Home>Discussions>PAINTING & FINISHING>Preserving a 100+ year old door
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Jjennifer V
Preserving a 100+ year old door

I purchased a 100 year old, 6 panel door that I plan on using as a desk top. It has been painted, and I would like to preserve the paint that is on it to keep it old looking. The paint is starting to crack, but has not started peeling yet. It also needs to be cleaned prior to doing anything. I did not begin cleaning it yet bacause I don't want to damage the existing paint. Any suggestions??

Faron
Re: Preserving a 100+ year old door

I would lightly and carefully use a good wood cleaner.

Are ya gonna use a heavy glass beveled-edge desktop?!

Faron

Jjennifer V
Re: Preserving a 100+ year old door

Hey Faron, would you consider Murphy's Oil Soap to be a good wood cleaner ?

And yes, I plan on using a glass desktop on it. I have not decided beveled or not, I thought about maybe using tempered glass. I just have not had a change to check into it - pricing and all!

Faron
Re: Preserving a 100+ year old door

Yeah, Murphy's should be as good as anything out there.
POWDERED Dirtex is good too. It's VERY good for pre-paint cleaning.
Normally, it doesn't need rinsing, unless the project is fairly dirty.
Just don't get it too wet, or the door will swell.

Faron

Jjennifer V
Re: Preserving a 100+ year old door

Ok, so after I clean it real good, what can I put on it to "preserve" the way the paint is? It has started to crack in places, but has not started peeling or rolling up or anything like that. I would like to keep it looking old, without having to worry about the paint continuing to deteriorate. Any suggestions? I thought about using shellac or polyurathane, but I don't really want a shiny finish.

ordjen
Re: Preserving a 100+ year old door

Jjennifer,

Under glass, what ever you use will still look somewhat glossy. Shellac will seal in the old finish without any compatibilty problems. Polyurethanes might not adhere to the old finish. I would make a sample on the under side to check. Polyurethane varnishes are available in a full range of sheens from flat to gloss. Shellac by itself is somewhat glossy.

If you put on a coat of de-waxed shellac first (sometimes called Universal Sealer), you can then put on a coat of dull urethane over it.

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