Replacing oak throughout house - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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Replacing oak throughout house

Hello!

Apologies if this isn't the right place for this post.

My home is in need of some updating. I have the honey-oak color trim throughout. EGADS! I'd like to slowly go through each room of the house - at least on the main level - and replace the trim, doors, stairway, etc. with all new wood and wood products. (slowly meaning as the budget permits...) For example, I'd like to replace the doors with solid doors and take down the trim and replace with wider trim. I really like the craftsman look - wide trim, 'boxy' look. I also want to stay with stained wood, rather than painted wood. I will try to tackle some of the easier jobs myself (door trim) and other things I will just buy (doors).

My question... what type of wood might you recommend? Do I stick with oak but just stain it differently? I like the look of alder. Pine (at least the knotty pine) might be a little too rustic for my house.

It feels overwhelming - and since I'm doing it slowly, I don't want to go down a wrong path without thinking everything through.

Any advice? Thank you!
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post #2 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 03:24 PM
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I like oak so I would stick to that. You can stain it just about any shade from light to dark


The only problem I would see is getting oak doors. While they are readily available, to me they are usually a little expensive.


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post #3 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 03:40 PM
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A good molding supply will have all the various shapes of moldings readily available in stock. They will stock more choices than a home center. But the types of wood will still be limited. Usually no more than four types of wood will be offered in solid woods. If you want other types of woods you would have to make the molding yourself. I recommend buying ready-made molding versus making your own. It will be so much faster when molding out an entire house. You can also use two-step or even three-step moldings to get a desired look. (Molding on top of molding).
5 1/4 base mold and 5 crown mold is now very common on new houses.
If you stay with stained moldings, I recommend staining and finishing the molding before you install it.
A good 18 gauge pneumatic nailer can sure be a big help with installation.

If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to do it over?
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post #4 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 05:45 PM
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Alder is beautiful, but the price is outrageous. A grade Pine is also beautiful, but more expensive than oak. Oak is readily available I would probably stick with that. Otherwise, the only real consideration is your taste and what you like.

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post #5 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 06:18 PM
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In the Midwest, you can get poplar as well. If you have a Menards close by, they have a fairly good selection of millwork.
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post #6 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 06:22 PM
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Do a searech for stained Oak

All Oak is not the same. There is Red Oak, White Oak, Pin Oak amns others. There are also many grain patterns depending how and where on the log it was sawn at the mill. Some grains are highly figured, or plain sawn. Others are almost all straight grained or quatersawn. Get familiar with those species and grains and then pick the color stain you prefer.

You will find images like this in abundance:

https://www.artsinheaven.com/items/A...228-detail.htm
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The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 07-31-2018 at 06:27 PM.
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post #7 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 08:08 PM
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Is this your forever home?

You are headed down a long, expensive road, while it may be something you really want, is there a less expensive way to get it?

There are so many ways to treat wood with paint, stain, techniques. Why tear all that out to replace it with almost the same thing?

Stained trim IMO is not really in these days, painted seems to be what you see the most. I would consider painting, and adding wide crown to those rooms you want to.

The money and time you spend on a tear out, and replace will not be recovered in the long run...
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post #8 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 10:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shoot summ View Post
Is this your forever home?

You are headed down a long, expensive road, while it may be something you really want, is there a less expensive way to get it?

There are so many ways to treat wood with paint, stain, techniques. Why tear all that out to replace it with almost the same thing?

Stained trim IMO is not really in these days, painted seems to be what you see the most. I would consider painting, and adding wide crown to those rooms you want to.

The money and time you spend on a tear out, and replace will not be recovered in the long run...
Im in agreement with Shoot Summ.
Stained moldings and paneling seems to date a house now. Stained paneling and molding seems to have fallen from being popular in new construction. Even new homes with stained hardwood floors are getting painted base mold.
If the old solid wood molding is still in good shape I would probably paint it. Again, as I said in my original post, you can add molding to your existing molding to give you an entirely new look with a two or three step molding.
We still see stained hand rails for stairs, stained cabinetry and stained doors. But a high percentage of these are being painted also.

If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to do it over?
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post #9 of 18 Old 07-31-2018, 11:57 PM
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Is the oak in good enough condition it could be stripped and refinished. This may be the easiest and cheapest solution. The new wood would have to be sanded, stained or painted so the only difference is stripping the old finish off. As others have said you could stain the wood to any color you desire and I would think solid oak trim would add to the value of the house.
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post #10 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 02:08 AM
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I am of a different opinion. If you are living in the house and you are wanting to change the oak because you don't like it much, (I am going to do the same thing) then forget about resale and do what you want. You don't want paint, the heck with fashions and don't paint. Look at different woods and try to visualize the color tones that appeal to you. I would recommend going with a natural color rather than stained, otherwise, why change it? Besides, if you like the look of alder, why change it by staining it? Use a clear coat finish. The price of alder varies in different regions. I'm in the PNW and alder is no more expensive than any other hardwood. Less than some, especially if you buy it from a hardwood dealer instead of a big box store like Home Depot. Do an internet search for hardwood dealers within a 100 mile radius of where you live. Ask around at cabinet shops. They may be able to turn you onto a local sawyer, and they will often sell hardwoods for less cost than a dealer. That is certainly the case here in Oregon.



