Once you start a project you can't stop. I learned from my first pass and thickly covered the wood this time. Around this time, I also realized my built-in had always been painted. There was no stain or varnish as I got down. I worried about the inaccurancy of me stripping this bare. Did houses in the 1920's even have wood showing? At the same time, I was looking a one solid 8 foot long 1" thick slab of beautiful old growth douglas fir with absolutely no knots or grains. In the end, my love for wood won out. I decided to compromise. I would strip and seal the top of the buit-in but leave the bottom painted.
Two weeks, and three passes with the stripper and I had removed all the paint from the top of the cabinet. I would not recommend this project to most people. I have what is often considered an obsessive attention to small detailed projects. In fact, I often get overwhelmed with the big picture, so this worked great for me. Everyday afterwork I stripped a small segment and applied more stripper to sit overnight. Josh understandably had no interest in taking on this mountain and left me to it.