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(Topic ID: 276038)

Anyone doing lime plaster in a Victorian building?


By DCP

3 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 77 posts
  • 13 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 days ago by DCP
  • Topic is favorited by 5 Pinsiders

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There are 77 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
#1 3 months ago

Since so many Pinsiders restore games and other antiques, build gamerooms, landscape, etc. etc. (talented bunch, aren't we???), Pinside should be a good place to find someone who knows about vintage plastering. I'm learning about lime plaster so I can correctly repair the walls and ceilings and tuckpoint the stones on our home / gameroom, which was originally the First National Bank of Piedmont built in 1887 (pic). I'm also trying to find a good source of real vintage-type plasters (gauging plasters), and different limes and sands that I can pick up within 100 miles or so of our place in Piedmont, WV 26750. South or SW PA, Maryland, VA, are all close enough for us to drive out and pick up materials.
If any of you know someone we could hire who would travel to Piedmont (we can provide a free room and games to play to help us with plastering, painting, brick and stone foundation repair, tuckpointing, etc. I'd appreciate a reference. We have several other buildings that all need things, too , the newest one being a 1904 brick warehouse. I'm pretty much doing everything myself, because this is an area where all of the skilled laborers have left and found better jobs elsewhere. There are many small contractors here that have good intentions, but no idea what they're doing.
I figure if I do all the work myself, I will be about 145 years old when it's all done
Any vintage plasterers out there?

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#2 3 months ago

Throw in some horse hair

2 months later
#3 13 days ago

That's a big job - got any photos showing the condition of the inside?

I love the old plaster look but it is a pain - just spent the last couple of months ripping out the plaster from a 2 story 1880's terrace house

#4 13 days ago

Cool building man, love to see some inside pics and what you are going to do with it

#5 13 days ago

Here's the little piece I'm working on...the building was horribly abused by cheap landlords for 75 years.
Water leaks ate away the plaster under the bathroom window.
It's disappointing to see the inside of the building now! Drop ceilings and drywall where it shouldn't be.
Gradually removing 7-1/2 foot drop ceilings and going back to 10 feet. Uncovering and repairing transom windows above every window in the building.
The former bank lobby has been stripped of all original fixtures. It makes a great game room, though!
I'll post a few pics when I can find some good ones.

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#6 13 days ago
Quoted from DCP:

Here's the little piece I'm working on...the building was horribly abused by cheap landlords for 75 years.
Water leaks ate away the plaster under the bathroom window.
It's disappointing to see the inside of the building now! Drop ceilings and drywall where it shouldn't be.
Gradually removing 7-1/2 foot drop ceilings and going back to 10 feet. Uncovering and repairing transom windows above every window in the building.
The former bank lobby has been stripped of all original fixtures. It makes a great game room, though!
I'll post a few pics when I can find some good ones. [quoted image]

I love these types of restorations - Not sure how I feel about lime plaster in the long term (putting it in and taking it out are both terrible jobs) ,but boy it sure looks great when done well. I'd love to see some photos of these transom windows you are uncovering. We decided to install a couple of those above our bedroom and bathroom doors in the extension we're building on the house. More light is always good!

#7 13 days ago

Best of luck with your project. I can't help with a plasterer though. I enjoy seeing people saving an old neglected building. It makes me think I am closer to normal knowing there are others out there. This is my house that was built in 1897, became a 2 family in 1938, I returned it back into a single family shortly after I bought it in 1999 so I know about the years of neglect. My plaster replacement in the necessary rooms was just 5/8" blueboard with a veneer plaster. Most of the house still has the lime/sand plaster with failing keys.

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#8 13 days ago

I hear you on the old building restorations. Been working on mine for almost 10 years and still not done. I’d to replace the slate roof, went with copper.

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#9 13 days ago

Our house had all leaded glass windows, we gutted the downstairs and some of the upstairs. Only 3 room still have plaster in them but it’s in good shape. I love the plaster, wish we could have kept it all plaster. I could load up this thread with pics, I’ll just put a link to our house, there is 27 pics to see if you care to look.

https://www.talktotucker.com/homes/2065-s-lick-creek-drive-indianapolis-in46203/600567

#10 13 days ago

Plaster is great. Just moved into an old apartment building that’s all plaster and it’s the best apartment I’ve ever had as far as sound proofing goes. Looks great too.

#11 12 days ago
Quoted from DCP:

Gradually removing 7-1/2 foot drop ceilings and going back to 10 feet.

