Am I applying the 2nd Coat too soon?

by Tony
(Barrow in Furness)

Paul. Have been doing a fair bit of skimming these last few days, and as a complete novice following your on line tuition, we are pretty pleased with the outcome.

Started with small walls and have even made a good fist of a larger wall.

I fully understand the 6 stage process but would like a steer on when to apply the second coat.

Most advise seems to suggest as soon as you have flattened the first coat, but for me, the first coat is still very wet at that point. I have generally applied the second coat immediately but, should I deliberately wait a little longer (very difficult concept for a novice) such that the first coat is somewhat firm??

Also having issues with still seeing the scrim tape through the plaster, even after the second coat has been applied. I know the obvious answer is apply a thicker coat, and I guess experience will eventually eradicate this.

Thanks for your continued and valued advice.



Hi Tony,

The 1st coat should be a putty like consistency so that it is pliable enough to remove any highs but not too soft that you will push it out of shape. The main principle of the two coat process is to do all your flattening and main work in the 1st coat. Then when it has firmed up enough, so that you will not lose this flatness, you can move on to stage 2 - flattening and then immediately after apply the 2nd coat. This 2nd coat will be a uniform thickness over the 1st coat that is firm but pliable. If you apply the 2nd coat too soon then it is like putting an extra thick 1st coat on that will be hard to keep flat.

The other issue of scrim tape showing through may be as a result of your trowel scraping during the trowelling stages. No matter how many times you go over the wall - no plaster should collect on your trowel, instead it needs to be a bit flatter to the wall and with firm pressure the highs will be pushed into the lows.


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