Refinishing Painted Porch Railings: Balustrades: Give New Life to Old Porch Railings

Submitted By
Tom Kraeutler
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Q:

My husband and I are the proud owners of one of only three Sears Honor Built Magnolias known to exist in the United States. The house was offered by catalog from 1918 to 1921.  It is located in Piedmont, Alabama and is subject to all the harsh weather the South has to offer.

The front porch was surrounded by a once beautiful balustrade, as were several other locations on the roof lines of the house. I say once, because when we bought the house, the front porch balustrade was falling apart, so we took the rest of it down and now have it inside the house and out of the elements.  I am now in the process of sanding each balustrade down to the bare wood and removing almost 90 years of paint.

What are the best products to use for refinishing the balustrade? In which order and manner should the products be applied to the balustrade to gain the best result and allow for the longest period of time between having to go through this entire refinishing process again?

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