Is 10 feet ceiling the typical Victorian ceiling height in the US? Here is Australia they're 12 or 14 feet - I wondering if that is because of our hot summers, they raised the ceiling height??

Keep posting pics - love to see more of the place (this is becoming my favourite thread .... sorry pinnies )

#12 12 days ago
Quoted from Bud:

I hear you on the old building restorations. Been working on mine for almost 10 years and still not done. I’d to replace the slate roof, went with copper.
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

Wow!! Was that expensive?? Are copper roofs common on historic houses?

#13 12 days ago
Quoted from Manny65:

Wow!! Was that expensive?? Are copper roofs common on historic houses?

It was expensive, real copper roofs are not common. It was cheaper to have the roof done in copper than slate in the end.

#14 12 days ago

===Warning: Long-winded post!========
bud Gorgeous house! Nice original details...
Our Bank was a fairly simply-designed commercial building, never intended as a residence. The bones are great, and its lack of ornamental detail gives us some freedom to re-design the interiors to our liking. Hey, that almost sounds convincing!!! It was originally 12 offices upstairs, converted to 5 apartments in the 1940s, and further butchered as the years went on. There are two large skylights in the stairwells that are wonderful. One skylight was hidden above a drop ceiling, and that "stairwell" is now a bathroom on each floor. Dumbwaiter and/or elevator is a high priority for us! There are a lot of stairs...
I've been working on my building(s) for almost 9 years, and my pace gets slower and slower, unfortunately. My health has not been good, and there is absolutely no one around here that is capable of doing quality work. Most of them I would never trust in my home, either.
I was hoping to engage the interest of my nephews/niece, cousins, friends, etc. in helping out with this huge project, but no one under about 55 years old seems to want to do any physical work. I have one sister who has been out here almost every year for a week or two to visit and help out. Sadly, her health has not allowed her to return this year.
This town and the entire area has fallen into disrepair in a way that has affected countless small towns in the U.S.A. It's a beautiful area, but everyone with any talent left years ago for better jobs. Those remaining are retired, disabled like us, on welfare, or squatting. A few have actual jobs and are more responsible. It's hard to know where to start in an area like this. But it feels like there is huge potential.
We came here for the cheap buildings, and nothing else! Our minimum plan has always been to make a comfortable space for ourselves to retire in and store all our stuff. We really wish we found this place about 20 years ago! But we will enjoy it as long as we're here and try to leave the buildings in better condition than we found them.
I may start a new thread to try to find some people who would like to consult or partner with us about possible business ideas that might allow us to generate enough income to be able to afford to properly rehab our buildings and get them all 100% useable and leased out. We have a million ideas, but we're not business people! We'll never get it all done at this rate...
Here is a picture from 1900 or so showing the original cupola on the building. It was removed in the 50s or 60s as far as I can tell. There are some old tiles in the attic, just like the ones seen on the "cone" in this postcard view. For a long time, the cupola was covered with copper like bud 's house. The top of the cornice all the way around the building is still covered with huge green sheets of copper. They are just starting to come loose and need repair. I need to rent a high lift (or somehow find someone to do it!) and reattach some loose edges before it gets worse.
All of the transom windows you see in the postcard are now above the drop ceilings, and painted over. One by one, we are freeing them up as we raise the ceilings. The arched windows on the main floor were never blocked. They are beautiful, and they are designed to open inward, pivoting at the bottom, held back by a chain. Only one is freed up and working right now.
We also own the building to the left of the Bank in the postcard (we were able to buy all the adjacent properties that surround our building). It's called the "Bice Building", after it's builder, and was constructed in 1877. It's in horrible shape inside with a badly-leaking roof, but the exterior details are in quite decent shape. It needs some serious roofing and and brick work. I'm trying to get my butt up there to start working on putting a metal roof on it before it's totally ruined. That one keeps me awake at night...
We took on way too many old buildings, but they were cheap and we couldn't bear to watch them melt away. We at least want to stabilize them and try to save them! Total is about 50,000 square feet, with most of it useable but some major leaks to deal with.
I'll post more pics after I dig through the thousands I have...sometimes it's quicker just to take new ones!
Denny (and Cindi)
Piedmont, WV
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#15 12 days ago

A shot of the skylights, and the chimney that needs repairs:

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#16 12 days ago

A couple of interior shots...hard to photograph the stairs.
The big skylight is over this stairwell and provides a lot of light.
From the 2nd floor to the street there are 23 stairs on that long stairway. The stairs all have cast-iron treads screwed on over the wood. I want to take them all off and clean them up and refinish the stairs. Maybe if I get 9 more lives.
An old bank makes a great house.

