We have original pine window and door trim in our 100+ victorian home.  We are removing the paint down to the original golden pine finish and sealing with polyeurethane.  We have a few pieces that have minwax directly on the original raw wood.  Any suggestions on how to remove the wax so that the polyeurethane can then be applied?

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Methylene Chloride should do the trick on any finish that that is in the grain, it will also dissolve paraffin.

Down to the original finish? How does that work? Typically you remove the paint and the finish goes with it, then you refinish.
Thanks for the tip. Is there a commercial product available?? Sorry, when I said down to the original finish, I meant down to the raw pine wood.
Any big box store will have it. It's the "dangerous" paint stripper in the metal containers. Klean Strip is the stuff I usually use. You might be able to get by with the aerosol spray bottle if you don't have much surface area to cover. Just be careful and don't get the stuff on your skin, and ventilate well.
And you don't have to worry about whether you got in on your skin without noticing: it will burn like a house afire until you wash it off with soap and water!
I dont want to be one of those smarmy "know it alls" but I have to ask, isnt it the case that almost all original pine mouldings were meant to be painted? My understanding is that there is virtually nothing about the grain of pine worth staining or "showing" and if you have a victorian house with pine trim, it was never intended to be stained or be unpainted.

Or is there a kind of pine worth staining or stripping? Of course you may just want to do this because you like the way it looks.
I grew up in a house (1925 dutch colonial revival) with all original natural stained and varnished yellow pine. The window sashes and doors in my 1895 are softwood of some sort, maybe pine, with oak jambs and casings. I think that they were grained back in the day, though, to match the oak, then shellacked.
Keep in mind I'm no scholar, but the only absolute that I can offer is that not all pine was meant to be painted. Mostly it depended upon the style decisions of the owner/architect/builder, whatever. For example, it was not uncommon for homes of the early to mid-eighteenth century to have painted or grained trim. It was the "style of the time" and less hardwood was used for trim. In Gothic Revival homes, though, you might find dark hardwoods that would be reminiscent of Gothic and/or Medieval architecture in Europe. The Victorians (Eastlake, Queen Anne, etc) seemed to favor dark colors -- house colors, walls, trim, etc. Again, absolutes don't apply since any homeowner could do as they pleased and it depended upon the room in question. Formal spaces might tend to have clear finishes with hardwoods (or grained to appear as such) or stained, natural pine while bedrooms and food prep areas/kitchens might have been more inclined to have painted trim since it was considered "sanitary".

After the Victorians, you had a mixed bag -- Craftsman tended toward natural wood tones while Colonial Revival and Neo Classical tended toward white or colors. Many Craftsman/Prairie Style homes had hardwood trim but many also used yellow pine, most likely because it was inexpensive and readily available (not so today (sigh)).

So the ultimate answer is: It depends, but no, it was not meant to be exclusively painted. My house originally (and still has) dark stained oak, mellow brown stained pine, and no longer painted pine in the bedrooms (I personally have an aversion to painted trim, so I have to admit my bias).

Good for you!  I am in the process of removing paint from my door frames and old doors in our 1836 Federal home, and personally do not like the ugly layers of enamel paint on everything. Seems like previous owners loved it and painted everything with many layers built up. It is a hard and tedious job removing it and sanding it and etc, but I know already it will be worth it! Wood grain is a beauty.

As far as whether or not any pine is worth staining/stripping--absolutely! Heart/yellow pine, cypress, and douglas fir, for example, are especially worthy of a clear stain as they can have beautiful grain patterns. The off-the-shelf crap pine you buy at the big box stores today is no way comparable to the lumber of 100 years ago, but I have used it with a clear finish because it was relatively cheap and available (again, because I don't prefer a painted finish). And even then that was only after I scoured the pile for what I considered to be the best pieces. Heck, some of the oak you can buy today should be painted, too, as miserable as the grain is on it. You can tell a mile away if someone has put new oak in a house to make it look old unless they go for the really expensive stuff from a specialty retailer.

I , myself love the way old Pine looks, especially compared to several layers of ugly enamel paint! 

Well back again!! I've been working on stripping paint off of the old "servants" stairs in our 106 year old home! What a chore I say! What I've uncovered after removing three coats of paint plus a really hard first tan colored layer is: beautifully grained yellow pine on the high "border" wood, on the handrails, newel posts, risers and possibly the balusters.  The treads I believe to be oak.  I've only removed carpet, old linoleum, old mastic and metal trim to hold the linoleum in off of two landings and two angle treads. That certainly is a smelly job getting off the mastic!!!!

My plan is to paint the balusters and risers and stain the rest.  My question is how can I get the pine graining to show but match the oak treads??

You will get a closer match on two different kinds of wood if you use a stain on the lighter wood to give it some depth.  You would have to try a few different colors to get the desired results.  My choice of stain and finish is Minwax for both.


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