Patching vs New "Sheet Rock"

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Skimcoat plaster is only done by HACKS...Basecoat with Finish Coat over Plaster Board is the proper way to go...
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MC,

It might be worth it to patch one or two holes, but when you've reached your swiss cheese state I would agree it would be easier to just gut and start fresh.

I've patched plaster and lath walls with layers of sheetrock. It's doable when needed, but takes a lot more work and is difficult to blend.

Demolition is messy work, no matter what you do. Tape plastic sheeting over the doorways to keep dust out of the rest of the house, open the window, lay down drop cloths to protect the flooring (and make cleanup easier), and cover any duct openings. Of course, wear a dust mask and safety glasses.
Then grab hammers, prybars, or whatever and start ripping things down. Don't worry about being neat, it's going to be messy. Stop every now and then to haul debris out of the room so it's not a tripping hazard or getting in your way. Take it out the window, if possible, to avoid tracking dust and dirt through the house.
As for the sheetrock over the walls, score the wall/ceiling corner with a utility knife before pulling down the ceiling. It should break fairly cleanly. If not, use a reciprocating saw to cut through whatever lath, mesh, or whatever is in the way.
Since this is a DIY newsgroup, I would gut one room at a time, add insulation if needed, then install the sheetrock myself using screws. It's not that difficult, and sheetrock is fairly cheap if you do mess something up. Even if you rent a drywall lift for the ceilings, it should be cheaper than hiring out, and you won't have the entire house in a state of demolition at the same time. You can hire out the joint taping and mudding if you wish, but it's a fun skill to learn that you'll probably use again later on. Start in the least visible room (utility room, closet, etc.), and develop your skills as you move to more visible rooms like the living room and kitchen.
Good luck,
Anthony
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it sounds like the home is near gutted already, so colateral damage isnt such a big concern.
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It sounds as if you disbelieve him. A second local estimate may help you decide.
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Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
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I do believe him, of course it is easier and cheaper to have a fresh canvas to hang new sheetrock. However, I have to factor in the cost of demolition and disposal, as well as resetting depth of electrical boxes and recessed lights that will now protrude outside of the new 1/2" sheetrock, as well as window sills and doors that would be impacted by this. It seems to trade one headache with another. Cost and time aside, the new sheetrock will look better, but the exterior walls will be thinner, and less sound proofing.
I guess another thing is I should have asked the electricians run the wiring in the attic instead of pounding holes wherever they feel like, or at least insist that they cut neat holes instead of using a hammer and pound it out, in some cases all they need is a hole the size of a fist, but they pound and cracked an area 18" wide. The drywall guy says these holes are a pain in the butt.
http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w67/143house/demolition/P1010275.jpg
Last time I hired a demo crew, after they took down three 18' dumpster full of the marked ceilings and walls, they left me with nails and staples spaced 8-10" apart along every furring, stud on every wall and ceiling. It took myself and a helper 2 days to pull all the nails and staples out afterwards, I had a sore neck for days, so I am not looking forward to it, that's all.
http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w67/143house/demolition/P1010313.jpg
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You should believe him as he is correct..Trying to patch up old plaster walls and ESPECIALLY ceilings almost never ends up looking good and will cost you just as much.I hope you didn't pay the hacks you hired to do your last demo as it includes pulling the nails..Atleast all the demo guys I have hired...HTH...Good luck with your project...
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Thank you, the ceiling has a texture now, not popcorn but a circular sweeping brush finish which I do not like, so that's another benefit I guess is I get to have new smooth looking ceiling.
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You are thinking "inside the box".
I have demoed many a plaster wall and gone back with drywall. One need only fur out the studs or joists to achieve the proper finished height. You can buy 4x8 sheets of 1/4, 3/16, 3/8, 7/16 or 5/8 plywood or osb and run them through a table saw to create a furring strip of the proper height. This is just no big deal. They install really fast using a nail gun as they only need to be tacked into place. The 1-5/8 drywall screw will go all the way through to the stud behind.
The cost of the wood is far less than moving all the boxes and modifying the jambs.
--
Colbyt
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Thanks. My plastered ceiling was already furred out with 3/4" strips, the then "three ply plaster" was nailed/stapled to them. So in order to match I need to either add a fur on top of a fur or remove the old fur and put in a deeper fur right?
http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w67/143house/demolition/P1010313.jpg
If I do install new fur under the original fur it's best to have it done perpendicular to them? Which would make them run in the same direction as the joists?
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On 12/18/2010 11:29 AM, MiamiCuse wrote:

