Painting finished wood and laminate

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Forum topic by ckorkyrun89 posted 11-13-2013 08:14 PM 1103 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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65 posts in 2018 days

11-13-2013 08:14 PM

I bought a very used old crappy desk that I would like to paint as an easy way to make it a little nicer. My last desk that I painted went poorly as the paint started peeling off almost immediately. I was told to get “Zinsser 1-2-3 primer” followed up by a latex paint. This apparently was not the right way to go.

I do not want to spend the time sanding all of the original finish off as the desk just is not worth the time. Is there a paint product that I can use that will effectively stick to a finished surface as well as the laminate top? The original finish I am guessing was some sort of penetrating finish as there is no film.

My best guess is that an enamel would be more likely to form a shell and be a more permanent covering.

Thanks for any info. As you can probably tell, I do not know much about paint.

5 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4981 posts in 2488 days

#1 posted 11-13-2013 08:53 PM

I think you picked up the wrong Zinsser product. Zinsser BIN is a shellac based primer, and shellac is the great go-between in the finishing world. It sticks to almost anything, and anything will stick to it. So if you clean your desk thoroughly to remove any furniture polish and other contaminants, prime with BIN, then top coat with an acrylic paint you should be good to go. Don’t confuse acrylic latex with latex wall paint; the wall paint is not what you want. Make sure the word acrylic is on the label. Disclaimer: I doubt even the BIN would help with the laminated part, but that’s not based on any personal experience. I’m not sure you can paint it with anything.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View sparks's profile


62 posts in 3083 days

#2 posted 11-14-2013 02:23 AM

Bin primer works well. I am a paint contractor and Bin works well. I perfer Zinzer Cover stain. Its oil based, sticks to damn near anything and I feel it sands better then Bin. Either one will work and you can put latex over the top. 123 is good primer but not good over stained, lacquered, or varnish products. Lightly sand it with 220, cover stain, 220 or 320 quick sand and paint should work good.

-- Sparks

View realcowtown_eric's profile


608 posts in 1931 days

#3 posted 11-14-2013 07:12 AM

One trusts that you scuffed the heck on the existing surface to give whatever primer some tooth to grab on.

And maybe wiped it with a solvent to remove residual finger greases, or even if it was new to remove the release agents used on the mold that made the surface.

If you haven’t removed grease/wax/etc residue and provided tooth for the primer to bite into, no one in their right mind would gaurantee that your primer would adhere. Preparation is often times 75% of the time involved in a paint job.

A reputable paint supplier would have advised you the same, perhaps even suggested a plastic primer, but certainly suggested the prep work necessary.

Paint and primer has to have some toothed surface to adhere too!, and sanding between coats to get a better finish ain’t just some urban legend.


Hey, if yer redecorating….don’t even think about painting the carpets!

-- Real_cowtown_eric

View ckorkyrun89's profile


65 posts in 2018 days

#4 posted 11-15-2013 02:35 PM

Thanks for the information. It definitely looks like I went the wrong route the first time. Going to look into your suggestions and see what I come up with.

View nailbanger2's profile


1041 posts in 3138 days

#5 posted 11-15-2013 02:44 PM

The above comments are stearing you in the right direction. 1. sand to 220 2. BIN shellac based primer 3. paint with your preference

-- Wish I were Norm's Nephew

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