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My wife and I recently bought a house, and one of her highest-priority projects was to strip some rather kitschy wallpaper and repaint the walls in our kitchen. This is nearing completion; however, the wallpapered wall had a paper border strip while all other walls have a crown moulding, so now I need a 16' length of the same stuff to paint and nail in place.

The moulding is not actually crown moulding, technically; it lays flat to the wall, and is used in the same room as both chair rail and baseboard. It would probably also do a fine job as window/door casing, which is, I think, its intended purpose. It's 3.5" tall and 5/8" thick, and has a rather generic profile with a top ridge, a swoop to a belly, then a crease that bows back out to a flat bottom border.

I've been to HD and to Lowe's (the two big-box chains in the area) and neither of them have the profile; there is one that's close, but IMO not close enough. I've looked at several suppliers online, and it seems that the pattern has simply fallen out of style in favor of slightly updated looks that are close, but no cigar.

At this point my father-in-law is saying to either check out a recycling outlet that deals in used/recycled building materials (I don't know of one in the DFW area), or look around for someone who can do custom millwork. Both sound expensive (the recycling outlets deal heavily in vintage stuff like hardwood floors; all I need is paint-quality moulding, to match what was installed less than 30 years ago).

EDIT: The profile I am looking for is on the left. The closest match I can find is on the right. If anyone can find a pattern number or any specific identifying info, I'd much appreciate it.

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You might want to check with a mill shop, they might just have the pattern already made up and be able to make the piece for you without the extra charges (it never hurts to ask). –  Tester101 Jun 22 '11 at 13:49
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given that it lays flat on the wall and is high up on the ceiling, I'd suggest it may very well be 'close enough'. Once painted to match, a person would probably have to be purposefully looking for a difference to ever notice. –  DA01 Jun 24 '11 at 16:47
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5 Answers 5

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Check your local cabinet supply wholesaler. They probably won't have that exact profile in stock, but they can probably lead to a place that would have it, or help you find a shop that can make it. It doesn't look like an especially difficult profile to mill, just have to use a combination of bits and a little finesse to make such a small batch. Expect to pay a premium, and order more than you think you'll need.

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I'm marking this as the answer because I found a company, Resdoor (a division of R. E. Sweeney Lumber), that is the major supplier of lumber for builders in the DFW Metroplex, they have the profile I'm looking for in their catalog, and they're about 20 minutes from my house. I just need someone from Resdoor to get back to me on how to go about buying a couple of 16' lengths of paint-grade, when they normally sell this pattern by the truckload in red oak and maple. –  KeithS Jun 27 '11 at 14:35
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take a look at this suggestion from ask this old house:

When none of the offerings at the home center or the lumberyards measure up, then it's time to go the custom route. A millwork shop can make special "knives" and turn out an exact duplicate of your existing moldings. The problem is, you have to pay setup fees, which increase the linear-foot price significantly and may not be cost-effective for a small order like yours.

The way to avoid those charges is to make your own profiles using a table saw, band saw, and router. On the next page, you can see all the steps I follow in order to copy a short piece of baseboard cap. The process isn't difficult, as long as you're familiar with and respectful of these powerful tools.

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You don't mention how much you're looking for, but I'll assume that it's not enough to make it worthwhile to have custom knives made up.

So, take a look around for smaller specialty shops - some of these guys never throw out anything, and may have some laying around. Also, check the architectural salvage/recycling places - they may have what you need for a price that'll be less than having it custom made. In this case, being "rare" may make it less valuable, not more.

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You're probably right about custom millwork; all I need is one run of 16' to use as crown moulding along one wall. –  KeithS Jun 22 '11 at 17:18
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There are a couple of Habitat for Humanity Re-Stores near you: http://www.Re-Store.com/locator/index.php

They are not expensive, but there's no guarantee they'd have anything close.

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Depending on how much moulding you are talking about, you could rip out all of the old stuff and replace it with currently available stuff.

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We looked at that; taking off all the current stuff and putting in real crown moulding would cost us about $125 in materials. Cheaper than a custom planing knife, but a single 16' length of the right moulding would cost less than $20. –  KeithS Jun 27 '11 at 14:30
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