Paint & Wood Finishing Secrets

winow trim

Carpenters know that a careless finishing job can ruin the appearance of the most careful work. On the other hand, a skillful finisher can substantially upgrade the look of less-than-perfect woodworking.

Projects in Finishing Secrets

Choose your finish
When you're personally responsible for a remodeling project, it pays to put your best efforts into all aspects of the work.

For some styles of trimwork, paint is the correct choice. You'll find that paint-grade moldings are significantly less expensive than stain-grade.

Another factor that recommends painted trimwork is the fact that the carpentry skills required are less demanding. You can fill gaps with a number of different products and the repair will be invisible under the final color coat.

On the other hand, the appearance of wood grain has powerful allure. Its richness and subtlety can glow through a carefully applied clear finish. The extra cost of materials and the additional work involved in crafting tight-fitting joints are quickly forgotten once you've completed a high-quality installation.

Don't skimp on prep work
While the beauty of a good finish is literally right on the surface, that final look is the result of careful preparation that goes down several layers.

After careful sanding, remove all dust with a tack cloth prior to staining or applying the first coat of primer. Lightly sand between coats of finish to remove nubs of dust that settled into the wet surface. Tack the surface before each coat, and keep your work area as clean as possible.

Filling the holes
Filling nail and screw holes may seem like an insignificant task, but doing it right -- and at the right time -- means the difference between blotches or near invisibility. In this section, you'll learn about the product options you have for both painted and clear-finished woodwork. Then you'll discover mixing and application secrets that will give you confidence and great results.

One Hour or Less

Three simple projects to cross off of your to-do list -- just print these instructions and begin!