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Restoring painted over mahogany interior walls...

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Joined: Apr 3 2007

Hi everyone, this is actually my very first post here. We are currently in escrow on an Eichler in the Terra Linda Eichler tract and are very excited about moving in.

We love the mahogany walls in the Eichlers but unfortunately all of ours are painted or wallpapered over. I noticed there are some forums and FAQ's about restoring the interior walls but it seems most of these are aimed at walls that have been stained/faded, or replacing the wall panels. Has anyone stripped paint off the panels in their restoration? Is this a realistic task? It seems like it might be difficult, as I'd imagine the mahogany wall is a fairly porous surface. Any advice?

Thanks!

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Joined: Jul 6 2006

We had the same problem with many of our panels. After "carefully" removing them, we were able to turn some of our panels around to the backside, lightly sand them and then finish them. They were completely unmarred and beautiful. However, some of the panels have cutouts for beams and outlets so it may not always work.

Other people may have had different results but it worked for us.

Good luck with your house!

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Joined: Apr 3 2007

carmagi wrote:
We had the same problem with many of our panels. After "carefully" removing them, we were able to turn some of our panels around to the backside, lightly sand them and then finish them. They were completely unmarred and beautiful. However, some of the panels have cutouts for beams and outlets so it may not always work.

Other people may have had different results but it worked for us.

Good luck with your house!

that's an interesting solution... Think that would be easier than stripping the paint? Anyone try the paint stripping method?

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Joined: Nov 26 2004

Congrats on your eichler purchase.

The panels are usually pretty thin so stripping them of paint probably isn't going to be the most practical solution. As the previous poster suggested, you may want to try and delicately flip the panels.

In terms of the wallpaper, I think you are going to run into the same problem however I do know of a wallpaper person that lives in an Eichler (also in Terra Linda) who might be able to give you an idea of what is possible. Email me and I can get you her contact information.

Last but not least, if you are noodling over ideas for the walls of your Eichler, you may want to check out the following webpage which presents a number of different solutions: Eichler Wall Ideas & Pictures WebPage

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Joined: Jul 6 2006

One more comment about turning the panels. Each panel had a manufacturers stamp on it but they sanded right off with little effort.

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Joined: Mar 25 2003

I wouldn't bother trying to to remove paint and wallpaper. After doing all that work, you're unlikely to be happy with the results. We had six or seven walls that needed to be replaced and we simply went to a local lumber yard, picked up some new mahogany panels for about $10 a piece, mixed some new stain using Watco Finishing Oils and some universal orange tint and you'd be hard pressed to tell the new panels from the old.

You have the added benefit of being to update the electricity and add insulation (for sound proofing, energy efficiency and some slight fire retardation).

sp
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Joined: Jun 26 2003

We're in a home where 2 walls were stripped by previous owners. In certain light you can see some paint left in the deep pores (avocado green). At first glance it's not noticeable but in any light they don't look the same as the never-painted walls. If you really want to retain these panels, try using the back sides (as suggested in other postings). Adding insulation, updating wiring, etc. is well worth doing at that time.

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Joined: Feb 1 2007

We have just been through this in Marinwood. We opted to replace the paneling that had been wallpapered, and I'm glad we did. We did put sheetrock underneath, and insulation where we could. I would caution you to deal with a lumberyard where you can pick your panels, as I had some problems with color variation -- even the same panel can often be beige on one side and red on the other. I will email you offline with a recommendation. After trying various formulas of danish oil recommended on this site, we used Watco Danish Oil, Golden Oak for the first coat on the new panels, then 1:4 Medium Walnut: Golden Oak for the second, as the first came out a little light. Then we went over the old panels with Golden Oak to try to even out the places where the sun had faded around pictures. It looks great. Good luck!

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Joined: Sep 2 2008

Hello,

For the guy who purchased new paneling in Willow Glen, where did you source it? Southern Lumber, OSH???? Thanks, Brad

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Joined: Sep 7 2009

save the old paneling if you want to put it in your shoji screen doors flipped backwards ? also, TSP works wonders on removing the old grasscloth covering and it might take off the wallpaper too..., soak a sponge and then soak the panels, wait 10 minutes, lightly scrape with a large plastic putty blade.

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