Wednesday, March 2, 2011

fireplace door

Back in September I bought a fireplace door/summer cover on ebay for only $30. Although it was white in the ebay pictures it arrived spray painted gold. P picked it up and when he brought it home I immediately told him that he got the wrong fireplace cover. Upon further inspection, comparing the pictures from the auction to the real thing and the obvious paint smell we came to the conclusion that someone painted it before we picked it up. Just one more layer of paint that needed to be stripped off. Luckily a layer of spray paint is nothing compared to what felt like 100 layers of paint underneath. I worked on stripping the cover for months. Ok it was only a handful of weekends with a big break in between because I got so sick of standing in the basement and scraping gunk of that thing. Everything was treated various times with stripper and I always let it work its magic overnight. The bigger pieces were fairly easy to work with. The small detailed piece took some time because I had to scrape out every nook and cranny.


This is how the cover looked when I finally stripped off all the paint. After that I used heavy duty scour pads to take off all the excess paint and stripper that was still on it. I tried to sand it as well but didn't like that the sanding paper took away the nice texture of the cast iron.


On the pictures from the ebay auction you could already see that one corner of the frame was chipped off but I thought I could repair it and once it would be spray painted it would not be visible anymore. I bought a self adhesive body patch at my local Autozone. The adhesive would not stick to the back of the frame so I had to glue it on with liquid nails and used three clamps to keep it in place until it dried.


A friend gave me a package of Bondo Glass fiberglass filler to start rebuilding the shape of the frame.The texture was kind of hard to work with so I took another trip the Autozone and bought some lightweight body filler which I knew would get the job done. In 2001 I did a similar project with mesh, body filler and spray paint to repair the roof of my very first car, a golden 1989 Honda Civic which I drove around LA while I was doing an internship in Santa Monica Ah, the memories...


I used the lightweight body filler to build up the shape so that it will match the existing. It actually took a couple of steps to get it right. Apply body filler, let it dry, sand and then repeat until you're happy with the result. After that I primed the fireplace door/cover and spray painted it black.


The whole project cost less than $50. Yay!

- fireplace door $30
-adhesive body patch $6*
-lightweight body filler $7*
-Krylon Indoor/Outdoor primer in black $1.25**
-Krylon Indoor/Outdoor spray paint in black satin finish $1.75**

*no sales tax added
**got the paint with a 75% discount because the store I bought the paint from closed down

The cover has not been mounted yet. Hopefully I will accomplish it the coming weekend. Stay tuned for pictures of the finished fireplace...


  1. WOW, what a transformation!!!! GREAT job! I think I may had just wanted to crawl back to bed and not continue the project ... haha ... again, GREAT job!!!

  2. Ha, ha....I was tempted to throw in the towel a couple of times but sometime I even liked working on the details and in retrospect it didn't feel like so much work anymore ;)


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