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schatzi 05-17-2012 10:53 AM

My strange house
I have two nagging questions about this house I own, it was built in 1951 and it's Dutch Colonial style...

1. The ceiling height on every floor is 7'2". They're not drop ceilings, this is to the plaster that's on the joist. Anybody know why this would be?

2. The lath is drywall. I never imagined anyone would plaster over drywall. Isn't this why drywall was invented, to avoid using plaster?

Anyway, just two questions that have bugged me for years. Thanks

TarheelTerp 05-17-2012 12:25 PM


Originally Posted by schatzi (Post 923373)
The ceiling height on every floor is 7'2".
Anybody know why this would be?

Probably because that was the MINIMUM allowed by code.
hint: look for (beware of) other bare minimum standards of work.


The lath is drywall. Isn't this why drywall was invented, to avoid using plaster?
That is probably "rocklath". A very popular wall system then.
I have it at my house too.

joed 05-17-2012 01:12 PM

The drywall type lath was an intermediary stage between when they used wooden strips and just drywall. It was used in place of the wood as lath before someone figured out that you could put nice paper on it and use it without plaster.

Wildie 05-17-2012 09:00 PM

I have this in my house also! Plaster and rock lath is superior to drywall as its many times stronger and limits the transmission of sound through out the house.
Dry wall was developed as a cost cutting method.

In my house, the outside walls were sheeted with rock lath that has an aluminum foil on the inside surface. This reflects radiant heat back into the building and forms a vapour barrier.

When I bought my house there was no insulation in the walls so I had cellulose blown into the cavities. (R13)
The heat saving with this combination is very economical.

The rock lath was manufactured in sheets 16" wide by 48" long and was generally installed horizontally.

no1hustler 05-18-2012 08:32 AM

Wow, I'm glad I read this thread. I have always wondered what the heck kind of walls I had and could never figure it out. It looks like (2) sheets of 3/8" drywall on top of each other but the Rock Lath makes more sense. It sucks drilling into it since it is so hard and it ruins saw blades in a hurry.

joecaption 05-18-2012 08:43 AM

I use a masonry bit in an impact drill to drill it, reguler saw blades in like a sawsall will only go a few inches and be distroyed. I use a tile cutting bit in a Roto Zip. for bigger holes I use a diamond blade in a ciruler saw.
For round holes like for a can light Greelee and Remline sell a hole saw made just for this with Carbide cutting surface.

no1hustler 05-18-2012 09:33 AM

Thanks for the tips Joe!

schatzi 05-19-2012 10:04 AM


Originally Posted by joecaption (Post 923919)
I use a masonry bit in an impact drill to drill it

that's not what I have then. Must be regular gypsum. I can saw through it easy.

mae-ling 05-19-2012 12:37 PM

For a while some did plaster over drywall. I read about a year ago of a company that still does it.

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