Help me not ruin this beautiful bed! How much to sand and what kind of paint?

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DirtSquirt's picture
Joined: 2011-08-18 23:05
Help me not ruin this beautiful bed! How much to sand and what kind of paint?
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Hi All,

I am basically building the farmhouse bed but raising it to be a mid-height loft bed for my daughter. The wood is all spruce and pine. I am planning on having an off-white painted finish. I have read through all the posts in this forum but the painting and finishing part of this project seems soooo complicated and now I am worried. So I have a few questions...

If I am planning on priming/sealing and painting, how much (how fine) do I need to sand before I start priming? Just the basics? Like maybe down to 80 or 120 grit or waaaay more?

At the hardware store, it was recommended that I use the original (the oil based one) Killz primer. I have started priming a number of the boards, but now I am second guessing this primer. Will this actually seal the wood? If not, what is worst case scenario?

Once everything is primed, what kind (brand, type, sheen, etc) of paint is the best, most durable paint to use?

What is this poly I have read so much about on here? Does it self level? I really don't want too many brush marks, but spraying is not an option. do I need to use this? Is it expensive?

Thanks so much.

claydowling's picture
Joined: 2011-01-26 17:28
Sanding and priming

Some kind of primer or sealer is necessary over pine and other soft woods, and the kilz is as good as any. You could also use dewaxed shellac, sometimes called sanding sealer, and get similar results. I prefer shellac because it's something I keep on hand and it's really easy to handle.

As far as sanding goes, my preference for furniture is to take it down to 220. Sanding doesn't have to be that onerous though, once you learn how to do it. My dad and I generally hand sand furniture, other than possibly the first pass with the coarsest paper.

A lot of your finishing questions are answered in a book called 'Finishing 101' by Bob Flexner. I recently purchased it and I have been very happy. It talks about all of these issues and is an invaluable resource.

DirtSquirt's picture
Joined: 2011-08-18 23:05
Thanks Clay! I will check

Thanks Clay! I will check out that book.

He may wear the pants, but I wear the toolbelt!