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#17 12 days ago

Man I’d love to find something like that to have! Thanks for the pics, please post more!

#18 12 days ago
Quoted from Manny65:

Is 10 feet ceiling the typical Victorian ceiling height in the US? Here is Australia they're 12 or 14 feet

I don't know what's typical...the first floor, that was the bank lobby, has a 12 foot ceiling with some plaster rosettes. That room took a beating when it was used as Piedmont's Post Office from the 1940s until about 1989. It's our pinball room now.

#19 12 days ago
Quoted from Bud:

Man I’d love to find something like that to have! Thanks for the pics, please post more!

They're out there, if you're pretty independent and willing to give up living in a nicer area.
We gambled and got lucky - there was a huge paper mill here that was active until only two years ago, and now it's shut down forever. We can see the Potomac from our kitchen window, and there are 3 large reservoirs nearby for boating. We're about 2-1/2 hours from Pittsburgh and 3 hours from Washington, DC. Some new development is happening nearby, and like I said, there's a lot of "potential"! LOL
We're only about 200 yards from the Maryland border, and about 30 miles from Pennsylvania. We would not have moved here if it was way deep in southern West Virginia...this was enough of a culture shock!

#20 12 days ago
Quoted from DCP:

That room took a beating when it was used as Piedmont's Post Office from the 1940s until about 1989. It's our pinball room now.

Any pics of the pinball room?

#21 12 days ago
Quoted from Blitzburgh99:

Any pics of the pinball room?

It's such a mess right now, I'm embarrassed!
You can see a scaffold above Twilight Zone...there is a big hole in the ceiling there we're working on (not visible in pic).
The ugly red paint on the box columns is from the Post Office. That marked where the fire extinguishers were hanging.
Windows are all covered to keep light off of the pins.
The floor is all original wood, and perfectly useable.
There is a cellar under that floor with about a 6 foot ceiling. It's made from 3 older foundations joined together. Some of it could be as old as 1850s-1870s. I need to do some archeological digging down there...most of it is concrete floor, but the older parts are dirt.

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#22 12 days ago

Sweet!

#23 12 days ago

Here are some pictures that some locals found and posted online of the interior of our building in the 1950s , when it was the Piedmont Post Office. Not too fancy - it looks pretty much the same today except for the service windows and PO boxes are gone.
The Post Office loved that sickly-green color that was used in those days. Several of the arched windows are still painted over in that green color.

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#24 12 days ago

This is cool...the "Piedmont Ice and Locker" float, complete with bluegrass band, rides past our building sometime in the 1950s...

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#25 12 days ago

One more piece of history...the First National Bank of Piedmont was one of the "chartered" banks that had currency printed with their own name and charter number (3629) on it. These are pics from the web - I'd love to find one of these bills, but I'm not paying what they want for these! Hundreds of dollars...
We did find a stack of handwritten deposit slips from 1901 in the basement. I'll snap a pic of some of them. Not too many traces of the history of the building left, but there are a few.
The two original Mosler screw-door safes from our bank are still in Piedmont, across the street at the First United Bank. First United Bank (the "FU" Bank, we call it) directly descended from our First National Bank of Piedmont. They still have a couple of old ledgers from here, too. We're trying to pry some of that out of their hands for display.
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#26 11 days ago

Wow!! Thanks for sharing all the pics and background stories - the place is amazing!! You've certainly got your work cut out for you, but so rewarding.

And you've got pinball machines as well

#27 11 days ago

Nice, thanks for sharing! Need to get your priorities straight though - pinball room first, other rooms later

#28 10 days ago

In case you're bored, here are some more vintage pictures!
A few more old postcards showing our Bank, and an old photo of the Piedmont roundhouses from shortly after the Civil War. It's amazing to see the progression of time, from horse and buggy and cobblestones, to the 50s and no more cupola. I like the first postcard - kids still jack around on our steps just like they did in 1900.
We were able to find a number of different Piedmont postcards on eBay. Piedmont was a stop on the West End of the original Main Line of the B&O Railroad, beginning in 1851. CSX owns the tracks now, and still runs freight and coal through here. Passenger service ended in the 1960s, unfortunately. That was really the beginning of the end of Piedmont, and many other small railroad towns.

