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A true labor of love


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Okay, so most of you know I will be putting my house on the market in February. Until then we are doing lots of renovation and today I embarked on a true labor of love, something I have wanted to do when I purchased the house 6 years ago. Remove the paint from the clear heart old growth redwood siding and seal it naturally. Last week I purchased a tool that ran me about $1000 dollars that apparently is the best on the market. It is called a Paint Shaver Pro, google it. I did a lot of research and found that it truely is the best paint removal tool on the market, and it also comes with a sanding unit to get swirl marks out of the wood after grinding it. Not cheap, but after today I find that it is well worth it!! It is a grinder tool (see pictures) that attaches to a vacuum (less mess) it is rated by the EPA as a good tool for removing lead based paint also. So I start in on a few boards that I know I will be replacing because they are so damaged so that I can start to get the feel of the tool and how it works. When finished with a few of these boards I rubbed them with an oil based redwood sealer that had a red tint to it, this I did not like at all. No worries though, I plan on replacing these peices anyway. I move to a new area and start in on my first board. Blonde wood started showing. Holy crap, did I spend all this money to find out that large parts of the house have had the redwood siding replaced with cheap old pine??? As I move up the board with the grinder a gorgeous red streak starts to appear and I realize I have struck gold. Redwood sometimes has blond in it and this only enhances its beauty. Interesting note on that, I had salvaged a bunch of the same redwood siding from a house in River oaks before it was torn down and none of it has any blonde in it. Perhaps it is a younger wood. I only did a little bit of work today with plans to hit it hard tomorrow but I am very excited about what it is going to look like in the end. I am not crazy enough to remove the paint from the facia and soffit (there is a ton of square footage of soffit) as I do not want to be laying on my back for long periods of time with saw dust falling into my face. Brutal. Having researched the Eichler colors I came across a color swatch from Benjamin Moore paints that has translated all of the Eichler colors into current paints they sell. So the facia and soffit will be painted what is called Black Bean Soup. I took a piece of my salvaged redwood, sealed it and painted a strip of Black Bean Soup on it and found out that it matches and pulls out the dark grains in the redwood perfectly. Perhaps this was meant to be when Eichler chose the color because many homes in that era had redwood siding. One of the photos has that peice of wood laying up next to the recently stripped siding. I have two questions some of you may be able to answer. One is, I have come across some bondo ( it can be seen in one of the photos) that I am wondering how I might color it to look somewhat natural in the wood. I could just dig it out and stain the inside of the hole if need be. Also, I am not really digging the sealant that I used on the test board as it contains a red pigment that I think would be less attractive than the more natural color of what I have uncovered. In one of the photos you can see a patch that I sealed with the red pigment in it. I'm not diggin it. What suggestions might any of you have as far as sealing the wood with a sealer that does not contain pigment?

I plan on starting a blog showcasing the progress so in the future I will post a link should anyone want to follow. Its going to look like a million bucks when it is done. I hope you all will chime in with any comments or suggestions as it moves along. Thanks and have a great day!


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Seems from your story that you truly love what you do, you must, 'cause that's a lot of work, stripping.

Interesting, about the blond in the redwood. Good for you, salvaged some wood from another dead mod.

I love real wood, stained or unstained, despise white paint, but know it has it's reasons for being. haha...When sold, I hope the purchaser is a mod lover, and not a style destroyer.

Edited by NenaE
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Save the sawdust that doesn't contain paint. Dig out some of the bondo. Mix the sawdust with carpenters glue (clear) and fill the hole. It will match very well. Note that it doesn't stain well but it is great for natural finishes.

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I do hate to sell the house but I do want to leave the house as I feel it should be. The next owners may or may not appreciate the work I have done but I at least get to drive by the house in years to come and feel good about my contribution to its preservation. I can understand why people would think I am crazy to do this much work just so I can sell it in a few months but I do enjoy the work and it seems to be a noble thing to do for such a great house. All I really lose is my time. I did forget to mention one important stat about the Paint Shaver Pro. It can remove one square foot of paint in 20 seconds, so the work will go rather quickly. I have caught all sorts of hell both from my wife and my mother for taking on this job, LOL!

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