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Thursday, July 31, 2014

stripping hardware

we've been living without doors in the finished part of the house, since we moved in. it's my job to paint them and get them ready to be put back on....painting doors is not one of my most favorite things to they're not finished yet. i did however, get the bathroom door painted and ready, but its not installed yet. why???!! well, the hardware for the doors has about 235 coats of paint on it. and before the doors go back on, i really wanted to strip the hardware. the hinges, knobs, locks and any other metal parts that go on the doors. some of it is absolutely gorgeous! you can see some of the detail under all of the paint, and i really want to get them back to bare metal, so all of the detail is showing. i've been researching ways to do this....and i really don't want to use a chemical stripper. one reason, with so many layers of paint, i think it would take A LOT to get it off and i don't want to risk the chance of the chemicals eating or pitting the metal...just because there are so many fine details on it. two, because it smells SO bad...and i dont know how many times i'd have to actually strip it. so i kept looking for another way to do it.....and i read somewhere you could put it in a crockpot, filled with water...put it on high for about 8 hrs and the paint will just sort of peel off...sounds easy?!

i REALLY want doors on the bedrooms and the i got all the hardware together this morning and brought it to the shop with me. put in an old crockpot we have, filled it with water and put it on high. i went to check on it about 3 hrs later and you could tell some of the paint was starting to bubble. so i grabbed a hinge out of there and sort of scraped it...gently, with a flat head screw driver. ITS WORKING!!! the paint is super gummy though and i think i'll have to get a fine wire brush to get all of the paint out the crevices and small detail areas.

here it is this morning, before the crockpot, with the 283 layers of paint on can see that some of the hinges are the cool detailed, steeple hinges and will look amazing back to bare metal! the 'normal' looking hinges (in the first photo) aren't original...i'd like to find more of the steeple ones or even some that just have the amazing detail carvings in them, to replace the 'newer' hinges that were put on at some point. but in the time being, i'll strip them and put them back up.

after 3 hrs you can see some of the paint floating on top of the water...AND this water smells absolutely horrible! i dont know if lead paint has a scent...but i'm sure there are layers of lead paint on the hardware..and it smells so bad...i feel like vapor is going to be really bad for my body???!!! maybe i should wear a mask while i scrape it?!

 i pulled one of the steeple hinges out, because they have the most detail on them, and i was excited to see what it looked like! you can see the paint is starting to soften...

and here it is with just a little can start to see the fine detail coming through paint...

i'll get a wire brush tonight and bring it with me tomorrow and start scraping the rest of the paint off. i may still have to use a little bit of chemical stripper to get the gumminess of the paint residue off...we'll see...i'll let you know.

we have this same detail on all of the window pulls, and alot of the door knobs and door plates. so i think i'll be using this process alot during the restoration...its pretty easy so far!


  1. I have seen old hinges simular to yours at the Antique Mall in Harmony, MN

    1. yeah, i've seen them places....they're a little spendy though. but i may have to try and find a few!

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