Saturday, August 07, 2010

Compare & Contrast

Work on the stairs is moving at a faster pace than I anticipated. I only worked two nights during the week. Not as much as I wanted to, but it is better than nothing at all. I’m finding that the newel posts take longer than expected. There is a lot of flat wood, so I would expect that that would go faster than the baluster, but I think the flat surface only made it easier to apply the shellac. The shellac seems to have been applied more generously on the newel posts than on other parts of the stairs.

The hand rails were also more time consuming than I thought they would be. They have a lot of detail to them, so there are many surfaces to get to. Also, it seems that decades of hands rubbing up and down them has added an extra thick layer of grime. So really, it is looking like the intricate balusters are the least time consuming. Who would have thought.

A little Before & After eye candy

I would say I’m about 30% through the stairs. What I’m realizing though, is that I’m going to need to strip all of the woodwork in the foyer. Otherwise, the stairs will stick out like a beautifully refinished thumb. That means there is the double front doors, the door under the stairs, casing around those doors plus the entrance to the dining room, and all of the base board.

It’s going to take a while.


St. Blogwen said...

Yep. It will. But it's gotta be done.

But oh boy oh boy oh boy, that newel post is looking nice.

What I'm waiting for with bated breath is how you tackle your stair treads and landings, especially re: equipment used. I'm dealing with mine now and the hard yellow pine isn't giving up its roughness easily.

Kate H.

Greg said...

The stair treads have largely been dealt with (see
stair-ing-in-disbelief.html). Granted, they are now covered with plaster dust, but that should be easy to deal with. The landings are still covered with 1920s linoleum, so I'm not sure what is under there at this point.

The plan is have a 27-inch runner with shellacked exposed edges. That is what was there originally.

Karen Anne said...

This is about when I'd go crazy with visions of never finishing.

St. Blogwen said...

Just checked out the post you mentioned. I'd be interested to know, about how long per tread did it take before you got the-- ahem!-- patina off?

My friend brought over a whole toolbox full of sanders yesterday. A random obital was not among them. The belt sander is the big gun I'm leery of using.

Kate H.

Greg said...


I don't really remember how long per tread. It was like a weekend job, maybe a little longer.

The belt sander would get you part of the way there, but would not get you in to the corners very good.

The belt sander can do a lot of damage quickly though, so you are right to be leery. You can probably pick up a RO sander for less than $75.