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
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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