in an old house with plaster walls, prior to painting, what is the best way to prep(smooth) the walls, there areas of the walls that are nick'd and corners that are rough, along with flaking of plaster under windows
I do a ton of old houses like that. If the plaster needs repair ( and they usually do- as in cracks) I "suture " either side of the crack with sheetrock screws into the lathe- is tricky to do right- and then use screen tape- and 1 coat mud to set ( usually a powdered "hot mud" , 2 more to fan out.
Same with any imperfections- you can use premixed Plus 3 - use a wide blade whenever possible.
sand smooth, prime with a primer sealer ( I've been liking smart prime lately- low voc- thin so it penetrated, great adhesion).
Then look over touch up as needed and finish.
you can use caulk in corners- i would do that after priming.
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