I'd think that starting over would be better because the thicker furring strips would be stronger than two layers of thin strips, but that is just a guess.
I'd get some shims, because you want the furring strips to be precise if you are going back with drywall, because drywall is a lot less forgiving than plaster of wavy framing.
nate
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Based on the photo you posted I would just add another layer to the existing strips. When the drywall is installed be sure to use screws long enough to completely penetrate both layers.
BTW I had to make some for a small project I have going on. I needed them 3/8 thick. One sheet of cdx plywood yielded 30 1.5" wide strips. Material only cost equal 45 cents each. It took me about 45 minutes to rip those working by myself.
Colbyt
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Just rip all the old crap out and sheetrock it..In the time you spent talking about it you could be putting up new drywall...
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On Wed, 15 Dec 2010 19:23:33 -0500, "MiamiCuse"

Good points. The studs will have to be shimmed to reproduce the old plaster depth. I had an adjuster fix my house after a fire, came home from work, and found the kitchen drywalled and doors and windows cased. The casings had a 1/4" gap to the drywall. Made them tear it all out and shim. That was a nightmare, but any good drywaller can shim easily enough. Doesn't add much to cost. I won't even mention how I had to show the adjuster's "carpenter" how to cut stair stringers. It was a "learning experience" for everybody. You want to avoid that by getting the right people.
--Vic
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Any faster than Hozsee and Hose D?
Joe
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What you have is most likely gypsum lath (not really called sheetrock) with plaster. This is small 16" x 48" x 3/8" gypsum sheets (made to be plastered) with brown coat base plaster covered with white finishing plaster. There should not be wire mesh over the whole area, it was typically placed on outside and inside corners and over areas prone to cracking such as the top corners of doors and openings.
Unless you only have a couple of patches, it would be simpler to gut and install regular drywall sheetrock. This is the ideal time to fix/add any wiring, lights, switches, plumbing adjustments, and to upgrade the insulation and install a code specified vapor barrier.
Rooms with minor fixes, could be patched, other areas with lots of openings should be gutted. New drywall is relatively easy to install.

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EXT, this sounds about right. Here is a picture.
http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w67/143house/demolition/P1000573.jpg
The bottom layer looks like gypsum, it has a paper backing, I can see from the backside of it it is in panels. The layer above it is darker in color and slightly thicker. At first I thought this is another layer of gypsum board, but if you can see, this layer "fills" in the joint between the two panels. So this is applied on top of it. Then there is a layer of white plaster as thin as eggshell on top, under the paint.
Here is another picture, except this one shows the middle coat has the embedded wiremesh. It seems to be more than just at corners, but yes definitely at the joints and corners.
http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w67/143house/demolition/P1000574.jpg
This stuff is impossible to cut with regular saw blade. The typical recipricating saw's metal blade does nothing to it. A carbide blade will cut better, but dulls after a few cuts. The only thing I can get to cut it is using an angle grinder with a diamond blade, that would chew through the brown coat and mesh good.

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(MiamiCuse) writes:
| Here is another picture, except this one shows the middle coat has the | embedded wiremesh. It seems to be more than just at corners, but yes | definitely at the joints and corners.
I have the wire mesh over wood on the ceilings; not so much on the walls. I think one wall actually has wood lath. Some walls have a type of board with a shiny metallic covering (vapor barrier?) as the base. This was all done at original construction (~1959) so I think they were experimenting with different materials. I have a collection of core samples from the various holes I've made over the years.
| This stuff is impossible to cut with regular saw blade.
It also chews up hole saws. I get maybe one or two holes per saw with typical bi-metal blades...
                Dan Lanciani                 ddl@danlan.*com
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We have plaster directly over 1/2" sheetrock. Sometimes a pain, but we love the additional soundproofing you get with the plaster, both from outside noises and from adjacent rooms inside the house.,
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