Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Master of Plaster

It is now almost a year from the time we accidentally started our foyer re-do.  And today, we are FINALLY on our way to getting it finished! As you may recall, our biggest roadblocks were the giant holes we discovered when we took down the old molding.  As you can see in the picture, Lance already fixed the cracks radiating from the hole using the same method I used in the upstairs hallway last winter.

After several dead ends in our search for a professional to address this problem, Lance turned to YouTube.  Unfortunately, there seem to be countless differences of opinion out there on the interwebs regarding the proper materials and methods to fix this problem.  So I asked the question that any homeowner should: What would they do on This Old House? And as it turns out, Contractor Extraordinaire Tom Silva recommends Big Wally's Plaster Magic.  Yeah, remember Big Wally? Last year I totally rejected his overpriced system for plaster crack repair in favor of a tube of liquid nails and some MH Ready Patch.  But this was a much bigger project, and who am I to question Tom Silva!?

So Lance went online and ordered a tub of patching plaster and plaster conditioner, and within a few days he was ready to go.  He was somewhat apprehensive, but it turns out the whole process was surprisingly easy.

1. Vacuum out all of the loose plaster bits

2. Spray 3 coats of plaster conditioner on the lathe and the exposed edges of the old plaster- allow it to dry between each coat

3. Mix a batch of plaster and water to the consistency of peanut butter and trowel it on the wall, making sure to get it in between all of the slats of the lathe. Allow to dry for 2 hours.

4. Mix a second batch of plaster, this time a little thinner consistency, slather it on over the first coat, and smooth it out. Let it dry and it is ready to prime and paint.  Seriously, that's it.

So... the good news is, the plaster problem is finally fixed! The bad news is..... had we known it was that easy, we probably would have had this whole project done months ago......

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