Dear PoPville – Paint Stripping old Veneered Doors, Success!

“Dear PoPville,

OP here, from What Do You Use to Remove Paint?

Some initial results to report. See photos.

Turns out the doors are veneered. Who knew? Heat gun very useful for paint goop stuck in crevices. And for all the areas that the stripper missed. Little wood carving tool, steel brush, and chisel worked well. Clean up with Denatured Alcohol and rags at the end works well. Overall effort way more than $100 to use local dipper shop downtown. Wondering though if the lye dip would have screwed up the veneer. Ah well, on to the next one.”

If anyone else has some home improvement/renovation projects you’d be willing to share – please send some photos (before and after if possible) with a brief description including cost if possible to princeofpetworth(at)gmail

15 Comment

  • Don’t forget the baseboards, honeybun!

    • Right, anyone know a very very short construction worker who can strip the baseboards without having to bend over or work on all 4s, ugh.

      • Not sure if this is a joke or not, but you should probably pry the baseboards off before actually stripping them. Just like you would take a door off its hinges before stripping it.

        • You will end up with a pile of cracked baseboards. Do not do that.

        • Don’t try this. Like 1:50 said you will never get them back in place in one piece.

        • Do it with the right tools, slow and careful enough and you’ll be fine. Label the pieces as you take them up. I’m doing it now. Takes a while, but it’s worth it.

  • Just an FYI to anyone else who’s stripping paint or debating it–using lye (Peel Away 1 is basically lye) might discolor the wood. I have no idea how it would work on veneer, though.

    Also, Peel Away 7 might pull stain out of the wood. I finally finished stripping and refinishing a mantel that we had started about 4 years ago and had to re-stain it a couple of shades darker than the original to hide the splotchiness.

  • Could you please post the info for the dipper shop downtown that you mentioned?

  • I’m not the original poster but I know of only one dipping service in DC. I’ve used them for several doors in my house and was very pleased with the results.

    Stripping Workshop
    411 New York Ave. NE
    Washington, DC 20002

  • I recently bought a house in Columbia Heights that was built in 1911 and I need to do work on the doors.

    The doors have been retrofitted with the circular hardware sets and the old hardware was removed. I have those ugly metal plates. That surround the new hardware and cover up the old hardware holes.

    What should I do? Strip all the layers of paint off the doors and repaint them and install period hardware?

    How can I get rid of those awful metal plates that I have now that cover up the holes in the door where the old hardware was?

    Does anyone know good contractors or handymen who work on this?

    Any advice would is appreciated.

    • I had the same dilemma when I was renovating. I found three usable doors at the Brass Knocker and bought new unfinished doors in a period style from an online company. I think I got 6 for a little over $500 delivered. Pine, so not the greatest, but once I painted them, they looked fine. I also got reproduction hardware off ebay. Way cheaper than Rejuvenation. With all of the other stuff I had to do, I just couldn’t see myself stripping the doors.

      I did try on the baseboards and gave up on that too. My painter did a really great job smoothing out some rough patches and painted right over it. It doesn’t look perfect, but after 6 hours of stripping maybe 10 ft of baseboard, I was ok with it.

  • These are some very helpful suggestions. Please keep the series going.

Comments are closed.