painting over a urathane finish

Old 10-23-04, 11:30 AM
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painting over a urathane finish


i've just moved in to a house that was built in '86. there is a large built-in shelf that is looking pretty dated. i'm not just interested in repairing any blemishes in the finish, but changing the color altogether (something a little darker). i'm not sure of the existing finish...but neither alcohol or laquer thinner affect it. so, i'm assuming it is a urathane finish of some type.

if the piece was removable, i'd take it outside and strip it down and refinish with a stain. but, as its built in, i'm thinking the least messy approach would be to paint over the existing finish.

the biggest argument i had for paint over stain is the assumption that i wouldnt have to strip off the existing finish--which will make a horrible mess right in the middle of the largest area of the house. is this a fair assumption? any better alternatives that dont require stripping?

if paint still sounds like a viable option, can someone please offer advice on how to prep this piece for painting-- and, maybe suggest a type of paint that would give the best finish?


Old 10-23-04, 04:20 PM
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Taylors, SC
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Clean the piece with mineral spirits to remove any grease, grit, grime, and wax. Scuff it with a green scotchbrite pad to knock down the sheen, prime with Zinsser 123, and paint with a semi-gloss latex paint. Use a top quality brush and top quality paint for best results.

Hope this helps.

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