Lime Plaster Skim

Baz8510

New Member
Hi,

Hoping someone will be able to help answer a question about lime skimming (pictures attached).

I've recently moved into an 1860 solid stone cottage with lime plaster used throughout the internal walls. I intend to stay true to the original specs by using lime on the 'outer' internal walls so the building can breath.

I'm currently looking for a lime plasterer near Manchester but want to do as much prep work as I can during lockdown.

I'm working my way through layers of wallpaper and have reached the top layer of plaster which looks like a gypsum skim painted with an old, glossy paint. I'm able to chip away the skim and can now see the lime plaster beneath (white in photos). The lime plaster looks in pretty good condition, apart from a few bits that'll need a patch / skrim. From what I understand, the gypsum skim and paint will need to come off to allow the lime plaster to breath again.

My questions is, to make an assessment and job easier for the plasterer, should I continue to chip off the gypsum skim and get down to the lime?

It'll take me some time to do but I've got plenty of that right now. In the end, I'm hoping that the old lime might be in good enough condition for a new lime skim opposed to building up from scratch.

Thanks in advance for replies and to those who contribute to the site - have found it really helpful so far.

Cheers,
Baz
 

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Baz8510

New Member
Just wanted to add another point to my question that I've just realised might be relevant...

I'm concerned that the external stone work appears to have been repointed with concrete (see picture). If it is concrete, would there be any benefit to using lime plaster internally? Or would I need to get it repointed in lime?
 

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malc

TPF Special Forces
you will end up costing yourself a fortune.
just have the cottage skimmed in gypsum plaster.
someone has already paid a large sum to have the building weather pointed in sand and cement. you will damage the stone trying to remove the pointing. the cottage is not a high class building and can become a money pit.
 

Baz8510

New Member
you will end up costing yourself a fortune.
just have the cottage skimmed in gypsum plaster.
someone has already paid a large sum to have the building weather pointed in sand and cement. you will damage the stone trying to remove the pointing. the cottage is not a high class building and can become a money pit.

Cheers for the reply Malc.

I've since spoken to a couple of heritage building tradesman who have explained that the trouble with cement pointing is that water is absorbed through the stone but can become trapped behind the pointing as cement can't 'breath'.

That said, the condition of the stone is generally good and I think I'll keep the pointing as is for now. And as you say, unless the pointing is loose, it may cause more harm than good trying to remove it - not to mention the cost!

I'm going to continue to lime plaster internally because there is definite evidence of some damp behind the modern gypsum / textured paints that have been used, where I guess moisture from the outside has become trapped. The heritage people suggest that lime plaster would still be of benefit because it'll allow the interior to breath as was originally intended.

Luckily, I've already done a lot of work myself which has saved money, so we don't mind spending a bit extra on the jobs that need specialist attention

Thanks again for taking the time to reply (y)
 
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