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Old 11-27-2011, 09:48 AM   #1
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old style plaster question: base coat


When a 1" thick base coat of plaster (2.5 parts sand to 1 part cement) is applied to diamond metal lath, is a special technique required to roughen the wet base coat so the final 1/16" veneer coat will key properly?

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Old 11-27-2011, 05:42 PM   #2
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old style plaster question: base coat


You rake the base coat to give the next coat something to grab onto.
Are you sure you want to try getting a 1" thick scratch coat on the wall?

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Old 11-27-2011, 11:07 PM   #3
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old style plaster question: base coat


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Are you sure you want to try getting a 1" thick scratch coat on the wall?
Was thinking the same thing. Laying it in place that thick you really risk having it sag on you. And have you worked with plaster before? Do you know what material to lay down a 1" thick scratch coat is going to make the wrist holding the plaster hawk feel like about halfway down the wall? The one with the trowels full of the stuff will only go numb.

Work in layers if you must do this. Don't beat yourself up. Last time I plastered an entire wall or 12 was 25 years ago and I worked with a master of the craft (who really did do the high work on stilts). I honestly do not know one anymore. My arm muscles could have been photographed for a body building magazine after that one project. I was glad I learned the technique so I could patch. But new plaster walls? Never again.

Why plaster? Nothing against it if in places and needing a patch or two. I know hysterical preservation purists think drywall textured to look plaster akin to worshiping the devil but... It just seems like a building material technique that saw its day. It's day is gone.
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Old 11-28-2011, 04:14 PM   #4
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old style plaster question: base coat


This will be my first attempt. I am just trying to patch a few sections of wall and ceiling, totalling about 55 sq ft.

I couldn't find a distributor who would sell me only a small quantity (two 100-pound bags) of the brand that uses the sand admixture, so I'm going with USG Structo-Lite available at the Depot, and will apply it in three passes: scratch coat, brown coat, white veneer coat.

Is there a special tool for creating the key in the scratch coat and yet another in the brown coat? I have done a fair amount of tiling and have a full range of thinset trowels. I was thinking a 1/4" v-notch trowel might be good for the scratch coat key:

http://www.tiletools.com/department/tile-trowels-34.cfm

But the key scored into the brown coat should be much finer than that because the white coat is only 1/16" thick. What did plasterers use to roughen the brown coat?
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Old 11-28-2011, 04:33 PM   #5
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old style plaster question: base coat


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Originally Posted by diy888 View Post
This will be my first attempt. I am just trying to patch a few sections of wall and ceiling, totalling about 55 sq ft.

I couldn't find a distributor who would sell me only a small quantity (two 100-pound bags) of the brand that uses the sand admixture, so I'm going with USG Structo-Lite available at the Depot, and will apply it in three passes: scratch coat, brown coat, white veneer coat.

Is there a special tool for creating the key in the scratch coat and yet another in the brown coat? I have done a fair amount of tiling and have a full range of thinset trowels. I was thinking a 1/4" v-notch trowel might be good for the scratch coat key:

http://www.tiletools.com/department/tile-trowels-34.cfm

But the key scored into the brown coat should be much finer than that because the white coat is only 1/16" thick. What did plasterers use to roughen the brown coat?
You can use a garden rake if you want. It's very similiar to the tool used by plasters, just bigger.
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Old 11-28-2011, 05:48 PM   #6
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old style plaster question: base coat


Most of the plasterers here use a wooden float with a couple of small nails knocked through just enough to give a small scratch as they float it up.
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Old 11-28-2011, 06:33 PM   #7
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old style plaster question: base coat


http://www.demandproducts.com/EIFS-i...4,37&sku=SRAKE
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:31 AM   #8
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old style plaster question: base coat


Thanks for the helpful replies.

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