Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Grand entrance

The thing about updating your patio with glorious rich new mahogany planks is that it makes everything else look horrible. Ah, the house really should be painted. Oh, those trim boards look like they went down with the titanic, were found years later and then repurposed as trim on the house. 

Ok, so the paint on the house is not all that bad. However, the trim boards around the side door, a.k.a. the door we use all of the time, were in desperate need of some help. 

Before shots. If you look really close, you can see a furry little helper, which freaked me out by the way. I did not notice this when I first saw this image.

This was more or less Kevin's project, so here is a rundown of the materials and process as told by him. According to Kevin, this is a medium level of difficulty project on a low-medium-high scale. Enjoy!


  • 1x6 pine lumber
  • brad (finishing) nails
  • primer paint
  • trim paint
  • table saw
  • miter saw
The process
  1. First thing I did was to put down a moving blanket over my new deck to keep myself from injuring it by accidentally dropping tools or dripping paint.
  2. Remove the bad trim with a hammer and a large and small flat pry bar.  This will help you to keep from damaging the surrounding wood.
  3. Inspect the area that was under the trim.  Look for mold or other weak spots that need repair.  I had to chisel out a chunk of the original door frame and cut a piece of treated 2x4 to fill it in.  I then had to do 3 or 4 layers of wood filler to make it as seamless as possible.
  4. On old homes, the old trim might not be a consistent width.  I had to cut the siding back a little bit to make a straight line.
  5. Measure twice, cut once.  I had to cut a notch in the trim because part of it extends down below the threshold.  I used a table saw and a hand saw to make it just right.
  6. Prime the trim boards before you nail them on.  This makes it much easier.  You can even do the finish paint before nailing them on, then touch up later.
  7. I nailed the trim to the door frame using finishing nails.  The old trim was nailed on using standard 8 penny framing nails, so the nail heads were very visible.  Finish nails allow you to sink them with a nail punch and then fill the hole with wood filler so that it disappears when painted.
  8. Finish painting the trim with some leftover paint from the last painting, or get it color-matched at the local hardware store.
  9. Drink a beer and pat yourself on the back.

Now for the after shot. Much bettah!


  1. Y'all are inspirational! I mean, we have a lawn guy coming to restake a tree?! We are clearly not very (err-at all) handy around the house. But that trim looks good! Nice job!

  2. Thanks Mo! Not the most exciting project, but sometimes you gotta do these too!