Plastering Tools 101

Plastering a wall can be made easier with the right kind of plastering tools. The wrong tool can cause irreversible damage to the wall or ceiling, and that damage could have been avoided. The following list of plastering tools should be considered the minimum requirements for anyone looking to plaster drywall or plaster walls.

What you need to get started

Plastering Float: This is the most important plastering tool to buy. You cannot plaster without a float. The float is used to apply and smooth out the plaster on your surface. Any type is fine but stainless steel should be considered so the float does not rust.

A five litre or larger bucket: This is an absolutely essential plastering tool for making a good plaster mix. Be sure the bucket is clean, dry, and flexible. Unwanted dirt contaminates the plaster mixture. Take the time to clean out this bucket between each use so that nothing hardens inside.

Plasterers Hawk: This small rectangular tray shaped plastering tool is used to hold a small amount of plaster for easy access as you plaster the wall.

Bucket Trowel: This is a small spade used to load up the plasterer’s hawk with plaster from the bucket. It is a very necessary plastering tool that can avoid a lot of mess.

Mixer drill and/or Paddle: A mixer drill can become a necessary plastering tool if you have a lot of plaster to mix. This provides a quick, easy solution to creating smooth, even plaster. Otherwise, a paddle suffices for smaller mixing jobs but results in work that is more physical.

Plasterer’s Beads: These provide a guide in creating flat vertical surfaces and sharp corners and edges. These plastering tools aren’t required for plastering drywall, as drywall is already flat and even. However, if you intend on creating only plaster walls, these are necessary.

A level: This plastering tool goes hand in hand with the plasterer’s beads. Even though the beads' job is to keep the wall even, the level will ensure that the beads have been set up exactly vertical before you start plastering. A level isn’t necessary for drywall jobs, only when you require using plasterer’s beads.

Straightedge: A straightedge is used only with plaster walls and not drywall. This plastering tool is used to even off a plastered surface.

Scarifier: The scarifier looks like a large comb and is used in much the same manner. This plastering tool is important in preparing a second coat on a plastered wall. Diagonal comb strokes are made on the base layer to prepare it for additional layers. A scarifier is not required for drywall plastering.

Splash Brush: Use a splash brush to splash water onto a freshly plastered wall to dampen it to work out any imperfections. This tool is only necessary for plaster walls.

See Also:
Venetian Plaster