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Trim for Older Homes
Jan 25, 2018

Trim for Older Homes

When working on an older home, you may need to match a trim profile that is no longer sold. In this case you have three basic options:

1Use one or more pieces of off-the-shelf trim that are similar to the old trim. Sometimes, combining two narrow pieces can mimic the look of one wider piece. This may be close enough that the difference is unnoticeable.

2Have a lumberyard custom-mill pieces for you. There will be an initial charge for setting up the “knives” used for milling the profile. Other than that, the cost per lineal foot will not be too bad. Of course, that means that custom milling is expensive if you only need a few pieces but becomes more reasonable the more boards you purchase.

3Start with clear lumber and mill it yourself. Use a router with router bits that match or come close to the profile you are after.

If your home has an Arts and Crafts style, you may find that much of the trim is square cut. In that case, you might be able to use clear 1-by boards (which after milling are 3/4 inch thick), or ask a lumberyard to mill boards that are a bit thinner or thicker.