The stucco has to come off

Stucco removal?  What the . . . ?  Yes, we are now a year into this project and sidetracked with a new challenge.  All the lath and plaster that is to be removed (on both floors) has been removed.  The living/dining room and TV room are insulated (Roxul and stryofoam both).  The ceiling joists in the spare bedroom have been replaced (2×6 instead of 2×4) and lowered in preparation for a loft bed.  Lots of new wiring is in place, although there is still more to do.  But . . .

We had actually hoped to have drywall up by now.  What happened?  Well summer for one thing and along with lots of beautiful weather, some fishing and camping, lots of grass to cut and two family weddings, the summer brought thunderstorms and heavy rains.  Rains that found a way into the inside of the house!

All interior renovations were immediately put on hold whilst the leaks were sourced out and potential remedies contemplated and discussed.  Ultimately we decided to remove all the exterior stucco (which was cracked in places from when the house was moved to the property) and enclose the house in house wrap.  Certainly, we wanted to at some point redo the outside of the house — just not until we had finished the inside.

Still, we can’t be allowing water in and so remedying that has become the number one priority.  After early attempts to pry off a little of the cement stucco at a time, then cut the attaching wires and drop a piece of a square foot or two, John started using a diamond blade in a circular saw to score the stucco into larger sections.

Loosening stucco cement and wires from an exterior wall

John uses a pry bar to loosen the stucco cement and wire from the exterior wall.

Then the experimenting started.  The sections got larger and after loosening the stucco and wires from the wall, he tied a rope to the loosened wires and pulled the larger pieces off that way.

scoring the stucco into more manageable sections prior to removal
The first step in removing the stucco is cutting it into manageable pieces. John uses a diamond blade in a circular saw.

And now the current procedure (except above the windows where we still have to take the time and make the effort to carefully remove smaller pieces) is to cut the stucco into full-length vertical pieces, loosen the cement and wires from the top of the wall, attach a rope and then bring the trusty Massey-Ferguson in to do the pulling (and subsequent loading).

loosened at the top, will this stucco now pull off the wall?

John and Sharlee pulled and pulled with all their might (kind of reminded me of the wolf trying to blow down the third little pig's brick house!).

stucco peeling off the wall
With the preliminary vertical cuts in the stucco and a good hefty pull, the stucco and wire peel off the wall. (But alas, it wasn’t John and Sharlee who were able to accomplish the pulling — it was the trusty old Massey-Ferguson tractor that had to come to the rescue.)
large pieces of stucco are loaded by the Massey Ferguson

And after pulling the large piece of stucco off the wall, the trusty Massey Ferguson picks it up and loads it into the truck for us (with a little help and direction from John).

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2 Responses to The stucco has to come off

  1. Pingback: New windows, and even some new wall | prairiewoods

  2. Pingback: Earth Day: Reusing lath, insulation and stucco | prairiewoods

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