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#29 10 days ago

Is this stuff considered lime plaster?

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#30 10 days ago
Quoted from Blitzburgh99:

Is this stuff considered lime plaster?

Depends on the age - that does look like it to me. If it's pre-1919, it is almost certainly lime plaster. It looks white or grayish-white, and you might be able to see the chopped-up hair in the base layer.
Later plaster is gypsum-based and very similar, but has cement in it. It can be a little pinkish-looking.
I hand-mixed my first test patch, but now I have a little Harbor Freight mixer. I scratched the surface with a nail so the top coat will adhere. It's hard as a rock and should work fine. Takes a couple weeks to fully harden, since there's no cement, only lime, sand, and water. It hardens by absorbing CO2 from the air, basically turning the lime back into limestone.
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#31 10 days ago

What happen to the roundhouses and the cupola on your building? Why did the tear it down?

#32 9 days ago
Quoted from Blitzburgh99:

Is this stuff considered lime plaster?
[quoted image]

Out of interest, do you guys call that a lath & plaster wall? Laths are the wooden slats. Houses in Australia used lath & plaster until around 1920, after which you started to see plaster board made with horse hair being used - this stuff is heavy as compared to the dry board we have today.

#33 9 days ago
Quoted from Manny65:

Out of interest, do you guys call that a lath & plaster wall?

Yes, we call it plaster and lath, too...and plasterboard starts showing up in the 1920s or so in the States, also.
The part I'm repairing now is plaster directly on top of brick. I never really knew you could do that! But my test patch seems to be sticking really well to the brick, so it is doable with my modern version of lime plaster.

#34 9 days ago

Awesome project.

I see these buildings when we drive around the States, and I’ve often commented in my travel threads about what awesome projects they are.

For us poor schlubs down under (where a building like that costs in the millions of dollars) do you mind letting us know how cheap it was?

I’ve seen some in my travels that were ludicrously cheap ... well, compared to what we pay down here.

I’m currently restoring a 1919 3 story timber house near the centre of Auckland. I started late January and happy to say that the main 2 levels are almost done. Just painting the inside now. It’s been my full time job all year. Can’t fathom how you could do this if you’re working full time as well. It’d take 20 years.

rd

Before: turned into 3 flats, unpainted for 60 years, original 100 year old roof broken and leaking, house on an angle. Lol.

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Now: house not on an angle, repainted outside, turned back into one 350sqm (3800sqft) house, removed chimneys, installed 2 giant AC units, new roof, new skirting, architraves, moldings, windows ... etc etc

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#35 9 days ago
Quoted from rotordave:

Awesome project.
I see these buildings when we drive around the States, and I’ve often commented in my travel threads about what awesome projects they are.
For us poor schlubs down under (where a building like that costs in the millions of dollars) do you mind letting us know how cheap it was?
I’ve seen some in my travels that were ludicrously cheap ... well, compared to what we pay down here.
I’m currently restoring a 1919 3 story timber house near the centre of Auckland. I started late January and happy to say that the main 2 levels are almost done. Just painting the inside now. It’s been my full time job all year. Can’t fathom how you could do this if you’re working full time as well. It’d take 20 years.
rd
Before: turned into 3 flats, unpainted for 60 years, original 100 year old roof broken and leaking, house on an angle. Lol.
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]
Now: house not on an angle, repainted outside, turned back into one 350sqm (3800sqft) house, removed chimneys, installed 2 giant AC units, new roof, new skirting, architraves, moldings, windows ... etc etc
[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

Wow Dave you've been a busy man!! Looks awesome

#36 9 days ago
Quoted from DCP:

Yes, we call it plaster and lath, too...and plasterboard starts showing up in the 1920s or so in the States, also.
The part I'm repairing now is plaster directly on top of brick. I never really knew you could do that! But my test patch seems to be sticking really well to the brick, so it is doable with my modern version of lime plaster.

Yep all our period houses with double brick walls had the plaster applied directly to them. I don't know the specific details but it looked like they applied different compound layers in plastering the wall - the thicker layer applied to the bricks had more coarse sand (similar to mortar but different) while the final coats were much thinner and very fine material (similar to the modern day plaster).

