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  #1  
Old 03-26-2018, 12:11 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 4,493
300SD door trim refurb

A fellow forum member has a '85 300SD with dilapidated door inserts. Cracked, separated, the usual for a thirty plus year old car.

Ran across a gonga deal at the local U-Pull-it yard.Got all four door panels, complete, pull handles and all for $52.00.

The wood needs to be refinished but the panels are solid.
300SD door trim refurb-crack1.jpg

300SD door trim refurb-crack3.jpg

300SD door trim refurb-crack4.jpg

300SD door trim refurb-crack5.jpg

Slopped some stripper on them and wrapped them in plastic.

300SD door trim refurb-soaking.jpg
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Old 03-26-2018, 12:26 AM
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Let it soak overnight. Most of the finish came off but a lot remained. There was so much nasty around my bench I didn't want to take my camera near it. Wiped them off, re-applied stripper and re-wrapped.

There are some test/control pieces I did just to get an idea of the final product.
300SD door trim refurb-test.jpg

300SD door trim refurb-trial.jpg

After the second soaking. Most of the old finish is gone but the stubborn bits required another soaking.

300SD door trim refurb-secondsoak.jpg


The center console piece is from a 500SEL. It is Walnut Burl, not the Zebrano of the door trim. I stuck it in just to see how it would come out. It is an extra from my 500SEL.
Freakin' Klingons!

300SD door trim refurb-klingon1.jpg

300SD door trim refurb-klingon2.jpg

Man, oh man, that finish was THICK! The dark brown bubbly piece in the top of the third picture was a test using a heat gun to see if heating the finish would help. It didn't so I cooked it a bit extra just because.
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Old 03-26-2018, 12:54 AM
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The third soak did the trick. Still have a bit left in the can I got for $9.00.

A quick scrub with a medium scuff pad and a LIGHT burnishing with some 320 grit sand paper. Go straight along the grain using full length strokes to avoid leaving sanding marks. Be very careful using sandpaper around the molded/formed edges. The veneer is VERY thin as it was stretched to fit the curves.

Ready for stain.

300SD door trim refurb-ready4stain.jpg

Min-Wax golden oak stain. I was a bit hesitant when someone told me the color as I thought it would be too light. I compared it with my control piece and taking into consideration the natural darkening of the wood over time, I'm convinced they are right.

300SD door trim refurb-stained.jpg

Need to let the stain cure for a couple of days before I apply the finish so I figured a nice cold beverage was due. Salud!
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Old 03-26-2018, 09:47 AM
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Oh man this is dangerous. The wood trim in my car is pretty sun faded and this is giving me ideas. More things on the To-Do list!
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Old 04-16-2018, 02:56 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Back in SC upstate
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What brand of stripper did you use? Please post a picture of the container if it's not too much trouble or give a complete description. Was it the best on the market?

I'm at the end of refinishing every thing in my interior with the intention of settling for the finish on the trim I have. Your project impressed me enough to give real consideration of refinishing every piece of wood in my car.

I may change my mind and leave things as they are but right now I'm dead set on following your method of stripping all that wood.

Thank you much, sir.
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