scrub off the remaining finish.

when i cleaned the woodwork in my brownstone, i used heatguns to get to where you have gotten in the picture. Then, I hand-sanded with sanding paper 150 and then 220. Pre-treating the wood: if you are treating/finishing with oil-based stain, buy the oil pre-stain from home-depot. pre-stain the wood. this would allow for equal distribution of the stain once you stain it. if you are staining with water-based stain, pre-treat the wood with water-based pre-stain. You can buy both from home-depot. Read the labels because it is very important to use oil-based pre-stain if you are using oil-based stain to finish the wood and water-based pre-stain if you are using water-based stain. good luck! i know stripping and refinishing wood is a nightmare!!!

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