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Veneer plaster on top of perlited bas...

Tom@Home's picture

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Can I use something like Red Top Veneer plaster on top of a perlited basecoat material? Or is veneer plaster meant to go on some other type of base?

(post #163588, reply #1 of 8)

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b WBA At Your Service

I never heard of USG's Red Top products referred to as "Veneer Plaster". These days, the vast majority of interior plastering is skimcoat or veneer over blueboard drywall. Perlited basecoat is rarely used except for patchwork. The perlited basecoat is covered with a finish of lime putty and gauging. If you have a bag of Red Top Finishing Lime, then you are going to need a bag of Red Top Gauging Plaster. It used to come in a quick set 30-40 minutes or the slow set at 50-70 minutes. Because the Red Top Lime is a single hydrate, it needs to be mixed with water the day before use, and allowed to soak for 16 hours. The gauging comes in 100 lb. bags and should be sifted into the lime putty. You might also want to get a small bag of retarder if you're new to this. Have you ever done this before ?
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PS You can also use the Imperial skimcoat products for blueboard on perlited basecoat. It is a more expensive finish and the quick setup can be a little dicey over porous browncoat.

(post #163588, reply #2 of 8)

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Tom, I have been doing patchwork around my home and the local Home Depot has Veneer Plaster as well as the perlited base plaster. I have previously purchased Red Top's Finish Plaster (Regular Set) for use on top of the perlited basecoat - I had purchased that from a masonry product company - and had great results when doing three coat plaster over diamond metal lath. To answer your question about experience I;m just weekend warrior who will try things out, hopefully with a result that I can proud of when I'm done! As far as hydrating lime and using gauging plaster and retarder I don't think I'm up to that challenge, yet. I'm still pretty much in the pre-mixed world. Do any plastering contractors still do metal lath and thre coat work for whole walls and ceilings? I'm near decision point on how to redo a ceiling and I was thinking of using the material I already have experience with - USG Perlited Gypsum basecoat (for base and brown) and Rep Top Finish plaster for top. One thing that confuses me is that the Red Top product (I have an unopened bag left from work I did last year) indicates that it is supposed to be used on top of sanded gypsum basecoats. Does that mean it's not intended for use over perlited basecoats? I used it before and was very pleased with the result. Any thoughts you have would be welcome.

(post #163588, reply #3 of 8)

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Tim, I apologize for the typo above where I addressed you as Tom. That was not some kind of freudian I'm-the-center-of-the-universe slip. I think.

(post #163588, reply #4 of 8)

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b WBA At Your Service

No problem, usually it's hacked into Jim or Ken ! My father wanted to call me Brendan, I can only imagine the trouble that would have caused.
In answer to whole walls with wire, no, not really. Anyone who is still doing this type of plaster is using rocklath as their base for straight walls and ceilings and reserving wire for radius work and patching. I'm sure that your Home Depot employees have not a clue about rocklath. It is a 3/8" drywall product that comes 16" wide by 4' long in 32 sq.ft. bundles. It has gotten expensive and difficult to find. Our area has only 1 or 2 places that carry it. (professional plaster suppliers) It currently runs around $9 to $11 per bundle.
Your finish over perlited base is ok. Most plasterers who are using USG's Structolite add about 1/2 to 1 five gallon bucket of mason's sand to a bag of Structolite to give it more body.

(post #163588, reply #5 of 8)

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Thanks for the insight, Tim. It's interesting that you mention Structolite since that's the basecoat I use. I like the idea of adding mason's sand to it. I've thought about doing it but wasn't sure what would happen. Would that change any of the shrinkage characteristics? Should I make the mix really rich or a little sloppier?

(post #163588, reply #6 of 8)

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Hi Tom,

I read your query about veneer plaster. We've done a lot of veneer plastering in restoration work I've done here in California. We only use structolite for patching. For the actual plastering we use either a one coat or two coat system using USG products. Either Diamond or Imperial veneer plasters. There is base coat and finish coat for each but applying a veneer finish coat directly over structo lite I would not recommend unless you apply glue over the entire surface to seal it up.Otherwise the structo lite base will suck your finish dry before you have time to work it.

(post #163588, reply #7 of 8)

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Hi Adam,

You're definitely right about the suction problem with Structolite. I always have to really dampen the surface before I apply a browncoat or finish coat because the new coat is sucked dry really fast. Since I'm about to redo the dining room ceiling in my house I will probably consider using the blue board basecoat Tim mentioned in a previous post.

(post #163588, reply #8 of 8)

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Can I use something like Red Top Veneer plaster on top of a perlited basecoat material? Or is veneer plaster meant to go on some other type of base?