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-   -   Prepping plaster walls for painting (http://www.diychatroom.com/f4/prepping-plaster-walls-painting-108884/)

phantasm72 06-26-2011 10:08 PM

Prepping plaster walls for painting
 
Whats the best way to prep an old plaster wall for painting?
Its been wallpapered and painted over several times, so Ive removed pretty much all of that. The bottom most layer of paper is still there, as it wont come off, but I dont believe it is actually wallpaper per se, just some coating over the plaster.
But anyway, the walls are in pretty rough shape. No longer smooth, many nail holes. several patch jobs over the years, missing plaster, loose plaster, etc.
Ive been cutting out any loose plaster and just filling it in with drywall mud in several layers, and it looks pretty good, but over all the walls arent all that smooth. Any tips or ideas or helpful hints?
Cheers

Stanchek 06-26-2011 10:41 PM

If it were me, I would heavily prime everything, then float it all smooth. However, I've been floating walls for many years, so it's easy for me to say. Not sure what your skill level on floating walls is. Get a big blade, thin your mud a bit, float the whole wall, sand and repeat. Good luck

ccarlisle 06-27-2011 08:31 AM

I just read something about skimcoating using a 9" roller and thinned-down joint compound...I'll try and find it. But the best would be to have a uniform surface of fresh plaster that you then uniformly prime with a high solids primer.

Mike Swearingen 06-27-2011 09:51 AM

Addtionally, a pro painter friend of mine who has been painting plaster walls and ceiling for 40 years once gave me this tip.
When he has cracks in plaster, he digs out any loose plaster with a church key can opener and muds it using about 9" wide strip of black plastic vinyl screen instead of sheetrock tape.
Works great!
Good luck!
Mike

phantasm72 06-28-2011 06:29 PM

thanks guys. I guess there is no easy, quick way about going at it. Im doing the skim coat, which hopefully with a little practice, will go a bit quicker (and less messy). Just being a bit humid the last little while, its a bit frustrating to have to wait so long between coats which just drags this out seemingly forever...

chrisn 06-29-2011 06:20 AM

couple of big fans helps a lot:yes:

Brushjockey 06-29-2011 07:40 AM

If you are at least somewhat confident in your mudding abilities- you can fill any deeper stuff with "hot" mud- the powder stuff that sets up in a given time.
It also can be topped after it's set but before all the moisture has dried out.
Clean out your bucket real clean before the mud sets up in it.

ccarlisle 06-29-2011 09:48 AM

We 'invested' in a 16" long trowel for skim coating - $40! - and it seemed to give better - more even - results than the regular trowels. Paint supply stores have them.

Leah Frances 06-29-2011 07:55 PM

I've just been doing this sort of project here are some of my thoughts from a DIYer's prospective:

- only mix as much setting/joint compound as you can use before it starts setting up. Some project this means a gallon at a time, for my last step today, I was mixing a cup at a time.

- keep your knife and containers scrupulously clean so that hardened compound doesn't get into the mix.

- Think more thin coats rather than fewer thick coats. Use your knife to knock off high spots when the compound is dry/drying.

- Don't overwork one area. Stop while you're ahead.

- I prefer to fill voids rather than having to sand extra off. My last coat is scraped on so thinly, as to ONLY fill irregularities. All excess is scraped off.

- I only sand sparingly, with a high grit block, as the last step to achieve that perfect finish. For example: I'm finishing a 15x17 room with 9.5 foot walls. I spent all of 35-45 minutes with a sanding sponge (by hand) to get the finish I wanted.

- Practice, practice, practice. I'm on my fourth room doing this sort of thing and I am WAY faster than I was.

chrisn 06-30-2011 07:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Leah Frances (Post 676782)
I've just been doing this sort of project here are some of my thoughts from a DIYer's prospective:

- only mix as much setting/joint compound as you can use before it starts setting up. Some project this means a gallon at a time, for my last step today, I was mixing a cup at a time.

- keep your knife and containers scrupulously clean so that hardened compound doesn't get into the mix.

- Think more thin coats rather than fewer thick coats. Use your knife to knock off high spots when the compound is dry/drying.

- Don't overwork one area. Stop while you're ahead.

- I prefer to fill voids rather than having to sand extra off. My last coat is scraped on so thinly, as to ONLY fill irregularities. All excess is scraped off.

- I only sand sparingly, with a high grit block, as the last step to achieve that perfect finish. For example: I'm finishing a 15x17 room with 9.5 foot walls. I spent all of 35-45 minutes with a sanding sponge (by hand) to get the finish I wanted.

- Practice, practice, practice. I'm on my fourth room doing this sort of thing and I am WAY faster than I was.

Now, right there is some very fine advise!:yes: Well done:thumbsup::thumbup:

phantasm72 07-02-2011 06:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ccarlisle (Post 676438)
We 'invested' in a 16" long trowel for skim coating - $40! - and it seemed to give better - more even - results than the regular trowels. Paint supply stores have them.

Yeah, I saw those. My jaw dropped as I hummed and hawwed about getting it, but then I walked into tool town and saw the same thing for $6.00. Doesnt have the cushy handle, but works wonders.

But thanks for all the advice guys. The skim coat is a bit messy, but with a little practice with the tools and once figuring out the best consistancy for the mud, its actually quite a relaxing process.

chrisn 07-03-2011 06:34 AM

[quote=phantasm72;678689]Yeah, I saw those. My jaw dropped as I hummed and hawwed about getting it, but then I walked into tool town and saw the same thing for $6.00. Doesnt have the cushy handle, but works wonders.

But thanks for all the advice guys. The skim coat is a bit messy, but with a little practice with the tools and once figuring out the best consistancy for the mud, its actually quite a relaxing process.[/quote]:eek:

Not sure I ever thought that but I know what you mean.:thumbsup:


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