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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

New to the forum, but really need a few opinions!

We are in the middle of a complete gut of an 1910 Queen Anne house. As part of the demo, we removed all plaster walls and lath.

Idealy we would have removed all baseboards, but in my neck of the woods, the house was originally constructed with baseboards in place, then hardwood butted up next to the baseboard. To remove the bottom baseboard damage usually occurs to the hardwood/baseboard cracks. We are refinishing the hardwood starting next week.

We did remove the decorative top cap on the baseboard and saved them for reuse.

Here is the problem:

New drywall (and soundproofing in some cases) on old walls has meant that the baseboards stick out anywhere from 0" to 1" from the wall (see the attached drawing). Green is the drywall, blue the the baseboard (about 8" tall).

I have an original cap molding (about 3" tall) that has a 1/2" chanel where the baseboard would have tucked under. I am obviously now trying to figure out what to do.

I have thought of the following:

1) Adding a "face" baseboard to those areas where the existing baseboard is flush with the walls as to "build" it out. Problem with this approach is that this area of molding is located on an extreamly ornate staircase and would next to impossible.

2) Might need to cut those baseboards with an undercut saw that stick out 1", then remove the plaster and lath behind, add a buildout and replace the moulding so that it is 1/2" from the wall (problem here is that now I need to add a quarter round or something of the sort around the bottom to hide the baseboard that would be flush with the hardwood - I didn't want to do this and would have to do it in all 3500 square feet).

3) My hope is that I can "mask" the different projections in the baseboards by using the top cap. I am comfortable with milling my own baseboards or trying to salvage and use the ones that we saved (adding filler strips as necessary to the backs?) but don't know whether our work will be ruined by moldings that are not uniform.

Is option 3 really possible? It is going to be obvious that one basemoulding is projecting 1" from the wall and the other 0" from the wall?

(Also, FYI, the only spot there is 0" projection is on the stairwell, which is by itself - so that may factor in your opinions.)

Appreciate it is a long post - and really appreciate some advice!

Also, I would need some assistance with figuring out what to do when a wider top cap, meets a narrow top cap (both on an inside and outside corner.) Not quite sure how to do that mitre.

Much appreciated.

Alanna
 

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Why not head over to the introductions section and tell people about where you're located, your specialty, experience, etc. Welcome to CT!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I wouldn't say that I am a full-time contractor - but we have renovated 4 historical properties for sale so we are certainly moving in that direction. This particular house has been our biggest project to date.

Do you have thoughts on my prediciment?

Thanks,
Alanna
 

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but we have renovated 4 historical properties for sale so we are certainly moving in that direction. This particular house has been our biggest project to date.
Pictures?

?? You didn't take in account how thick the drywall and such was going to be in relation to the mill work and original plaster thickness ?? And that is causing a problem in a "Historic Restoration" ???
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, that is the charm, I have met with a number of finish carpenters to sub the work out, but haven't found someone who has a solid solution. I was turning to the expertise here to provide some direction.

Clearly, the forum isn't quite as helpful as I was hoping.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Texas Wax - call it bad drywalling - we anticpated that we were going to end up with 3/4 inch on all baseboards (where the baseboard has pulled away from the wall/plaster has let go, the baseboard would be 1" from the drywall). I didn't have the benefit of seeing the discprencies in the existing baseboard until the drywall went up.

Where it is 1/4 clearance, it is a party wall where we had to deal with sound transfer (added insulation and Quiterock). We knew this wall was going to cause us issues from the start but couldn't cut back anything further (we were on the party wall studs when we completed the gut).

rgds,
Alanna

I have hired a number of reputable subcontractors as part of the process, but again, I am simply looking for some direction and guidance.

I will post a few pictures shortly.
 

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Well, that is the charm, I have met with a number of finish carpenters to sub the work out, but haven't found someone who has a solid solution. I was turning to the expertise here to provide some direction.

Clearly, the forum isn't quite as helpful as I was hoping.
Some things just can't be fixed, properly. Especially, if done not thinking about the end results, before hand.

Pictures might help ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Here are a few photos -

I also included photos of the top cap which we salvaged.

At this point, the hardwood floor company is coming in 10 days. I have time to undercut all baseboards and remove them (which may be the best option) then replace with all new.

Although I don't really want to end up doing this - I was hoping that a modified top cap may be manufactured to disguise the situation.

Thanks,
Alanna
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The first picture in the reply above is the drywall on the party wall/stairwell (the drywall lines up directly with the "grove" that is notched into the baseboard).

hdavis - I don't have recent photos of the stairwell itself, but I have attached a few from when we purchased the house (the trim extends well below the stairtreads themselves, so doing something with that trim is really not possible). The other is post demo on the ground floor. If you need better photos, I can head over and take something better.

Thanks,
Alanna
 

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Looks like you may be a little over your head. How about finding a contractor who could consult with you on this ? Maybe sub it out to a professional.

Not trying to get picky towards you . but, maybe this is a little out of your comfort range and experience level. We deal with this a lot in the northeast.
You have to plan it beforehand. maybe a little custom shoe or bead molding
or pad the studs to allow for the finish drywall to end up where it needs to be.

Good luck.
 

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quick thoughts - sorry base cap is not 3" tall, but a bead type trim is likely an appropriate finish for the base build up.

A flat trim or modified panel cap, ripped to sit flush on both surfaces might work for the stairs.

and I would question the "professionals" that you have on hand- they should have pionted out a number of problems. This type of renovation requires a good deal of experience and extensive knowledge to get it right.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Re hiring professionals, I thought I was doing that!

As for the finish trim, I do plan on contracting it out, but I want to have a decent game plan first. Any chance you want to come to Canada for a month?

Thank-you very much for the drawing. It is similar to what I had put together. For the 1" molding, I am thinking that a few fillers split in a couple of locations will mask the differences a bit more.

With the stair, I agree, a unique molding is needed there because nothing will look good if I try to make it look the same.
 

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Mock some up both ways (yours and Texas Wax) and see how you like it. I think it will be very noticeable on the baseboard, but you don't have much choice on the stairs. Worse comes to worse, you can pad out the baseboards and use the original top mold. I'd leave the original baseboards so if the walls are ever redone, the wall surface can be put back where it belongs.
 

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Why can't I see the pictures?
Was the lath removed or just the plaster ?
Lath and plaster is usually about 3/4 to 1 inch thick. Drywall is 1/2.
 

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Using a Crain saw to undercut all the base and start fresh may end up being the fastest and cleanest solution.
Dammit that was my idea!!!!

It really is the only way. The super 7 will take out any saw marks frkm the crain and you end up with perfectly clean base boards and no half assery.
 
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