Home>Discussions>INTERIORS>Molding & Carpentry>How to repair cracks in 236 year old plaster?
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Kathiemk
How to repair cracks in 236 year old plaster?

Our CT saltbox ws built in 1763. We recently took the wallpaper down in the DR, LR, front hall and stairway. The walls and ceilings are a mess: small cracks, large cracks, buckling, etc. The painters that have looked at the job have suggested fiberglass but I read that fiberglass isn't compatible with historic plaster. Can anyone please help? --Kathie

Hank Bauer
Re: How to repair cracks in 236 year old plaster?

If your home is 1763 than it will have a lime/sand plaster.
Any repairs should be made with a matching material.
DO NOT USE ANY TYPE OF JOINT OR TAPING COMPOUNDS.
If you will check the base coat you should find small pieces of OTSTER SHELL that did not burn down to lime.
For the repairs you should use something like Prepared Lime Puddy that would match buildings before 1872.
Check with some of the following.
U S Heritage Group e-mail [email protected]
Look up Saint Astier Natural Hydralic Lime ( TransMineralUSA )
Also contact Virginia Lime Works P.O. Box 516 Monroe, VA. 24574
Ph# 434-929-8113 Fax 434-929-8114 ask to speek with Jeff Price.
Also check into the HISTORIC SCOTLAND CONSERVATION. www.historic-scotland.gov.uk Tel: 0131-668-8638 Fax 0131-668-8669
Also look at Lime Plaster and Render Reinforcement - Bob Bennett
To reattach the plaster to the existing wood lath check Big Wally's Adhesives, Inc. Ph # 802-254-1330 Fax 802-254-9009 www.plastermagic.com
When you get the plaster stabilized and patched you can skim coat the entire wall area or ceiling with Master of plaster for a finish that will be smooth white and show no patching.If you would like the patch areas to show delete the skim coating.
Above ALL make sure that repairs are completed with LIKE MATERIALS and it will last another 200 years.

NEC
Re: How to repair cracks in 236 year old plaster?

I’d gut the place. Insulate it, hang drywall and make it a modern home. Leave the 100% restored homes to the museums.

Tom
Re: How to repair cracks in 236 year old plaster?

Agree with the last poster. Way to much work.
You don't even have to gut a house anymore. They make a quarter inch drywall that you can use and not even have to remove the baseboard. It will blend in very well. Just go right over the old plaster with this quarter inch dryway and you will have a nice smooth surface to paint.

Hank Bauer
Re: How to repair cracks in 236 year old plaster?
Kathiemk wrote:

Our CT saltbox ws built in 1763. We recently took the wallpaper down in the DR, LR, front hall and stairway. The walls and ceilings are a mess: small cracks, large cracks, buckling, etc. The painters that have looked at the job have suggested fiberglass but I read that fiberglass isn't compatible with historic plaster. Can anyone please help? --Kathie

As the owner you may select the repairs you think is the correct one based on the recommendations.
Before you deside check into what will or what will not happen to the value of the structure if dry wall is installed.
Also check with some or all of the following and find ouy what the recommended repair should be and WHY?
If your area has a Historical Society call them.
connect the National Park Services.
Check with your States Historical Archive.
Ask your local Real Estate agents if it will affect the value if you change the wall fabric?
Check to find out if this structure is on the National Archive Listing.
For a structure 236 years old there may be funding available From local Gov. State Gov And Fed. Gov.
I do have completed over 60 structures in the past 31 years and the money maybe slow but it aways get there for Historical repairs.
When you cover plaster in a building this old it is like going over a Historical Painting the value drops.

plastrr385
Re: How to repair cracks in 236 year old plaster?

:eek: DON'T LISTEN TO NEC AND Capt TCB !!!:eek:

Using the proper materials will take some searching and some practice but will look great in the end. We are such a throw away society it's terrible. If you don't like it tear it out and put new in. Old house web has some recipes for old lime plaster. Its a forum like this and most people there have old homes. Try typing lime plaster and see what comes up. If that dont work put it in the pre 1900 section and someone will be able to help you.

Hope this helps:)

I THOUGHT THIS WAS THIS OLD HOUSE. NOT THIS MODERN OLD LOOKING HOUSE.

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