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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011

    Default Just removed ceiling in 140 yr old home

    We just removed the ceiling in our home and would like to leave the beams exposed. Unfortunately there are stains from the plaster in between the lathe that was up there. Is there any way to remove these without sanding down the beams?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Portland, Oregon, formerly of Chicago

    Default Re: Just removed ceiling in 140 yr old home

    You might try scrubbing the beams with a solution of oxylic acid. Most deck brightening solutions contain this acid. Behr's "2in1" Deck Brightener is one such solution. With the deck brightener diluted 4 to 1, it is quite mild and not too nasty to work with. Plaster is somewhat caustic and the acid will help neutralize it as it cleans it. Unfortunately, it is possible that the wood will be cleaned too well and lose its aged charm. I would test it in an inconspicuous place to see if it brings the desired look.

    Such wood is also often sandblasted with ground nut shells as the abrasive grit. This cleans without overly abrading the wood, as often happens when using sand.

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