Katy Elliott

A daily design journal about new england life, home decorating resources, and renovating a 257-year-old house in Marblehead, MA.

Restoring Raised Paneled Doors

Posted on | February 23, 2011 | 18 Comments

Over the weekend we stripped three solid wood raised paneled doors for our den project. We used our handy Silent Paint Remover—with a little nudge of a scraper the paint comes right off. The doors feel about 10 pounds lighter each; unfortunately for one of the doors the paint was holding it together. We still need to remove the hardware, sand and paint.

On one of the doors we found a shotgun blast. If you look closely at the image below you’ll see a spray of dots on the door. I wonder what happened? Maybe an intruder or just a drunk guy shooting off rounds? So interesting, right?

Update: we’re pretty sure this wasn’t a gunshot but a dartboard, see here.

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Video: Paint In Den Stripped

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18 Responses to “Restoring Raised Paneled Doors”

  1. Katarina
    February 23rd, 2011 @ 12:58 pm

    Hey, I’m really curious about your silent paint remover. Do you find that it works much better than a heat gun? I have a lot of molding in my house that needs to be redone, as well as a staircase. I’ve been using a heat gun, which works well but I find that I have to do a lot of scraping after removing the initial layer of paint.


  2. Jane Flanagan
    February 23rd, 2011 @ 3:19 pm

    Wow – that’s insane about the shotgun blast!


  3. Katy Elliott
    February 23rd, 2011 @ 3:31 pm

    Hi Katarina!

    The silent paint remover makes it really easy. But what sold us was is the remover uses “low operating temperatures that prevents hazardous plumbic gases that might otherwise be released using other heat or hazardous chemical methods. You are left with a dry and easily disposable substance.”

    We still use masks and take precautions but overall we have read/heard this is the safest way to remove paint.

    I’m realizing we should do a whole post on how it works!


  4. Susan
    February 23rd, 2011 @ 5:13 pm

    Amazing…there is almost always a story, wouldn’t you love to know!?!


  5. Indira
    February 23rd, 2011 @ 11:48 pm

    Job well done! I’ve stripped a lot of doors in my day. Heat gun and Jasco to finish is my method. That Paint Remover is spendy. How did it do in the corners? What’s your method for the hardware paint removal? Are you going to use TSP to soak your hardware?


  6. Wendy
    February 24th, 2011 @ 10:39 am

    How big are the holes? They look small to me in the photograph which–if they are small–they could be wormholes because it’s old wood. Our trim has wormholes. My boyfriend insisted the previous owner had gone crazy with pushpins but the Orkin dude was like “Nope, wormholes–probably dormant.”


  7. Steve
    February 24th, 2011 @ 1:04 pm

    Would love to see more about the paint remover.


  8. moparbrownstoner
    February 24th, 2011 @ 2:14 pm

    Intrigued re Silent Paint Remover. I have read complaints elsewhere that it doesn’t work. Maybe it all depends on the kind of paint you are stripping. You make it sound so easy, as if stripping all the woodwork in my house might actually be possible.

    Fascinating re the shotgun blast. Where was the door located in the house? Is this in the den with the plaster ceiling?

    We have a bullet in a pocket door and found another one buried in a wall — shots from outside gone astray, since we also have a matching hole in the window. Not ancient bullets, unfortunately, more like 1991 to 2005.


  9. moparbrownstoner
    February 24th, 2011 @ 2:15 pm

    Are those burn marks from the Silent Paint Remover? If so, then perhaps it would be best used for those planning to repaint, not stain?


  10. Katy Elliott
    February 24th, 2011 @ 2:25 pm

    Hi everyone!

    We’re going to do a post next week demonstrating the Silent Paint Remover and tips.

    If you have questions please leave a comment here and we’ll address in the post next week.

    Sorry gotta run, busy week!


  11. Cotehele
    February 24th, 2011 @ 7:19 pm

    Wouldn’t you love to know the story behind the shotgun blast. History and stories of an old house are one of the many charms.

    You did very well to get all three doors stripped last weekend. I got the Silent Paint Remover when we started on the kitchen remodel in 2009. It works very well, and I like not using chemicals.


  12. liz
    February 25th, 2011 @ 9:52 am

    The Silent Paint Remover sounds great and your renovations look beautiful! Once you remove the majority of paint and move on to the sanding process, what precautions do you take to minimize dust as there could be lead in the dust? In particular, with your fixed woodwork that can’t be moved outside the house for sanding? Thanks in advance for any ideas.


  13. abby Belknap
    February 25th, 2011 @ 4:44 pm

    considering the age of your house I would love to know about the shot in the door!


  14. quintessence
    February 26th, 2011 @ 8:49 pm

    Don’t you love when found objects have a history of their own? Makes them seem so much more meaningful!


  15. Brad Haan
    March 1st, 2011 @ 1:44 am

    Came across this tonight…


    I had never heard of it before. Thought you might like to see you’re not alone!


  16. jack
    March 17th, 2011 @ 2:32 pm

    Are you keeping any of the original door hardware on the doors? those doors sure do have a lot of character. Shotgun blast and everything! They look great and the antique effect is awesome!

    http://www.yourhomesupply.com – check them out in case you do need new hardware, but hopefully not. Those antique knobs are beautiful.


  17. Katy Elliott
    March 17th, 2011 @ 7:24 pm

    We are using some of the old hardware but it’s not all old. Some pieces were added and don’t seem to be original.


  18. Nicole @bklyncontessa
    June 10th, 2011 @ 3:15 pm

    hmm … looks more like it could be from powder post beetles or maybe bird shot at most.


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