Picture Rail on Stud Wall when Boarding/Plastering

19 Feb 2015
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United Kingdom
If wanting to apply affix a picture rail to a stud wall which has still to be boarded and plastered, would you:

a) attach picture rail to studs using a small wooden block on each stud, then boarding above and below the rail, then plastering above and below rail

b) board entire wall, affix picture rail directly onto plasterboard, then plaster above and below picture rail

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Take measurements of stud positions before boarding and skimming.
You can then nail/screw into studs or simply use a gripper paste to attach to finished wall.
Once the plaster has dried over a couple of weeks on a plasterboard wall, would you apply the grab adhesive to affix the picture rail directly onto the bare plaster?

Alternatively, the plasterboard could have a thinned coat of emulsion applied, then coated with full emulsion. However, this would mean the rail is applied to an emulsioned surface and may not attach as effectively. Though applying the rail to the pre-emulsioned surface would avoid having to subsequently emulsion around the picture rail.
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Would you use 40 mm masonry nails where the rail attaches to plastered brick wall?
I fix it with polymer grab over the new plaster. So don't fix it until the walls are skimmed.
To hold I put a blob in the middle and both ends using 2 pack wood filler. This sets in around 5mins holding firm until polymer has set which is 3 hours or so. I can then get on with it..

Don't like nails or screws because of having to fill holes
Skim sets in hours.
Paint the boards.
Pre-paint the wood, picture rail.
Having measured from a known point eg an inside corner to the first stud - you now know all studs are at 16" c/c from the first stud.
Any investigation holes in the board would be irrelevant, the rail will cover them.
Fix the picture rail with screws - it might be supporting heavy, family heirlooms.

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