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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Problems with Paint

I seem to having more than my share of problems with paint this week. Last Spring, when we were getting ready for the neighborhood garage sale, our little red wagon bumped into the front bumper of our brand new car leaving a short red mark. Someone who knew what they were doing probably could have rubbed it out and left it looking like new, but I thought I could fix it and I am afraid I made a mess out of it. I took into a local body shop yesterday and they could fix it, no problem, just $500 to remove, repaint and reinstall the bumper.

The estimator had what appeared to be a very sophisticated software package that had exploded diagrams of all the parts of the car, even our relatively obscure Mitsubishi. It took her no time to figure out exactly what operations were needed to separate the bumper from the car and all it's auxiliary fittings.

We bought a new suite of furniture for our living room several months ago. Sometime later someone had school project involving poster board, glitter and glue that they constructed in the kitchen. They used a coffee table book to weight it down while t the glue dried. When the glue was dry, the coffee table book went back to the living room. Sitting there it was fine, but it got pushed across the surface of the table, probably to make room for something else, and when it did, it left little tiny scratches in the surface. Evidently "the project" involved not only glitter but some kind of grit, or maybe glitter is gritty. I cleaned off the back of the book, no significant damage there, I got it out of the bargain bin at Barnes & Noble, but the table had several nasty looking scratches on it.

I went to Home Depot and picked up a colored wax pencil used for fixing scratches and dents in woodwork and I tried it on the coffee table, but no luck. It did not appear to make any difference at all. Maybe I should describe these scratches better. They look like thin white lines about twelve inches long. If the furniture was lighter colored you might not notice them, but it is very dark. I did some reading about this and one source mentioned that for the last umpteen years all wood furniture for the home is finished with lacquer. Understandable. Lacquer is cheap, dries quick, and gives a very high gloss. That is the same thing that the builder used on our kitchen cabinets and it is slowly turning to gum. That is another problem I will have to deal with eventually, but it isn't even on my list right now.

Anyway I made a couple of phone calls and I found a guy who is fixes stuff like this. He'll come out to the house and take care of it, if he can, for $200. If he has to take it back to his shop and strip and refinish the entire top, it will be $400. He is very busy.

We hired a contractor to finish the attic above our garage. Some framing, wiring, insulation, drywall, spackle, texture, paint, doors and trim. A lot of work for a very small room. Anne had some wall paint she wanted to use, but it wasn't quite enough, so she went back to the paint store and picked up another gallon, same paint store, same color, same brand, and, supposedly, the same number. But after it dried, it looked different. Oh, look, the number on the can is 3356, not 3456. It is semi-gloss, not satin. I have to look at the right angle to notice the difference, and it is only Johnny's rat hole, is it worth making a fuss about? I am not sure why we didn't just paint it white, but then I am just a man, and what do I know about paint?

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