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I've got a small (2 foot long) wooden banister and some plain old wooden railings on brackets, all interior. I'd like to paint them white. They have a slight sheen to them as if there's some sort of coating on them. Do I need to sand it off or just rough it up a little? Should I prime first? If so, what type of primer? And what kind of paint? I've seen people mention enamel for railings. Is that the best? Water or oil based? And do I need to put a top coat on so it doesn't get gross from people's hands? The handrails are off the wall so those should be easier, but the banister I can't remove obviously so any recommendations on techniques and type of brushes is appreciated as well. TIA
 

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paper hanger and painter
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I've got a small (2 foot long) wooden banister and some plain old wooden railings on brackets, all interior. I'd like to paint them white. They have a slight sheen to them as if there's some sort of coating on them. Do I need to sand it off or just rough it up a little? Should I prime first? If so, what type of primer? And what kind of paint? I've seen people mention enamel for railings. Is that the best? Water or oil based? And do I need to put a top coat on so it doesn't get gross from people's hands? The handrails are off the wall so those should be easier, but the banister I can't remove obviously so any recommendations on techniques and type of brushes is appreciated as well. TIA
Clean,scruff it up with 100 grit paper, clean, prime with Zinsser's 123, paint with (preferably)oil based topcoats. Latex will eventually get gummy from hand oils. A quality 2 1/2 in brush will do( that means you will have to spend more than $25 on the brush)
 
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