Drywall patching question

I am patching holes left after removing some recessed lights. I know how to glue/screw wood strips as a back stop to attach the drywall patch to. My concern is that the current plaster on the current ceiling drywall is up to 1/2" thick in places. Rather than have to build up the plaster on the patch to the 1/2", would it make more sense to use a shim to bring the patch to within 1/8" or so of the final surface before taping and plastering? Would the different thickness of the final plaster cause any problems?
Thanks, Bob Abbott
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1/2 inch sounds a bit thick. Plaster or drywall compound?
Yes, you can add plywood or 2 layers of drywall if either solves your problem. If they were typical 6" can lights you might square the holes and adhere the plug with drywall compound applied to oversize face paper with no backer, similar to http://paint-and-supplies.aubuchonhardware.com/do_it_yourself_projects/how_to_patch_and_repair_drywall.asp
look at step 3.
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to
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patch
Would
Should not cause any problems and is the better way to do the repair.
Colbyt
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wrote:

----------------------------- Shimming within the cutout would work fine. Just make sure to shim the entire width of the cutout so you don't get any wiggle.
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to
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patch
Would
I hope you don't really mean plaster. Some sort of shim would be a good idea - otherwise you'll need too many coats because 1/2" is way too thick to dry very well without distorting. But a setting compound would work good if you have a mind to mix that up.
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