Replacing and sheetrocking old ceilings and walls

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You don't want to sister things. Save that for things structural. As far as the shimming, the most important thing when replacing plaster with drywall is shimming for the overall thickness discrepancy, then it's a matter of shimming individual studs as required for alignment.
If you have to build out more than 1/4" you can use a single layer or a double layer of thinner material, such as luan plywood. A sheet of luan is cheap and when ripped down goes a long way. A double layer of luan, each attached with a staple hammer with the joints staggered, goes up fast and will be in the right ballpark for the typical thickness difference between plaster and drywall. A single layer of luan will take care of more severe individual stud alignment discrepancies, and layer(s) of non-corrugated cardboard, such as poster board, attached with a staple hammer will take care of the less severe stud alignment discrepancy.
R
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RicodJour wrote:

Thanks. In my case, I won't have to worry about accounting for the overall thickness discrepency between the old lath and plaster and the new sheetrock. The reason is that this property has an unusual (to me) construction. It is a side-by-side twin home and all 4 exterior walls are stone. I say "stone", but it's some kind of red clay-looking blocks that are stacked on top of each other. Those 4 exterior walls then have a rough coat and then a finish coat of plaster right on the stone to create the interior side of each of those walls -- no lath, just stone and two types of plaster on top of the stone. The only lath and plaster is on the ceilings and the interior room divider walls and walls between the rooms and the hallways.
If I do go with the complete tear-off of the lath and plaster, I will be replacing all of the interior doors and door frames at the same time. I would have the door openings reframed to accomadate standard size pre-hung 80-inch high doors. And, of course, the baseboad trim would all be ripped out at the same time. So matching the old lath and plaster thickness won't be an issue.

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Where are you located? I guess you're in a pretty mild climate, as plaster on stone or clay around here would be akin to living in a refrigerator. Or you'd have to have the heating on all of the time, and live away from the exterior walls.

Well, that's easy enough then. Please post back after you've finished the ripout, and let us know how far those interior studs are out of alignment. I'm betting it'll be better than you think.
R
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RicodJour wrote:

I am on the U.S. East Coast -- New Jersey. The property does use a LOT of gas for heating in winter. I had attributed that in part to the fact that it is a large older home with old and drafty windows. The windows are all going to be replaced. But, now that you mention it, the stone/block walls with no insulation barrier (it has a stucco exterior on top of the stone/block) could also be causing a huge heat loss. I have given some thought to putting up new wood frame walls on the inside of the 3 exterior stone/block walls to accomodate wiring etc. And, if I did that I could insulate them. I would probably skip the stone/block partition wall between this property and the other twin home that is attached along that wall. I am still not sure whether I will do the wood frame walls, but the insualtion factor is another reason in favor of going ahead with that idea.
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You may want to look into one of the insulated basement finishing systems. They provide unbroken insulation (wood or metal studs are thermal short-circuits), and wood against stone/masonry presents problems with future rot and mold growth. I would imagine that if you insulated your solid masonry exterior walls you'd cut your heating bill by a very large amount. You would also qualify for state and federal energy credits off of your taxes.
R
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RicodJour wrote:

Thanks. If I decide to do the exterior walls, I will probably just build a new wood frame wall next to the masonry, keeping the studs about 1/4 inch away from the masonry, then insulate and drywall. That would also create an easy way to do the wiring on those walls.
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Masonry walls are not waterproof. Any water vapor or water intrusion, from either side of the wall, will make those studs a lovely growth medium for mold and promote rot.
If you are set on the wood studs they should be treated and other steps should be taken to make your time, effort and money last as long as possible. Otherwise you'll be shooting yourself in the foot if you're going to be in the house for a long time, and if you won't be you'll be creating a problem for the next owner.
Always take care of the next guy. Half the time you are the next guy.
R
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Ceiling was probably done on 24 inch centers. Run strips of .5 inch plywood across the ceiling joist on 16 inch centers and shim as required. Do the same to the walls. If you have some joist or studs that are really setting proud you may be able to dress them down with a belt sander.....other option is to replace. Just my $.02 and I may do it different if I were there.
Jimmie
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It sounds like you're saying to use 1/2" plywood strips as strapping. Wouldn't that sag like a mofo?
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On 2/12/2011 6:49 PM, RicodJour wrote:

Real plywood, no, if the strips were wide enough, like 2-3 inches. OSB crap, probably. I'd check the prices on strapping at the local yards before I did that. Ripping plywood into strips, table saw or skilsaw, is tiring work. I remember pushing a whole lotta 1x cedar through a table saw one summer for fence boards. Not hard, but tedious, and you gotta pay attention all the time when you are cutting.
--
aem sends...

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1/2" plywood is not going to be stiff enough to keep a drywall ceiling from sagging over time. Might look fine when it's just finished, but sure as shooting you'll have a rippled ceiling before too long. With 16" OC joists and 16" OC strapping, there's ~4# per strip, and 24" OC joists => ~6#/strip. Not a lot of load, but it's a constant load and there's no forgiveness in a ceiling. If the thing only sagged 3/16" to 1/4", you'd see the repeating pattern of ripples running along the ceiling. You wouldn't see them in all light conditions, but you would see them.
R
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RogerT wrote:

For ceilings, I just learned about another option called a "Chicago Grid"(?) on another forum. It's a metal frame system like a drop ceiling metal frame (only stronger), and the sheetrock gets screwed onto the framing from underneath, and then the seams are taped.
Here is a link to the company that makes the metal grid system:
http://products.construction.com/manufacturer/chicago-metallic-corp-nst2215/products/spanfast-drywall-ceiling-grid-nst32093-p .
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