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Anonymous (not verified)
Stripping paint by dipping

I'm getting ready to redo my kitchen and with it the old windows. I do not want to replace them with new windows, but I'm not looking forward to days spent hand stripping all the wood from the pane to the frame.

A contractor that visited the house for other reasons had mentioned places that dip the wood to strip the paint. This sounds much easier and also decreases the number of slivers I will get.

I've been all over the internet but can't seem to find companies that do this.

Can any one help? Specically in the Chicago area.

Re: Stripping paint by dipping

I would recommend against it. The dipping process not only removes paint but has a tendency to dissolve many glues.

Re: Stripping paint by dipping

My circa.1680 house had plenty of windows (more than 30-12 over 12's) and doors to strip. I look at projects this way....if I didn't want to do the work I'd live in a condo or replaced the windows with vinyl replacements but since none of those answers fall into my agenda I set myself up with the proper attitude and get busy. Set my radio up..drop cloths, tools, etc etc and get to work methodically with a smile and dust mask on my face. I use a heat gun, sanders and liquid strippers depending on what I'm doing and the results I'm after.
I take the sahes out of the frames and set them on my work table out doors or an area in my shop or designated room with ventilation and fans. I use my belt sander with a 60 grit paper on all the flat wide surfaces (stiles and rails) just enough to get the major paint/finish off. I use heat guns for all the rest and then a liquid stripper. I finalize it all with an 80 grit then 100 grit paper....and higher if you want.
If you wanna spring for a Fein Multimaster you'll save a lot of time. I wish I'd have bought one before I started!!
With the MM you can also get all the bad glazing out with ease!!!
That tools worth its weight in gold......as long as you don't hit nails with any of the blades:eek:

Re: Stripping paint by dipping

When we were working on our shotgun house in New Orleans in the 70s, there was a local business that stripped wood using a dip tank. It worked well for old, paint-encrusted cypress shutters. We tried it on an old hardwood mantle but it really raised the grain. I understand the process works well only on softwoods.

Unfortunately I don't know of any businesses that still do this type of work.

I think the dip tank contained lye.

Re: Stripping paint by dipping

I would concurr with the advice to be leery of dipping. I have seen rocking chairs come back as a kit, window sash devoid of the glazing, grain swollen, doors swollen so bad they no longer fit their openings, etc.

At a minimum, only send out a trial piece before committing the entire project.

Re: Stripping paint by dipping

I had 6 heavily painted windsor wood chairs dipped and was so pleased when I pick them up. Looked like new unfinished wood. HOWEVER, after I spent many hours sanding , staining and finishing with urethane in the summer, and they looked fabulous......come winter they literally fell apart.

I was told that the stripping process during the summer swelled the wood and then when I sealed the chairs and when the season changed, the wood constricted and all the glue was gone, so the chairs fell apart. Because the wood was sealed, no matter how often I reglued the spindles, it wouldn't work. I threw them away.........

Big learning lesson!

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