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Old 07-24-2008, 09:21 AM   #1
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Sand swirl interior wall finish (Virginia)


Where I live in southeastern Virginia, sand swirl interior wall finish is very common. I'm adding an addition onto my house which will extend the length of the finished room over the garage (FROG). I want to match the texture as closely as possible, but am having trouble nailing down the technique.

When we had our house built, I could have sworn the plasterers used big sponges to spread the plaster/sand mix onto the wall, but the only techniques I've seen documented on the internet use a trowel or brush.
Can you tell me if you are familiar with the brush technique?

Also, what should the ratio of sand to plaster be, and does the drywall need to be primed first?

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Old 07-24-2008, 09:40 AM   #2
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Sand swirl interior wall finish (Virginia)


Prime the drywall first.

As far as the amount, or ratio, of sand, that all depends on the texture that you want to match. More sand in the existing texture = more sand in your mix, less = less.

We use a 5 gallon bucket of redimix compound. We add about 7 cups of sand per 5 gallon bucket of compound, and add more if needed. We also add 1 cup of flat latex white paint to the mix.
We do not use the brush to apply the texture, we use a paint roller and pole, to apply it evenly. Grid pattern. We apply a square at about 8'x8' at a time, careful to blend the edges, so as to not leave a defined "ridge", when continuing the application on the next 8'x8' area. We do 8'x8' areas, so as to avoid the mixture drying in the middle of the texture work.
We use a plaster's brush to form 1/2 circles, after the area has the texture rolled onto it evenly... The actual texturing with the brush, is a whole technique, in itself, to get right.

The keys:
Consistent Texture mixtures
Consistent and even thickness-application of the texture material.
Consistent brush-texturing of the applied texture material.
Leave no ridges on the areas.
Practice, practic, practice....on scrap materials, before you attempt it on the walls/ceilings. Get your technique right before.

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Old 07-24-2008, 10:22 AM   #3
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Sand swirl interior wall finish (Virginia)


Thanks for the quick reply. This is very helpful.

Couple of clarifications: What nap of roller would you recommend? Also, is there a particular type of sand that is recommended? I had some brickwork done and the guys left a small pile the they had used to mix the morter with. Since I need such a small quantity, if that sand will work then I won't need to buy another bag.

Will definitely plan to practice on some scrap first.
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Old 07-24-2008, 07:01 PM   #4
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Sand swirl interior wall finish (Virginia)


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Originally Posted by davetodd View Post
Couple of clarifications: What nap of roller would you recommend?
Any roller will work. Stick with a general-use paint roller cover. We just use the cheapo bulk 6 packs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by davetodd View Post
Also, is there a particular type of sand that is recommended?
Yes: Silica Sand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by davetodd View Post
I had some brickwork done and the guys left a small pile the they had used to mix the morter with. Since I need such a small quantity, if that sand will work then I won't need to buy another bag.
No, you must use silica sand. I believe it comes in a 60 pound bag. A drywall supply house, or masonry supply house, should carry it.

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Will definitely plan to practice on some scrap first.


Good Luck with the project!
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Old 07-27-2008, 09:59 AM   #5
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Sand swirl interior wall finish (Virginia)


I to live in southeast Virginia [Virginia Beach] and have had the same swirl texture in several houses and always thought it was done with a brush.

Bout two months ago the AC guy missed a board in the attic and took out about three quarters of a sheet of drywall.

The next day his drywall guy came over to do the repairs. After putting up new board they used USG Veneer Finish [see USG.com] and a few other ingredients and trowled it over the repair area. Then worked in the swirls with a large well rounded damp sponge just like what you would wash your car with. The match was perfect! [cept for it aint been painted yet]
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Old 07-27-2008, 10:16 AM   #6
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Sand swirl interior wall finish (Virginia)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy View Post
I to live in southeast Virginia [Virginia Beach] and have had the same swirl texture in several houses and always thought it was done with a brush.

Bout two months ago the AC guy missed a board in the attic and took out about three quarters of a sheet of drywall.

The next day his drywall guy came over to do the repairs. After putting up new board they used USG Veneer Finish [see USG.com] and a few other ingredients and trowled it over the repair area. Then worked in the swirls with a large well rounded damp sponge just like what you would wash your car with. The match was perfect! [cept for it aint been painted yet]
He was applying a Plaster finish, as opposed to a Drywall material finish.

There are many, many texture patterns in various homes all over the country.
Generally, if it is a swirl, it is done 99% of the time, with a type of brush.

Do we always use a brush to do a swirl pattern, or other similar pattern? No, as stated earlier, every texture is slightly different, like a fingerprint.

Each pro mixes and applies their texture in their own way, with their own slightly deviated technique.

You have to be prepared to "match" by adjusting it, using slight variations of the mixture, the texturing tool, and the technique. That is why every DIYer attempting to match or mimic a texture pattern, should practice, and make the adjustements to get the pattern "just right".


Last edited by AtlanticWBConst.; 07-27-2008 at 10:18 AM.
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