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Old 06-23-2008, 09:09 PM   #1
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surface prep "photographed wood"

I am planning to repaint several rooms in our manufactured home which are currently dark - I call it "fake wood" - my Mother calls it "photographed wood". What suggestions do folks have for surface preparation, i.e. Sanding, etc.

I also want to then paint the walls with a low-VOC paint. Your experience and thoughts here also greatly appreciated. Mariquita


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Old 06-23-2008, 11:06 PM   #2
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Masterchem makes a latex primer called Bullseye 123 which they brag sticks well to smooth surfaces like glazed ceramic tile, sheet metal, high gloss polyurethane, etc.

If it wuz me, I would probably just apply Bullseye 123 primer over it and then top coat with the paint of your choice.

Bullseye 123 has lousy hide. You may want to paint over that 123 with a top quality interior FLAT latex paint to hide the ghost of the spirit of the woods. Then top coat with the paint of your choice. And, if you're planning to paint that wall a highly pigmented colour (like Canary yellow or Navy blue), tint both the Bullseye 123 and the flat white paint in the yellow or
blue direction.

I've only used a low VOC latex paint once because I was given 4 gallons of it to try. So, I have very little experience with it. From what I saw, though, the latex paint I used (which was called "Dulux 2000") seemed to work fine.

What I can tell you about it is this: Normally, a latex paint uses a coalescing solvent to dissolve (kinda) the clear plastic binder resins so that they're soft enough for the relatively weak forces of capillary pressure and surface tension to cause the resins to coalesce into a continuous film of solid plastic (with the coloured pigments suspended inside that plastic much like the raisins in raisin bread). One of the most popular of these coalescing solvents used in interior and exterior latex house paints is called Texanol, and it's made by the Eastman Chemical Company.

Because of the push to reduce VOC's in all paints, they tried to make latex paints with less coalescing solvents in them by using softer plastic resins that would require less coalescing solvent to soften enough to coalesce to a continuous film. This worked, but being made of a softer plastic, the paint dries to a softer film, and soft paints don't stand up well to scrubbing, and get dirty faster because dirt gets embedded in them easier.

About 3 or 4 years ago now, the Archer Daniels Midland company introduced "Archer RC" with the RC standing for Reactive Coalescent. Archer RC was essentially an unsaturated sunflower oil fatty acid that worked well as a coalescing solvent in latex paints. RC had two unsaturated sites on it that would react with the oxygen in the air just like drying oils do to become part of the paint film. So, Archer RC is a coalescent that gets chemically bound up in the paint film after film formation rather than evaporating from it like Texanol. Consequently, ANY paint company can make a low-VOC paint by buying Archer RC from the ADM Corporation instead of Texanol from EAstman.

Eastman Chemical is claiming that Archer RC acts like a plasticicizer in latex paint, keeping them semi-permanently soft (or softer than the paint should be for longer than you'd want). Also, they claim that Archer RC causes yellowing in latex paints. How much of a problem there is with Archer RC is wide open to scepticism because it's Eastman Chemical who are seeing these problems with the competitor of one of their best selling chemicals.

So, if the low-VOC aspect of a paint is important to you, then that's what you should buy. However, be aware that this is still relatively new technology, and there isn't 100% confidence that all the bugs have been found and ironed out yet.


Last edited by Nestor_Kelebay; 06-24-2008 at 12:22 AM.
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Old 06-24-2008, 04:36 AM   #3
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If it is the "wood laminate" that is basically a "picture of wood grain paper" laminate, then you really don't want to use a water-based (latex) primer
It can bubble up pretty bad
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