Baseboard, Molding Refinishing + Newbie

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  #1  
Old 10-31-09, 05:31 AM
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Exclamation Baseboard, Molding Refinishing + Newbie

All the baseboards and molding around the doors in this 1958 ranch house are in lousy shape cosmetically. They seem to have dirt ground in, paint slopped on them and so on. I am a complete and utter novice to home repair and since my husband's illness have to be the DIY person. I'm clueless as to how to approach what looks like a huge job.

I believe I have to do the baseboard and molding, then paint and then do the floors in this order. Is that correct? Right now I don't know where to start or how to do it. And direction to information would be greatly appreciated.

Peace,
Jane
 
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Old 10-31-09, 08:12 AM
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What kind of floors are they? When you say redo them, exactly what do you mean. Don't try to do the molding job without a finish nail gun & a chop saw.
 
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Old 10-31-09, 08:49 AM
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Welcome to the forums Jane!

Just how bad are the baseboard and casings? Would a good sanding and a couple of coats of paint make them look decent? Some dings and gouges can be filled although I wouldn't want to repair all the woodwork.

Give us a little more info and we will try to help
 
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Old 11-01-09, 04:31 AM
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I'm sorry if I haven't given enough info. I really am doing this for the first time, so I don't know what some things are called and what info to give.

I do not know what wood is on the floor. I was just told it is "hardwood" and have no idea how to tell one wood from another unless it is very distinctive looking. By "redo" I meant rent a sander, hope for the best and then give them a coat of something, probably polyurethane, or something less slippery if I can find it. My need at the moment is to stop having completely bare wood floors. Not only do they look bad, but if the dogs have an accident it soaks in.

The baseboards themselves and the moldings around the doors are in decent shape. They have achieved a coating of yuck over the years that is defying my scrubbing. The original look and what attracted us to the house, is that the house has a sort of "theme" with all of the moldings and baseboards being the same gold/brown finish as the sliding doors in the pantry area, the doors and the kitchen cabinets. I love the look of wood and stupidly thought some elbow grease would restore the color of the stain. As my husband put it "we loved the warm glow of the house - before we realized that the "warm glow" could be scraped off..."

I would like to restore them to their honey color, but that's starting to look impossible with my abilities or lack of same and tight budget, not to mention lack of proper tools. Chop saws aren't cheap and I don't know what else I could use it for. Any tools I buy have to have multiple uses or I can justify the expense.

If I was to sand and paint them, should I do them in place or pull the baseboards off the wall. On one forum a post to someone else said to pull them loose take them and sand and stain them and then put them back on. I don't know which is more daunting -- leaving them on to sand, or pulling them off. I have a slight disability that makes being on the floor painful after a while.

I have bitten off a lot more than I could chew, but we started this with two people and now there is just me, so I have to do the best I can. I'm just trying to figure out how.

Thanks for the replies. I really appreciate it.
Jane
 
  #5  
Old 11-01-09, 06:12 AM
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You say the wood floors are bare but it's not a new house and presumably the floor is old but unfinished

Normally floors are sanded with a drum sander but drum sanders aren't diy friendly. Some pros even have trouble with them. If any area gets oversanded you wind up with dips in the floor. A couple of coats of poly will hi light the dips While it doesn't do as good a job, a buffer [w/sanding pad] is a lot easier to use. An edger [sander] is used to sand along the walls and anywhere the buffer can't reach. If the floors don't look too bad, you might get by with just a light sanding and then a couple of coats of poly. It won't look as good as a full fledged refinish job but would be easier and cheaper.

If the house is 50+ yrs old the woodwork probably has shellac on it. Shellac can be disolved with denatured alcohol so you might try scrubbing some with it and see how that looks - start in a closet or some area not readily seen. If you can clean the woodwork up, a fresh coat or two of poly should make them look nice.

IMO leaving the trim nailed up is best. A mechanic's creeper or something else with wheels that will allow you to sit and roll along the base as you work on it might help.
 
  #6  
Old 11-03-09, 08:21 AM
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Jane don't even think about using a drum sander as stated they are not for the DIYer. If you want to sand them yourself go to the Home Depot and rent and oscillating floor sander. They are much easier to use but take longer. You could also hire someone to do the sanding and you finish them yourself. This is the route I would take. Between the sander rental and the cost of the paper ($5 dollars a sheet) it would probable cost about the same in the end. As far as the molding goes try Rejuvenate for woodwork which is also available at the Home Depot. I would say use Rejuvenate for floors on your floors but it sounds like you don't have much to work with there. If they do have a finish on them then give it a try you'll be amazed. Check out the web site
Rejuvenate floor cleaners protect & seal floors
 
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Old 11-04-09, 05:54 AM
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I work with a man who used to do wood flooring and might still be doing some on the side. Maybe he can sand it or recommend someone who could. I asked him about my floors at one point and he was horrified by the idea of the stains, but he's probably used to people who want perfect floors. I actually rather like the "lived in" look that the floors have even if they are stained and unfinished. I've been looking at floor coverings and can't find anything I like better than the look I have now. I like the rustic look, which doesn't seem to be in unless you have a cabin in the woods. Everyone seems to be into perfection. I don't like it much, which is probably why I have a houseful of handicapped dogs.

I will check out Rejuvenate. I looked at strippers and denatured alcohol but I think I need to use those in the summer with more ventilation than I have now.

If I do the floors -- is there anything less slippery than Polyurethane to put on them? I don't want to turn this place into a skating rink for me or the dogs. I know it looks purty and shiny, but I'd rather have less shine and more safety.

Thanks so much for your replies. You have no idea how much I appreciate your help.
 
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Old 11-04-09, 06:53 AM
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Most any coating you use will result in the floors being slicker than they are now. A satin poly has less shine than a gloss but both are equally as slick if applied properly. There are some oil rub finishes that can be used. I'm not real familiar with them. Their level of shine is realitive to the amount the oil is buffed.
 
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