What is the best way to paint varnished oak stair rail.

John Cominski
by John Cominski
I want a durable black painted, that won't easily chip, hand rail and black bottom plate and white pillasters
  12 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Sep 25, 2015
    I am not an expert on this but having done some research on your project I am going to say you will have to use an interior oil based paint or an enamel paint. I also have found a website for you . Go to homeguides.stgate.com.
    • John Cominski John Cominski on Sep 25, 2015
      Thanks for the response but all i got when going to homeguides.stgate.com was a couple asiain characters
  • Glenda Wigginton Edmunds Glenda Wigginton Edmunds on Sep 25, 2015
    I am in the same boat. My railings are light colored wood top and bottom with metalwork in between.
  • JulieArt JulieArt on Sep 25, 2015
    They should be sanded well for tooth, then primed and painted or restain with gel stain. The problem with hand rail is that it gets used so much the paint or stain can wear off. You should top coat it with a really hard polyurethane.
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Sep 25, 2015
    Sorry for that but I found out a lot of info thats sounded to complicated for me to type.So another suggestion try DYI making planking. Let me know if this helped.
  • Nep2149218 Nep2149218 on Sep 26, 2015
    Unfortunately there really isn't an easy way to do it but a bit of elbow grease( maybe a lot of elbow grease )and a lot of sanding , then an undercoat then a very good topcoat.
  • Melanie Fowler Gross Melanie Fowler Gross on Sep 26, 2015
    Well let me share my own experience. I also painted mine. I lightly sanded, then applied a primer first like Kilz. But it was the hardest thing I've ever painted in my life and I paint everything all the time. The paint has runs everywhere. It looks gloppy in places, especially up around the top of the spindles, it puddled at the bottom on some. So... I recommend buying as many plastic drop clothes as you can afford, cover everything, and spray them. I promise you'll save yourself a lot of headaches. We're seriously thinking of ripping ours out and replacing them now.
    • See 1 previous
    • Fran Del Corpo Saravia Fran Del Corpo Saravia on Dec 04, 2016

      I had the sam experience. It's pretty awedu

  • General Finishes Gel stain. This one is in their color Java. Seal with their wipe on Poly, Arm-R-Seal. For prep work all you need to do is: Clean with a good cleaner like TSP, and go over the surface with a 120 grit sand paper. All your doing is giving the gel stain something to grip on to. Paint it on like you would paint. Give it 24 (or more) hrs between coats. You can buff between coats with a paper bag. It wont look good until the 2nd or 3rd coat. Let dry for a good 24 hrs and apply the Arm-R-Seal. 2-3 coats and your good to go.
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  • Carol Carol on Sep 26, 2015
    use any of the processes above. BUT .... YOUR FINAL FINISHING SHOULD BE WITH BOWLING ALLEY WAX. works amazingly. my sister did this to her dining room wood floors after a Popsicle melted on the floor and ate thru the finish.! ( makes you wonder what is in those things ) google the wax on amazon. good luck
  • LD LD on Sep 26, 2015
    Whether you choose to paint or stain, you will need to clean and lightly want to lightly sand in order to get good adhesion. Now, if you want to stain the hand rails and bottom plate you could use Mine as Polyshade for this can be applied over existing stain finish. Here is a link which gives you more detail info on the product and how to use it: http://www.minwax.com/wood-products/one-step-stain-and-finishes/minwax-polyshades Now if you wAnt to paint the hand rails, spindles and base plate, I would recommend using the following product by Sherwin Williams, for it is recommended for use on wood trim: http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/products/catalog/proclassic-interior-waterbased-acrylicalkyd/?referringCategory=interior-paint-coatings/paint/&N=106978319%2B416668465
  • St Rose St Rose on Sep 26, 2015
    The best way is . . . DON'T DO IT! The warmth of real oak far surpasses any paint treatment (in my humble opinion). :)
  • Cornelia Schott Cornelia Schott on Sep 26, 2015
    We sanded our oak stair railing to the natural wood. Once this was done, we used General Finishes Antique Walnut gel stain. We will seal the stair railing and white balusters when we are finished with the steps. Make sure the gel stain dries after each application before applying the next coat (over night is best). Be prepared this is very hard work.
  • DP DP on Nov 07, 2016
    I love it as it is, it is beautiful and natural, please don't paint them I wish mine were not painted, I don't have the energy to try and remove all the paint.