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Sunday, January 24, 2010

Stripping Paint Off The Table Base (In The Rain)

Even thought the holidays have been over for almost a month I still feel like I am trying to catch up on things. Mostly I believe this feeling is because of the seemingly endless rain and the cold darkness of night time coming early. Despite this Otto Jr. and I managed to get some work done on the table that I wrote about last week. As I mentioned in that post I have decided to make a table from a base that has been kicking around my house for some time now. I actually have 2 of these bases so if anyone would like a table let me know and I'll make one for you!
Here is a picture of the table base as it looked last week PICTURE.
Here is a picture of how it looks today!

As always you can click on the picture for a bigger and more detailed view. Essentially all that has changed since last week is we have started to strip off all the ugly pinkish paint to reveal the cheap and ugly looking pine wood underneath.  I'm not sure how much of an improvement this is or will be but I can always paint it again if I don't like it! Actually I think the wood grain no matter how bad it is will still look better than the paint that it had on it.

You can't really tell from the picture but we stripped off most all of the paint on one side of the base. We did this using Klean-Strip KS-3 Premium Stripper that you can buy at the hardware store. I have never used this particular brand before and I thought that this would be a good opportunity to give it a try. The instructions say to use it at temperatures above 65F and it was 49F here today so right off the bat we were doing things wrong! Because of the warnings on the can for this stuff about fumes and ventilation we decided to do the work outside (this is the In The Rain part). No matter I suppose, it seemed to work pretty good. I was ready for a nasty workout in getting this paint off because I sanded another piece of wood that was related to this table base and it was a lot of work. There are several coats of paint and primer on this making it hard to get down to bare wood.
This stripper worked pretty good at getting the top layers of paint off in one application and scraping with plastic scrapers. A second coat on top of what was left after the first cut through the primer and I can see wood in most all places. The second coat of stripper I used a wire brush / scraper combination to clean out the cracks and the rounded turned surfaces and crevices. Using a brush with a caustic nasty chemical like paint stripper is never a good idea as the brush bristles always flick toxic debris off onto everything so don't do that.

After scraping and brushing for an hour or so we called it done for today. We used some old rags soaked in water to get what little was left off the surfaces and clean it up. There is still some noticeable primer and bits of paint really stuck on there but I think possibly one more coat of stripper and some light sanding will get it back to bare wood.

As I mentioned above I'm not sure that this is going to look any better than the pinkish paint or just painting it but I want to give it a try. It's a good project for my son and I to work on together and even if it doesn't look great it is still fun. I am considering staining this piece if the grain looks somewhat OK once all the paint is off... maybe coloring it some with paint and staining... also carving some neat stuff like gargoyles and scary faces on the flat parts... all depends on my mood as we get closer to finishing it. Oh yeah before I forget we are also going to put a table top on top of it and I need to make that too.

Thanks for reading another one of my semi-coherent rambling posts.. have fun over and out!!

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