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Although it doesn’t look like there’s been any progress, the hallway project is inching its way along. The door hardware is cleaned and back on. The trim has all been scuffed up for painting, dings sanded. An electrician has been consulted, and the hole left by the wall sconce patched up. A plasterer has been scheduled for the ceiling. Primer has been purchased.

But…Saturday was beautiful so we went to the park instead of working on anything. The kids had a blast and got very sandy. We followed up with a trip to Burdick’s for little slices of chocolate cake.

Back to the hallway: The doorknobs are back on and look very nice. (The doors don’t look nice yet; that’s part two.) Normally I would wait to put the hardware back on until the doors were painted and dry, but we were all pretty sick of losing half of the doorknob set and getting stuck in the bathroom, so on the hardware went. I may take it back off, one door at a time, to paint.

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I took the paint off the doorknob hardware using water and a plastic knife, believe it or not. This is one of those processes that involves more waiting than work.

First, put everything to be denuded of paint into a bucket or plastic tub. Boil a full kettle of water and pour it over the painted hardware. The paint will begin to bubble.

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After about 5 minutes, use a plastic knife or something similar to scrape off the bubbling paint. Don’t work too hard at the stuff that’s still stuck on – just add more boiling water. After another 10 minutes or so, scrape again. Depending on the type of paint and the number of layers, you may need to do this a few times. I’ve found that latex paint tends to come right off, while older oil-based paint needs more coaxing.

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Once the paint is all off, dry the hardware and get out some Brasso, Barkeeper’s Friend, or other appropriate metal polish and shine away!

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