Built-ins paint..What do you use?

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Forum topic by Kali2024 posted 05-10-2011 04:38 PM 2908 views 2 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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29 posts in 1994 days

05-10-2011 04:38 PM

OK so I would like to a build bookcase like this surrounding a passthrough from one room into another. Since they’re going to be painted I am going to use birch plywood. Any suggestions on what kind of semi gloss/high gloss paint to use? Primer?

• I’ve read that latex causes something called “blocking” (I think thats what is called) which causes the paint to remain somewhat tacky even after several months.

• I’ve read that oil paint yellows over the years with sun exposure…

Is the info above accurate? If so what the heck should I use?

8 replies so far

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 2489 days

#1 posted 05-10-2011 05:15 PM

Most paint stores have a line of highly durable, latex paints that work well for highly used areas. On paint grade kitchen and bath cabinets, my finish guy sprays Kelly-Moore “Durapoxy”.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View TJU's profile


72 posts in 2077 days

#2 posted 05-10-2011 05:26 PM

We used Sherwin williams pro clasic water based paint for all of our trim and built-ins. We sprayed most of it but also rolled some with a foam roller. It turned out great. Easy to use and good durability and no yellowing. We have 3 little kids and it cleans up nice. Stay away from “wal paint” even if it is high quality.


-- Although the voices aren't real they have some pretty good ideas.

View devann's profile


2199 posts in 2113 days

#3 posted 05-10-2011 05:27 PM

Ditto what Sawkerf posted. I’d use a latex, they generally dry faster than oils.

-- Darrell, making more sawdust than I know what to do with

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Steven H

1117 posts in 2480 days

#4 posted 05-10-2011 05:34 PM

During the 70’s, that was the best time of oil base paint to use.
Oil base paint is not the same as they use to be.

To answer your question about latex blocking. That is nothing new with latex. If you paint a door sides and during summer and winter you will have hard time to open it. Not only expand and contrast, its also tacky.

If the bookshelf will not have stuff taking off and put it on, then it is not a problem. If yes, then oil base paint is better to use. If the bookself will have sun exposure , it will be best for latex.

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Steven H

1117 posts in 2480 days

#5 posted 05-10-2011 05:35 PM

I agree what others said. Use a high quality semi-gloss or gloss latex with good block resistance.

View Sorethumbs's profile


38 posts in 2068 days

#6 posted 05-10-2011 06:12 PM

The best luck I’ve had is to coat the latex painted surface with 2 coats of water-based poly. No more sticking, none. It does change the look a bit, so do some testing to see if you like it. On a project like the one you posted it would be possible to poly only the shelves, even only the tops of the shelves.

View Kali2024's profile


29 posts in 1994 days

#7 posted 05-10-2011 06:41 PM

Thanks all for the replies.. VERY much appreciated!

View John's profile


190 posts in 3004 days

#8 posted 05-11-2011 02:55 AM

I like two coats of Zinzer BIN for primer, sanded glass smooth, then one or two coats of BM Satin Impervo in whatever shade you like. I prefer Dove White. Give a really hard smooth finish. You can do poly over it if you like if the piece is in a very high use high traffic location but the Satin Impervo is very durable and hard.

-- John, Long Island, NY

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