Painting Surface

i have been using Trekell Birch Panels which have 3 layers of Gesso on them. I like them but i am starting to realize they might be a bit rough compared to the panels that LOP instructs you on how to make. I emailed them and asked which sandpaper that they use. They replied with “80 grit”. Hard to do fine lines on this as it is too “bumpy”. Anyway, i dont have the proper space in my house to make the panels. Do you think i should take a 200 or 400 grit sandpaper to these panels to make them smoother? my concern is that it is only 3 layers of Gesso. not sure if it will work. Anyone have a panel that they have bought which is comparable to the ones that are made for LOP. Thx

I tried sanding an Ampersand gessoboard, which was somewhat rough, to a smoother finish and it completely altered the surface. Paint was absorbed and could no longer be freely moved across the panel, so if their finish is similar to Trekell’s it may not be a good idea to sand.

The surface of Ampersand Gessoboards ( are close to what a 180 or 220 sanding would do, but likely will not be as tough for continued applications of paint. Ampersand also offers some ultra smooth panels in their “value artist series”( These panels contain virtually no tooth. Both of these products can be found in Hobby Lobby and maybe Michaels.

I found some panels sold by Hobby Lobby that seem to be close to the ones I made for LOP. They were the smooth-finish from “Master’s Touch.” These have a slight tooth to them. I can’t really tell a difference when painting on these or the ones I made for LOP; however, I have not tried to use these multiple times.

You mentioned that you have no space to prepare panels, if this is only due to an inability to cut them, unprimed panels can be purchased from multiple venders, but these would still require sanding. I live in a small apartment and only primed 1-2 large panels at a time. I had my sanded panels on a slightly larger board with newspaper between them. After applying a coat, I lifted the larger board (with the primed board on top) and placed it on a dresser so it would be out of the way until the next coat was due. This was a laborious process, but I chose to do it to save a few bucks in the long run.

Hope this helps

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Very helpful. Thx. I tried the ampersand once but it felt like it was way too smooth. The paint just slid across then.

Anthony, is there a brand which you suggest as being comparable to the ones which you make? Thanks a lot.