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Old 05-18-2011, 12:36 AM   #1
thumper1
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Default melamine prep for painting

How do you prepare the white melamine cabinets from Lowes to accept paint?
I have tried sanding, priming and paint, all without success. Paint just will not stick to this stuff. Any success stories.
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Old 05-18-2011, 01:48 AM   #2
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Isn't the attraction of melamine that you don't have to paint it? I'd be inclined to use vinyl dye if I wanted to change the color of the laminate.
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Old 05-18-2011, 02:43 AM   #3
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

How would I prep them? By adding 1/4" plywood to act as a veneer over them.
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Old 05-18-2011, 08:27 AM   #4
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

automotive etch primer...... will stick like sheeit to a blanket!!!
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Old 05-18-2011, 06:53 PM   #5
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Look for a product called Zinsser Bullseye 123. Lowes and depot sell it. It is designed specifically for bonding to surfaces like melamine (which is the same material as Formica and other plastic laminates) glass and tile. Don't be alarmed that the stuff seems to peel right off with a fingernail after it dries. Follow label directions, the stuff doesn't reach full bond for about a week after it's applied but can be topcoated soon after application.
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Old 05-18-2011, 10:37 PM   #6
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

tcianci is right. I built some wall cabinets by cutting up a trash find melamine type, RTA tall storage cabinet. I sanded them pretty good first and primed with KILZ, then painted the outsides with Rustoleum. I have had no problems with the paint sticking, and the cabinets have been in use for over a year now. I used the oil based KILZ. Zinser Bullseye 123 is latex based primer and is excellent. I once painted a sheet vinyl floor after sanding then priming with Zinser Bullseye 123. This was intended to be a temporary fix, but held up for six years before replacing the flooring. Zinser Bin is their oil based primer and I have known of some paint contractors using it to prime ceramic tile before repainting bathrooms with no issues.
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Old 05-18-2011, 11:58 PM   #7
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Thanks for the info guys.

What grit sandpaper should I end up with? Should I sand the primer also before final paint?
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Old 05-19-2011, 06:31 AM   #8
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

I guess you already have the cabinets.....

For future reference....they make more than one color.....I made my cabinets out of gray melamine....the doors were left over from the MIL's kitchen remodel....I painted them the same color.

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Old 05-19-2011, 06:49 AM   #9
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

What about sanding, then use an adhesion promoter, spray prime with automotive primer, then paint with your choice of paint.
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Old 05-26-2011, 04:19 PM   #10
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Ok let's see if I have this right.

1.Sand well.......what grit should I use?

2.Prime with the KILTZ or Zinser Bullseye 123........how long to set? should I sand this coat? grit?

3.Paint the final color.........Can I use water base paint over the KILTZ or the 123?

Question.......will the final coat adhere good enough to use blue tape on it as a guide to paint a stripe over it and then be able to pull the tape off? Is the bond going to be good enough not to pull the paint when pulling off the tape?
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Old 05-26-2011, 07:57 PM   #11
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

I just used 120 or 150 grit sandpaper to sand my garage cabinets before priming. I used the regular KILZ because it is oil based and I painted over it with Rustoleum oil base paint. I did not sand my primer coat befor painting over it, but I did let the primer dry for about 36 hours before painting over it. The KILZ is designed to be a primer for oil or latex paint. The Zinser Bullseye 123 is a latex based primer. I know it will work great for latex paint, but I'm not sure if it will work for oil based paint. Hope this helps.
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:58 AM   #12
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Quote:
Originally Posted by kfainf View Post
I just used 120 or 150 grit sandpaper to sand my garage cabinets before priming. I used the regular KILZ because it is oil based and I painted over it with Rustoleum oil base paint. I did not sand my primer coat befor painting over it, but I did let the primer dry for about 36 hours before painting over it. The KILZ is designed to be a primer for oil or latex paint. The Zinser Bullseye 123 is a latex based primer. I know it will work great for latex paint, but I'm not sure if it will work for oil based paint. Hope this helps.
Kfainf.......do you think the bond will be strong enough to use blue tape as a stripping guide over the newly painted surface and after painting the strip, will it pull off the paint when removing the tape?

Sorry for beating this question to death, I just don't want to screw this up.
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Old 05-27-2011, 11:25 AM   #13
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

You can find tape that has lower adhesion than the regular blue tape. I don't have the answer to the question about pulling the paint, but there are less sticky tapes than the regular blue stuff.
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Old 05-27-2011, 01:43 PM   #14
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

123 has worked for me as well, did the kitchen cabinets with it, as a hold-over till we could afford new ones. Even used it to prime/paint some flowery-awful tiles in the kitchen too.
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Old 05-27-2011, 03:09 PM   #15
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Use the green Frog Tape if you can find it. It seems to work better than the blue 3m
stuff for stripes, or general masking off areas. It removes real easy.

Your best option would be to prime using the killz, but let it dry for a few days or a week as suggested before painting. Then tape your stripe and paint that, but remove the tape after a few hours and then let it completely dry.
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:10 PM   #16
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Thumper1.... I think I would use the green FROG tape as suggested earlier, but I would let any painted surfaces dry for several days before taping off for stripes. Here is a few pics of the cabinets I built. The outsides are painted with Rustoleum and actually the insides are all painted with some left over latex interior paint. I have had the two green cabinets in use for over a year and the finish is holding up great. The two red ones have been in use for at least ten months and their finish is holding up great also.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg App Workbench cabinets1.jpg (145.0 KB, 24 views)
File Type: jpg App workbench cabinets2.jpg (147.2 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg garage cabinet1.jpg (137.1 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg garage cabinet2.jpg (141.2 KB, 21 views)
File Type: jpg garage cabinet3.jpg (137.6 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg garage cabinet4.jpg (141.6 KB, 23 views)
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Old 05-31-2011, 07:39 PM   #17
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Kfainf......Nice job. Was the surface melamine to begin with? Where do you get the green FROG tape? I'm not sure I have seen it in the local box stores.

Last edited by thumper1; 05-31-2011 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 05-31-2011, 07:46 PM   #18
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Default Re: melamine prep for painting

Quote:
Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
I guess you already have the cabinets.....

For future reference....they make more than one color.....I made my cabinets out of gray melamine....the doors were left over from the MIL's kitchen remodel....I painted them the same color.

ddawg.....did you repaint the doors or did you leave the doors gray and paint the rest of the cabinets to match.

Yep already have the cabinets, decided to paint the garage a gray color and would like to paint the boring white to match the rest.
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