I wrote about my tests with two such products the other day. It seemed like it was going to work, but in the end it was just too difficult to get the timing down. I planned to really start the paint stripping this weekend, so on Friday I applied the Safe Strip to a four foot section of base board. Four feet is short, but this was to be my real world test. The plan was to leave it on over night and then strip it off Saturday. During testing I found that it required two applications, so I would then do the second application, let it sit for 3 or 4 hours an then strip that off. I would then apply the first coat to a second area and finish that up on Sunday. There was supposed to be a system and the timing was a crucial part of the system.
Well, on Saturday it wasn't really ready. After testing a few times I finally removed the stripper. That was supposed to remove all of the latex and the second application would remove the old oil paint. The first application ended up needing two applications just to get the latex off. Since the second “first” application had to sit for a few hours before I could remove it, I didn't get the second application on until almost 3:00. That now had to sit 3 or 4 hours, so it basically took about 30 hours to strip 4 feet of base board. There is just no way that is going to work.
Tonight I tried the tried and true methyl chloride and was able to do two applications to a 2 foot long test section in less than a half hour and ended up with the same results as the “green” stripper. The first application took about 10 minutes to lift the latex paint and 5 minutes to scrape it off. The second application for the oil paint was about the same.
I use Jasco Premium Semi-Paste. It is caustic. It is highly flammable. It burns bare skin. It causes cancer in lab rats. It also happens to work as if by magic. Especially on the detailed areas and that is the only reason I'm using paint strippers this time instead of a heat gun.