Also, if you have a table saw, you can readily make your own trim, since you are interested in flat trim with no profile. (Some people don't really READ the original posts) Craftsmen style, with no profiles, can be very good looking. That's probably the route I will take in my house. We bought it and it has oak 'colonial' casings and trim and I find it to be too cookie cutter looking for my tastes. I also find oak to be a cold looking wood with little warmth. Obviously, that's just my own opinion. But I would encourage you to do what suits your tastes and never mind resale, or subsequent owners. They will either love it or change what you did. There's no way to predict that. So what? You're the one who has to live with it NOW.
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post #11 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 06:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmwood_1 View Post
(Some people don't really READ the original posts)
Some actually read quite well, first sentence in her paragraph:

My home is in need of some updating.

Every house I see that is updated, does not have stained wood trim in it...

I had that house, where I took on every project with the "make it the way I want it", "rip and replace" perspective. In the end it became a burden because I created so much work for myself, and then ultimately I lost a lot of money on it. So my comments come from experience, I wouldn't do it again, nor would I suggest someone take on the same perspective.

Last edited by shoot summ; 08-01-2018 at 06:43 AM.
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post #12 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 10:38 AM
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"I really like the craftsman look - wide trim, 'boxy' look"

I was refering to comments about needing to get a molding supply place involved. As for the paint vs. natural wood, it's her time, not yours. If that is what she likes and wants, and is willing to do for herself, I see no point in discouraging that goal.


Also, you are in OK, she is in ID. I am in OR. It is not uncommon here for people to tear out the cheap, painted stuff and put in real wood. Maybe they're doing the opposite in OK, I don't know what the trend is in ID. But trends come and go. If I plan to live in my house for a long time, which I do, I will make things how I like them. The next owner will do the same, I see it quite often. Even Greene & Greene's work was torn out, painted over, etc. by subsequent owners, in time. Can you imagine that?

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post #13 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 10:40 AM
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Arts & Crafts use white oak and frequently fuming to achieve the color. Fuming is difficult, time consuming and sometimes dangerous.

Here is a modern (safer) take on that look using dyes:

https://www.woodmagazine.com/materia...-without-fumes
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post #14 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 12:28 PM
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although some houses have the same look throughout every room, I prefer different looks. some rooms with cherry, some with painted poplar, some with hemlock, etc. Because of the scale of the job, and difficulties which can arise, I would recommend that you take on one room, maybe not your front room, and see how it goes.

Last edited by TimPa; 08-01-2018 at 12:31 PM.
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post #15 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 01:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for all the responses - and for taking the time to respond. SO MANY THINGS to THINK ABOUT.

I am actually in IOWA! (Go Hawkeyes!) Midwest girl.

Is this my forever home? Don't know. Maybe. It's my "forever-for-now" home. No plans to move or change jobs...

The oak trim in the house now is in pretty good shape - for being nearly 20 years old. It's much thinner (narrower) than I would like. I would love to have it be wider. - have it look "heavier." And the doors now are the cheaper, not-solid doors. I'd like to replace with solid (or solid core - not sure the difference between the two) doors. Some of the doors (mainly closet sliders) need replaced as they have damage to them.

The other main thing I don't like is the color. It's the honey oak - kinda orange!

I thought all this would be a relatively easy and not outrageous thing to replace over time. I know good doors can be quite expensive - but that is one thing I REALLY want to change. I hate the doors I have now. But I appreciate the comments on cost - and not recouping the costs. ACK.

Can someone help with this comment? "you can add molding to your existing molding to give you an entirely new look with a two or three step molding." I'm sorry, I don't understand. But this intrigues me.

And paint versus stain???!!! I don't know! I like the rustic, farmhouse, vintage, craftsman look. That feels stain to me - or at least natural wood. And I like wood stain/wood color. Painted wood - while it may be the popular thing to do and it may be the standard going forward - it feels more risky to me. (Does this show my age?)

To the person who said that I could use different types of wood... I was thinking about this. I'm going to start in my mudroom, laundry room, 1/2 bath. So definitely not the living room or kitchen. Much lower risk (and cost) involved in the smaller areas. I think there might be a fine line of using a few different types of wood that can coordinate and blend- to using a whole bunch of different woods and things getting out of control. This is why I'm asking early - I don't want to make costly mistakes for poor planning.

Thanks again to all for some great perspective and discussion. There are just SO MANY options that it's hard not to get overwhelmed. I'm overwhelmed.
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post #16 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 02:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michelle-1106 View Post
Thank you for all the responses - and for taking the time to respond. SO MANY THINGS to THINK ABOUT.

The oak trim in the house now is in pretty good shape - for being nearly 20 years old. It's much thinner (narrower) than I would like. I would love to have it be wider. - have it look "heavier."

Can someone help with this comment? "you can add molding to your existing molding to give you an entirely new look with a two or three step molding." I'm sorry, I don't understand. But this intrigues me.

Thanks again to all for some great perspective and discussion. There are just SO MANY options that it's hard not to get overwhelmed. I'm overwhelmed.
The attachments were chosen not because theyre my favorites but because they show multiple moldings used to give a new look of wider molding.
Multiple moldings can give you a totally different look for both base mold and crown molds.
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If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to do it over?
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post #17 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 04:21 PM
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I've seen the usual hollow-core interior doors modified with trim molding patterns to look a lot like old, solid-core doors.
A little like wainscoting. Some are done very well, some look home made.

Research possible sources of the solid wood trim that you have in mind.
I'd like to do one room, finished, exactly as I imagined that it should look.

Do that again and again or something different?
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post #18 of 18 Old 08-01-2018, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Toolman50 View Post
Im in agreement with Shoot Summ.
Stained moldings and paneling seems to date a house now. Stained paneling and molding seems to have fallen from being popular in new construction. Even new homes with stained hardwood floors are getting painted base mold.

Isn't it amazing how what is cheap and cutting corners can be marketed as popular and trendy?
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