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Rough-sawn cedar ruined by blue paint :(

We just bought a house with rough-sawn cedar doorways, windowframing, and entire walls, however, the former owner painted them all with a horrible blue color. Can I sand this down or should i just give up and paint them with a less objectionable color?

A. Spruce
Re: Rough-sawn cedar ruined by blue paint :(

Easiest will be to repaint with a less objectionable color, otherwise you're into stripping the paint, which will leave remnants behind anyway. If you sand rough sawn material, especially enough to get the remnants of paint off, it will no longer be rough sawn. Maybe replacement of the trim is in order?

Re: Rough-sawn cedar ruined by blue paint :(

Pressure washing or sandblasting *may* remove the paint and let it keep that rough-sawn look, but it may also cause other damage as well.

Re: Rough-sawn cedar ruined by blue paint :(

You are kind of stuck with the painted cedar. A less bright color would certainly make it less objectionable. Also, I never have thought that glossy paints look good on rough cut wood.

There is no way to get rough cut cedar back to natural looking rough cut, especially while it is in place.

You might experiment with painting the rough cedar with a low sheen woodtone paint and then going over it with a darker woodtone glaze to emphasize the rough cut. Brush on the glaze and then wipe off the excess. You have nothing to lose!

Short of that, I would consider re-trimming with new cedar (assuming you like the rough cut look). One advantage is that the old trim gives you a template to greatly speed up the re-trimming. A power miter saw and pneumatic nailer greatly ease this work. Also, to lessen the mess in the house, consider pre-staining and sealing the cedar before hanging. Then only minor touch-up of cut edges would be neccessary when the trim is up. Do seal the cedar with a clear varnish. Again, on rough cut, I prefer the natural look of low sheen varnish. Without sealer/varnish, those areas subject to soiling, such as door casings, will not be cleanable. Sealing also allows you to fill the nail holes with match colored putty without making smudgy oil stains in the grain of the wood.

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