Removing/replacing Base Molding On Brittle Plaster Wall - Remodeling - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 09-04-2009, 02:14 PM   #1
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removing/replacing base molding on brittle plaster wall

Hello, DIY novice here!

Updating our 1952 ranch, and want to remove all the base molding. Not worried about damaging the molding, we won't be reusing it, but trying not to damage the plaster walls. Molding is attached with nails, no adhesive. Tried easing it a bit at a time with a lever and a block against the wall to distribute the weight, but plaster is still crumbling anyway.

Any suggestions for other methods of removing the molding? We will be replacing it with new and slightly larger molding (so I suppose some damage will be covered, but we'd still like to keep plaster as much in tact as possible).

Thanks for your help!


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Old 09-04-2009, 02:53 PM   #2
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Use a flat-bar, push it behind the base at the middle of the wall, about half-way down, pull it (top of bar) back towards you. There is a plaster ground, a wood 1x2 used as a plaster guide (for thickness) nailed to the studs close to the floor. I have also used a flat shovel before, insert behind, pull handle down towards you. The other option is to split the base into thin strips at the (nailing) grain.

Be safe, G


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Old 09-08-2009, 03:07 PM   #3
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Agreed. Pry down toward the floor, not outward at the top of the trim. any damage should be covered by the new trim
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Old 09-08-2009, 09:28 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tips! I never thought of using our flat shovel. I just purchased a Dremel MultiMax (Fein Multimaster knockoff), and I'm hoping I can use it to either cut flush behind the molding through the nails, or if the blade isn't strong enough for that, at least cut the molding into much smaller sections so it will come away from the wall more easily. It (the multimax) should arrive sometime this week, so we'll see how it goes.

Thanks again!
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