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Removing baseboard from plaster walls - mud advice

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  • Jan 17th, 2019 7:30 am
[OP]
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Jan 4, 2019
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Removing baseboard from plaster walls - mud advice

I am going to be replacing my flooring and baseboard in an old house w/ plaster walls. I removed the first of the old base today, and noticed there was a large gap between the floor and where the plaster starts.

From the bottom of the new flooring to the bottom of the lathe is about 5", then 6-1/4" to the bottom of the plaster. Then the plaster has chipping up to about 8", the heigh of the old baseboard.

My new baseboard is going to be 5.5", so you can see in the pic it will end up about halfway into the bottom lathe, leaving some wood and cracked plaster exposed that will need to be patched first.

What would you use for something like this? Would hot mud work, or maybe even all purpose light? I want to avoid getting another 8" high baseboard.

Thanks
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30 replies
Deal Addict
Nov 18, 2005
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Kitchener
Add a strip of drywall, Fibafuse tape the horizontal seam then coat with Durabond 90
Deal Addict
Jan 19, 2011
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Ummm, you are not actually going to install 5.5" tall baseboard to replace the original 8 inch in a turn of the century home? If yes, please put the house on the market, and sell it to someone who has a little more respect for, knowledge of, and experience with older homes..
Last edited by fieldhousehandyman on Jan 11th, 2019 10:43 pm, edited 2 times in total.
"The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end; there it is."
Just a guy who dabbles in lots of stuff learning along the way. I do have opinions, and readily share them!
Deal Addict
Dec 18, 2009
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fieldhousehandyman wrote:
Jan 11th, 2019 10:16 pm
Ummm, you are not actually going to install 5.5" tall baseboard to replace the original 8 inch in a turn of the century home? If yes, please put it on the market, and sell it to someone who has a little more respect for, knowledge of, and experience with older homes..
+1
[OP]
Newbie
Jan 4, 2019
14 posts
6 upvotes
fieldhousehandyman wrote:
Jan 11th, 2019 10:16 pm
Ummm, you are not actually going to install 5.5" tall baseboard to replace the original 8 inch in a turn of the century home? If yes, please put the house on the market, and sell it to someone who has a little more respect for, knowledge of, and experience with older homes..
I am really curious to know how you figure updating the baseboards to something more modern is such a sin. This is not a historic landmark, it's just an old house out in nowheresville.
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Jan 25, 2007
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Paris
dani6634 wrote:
Jan 11th, 2019 11:18 pm
I am really curious to know how you figure updating the baseboards to something more modern is such a sin. This is not a historic landmark, it's just an old house out in nowheresville.
New houses look better with tall baseboards. Old houses with short baseboard is a sin.
Gbill2004: Thanks but I'll just smell the couch before/if I buy it.

jonnyb: I go in there like PICASSO and toss the glue everywhere, I don't care what house I'm on.
[OP]
Newbie
Jan 4, 2019
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Jerico wrote:
Jan 11th, 2019 11:20 pm
New houses look better with tall baseboards. Old houses with short baseboard is a sin.
I think it just comes down to personal preference. Some people like tall baseboards and some like me don't, regardless of the age of the house. 5.5" is the sweet spot IMO.
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Jan 19, 2011
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dani6634 wrote:
Jan 11th, 2019 11:18 pm
I am really curious to know how you figure updating the baseboards to something more modern is such a sin. This is not a historic landmark, it's just an old house out in nowheresville.
because it is a hell of a lot of work that will reduce the aesthetic appeal of your house. how about building an appealing 8 inch baseboard by taking a baseboard you like and standing it on a slightly wider block with a chamfered edge below it. Maybe a 4.5 inch wide base with a 3.5 inch ornamental on top, which would likely be no more expensive than the 5.5 inch you are going with.

And yes, it is a sin.
dani6634 wrote:
Jan 11th, 2019 11:31 pm
I think it just comes down to personal preference. Some people like tall baseboards and some like me don't, regardless of the age of the house. 5.5" is the sweet spot IMO.
Lol, no, you don't have to sell anyone that, you are going 5.5 not because you like it, but because it is pretty much the tallest readily available inexpensive mdf or fingerjoint baseboard at box stores. If you want 5.5 inch baseboards, buy an eighties tract home.
"The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end; there it is."
Just a guy who dabbles in lots of stuff learning along the way. I do have opinions, and readily share them!
Deal Addict
Jan 19, 2011
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But back to your dilemma, you can install a backer piece of drywall, tape, mud using sheetrock 90, other sandable mixed compound, or even drywall compound. and then paint, hoping your patch will not be noticeable (of course, to make it that way will involve hours of mudding, sanding, and multiple coats)

or, you can take the easy and non sinful way out, and build your own two part baseboard to cover things properly, and do so in a quarter of the time, and at half the cost.

Seen it, done it, and helped others with it. you know...
"The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end; there it is."
Just a guy who dabbles in lots of stuff learning along the way. I do have opinions, and readily share them!
Deal Fanatic
Jan 25, 2007
5216 posts
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Paris
fieldhousehandyman wrote:
Jan 11th, 2019 11:43 pm
hoping your patch will not be noticeable (of course, to make it that way will involve hours of mudding, sanding, and multiple coats)
Agreed. There is no shortcut to downgrading to 5.5” trim here. It will take 5x as long and cost way more than just doing a 2-3 part trim.
Gbill2004: Thanks but I'll just smell the couch before/if I buy it.

jonnyb: I go in there like PICASSO and toss the glue everywhere, I don't care what house I'm on.
Deal Fanatic
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Dec 27, 2009
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Why on Earth would you do that? Just have some taste and put another 8" baseboard in there.
[OP]
Newbie
Jan 4, 2019
14 posts
6 upvotes
Thanks everyone for your input/advice. I am going to think over the weekend but I might do a 2 part base to get to 8". The top part is the base I already have, biggest concern will be how do I mill 12ft sections for the bottom base because I will have to make that in house.

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dani6634 wrote:
Jan 12th, 2019 9:15 am
biggest concern will be how do I mill 12ft sections for the bottom base because I will have to make that in house.
The rabbet could be done on a router table; thinking you don't have one if you have to ask. It would be a better build than simply sitting two pieces of trim on top of each other and using painters caulk/crown molding caulk on the seam as is commonly done.
[OP]
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Jan 4, 2019
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Zamboni wrote:
Jan 12th, 2019 9:33 am
The rabbet could be done on a router table; thinking you don't have one if you have to ask. It would be a better build than simply sitting two pieces of trim on top of each other and using painters caulk/crown molding caulk on the seam as is commonly done.
I have a router table / dado stack that could cut the rabbet, it is the length that is the concern. And I am trying to avoid stacking the baseboards because that is what is currently in the house, and it doesn't look great, especially over time as the seams separate.
Deal Addict
Jan 19, 2011
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Another common way to do it is use an unadorned or plain bottom block, perhaps with a simple angle at the top, upon which sits a more ornamental piece, the majority of older homes I have seen have simple yet impressive baseboards built in this fashion. In my own home, the 11 inch tall baseboards are two part, and original from 1892, the bottom part is plain, with a simple curve and rabbet behind into which the decorative top part sits.
"The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end; there it is."
Just a guy who dabbles in lots of stuff learning along the way. I do have opinions, and readily share them!

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