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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started this Stained Trim thread , but after messing with trying to stain-match to my A/V cabinets, i have gone back to my original idea of using black painted trim. I coudn't get the stain dark enough, so I finally tried to see about matching a paint that resembles the color of the stain. I went to my local paint store with piece of the door of the A/V cabinet and they matched the paint to the stain color. It actually came out really close, but after painting up a few sample trim pieces, I decided it really didn't look right throughout the room. I got a semigloss black paint and did up some scrap pieces of trim with that and really felt that this is the way to go.


Questions now...


1. I was going to go with Poplar wood for the trim instead of Pine, before when i was staining. Is there any advantage of staying with Poplar over Pine, now that I will be painting? Is Poplar a little bit harder and less prone to denting? The cost is pretty similar.


2. I will be painting the trim in the garage before its cut and installed. There is no way I am messing with painting around my GOM walls and the carpeting. Any tips on this approach?


3. Is primer absolutely necessary before painting?


4. Does anyone apply a clear finish to painted trim?


Thanks!
 

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Primer is a good idea any time. You can get by without it if you must.


For trim, I generally use Enamel as it is a bit more durable.


As for Pine or Poplar, it's really up to you. I use Pine. Yes, it's a bit softer but a whole lot cheaper. If you properly sand, condition, prime, sand, paint, steel wool, paint with good quality enamel, you can get a very nice durable finish.


I don't clear cote over paint - only over stain. Ever tried to paint over clear cote? Not fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
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As for Pine or Poplar, it's really up to you. I use Pine. Yes, it's a bit softer but a whole lot cheaper. If you properly sand, condition, prime, sand, paint, steel wool, paint with good quality enamel, you can get a very nice durable finish.
Being that this room is dark with the lights on and most of the time the lights will be off, I am not sure its worth going to all the trouble of trying to make perfect looking painted trim? Don't worry, i will not be slapping on some paint and calling it good, but what do you think is a good compromise?
 

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If you want durability and evenness, use enamel and prime it first.


If you want it to look good and not have all the little fuzzies/bumps (especially with pine) steel wool it between coats.


If you want both, all you're saving is the initial sanding (that CAN be a PITA!). Sanding sponges make this step quick and easy to do. I can sand a 10' piece in about 2 minutes. You can skip the conditioning if you want - especially if you prime. It's really more important on stained wood than on painted.


You have a nice looking room. Don't scrimp here. Your trim is an accent that tends to draw the eye. While nobody will be down on hands and knees inspecting, a smooth finish looks 'sharp'.
 

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Definitely prime pine. Just like with stain, pine can absorb paint unevenly and priming reduces the likelihood of that happening.


Oh yeah, one thing you'll want to do before even touching a paint brush is to give every piece a light sanding. 100 grit is fine here but be sure to knock off the sharp edges/corners so the paint will stick better.


bpape mentioned a "smooth finish" in his post and one of the best ways to get that is to use a high quality brush. A 2" sash is what I use for most trim, Purdy or Wooster will do fine. Expect to pay $8-12 but if you take good care of it, it'll last you at least 20 years.
 
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