My husband and I are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel with our 100 year old house renovation. With that, we've been told a few different ways to handle the refinishing of our baseboard trim. We first started out with the whole stripping process - Coat the wood, wait, scrape, reapply, and finish with steel wool pads. Next when we made the final decision to have all the baseboards painted, instead of restaining, we were told that we just need to sand the baseboards, prime, and paint. I'll have you know that some of these baseboards have 3 layers of paint, then a layer of stain.


We are unfortunately aware of the huge project we're taking on...We have about 1/3 of them stripped and sanded. Does anyone have any info on refinishing with paint, and the best way to achieve? Any info will be helpful!

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since i save our history, I do not have any laying around lol .  Man I've been so busy sorry for the delay in getting back to you. A Colorado snow day  



The wood in that picture is beautiful! When I stripped all the paint off my newel post the wood was very dry. I rubbed it down with BLO, which turned the wood a redish color. The wood does not look as nice as yours and I realize you did not disturb the patina and added a special blend. My newel post has a lot of dings and a few places a dog chewed. Any suggestions on what I can do to make it nice again? The diamond shape on the newel post is repeated on all the doors as well and it is a much darker color. The same with the square with bullseye on the newel post.

thank you


why do you think your may have disturb the patina?  If you use a deep penetrating old world oil blended finish your patina if left will pop.  


I believe you told me you use Duraseal on your floors, do you use it on stairways and all its components? Duraseal has a lot of beautiful "colors" and I love the old darkish/red/mahogany varnish or shellac that was used back in the day. 

If the patina is gone, what would you recommend as a "color" to replicate the old charm? If Duraseal is not the choice you recommend for banisters, newel and other components, what  would be best?  

The patina is definitely gone on the stairs and risers. Last time I spoke with you, you instructed me to use a spray bottle filled with mineral spirits and steel wool to get the dark, middle strip of paint off. There was no traces of varnish or shellac or anything under that strip. Very odd, the middle of every riser was like that. And yes, you said it would keep me busy for a

This couldn't be more timely. We wanted to strip all the woodwork in our house and stain it but it is a BIG house and the job was just so overwhelming-not to mention the cost. We had decided to add another coat of paint to it to make it look as close to a wood color as we possibly could make it. It wasn't ideal but we figured we could live with it-until I read this thread. I did a little research on infrared strippers and told my husband about it and we decided to do this. Of course the stripper is a bit expensive and we are not mechanically incline to be able to build our own-but we figured this will be a good investment for our house. We have decided to take our time and do one room at a time. There really isn't a hurry to get it ALL done. And it will be nice to get rid of all the lead paint that is in the house. And once we finish with everything, we can sell the stripper and get some of our money back.


Depending on how serious the infrared stripper is, you'll have to be VERY careful. You can very easily scorch the wood, and I'm also always concerned about embers getting loose and falling in cracks. While it's much slower, a good, old fashioned heat gun also works well. 

Also, depending on what type of paint was used, low VOC chemical strippers can be used. I've had good luck with both Citristrip (less expensive) and Dumond Peel Away (much more expensive, but works well.)


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