#37 9 days ago
Quoted from rotordave:

I’m currently restoring a 1919 3 story timber house near the centre of Auckland. I started late January and happy to say that the main 2 levels are almost done. Just painting the inside now. It’s been my full time job all year. Can’t fathom how you could do this if you’re working full time as well. It’d take 20 years.

Holy Shit rotordave ! You "UNDERSTAND" what I am going through...all the little holes and crumbly edges from years of neglected water leaks. Applying many different skills to fix the underlying problems and make it all look perfect again. Tricky corners and angles on everything. Sort of like restoring a giant pinball machine. Nice Job on your place!!!
The kiddie pool for a leak-catcher is classic. Our local Dollar General store sells kiddie pools year-round for this use.
I never understood the logic of putting bigger and bigger buckets under leaks instead of fixing the leaks. They do that stuff all the time around here. Lack of education and basic skills is a big part of the problem here in Piedmont, WV, and probably in a lot of places worldwide.
Many, many historic buildings are reaching the point of no return with water damage and other problems. They were built to last 100 years, and many of them are still in good shape despite virtually zero maintenance. But it's getting close to 150 years for a lot of them, and they are trashed, especially the roofs. If you can get one and save it, you will have something stronger, better, and more beautiful than anything made today.
Yes, it is a full-time job. I'm doing it the hard way, though - I've been disabled for 10+ years but I can work hard for a couple of hours a day most days. It takes careful planning, and making sure I have the right tools, etc. but the shit does get done. It's gonna take 20 more years to finish at this rate, but it really makes me feel like I'm doing something worthwhile. I pretty much had to give up or restrict everything I used to do for work and for recreation, and change my focus to things I CAN do.
This has been a difficult and very rewarding project. I'm glad to be able to share it with some people here that appreciate this kind of thing.

#38 9 days ago
Quoted from Manny65:

the thicker layer applied to the bricks had more coarse sand (similar to mortar but different) while the final coats were much thinner and very fine material (similar to the modern day plaster).

manny65 That's exactly the way they do it..a thick basecoat, like 3/4", and a thinner coat on top. They use finer sand and maybe a little less of it for the top coat, but it's all the same stuff. What I like about it is you have all day to dink around with the plaster and smooth it and make it flat. It sets up really slowly compared to anything else I've ever gooped on to walls.
They do a whole lot more plastering in the UK, and there are a ton of great websites with information about lime plaster and other old finishing methods. This site is very informative - https://www.limeworks.us/. They get into the differences between so called "hydraulic" and non-hydraulic limes. The hydraulic limes have some cement in them, and are sort of a hybrid between the old lime-and-sand mix and more modern ones. There is really an unbelievable amount of information to be discovered on the topic of interior plaster and exterior stucco and other mixes.
This is both the fun part, and the problem with doing restorations. There are a million rabbit holes you have to look in for information, and that is distracting and takes a lot of time.
I've always loved being a Jack of All Trades, Master of None!
"...Specialization is for insects..." Sci-fi author Stanislaw Lem

#39 9 days ago

manny65 Here's a picture showing the layers in the area I'm repairing...almost an inch thick. I already pulled off the loose parts, and will fill it in with new plaster. I'm putting in some metal lath where it's wood underneath.
It's 133 years old, and it would have been fine except for the water leaks. Amazing shit!

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#40 9 days ago
Quoted from DCP:

I never understood the logic of putting bigger and bigger buckets under leaks instead of fixing the leaks.

Me neither!

So get this ... above where the kiddie pool was, the previous owner (owned from 1980-2020 and did bugger all to the place) had gone to great lengths installing scrap timber and black polythene and a bucket up in the ceiling to stop the leak.

The bucket was a typical 50c plastic bucket, and he had drilled a hole in the side near the top, installed a metal thread with nuts holding it in, and popped a washing machine waste pipe on the end of it.

The waste pipe drained straight into the eaves. Causing more damage.

All that effort - he could have replaced the cracked tile in 20 minutes. Or worst case, epoxy the old tile up. Would have worked better than what he did.

Just crazy shit.

I’m currently outside rebuilding the large elevated double garage on the site. The section is very sloped - the place is built on the side of Mt Eden, a dormant volcano (Auckland is built on top of like 50 dormant volcanos)

The roof was shot ... so bad in one place, the guy had taken off the garage door (!) and placed it on top of the roof to stop the leaks! (!!)

I started last Monday - it was going to be a tidy up and a reroof ... but the structure was so bad it just started falling down. So I ripped it all down and built a new one.

