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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    1,972

    Finding studs in plaster, etc.

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    Any tips here?

    Studfinder won't work through anything but drywall, I guess plaster is too thick. Or something. I would like to hang a towel shelf in my bathroom and (short of drilling a bunch of holes) can't figure out where to attach it.

    Help!

    Thanks!

    "I never met a donut I didn't like" - Dave Wiens

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
    Posts
    5,226
    My experience in my 1939 cottage is that there are no studs with plaster walls. Lathe and plaster, yes, but no studs. I've had to get those plastic expanding screw anchors, and not lean on whatever's hung on my wall.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    1,972
    Apparently for interior walls, the lathe is usually attached to a stud. Exterior walls are different and it can be just stuck to masonry (but I've seen the guts of my addition, and I know there are studs in at least some of the walls...followed by what looks to be pine or oak flooring-like-material, then lathe and plaster).

    Some googling has recommended getting a REALLY strong magnet, like from a hard drive, and tying it to a string. When dangled near a wall, it will find the nails in the studs and thus, the studs.

    We'll see.

    (Note to self - google before asking random questions).

    Thanks Tulip!

    "I never met a donut I didn't like" - Dave Wiens

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
    Posts
    5,226
    If you ever come to my house, you will note the absence of anything on the walls. That's because of my delightful plaster walls. Can't hang a thing! I should just paint frescoes. Those anchor things really don't work in my experience.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    1,972
    Aww. I took my chances and hung a bunch of lighter pictures in my living room. I used those anchors for plaster, and I put masking tape on the wall when I hung them to keep it from cracking. I wish I had high enough ceilings to have picture molding.

    But my spare bedroom does have a mural painted on the wall instead

    Upstairs they drywalled OVER the plaster, so between the drywall, plaster, and lathe, I have about an inch of material to hold lighter frames...but the walls are mostly window (and knee walls), so it doesn't really matter.

    "I never met a donut I didn't like" - Dave Wiens

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Troutdale, OR
    Posts
    2,604
    instead of using an expanding plastic anchor bolt, use a butterfly bolt. Down side is that you do have to drill a big enough hole for the butterfly nut to fit through. Also use a masonry drill bit for the real plaster. Don't use regular high speed drill bits.

 

 

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