So here's the thing. Painting them is actually amazingly easy. You sand them down, give them a few light coats of spray paint, and voila...pretty "new" knobs and other door hardware!
However, I did learn a few things along the way.
Primarily, when removing the knobs, especially if you're removing lots of pieces, make sure to keep track of which screws go with which parts. The first time I did a set I did our front door. I took off the deadbolt, the door handle, the stoppers, and the latchy thing we have (I don't know what it's technically called!). Anyways, I was just going with it and was all excited that it had been so easy. Well, then I started putting them back on. AN HOUR AND A HALF LATER, after countless redos when certain screws wouldn't work in places, I had all the pieces back in place. The next time I did both living room doors and the front storm door handle. I removed each section one at a time, laid it out to be painted with its pieces, and then once they were dry, picked up one section at a time to put it back on. 20 minutes total for all three! Much better than that rookie failure! Lesson learned!
Not only did that first day take so long to get back on, I had another major setback that first attempt. Our doors are really old and, in places, our knobs are pretty stuck in there! On our front door, I got the actual door handle removed, but could not for the life of me, get the freaking stopper part that actually goes into the frame out. Not a big deal...until Levi closed the door...and then I later went to put the parts back on and realized I couldn't actually open the door without a handle. Luckily, we have a quick thinking, kind neighbor who came over with a spare knob and opened the door for me! Whew...second lesson learned: don't close a door that doesn't have a handle!
And speaking of that part that wouldn't come off. Because of it, I had to go back to Home Depot and picked up a can of oil-rubbed bronze paint. It was $8, but was so worth it. Not only did it allow me to paint the parts I couldn't actually remove, but mainly it was available to help me with touch ups...parts that got a little nicked as I tried to reinstall or even parts that I somehow didn't spray as completely because weird angles. I just used a small paint brush and got those places with a few light coats as well. I recommend putting it on your door knob handle painting supply list from the start!
So, all in all, I think ORBing was a major success. If, like me, this has been on your project radar for awhile, I highly suggest going for it! And now that I have a pretty good system going, I can't wait to eventually tackle every handle in the house.