Had to drop a huge tree branch that sorta went through the wall of the shed. Should have seen my stunts with the 4 metre long pole saw.

rd

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#41 8 days ago
Quoted from rotordave:

Me neither!
So get this ... above where the kiddie pool was, the previous owner (owned from 1980-2020 and did bugger all to the place) had gone to great lengths installing scrap timber and black polythene and a bucket up in the ceiling to stop the leak.
The bucket was a typical 50c plastic bucket, and he had drilled a hole in the side near the top, installed a metal thread with nuts holding it in, and popped a washing machine waste pipe on the end of it.
The waste pipe drained straight into the eaves. Causing more damage.
All that effort - he could have replaced the cracked tile in 20 minutes. Or worst case, epoxy the old tile up. Would have worked better than what he did.
Just crazy shit.
I’m currently outside rebuilding the large elevated double garage on the site. The section is very sloped - the place is built on the side of Mt Eden, a dormant volcano (Auckland is built on top of like 50 dormant volcanos)
The roof was shot ... so bad in one place, the guy had taken off the garage door (!) and placed it on top of the roof to stop the leaks! (!!)
I started last Monday - it was going to be a tidy up and a reroof ... but the structure was so bad it just started falling down. So I ripped it all down and built a new one.
Had to drop a huge tree branch that sorta went through the wall of the shed. Should have seen my stunts with the 4 metre long pole saw.
rd[quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

That's hilarious the extraordinary lengths the previous owner has gone to in applying half-arsed bandaids ... just fix the bloody problem properly!!!

#42 8 days ago
Quoted from DCP:

manny65 That's exactly the way they do it..a thick basecoat, like 3/4", and a thinner coat on top. They use finer sand and maybe a little less of it for the top coat, but it's all the same stuff. What I like about it is you have all day to dink around with the plaster and smooth it and make it flat. It sets up really slowly compared to anything else I've ever gooped on to walls.
They do a whole lot more plastering in the UK, and there are a ton of great websites with information about lime plaster and other old finishing methods. This site is very informative - https://www.limeworks.us/. They get into the differences between so called "hydraulic" and non-hydraulic limes. The hydraulic limes have some cement in them, and are sort of a hybrid between the old lime-and-sand mix and more modern ones. There is really an unbelievable amount of information to be discovered on the topic of interior plaster and exterior stucco and other mixes.
This is both the fun part, and the problem with doing restorations. There are a million rabbit holes you have to look in for information, and that is distracting and takes a lot of time.
I've always loved being a Jack of All Trades, Master of None!
"...Specialization is for insects..." Sci-fi author Stanislaw Lem

Thanks dcp this is useful information.

Here's a couple of pics from the reno we're doing at the moment - in the first shot we were taking down the horse hair plaster board, revealing laths but all the original lime plaster had been removed when they replaced it with the horse hair board. The second pic that wall had dry board glued to the old lime plaster, unfortunately the lime plaster was coming off from the brick causing some issues, so when we took the dry board off a fair bit of the lime plaster came off with it and the rest of it simply gave way ending up on the floor.

Perry St 1 (resized).jpgPerry St 2 (resized).jpg
#43 8 days ago

I bought this little prairie house next door to me and have been renovating it all summer. Focused on the outside before winter sets in. Currently on the bathroom. Installing a pocket door since it’s not very big. House was built in the early 1930’s.

BFB7CFC8-53E9-4B2D-B57E-CE143BBE3D58 (resized).jpegC5A5A885-1221-4B64-A7DC-F90025A562DF (resized).jpeg8CACDCBA-84B1-437A-AC08-589495B3D3AE (resized).jpeg081ACB14-A235-4A34-9850-4072DE84B62E (resized).jpeg

#44 8 days ago

Have you thought about leaving the brick exposed in some areas? The old brick has a really nice warm look to it and would make for a cool accent wall.

#45 8 days ago
Quoted from jgreene:

Have you thought about leaving the brick exposed in some areas? The old brick has a really nice warm look to it and would make for a cool accent wall.

We did talk about that as I've seen it being done more recently in pub and cafes and looks great, though we decided to replaster to address/cover some other not so appealing features in the brick wall. The other thing I've seen is where they have lime plaster with patches of the bricks being visible, when done well it can give a nice affect.

#46 8 days ago
Quoted from jgreene:

Have you thought about leaving the brick exposed in some areas? The old brick has a really nice warm look to it and would make for a cool accent wall.

