Exposed wood beams?

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  #1  
Old 11-25-04, 12:23 PM
bubbrubb
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Exposed wood beams?

Happy Thanksgiving!

I live in a studio condo.
Its an old brick factory that was converted into 8 lofts in the early 80s.
we had a roof leak and I'm on the 3rd floor, water trickled down the inside wall and pooled in my bathroom, eventually destroying the ceiling. I am just finishing up the new ceiling w/ green board and drywall compound; my first real home project (aside from some re-wiring when I moved in).

When up in the ceiling, I saw the building had old school massive wooden beams supporting the floors and since I had to vertical beams supporting a horizontal one that spans my entire apartment, I decided I'd break open the drywall today and peek inside. Sure enough, big wooden beams.

Here are my questions: once I finish removing the 2 layers of drywall that was put on the beams, how would you suggest I finish the beams off? There is a light crusty outer coating that may bee old paint that was partially stripped off. I need to get to a hardware store ASAP to test for lead paint but being that its thanksgiving, I have to suspend my work and wait for tomorrow. Assuming its not lead paint, should I just use a brush on the wood to get the gunk off or should I go all out and work the wood down to grain?

I kinda want to do the latter, but am unsure what's involved and what I'll need to get it done.

I could also use suggestions on how to make the floor-beam junction look nice.
I'm a total rookie, thanks in advance for any help you can offer!
photo 1
photo 2
 

Last edited by bubbrubb; 11-25-04 at 12:28 PM. Reason: adding pics
  #2  
Old 11-25-04, 12:46 PM
Sawdustguy
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An idea,

Instead of spending all of that time stripping the old off, what about adding new pieces of wood around it? Basically, you'd be "Capping" it.

If you'd rather see the old wood, then yes, I would recommend you find out if it has lead in it and if not, then you can use paint stripper from home depot and use a wire brush to get it out of the graining as much as you can. Put stripper on the brush too, as you're rubbing it out.
 
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Old 11-25-04, 02:00 PM
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If you aren't dealing with any lead, I would scrape the columns with a paint scraper then sand them reasonably smooth and finish with a clear polyurethane. They should look dyn-no-mite!! Some nice baseboard around the bottoms will hide the gaps in the flooring.
 
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Old 11-25-04, 03:18 PM
bubbrubb
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If i were to sand it down, could you recommend a sander model?

I assume I want a belt.
 
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Old 11-25-04, 03:36 PM
Sawdustguy
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If you're not good with a belt sander, use a random orbital sander with 100 grit.

It highly recommend Porter Cable. It will cost you about $60.00 and will last you a long time. I use it every day, as I'm "In the business"
 
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Old 11-26-04, 07:49 AM
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Like Sawdustguy, I would recommend a random orbital sander. Belt sanders have to be used parallel with the grain and you'll have trouble sanding the top and bottom parts of the column. With a ROS, you can go right to the ceiling or floor without getting cross-grain sanding marks.

I might start with 60 grit paper on the roughest areas - then take the whole thing to 100 or 120 grit. Anything finer would probably be overkill.
 
  #7  
Old 11-26-04, 09:00 AM
Sawdustguy
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Hey dave, have you ever had belt sander races??
 
  #8  
Old 11-26-04, 12:42 PM
bubbrubb
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^hahahhaa!!!
i've seen that, absolutely a riot!


I have a tiny hand-held orbital sander, a Ryobi. Good for small jobs but I imagine it will suck. Time to shop around

thx for the input thus far!
 
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Old 11-26-04, 03:07 PM
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Sawdustguy -

I've seen beltsander races and thought that some people have WAY too much time on their hands.

My only direct experience was when I plugged the belt sander in with the trigger on and locked.
 
  #10  
Old 11-26-04, 07:25 PM
Sawdustguy
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Too much time on my hands? Oh come on! Let the guy live a little!

I remember back in Shop Class "Highschool" a few "Select" guys would lock the trigger, so the next day in class, whomever would pick that belt sander, well............. You know the rest! Ah, the good ole days. Now, if someone breaks my belt sander, I break their head!
 
 

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