Two years ago the cast and crew of Restoration Realities spent a weekend helping us insulate our front windows and build a period-appropriate screen door.
Since then I’ve managed to stick a rocking chair through the screen and also ruin the door jam. Everyday the tear in the screen seems to get bigger because now the animals have become accustomed to using that hole as a pet door. The screen door also frequently gets stuck in the door frame when the handle is locked and the door is slammed shut.
So after months of procrastinating, I’ve decided it’s time to finally restore the Restoration Realities screen door. The first thing we have to do is find a new screen. Heather has always wanted a copper screen in the door, and we’ve tried to find it locally but with no luck. So recently I did some searching on the internet and was able to find a copper wire mesh at Metro Screen Works which we will be ordering next week.
Found - Affordable window coverings
We ordered 2″ wood blinds for our den from an online company called Just Blinds. For the money (i.e. affordable), we are very satisfied with the product. The blinds were custom made for our window sizes.
Just Blinds sent us free color samples so that we were able to match the blind color to our woodwork. The stain we chose is called Russet.
Stripping paint with an infrared heat paint remover
Products, Removing Paint
In an online forum someone posted a link to an episode of “This Old House” which used a product called the Silent Paint Remover to strip off paint. They were using it outside of a house but I thought I would try it inside on my woodwork. Silent Paint Remover uses infrared heat to soften paint. It’s environmentally friendly. There are no chemicals involved, it works at a low enough operating temperature to prevent plumbic (lead) gases that may be present in the paint from being released and like the name says, it’s silent.
The first thing I should say is this product isn’t cheap. It’s $375 to own it or $22 a day to rent it. It’s not widely available retail yet. I ordered it directly from the manufacturer and it was back ordered for 2 months.
It’s fairly easy to use. You plug it in, turn it on and hold it over the area you want to strip for 20-60 seconds. There are adjustable bars on the side to help stabilize the tool. It covers about a 12″ x 4″ surface area. The paint will start to bubble up or blister and smoke as the Silent Paint Remover starts to work. Then you need to take a scraper and scrape off the paint. It works! It cut through about 8-12 layers of paint right down to the wood. I think this process goes a lot smoother if two people are doing it, one to loosen the paint and another to scrape it off. I was also happy with how light in weight the Silent Paint Remover was.