We thought about that, too, but we decided it would always remind us of how hacked up everything was when we got it.
rotordave must know the feeling of obsession with filling every hole and smoothing out every rough spot...
When we first moved into our building, it was still owned by the evil hacker landlord, and we were renting an apartment from him. Every repair we do erases more of his evil influence over our building.
It was a dream come true, really - buying out our landlord and taking over the building. We let the two remaining apartment leases expire, then made the whole thing into our house.

#47 8 days ago
Quoted from Blitzburgh99:

I bought this little prairie house next door to me and have been renovating it all summer. Focused on the outside before winter sets in. Currently on the bathroom. Installing a pocket door since it’s not very big. House was built in the early 1930’s.

Quite the solid little place - they built them so the Big Bad Wolf could never blow them down! I love the chunky rough-sawn lumber in the old places. Thick wood, unbelievably heavy and strong.
Looks like it'll be a nice rental or AirBnb.

#48 8 days ago
Quoted from Manny65:

Here's a couple of pics from the reno we're doing at the moment - in the first shot we were taking down the horse hair plaster board, revealing laths but all the original lime plaster had been removed when they replaced it with the horse hair board.

Very interesting pics, Manny - these renovations force us to combine all sorts of materials and technology to make it all work. The bathroom I'm working on is a "practice ground" for every other room in the Bank. It had every possible variation of original materials and later additions and hack work.
There is drywall on top of plaster over wood lath. There's drywall on top of plaster on top of plasterboard. There is original wood lath on the ceiling with plaster. And there is plaster directly over brick.
There were "examples" of every kind of damage. Ceiling plaster coming loose from lath due to leaks, wall plaster cracking and falling off due to leaks, holes bashed in walls to route electrical wires...
I'm using multiple techniques on the bathroom to see which ones I like best. On one wall, I extended the framing and drywall up to the full 10 feet rather than tearing out a framed wall that was on top of the plaster. Mostly, I would like to avoid doing that, and go back to the plaster walls where possible.
I stabilized the ceiling with dozens of plaster washers, and removed all the loose and failing plaster. Then I covered the whole ceiling with drywall.
A mess of different materials, but it's coming out OK so far. More pics later as I make progress.

#49 8 days ago
Quoted from rotordave:

So get this ... above where the kiddie pool was, the previous owner (owned from 1980-2020 and did bugger all to the place) had gone to great lengths installing scrap timber and black polythene and a bucket up in the ceiling to stop the leak.

Quoted from Manny65:

That's hilarious the extraordinary lengths the previous owner has gone to in applying half-arsed bandaids ... just fix the bloody problem properly!!!

It is funny that our problems are so similar, even though we live halfway around the world from each other. We've seen many "creative" ways to deal with leaks (that never work).
I just stood up from my desk and snapped this picture of the building across the street with its decrepit peeling paint and a cooler in the window to catch leaks. Their building is full of kiddie pools and buckets.
It just sold recently for $8000. The plumbing store next door owns it, and probably has no plans but to use it for storage.
DixonsLeakCatcher (resized).jpg

DixonsStorefront (resized).jpg
#50 8 days ago
Quoted from DCP:

Very interesting pics, Manny - these renovations force us to combine all sorts of materials and technology to make it all work. The bathroom I'm working on is a "practice ground" for every other room in the Bank. It had every possible variation of original materials and later additions and hack work.
There is drywall on top of plaster over wood lath. There's drywall on top of plaster on top of plasterboard. There is original wood lath on the ceiling with plaster. And there is plaster directly over brick.
There were "examples" of every kind of damage. Ceiling plaster coming loose from lath due to leaks, wall plaster cracking and falling off due to leaks, holes bashed in walls to route electrical wires...
I'm using multiple techniques on the bathroom to see which ones I like best. On one wall, I extended the framing and drywall up to the full 10 feet rather than tearing out a framed wall that was on top of the plaster. Mostly, I would like to avoid doing that, and go back to the plaster walls where possible.
I stabilized the ceiling with dozens of plaster washers, and removed all the loose and failing plaster. Then I covered the whole ceiling with drywall.
A mess of different materials, but it's coming out OK so far. More pics later as I make progress.

I am debating on what to do with my bathroom ceiling. It’s in pretty good original shape. What would you guys do with it? Salvage and use it as is with the drywall walls? Removed the lath and plaster and put dry wall there too? Just put drywall over top?

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