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Heresy time capsule


Trippigs
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This week I purchased a pair of 1985 Heresy HBR from my brother-in-law.  He bought them new, never moved them and used them rarely......these things are a time capsule. I took the back off, no doubt the first time since they were installed at the factory, and looked around...not even dusty. Now he had them painted an off white which I might change. Plan to sand to see if they will clean up for staining but will have them professionally repainted if not. The cane grills are immaculate! I hope to keep them as long as he did.

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Had not thought about paint stripper so I appreciate the advice. I figure this is high quality paint put on raw wood some 30+ years ago. Does that make any difference in the process you recommended? Do yall think there is much of a chance of cleaning these up enough for staining or ploy??? That is my real preference. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Are the back edges painted?  I'd experiment with stripper(s) there first, and only do the fronts if you like the result.  Perhaps a heat gun on a low setting would also work.  In any case, I'd use a plastic putty knife to remove loosened paint to avoid gouging the wood.

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Well I just tried stripping the paint using Goof Off brand stripper. Followed the instructions and tested the entire bottom and one side. Absolutely no paint came off....all it did was lighten the color slightly as if had been bleached. Bummer. I suppose many cycles might have some effect but I don't think even this would produce clean unfinished wood. I guess the 30+ year old high quality paint on raw birch is just not going to come off chemically. So, I will try some sanding to see what this does.

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You might want to try Klean-Strip KS-3 Premium Stripper.  It is a paste stripper with a very high percentage of methylene chloride.  It's the strongest stripper I've used. Use in a well ventilated area (outside is best).
 
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To the extent the finish has been absorbed into the wood, I suspect that no stripper will fully extract it.  The "bleached" effect is probably the best you'll get.  Likewise, sanding will probably have limited success removing pigment absorbed into the wood.    Perhaps re-veneering is your best, or only, option, other than enjoying them as they are.          

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The outer ply is fairly thin, so don't go nuts sanding.  Gently does it, if it will.  I had my HBRs veneered with Mahoghany and finished in satin polyurethane.  Now that the kids are gone, I would probably do boiled linseed oil and/or tung oil. 

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I've used ez strip paint and varnish stripper. I've found that the longer you let the chemical sit, the better it works. It said to leave it for 20 minutes, and I had a tough time accessing off the finish. The first time I forgot about it and it sat for an hour or so, everything came off easily.

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I just used a DeWalt rotary palm sander with both 150 and 80 grit sandpaper. I worked one bottom side pretty aggressively and got through the paint to raw birch but unfortunately this is not something I would want to do all over. However, the sanding beautifully prepared all the surfaces for painting. So, I plan to have the professional painter who is painting our new home spray paint the Heresys in Sherwin Williams "Mindful Gray" to match the walls where the speakers will be. They are all taped up and ready to go!

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