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Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh Start

Posted by kendog2 (My Page) on
Wed, Nov 9, 11 at 19:53

I'm preparing to paint our cabinets, doors and trim. I have some Zinsser 123 but it seems really thick and sticky. I'm worried that it will leave brush marks. I've heard that BM Fresh Start has superior leveling capabilities. Since I'm not a professional painter, I'll need all the help I can get.
I'll be using Ace Cabinet and Door paint for the top coat. Can someone please tell me which primer would level best? Fresh Start is much more expensive ($37). I don't want to spend the extra money unless it will make a difference.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

Fresh Start


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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

Fresh Start

A very light sanding with #220 paper when primer is dry will provide a super smooth surface for paint.


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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

Thank you so much Christophern and Brushworks. I'll give the Fresh Start Superior and 220 sandpaper a try. (When I asked the question, I wasn't aware that the Superior was different from the regular Fresh Start.)

By the way, Christophern, I love the comment you post: "Better to leave the walls bare than to put Behr on the walls." I confess that I actually do use Behr (flat) paint on my walls because I can't afford BM paint especially since I often end up changing my mind about the color. I've been happy with the wall paint but the Behr semi-gloss and high gloss didn't work well at all for painting furniture and doors. It was too thick and didn't level properly - left a lot of brush marks. Until I found this site, I thought spraying must be the only way to go. I'm so grateful to everyone here for setting me straight. It would no doubt have been another disaster to spray with Behr. I can't wait to try the Ace paint.

Thanks again!


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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

Fresh Start Superior

I don't think there is any superior, it is just Fresh Start, oil or latex


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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

Behr paints have listened to customer requests and has improved their product over the years. I have applied it a few times this past season (commercial walls) and am quite pleased with the overall experience.

Use the Premium Plus.

Some painters are like car detailers. Anything sold OTC and outside of a "real" paint store is bad. For example, Meguiar's is a well known product in the car industry. Yet, among some professionals it's crap compared to Wolfgang, Optium, etc.

That's simply not true. :) Meguiar's is equal or better in most applications.


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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

Christophern,

I did a search of Fresh Start images. It seems that there are many varieties of Fresh Start primer: All Purpose, Stain Block, Fast Dry, Penetrating, Enamel Underbody and Superior. Most of them appear to be available in oil or latex. The Ace store where I purchased the primer carried only the All Purpose and Superior types.

Brushworks, it's good to know that Behr has been improving their product. I haven't tried their Premium Plus. We like Meguiar's products too.


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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

"Fresh Start

A very light sanding with #220 paper when primer is dry will provide a super smooth surface for paint."

Why the need to sand after priming? Do you then vacuum and damp sponge the walls to remove the dust before rolling on the paint?


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RE: Best Leveling Primer for Cabinets - Zinsser 1-2-3 or Fresh S

For normal wall painting, the dust will fall to the ground because of gravity. There would be no dust to remove with vacuums or damp sponges and if there was dust it would be such a small amount that it couldn't possibly be a factor for affecting the adhesion of the paint. Also, some guys sand between coats just because that is what they think you are supposed to do....in other words, it is part of the process. I sand for 2 reasons....to make a surface smooth or to rough up a surface (create tooth) so that paint will stick. I see no reason to sand a smooth surface because it's already smooth. I see no reason to sand a primer so that paint will stick to it since this is one of the primary reasons for using a primer in the first place. You can sand it between coats if you want of course. It certainly won't hurt anything. In my view though, this is a waste of time if the surface isn't rough.


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