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Been doing this stuff for years, but have a ?

Doing a restoration house, and we need to repair the old plaster walls.
They have very smooth OLD plaster on them, and need help! The minor cracks need taped, etc., need smoothed out due to scraping old paint and wall-paper off.

What is best to be sure a proper bond to the old plaster? Should I just use bucket mud, hot mud, sand first (not going to do much good), apply a bonding agent then mud, or prime with a "gripper primer" then mud?

I have done a few small repair like this in the past with just hot mud, with no issue, BUT have a few walls to do and don't want problems!

Thanks for any and all input on this.

Dave
 

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AP bucket mud will stick fine. Any major chunks gone need either a primer and then hot mud or mix acrylic admix in the the water you use for mixing your hot mud. Hot mud doesn't stick well to plaster, and really thin coats of hot mud can dry instead of fully curing.

I've usually sealed plaster with Kilz Original, but I'll probably switch over to Gardz.
 

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Prime the area with plaster weld. You can use hot mix, but I would suggest some kind of accelerator. Also consider screening the walls. I could give better advice if I could see it. I do these all the time.
 

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Plaster Weld is a PVA coating. It will consolidate soft plaster some and promote bonding to the existing plaster. So will shellac and a whole bunch of acrylic products. If the plaster isn't soft, then primers for use on plaster will promote bonding just fine, but AP bucket mud already has PVA in it, so it will bond fine by its self.
 
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