The Tool Barn

Installing the Trim Molding

Now it's time to install the molding.  First you need to prepare the existing window or door jambs, ensuring these are flush to the wall.  In an old house, like this, you may need to use a wood file/rasp or belt sander. 

First measure the length of the stock required.  The length depends on the rosette and reveal of the window/door jamb.  I prefer a 3/8" reveal of the jamb.  Bringing the trim flush to the jamb will show a crack and with imperfect jams, it will be nearly impossible to match the two.  With a reveal or recess, you will be able to split differences due to warps in the jambs.

If you walls are not plumb, one trick is to trim the back of the molding.  This can be done with your table saw and/or belt sander.  Be careful not to remove too much stock as this may come through the front bead recess groves!

Attaching the trim requires finishing nails (1-1/2 or 2").  In old house renovation with existing plaster walls, you may also want to use construction adhesive.  The corner rosettes are best glued in place  because of the dimensions, nailing may cause the block to split.

If you are staining and finishing the wood, it is probably best to wait to fill in the nail holes and cracks until the final varnish coat is applied.  I prefer to use colored stick putty to match the satin.  After stain and varnish you rub the crayon-like stick over the holes and fill the voids.

Conversely if the molding is to be painted, I generally use latex painters caulk to fill the cracks between the molding and the wall and putty to fill the nail holes. 

Door jamb ready to accept molding

Door jamb ready to accept molding



 Molding nailed in place

Molding nailed in place



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