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  Tip Of The Week  
 


Removing paint from door hardware

Problem: I stripped, sanded and repainted my old doors, but the hardware is still caked with old paint. How can I remove it?

Solution: Get a box of TSP (tri-sodium phosphate) cleaner and a big old soup kettle. Put your metal and glass parts in the kettle, and add enough water and TSP to cover them at least an inch below the surface. Simmer this on the stove for a few hours, and all the paint will come off. Make it a fairly strong solution, and watch that it doesn't boil over. Simmering a long time is what you want, boiling doesn't help. -- John Sprung, on the Old House Web Bulletin Boards.

Other readers report they've had luck with simmering their hardware in plain water and wire brushing it before it cools.
 


Painting Wicker

Use an old appliance box to contain spray paint

Here's how to spray-paint a piece of wicker furniture without painting everything else in the area.

Place the item in a large appliance box with the front cut off. Then spray in from outside the box. Allow each coat to dry for the time for no more than the time suggested on the spray can. You shouldn't have to sand between coats.

 


Painting Fresh Plaster

Problem: Paint won't adhere to fresh coat of plaster, even though it has cured the required amount of time.

Solution: Wipe the walls first with distilled white vinegar. This neutralizes the alkali in the plaster. Next coat the walls with a shellac-based primer to prevent further chemical reactions with the paint.
 


Concealing Uneven Walls

"I spent over a day repairing holes and cracks in a bedroom's plaster walls. After we painted the base coat, you could still see my repairs. My wife then painted a dark lavender on the walls, and sponge painted a lighter lavender over top.

"The results are nothing short of amazing. Not only do the walls look incredible, but all of the wall repairs are hidden by the sponge texture."  int won't adhere to fresh coat of plaster, even though it has cured the required amount of time.


Cleaning brass

Brass will look brighter and require less polishing if rubbed with a cloth moistened with olive oil after each polishing. Olive oil retards tarnish
 

 
 
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