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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a project to clean and then top coat some kitchen cupboards. I would appreciate some advice on the best way to clean them without removing the doors. I was planning on simply using denatured alcohol to clean followed by a very light and very fine sanding followed by a wipe on top coat (probably 3 top coats in total). My biggest concern is cleaning thoroughly so that all kitchen dirt and film is properly removed.

Advice from more experienced people would be appreciated. Thank you.

Gary
 

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I would first scrub them with Dawn dishsoap and water, small amt. of soap with warm water. Then I use liquid sanding deglosser before coating.
 

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I normally take the doors off when I recoat cabinets. It's so much easier to finish the cabinets without the doors in the way. When I start a job like that I usually wash the cabinets down with Krud Kutter Gloss Off frequently changing rags. If they are especially dirty or oily I follow the Krud Kutter with Dupont Prepsol solvent again frequently changing rags. I usually take the doors to my shop where I have more room and recoat them there.

I don't think dentured alcohol would be a good solvent for cooking oil. Then some finishes can cloud from exposure to alcohol.

You might test the exisiting finish to see if it is compatable with lacquer. Lacquer works well for a recoat because it melts into the existing finish and makes a good bond. It dries quick so you could be in and out of there in one day. Polyurethane doesn't have great adhesion even to a fresh polyurethane finish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What kind of finish is on them now? How long has it been there? Does the existing finish have damage or defects.
Howard, I do not know the answers to those questions yet and based on other feedback that I have received I may not want to go ahead with this.

Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I normally take the doors off when I recoat cabinets. It's so much easier to finish the cabinets without the doors in the way. When I start a job like that I usually wash the cabinets down with Krud Kutter Gloss Off frequently changing rags. If they are especially dirty or oily I follow the Krud Kutter with Dupont Prepsol solvent again frequently changing rags. I usually take the doors to my shop where I have more room and recoat them there.

I don't think dentured alcohol would be a good solvent for cooking oil. Then some finishes can cloud from exposure to alcohol.

You might test the exisiting finish to see if it is compatable with lacquer. Lacquer works well for a recoat because it melts into the existing finish and makes a good bond. It dries quick so you could be in and out of there in one day. Polyurethane doesn't have great adhesion even to a fresh polyurethane finish.

Steve, this is a much larger undertaking than I anticipated. I am checking things out in more detail on Sunday and will have to decide if I want to proceed. Thanks for the enlightenment.

Gary
 

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Steve, this is a much larger undertaking than I anticipated. I am checking things out in more detail on Sunday and will have to decide if I want to proceed. Thanks for the enlightenment.

Gary
Usually for me with a helper its about 24 hours for me and 16 hrs work for a helper labor to recoat a kitchen. I go the first day wash the cabinets and take down the doors. Day two I work in the shop recoating the doors. Then day three I go in with a helper and mask off the cabinets, scuff sand and spray them and when dry hang the doors and I'm done. I may be more set up for it though. I use a pressure pot to spray the finish and I have a portable spray booth fan with a explosion proof motor to vacate the fumes from the peoples house.
 

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Removing the doors would be the easiest way. Much of what may be found on old kitchen cabinets will not be removed with a solvent. For the most part, starting with s soap solution and water will remove kitchen grease, and food particles. You could also use TSP (tri-sodium phosphate), available at HD.

Once dry, VM&P Naptha will wipe down the balance of what the cleaning missed. It seems to work better than mineral spirits. You may need some very light sanding, and then use a wipe on version of a varnish, or a waterbased polyurethane. The WB poly will stay clear, dry faster, and have less odor.







.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Usually for me with a helper its about 24 hours for me and 16 hrs work for a helper labor to recoat a kitchen. I go the first day wash the cabinets and take down the doors. Day two I work in the shop recoating the doors. Then day three I go in with a helper and mask off the cabinets, scuff sand and spray them and when dry hang the doors and I'm done. I may be more set up for it though. I use a pressure pot to spray the finish and I have a portable spray booth fan with a explosion proof motor to vacate the fumes from the peoples house.
Steve, I am in no way set up to take on something like this. I am glad that I asked before I committed to doing this for a friend because it would have been an impossible thing for me to complete. Thanks for the honest guidance.

Gary
 

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Steve, I am in no way set up to take on something like this. I am glad that I asked before I committed to doing this for a friend because it would have been an impossible thing for me to complete. Thanks for the honest guidance.

Gary
I realized you were going turn the job down however it didn't hurt anything to talk about it. Perhaps another time you might try it or someone else looking may be considering it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I realized you were going turn the job down however it didn't hurt anything to talk about it. Perhaps another time you might try it or someone else looking may be considering it.

Steve, I learned new information and that is never bad. You drew the right conclusion ahead of time. Thanks.

Gary
 
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