Recommendations for planing painted boards

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Forum topic by gadawg31 posted 02-11-2015 06:25 PM 1152 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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23 posts in 691 days

02-11-2015 06:25 PM

Hello everyone,

I need some advice from those that have possibly gone thru what I am attempting. My dad and I tore down an old deck and most of the boards are re-usable. Some are regular boards and some are pressure treated and all of them have been painted/stained. I started planning them down this past weekend and I went thru three sets of blades, before we decided to stop. Is this common or is it my planer? I have a craftsman 12 1/2” thickness planer, two blade. Could a heavier duty planer do a better job or should I just call it a wash? Thanks.


13 replies so far

View CharlesA's profile


2976 posts in 1220 days

#1 posted 02-11-2015 06:38 PM

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View DrDirt's profile


4141 posts in 3164 days

#2 posted 02-11-2015 06:44 PM

The problem is not likely the paint, but all of the dirt and crud in the boards.

A drum sander with 60 grit would be a better choice.

A beefier planer would be no different, lest it had carbide blades, but that is largely a wash, as Carbide lasts 4X as long and costs 4X as much.

-- 'Political correctness is fascism pretending to be manners' ~George Carlin

View chrisstef's profile


15472 posts in 2428 days

#3 posted 02-11-2015 06:54 PM

I might be inclined to try a pressure washer to peel some of the paint off. You might want to see what a quick belt sanding would do too. Maybe if you could get the heavier stuff off it would be easier on your knives.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View gadawg31's profile


23 posts in 691 days

#4 posted 02-11-2015 07:07 PM

I haven’t thought about the belt sander first. I may give that a try with some heavy grit and then re-run them thru the planer. Thanks for all the input.


View JoeinGa's profile


7383 posts in 1429 days

#5 posted 02-11-2015 07:33 PM

Do you have a metal detector to check those boards for screws, nails, etc? THAT might be what was eating your planer blades.

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View gadawg31's profile


23 posts in 691 days

#6 posted 02-11-2015 07:49 PM

No it wasn’t nails. I do check all my boards, but nails are pretty distinct when it comes to cutting pattern. The knives were so dull, the planer would barely cut. It is definitely the paint.

View ADHDan's profile


799 posts in 1531 days

#7 posted 02-11-2015 07:53 PM

How wide are the boards, and can you ensure they are nail-free? I salvaged a bunch of 2×6 redwood boards when my parents redid their deck, and rather than chewing up multiple sets of planer blades I surfaced them on the table saw, skimming a face across the blade at 3” height and then flipping it end for end to get the full face. I approached it like resawing, with a riving knife, double-stacked featherboards, and an appropriate push block/shoe. It was moderately unpleasant but worked just fine for getting a nice, clean, dirt-free surface. It’s definitely more hassle than planing, though.

I’ve never done it, but I’ve heard that if you plane boards after sanding them (especially with heavy grit) you might end up gouging your blades with grit from the sandpaper itself. I could be wrong though, so if anyone else can confirm/deny go right ahead.

-- Dan in Minneapolis, woodworking since 11/11.

View Dan658's profile


93 posts in 692 days

#8 posted 02-11-2015 09:03 PM

I ve never done it, but I ve heard that if you plane boards after sanding them (especially with heavy grit) you might end up gouging your blades with grit from the sandpaper itself. I could be wrong though, so if anyone else can confirm/deny go right ahead.

- ADHDan

I’ve never heard that before. I ran some 3” boards over my benchtop belt sander with 80 grit just a few days ago to clean off any remaining paint flakes and debris. I sent them through the planer immediately after and everything worked fine. No grit was stuck in the boards and the blades were fine. I prefer to sand rather than use a saw or planer since belts are much cheaper to replace than blades.

View gfadvm's profile


14929 posts in 2112 days

#9 posted 02-12-2015 01:17 AM

I run painted boards through my drum sander with 50 grit before planing. Done it for years after learning the hard way not to plane painted lumber (planer blades are expensive).

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View TheFridge's profile


5678 posts in 908 days

#10 posted 02-12-2015 01:33 AM

Paint, especially white, is abrasive because of the titanium dioxide used to make the white base.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5300 posts in 3135 days

#11 posted 02-12-2015 02:43 AM

My first thought was a belt sander, but the tablesaw idea sounds good; a bandsaw might even be better.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View gadawg31's profile


23 posts in 691 days

#12 posted 02-12-2015 01:54 PM

ADHDan, the boards are typical 51/4 decking boards and I had not thought about the table saw. I think I will try that this weekend. Thanks everyone for the ideas.


View canadianchips's profile


2310 posts in 2419 days

#13 posted 02-12-2015 02:30 PM

The paint is dulling the blades. A bigger planer will still not work much better.
I use a 25grit disc on a 5 inch grinder.9 tHEY ARE MUCH CHEAPER THAN PLANER BLADES) I give up on trying to remove paints with stripper, planing etc.
After I grind the paint I use my planer.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

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