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Thread: 1/8" plywood and 5/8" osb shop walls

  1. #1
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    1/8" plywood and 5/8" osb shop walls

    Has anyone tried using 5/8" osb on the walls and then put 1/8" sanded plywood over it to make it look nicer? 3/4" sanded plywood is about $30 a sheet in my area and if I combined the osb and thin plywood I could save about $10 a panel when doing the shop. Is this a bad idea? Not trying to be a cheapskate but could also put the money saved towards new tools. Thanks for your opinions!

  2. #2
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    3/4" sanded ply with an "A" side is about $55 around here. I think you would burn up your $10 savings per panel in futzing around. JMHO.
    I am familiar with modern idioms but they are outside the vocabulary of what I want to say.

    - George Dyson (composer)

  3. #3
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    I agree with Glenn. Something you may not have considered is that the 1/8 ply is so thin that you'll need to many, many fasteners and/or glue to make it feel solid. Painted OSB doesn't look that bad. I was reluctant about putting OSB on my walls because of the appearance, but once it's painted & there is stuff hanging on it, I never even notice it. Makes the shop nice & bright too.

  4. #4
    If you're looking to save money, and have it look decent, drywall is generally cheaper than plywood.

    I've got plywood over my main tool areas, but there is a lot of the shop that I don't need to hang things on, or are covered in shelves or blocked by tools. If you decide later that an area needs plywood, you can then do your plywood veneer.

    A few other advantages of drywall. First, it's going to air seal better when you do a simple taping of the joints. You can do the same thing with plywood, but it's not going to look nice. Second, drywall is better at resisting fire, because it's mostly made of a material with water suspended in it. Which gets us to the third advantage, some building codes require the garage to have drywall on the walls connected to the house for a firebreak.

  5. #5
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    Andrew make a very important point. A wall adjoining the house must be fire rated drywall & taped before putting anything over it. I did 13/16 OSB on all the walls 9/16 OSB on the ceiling because there isn't a wall that doesn't have stuff hanging off it & the ceiling has all the lighting and dust collection duct hanging off it.

  6. #6
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    1/2 ply will work just as well. It will probably cost as much as the OSB and 1/8.
    Don

  7. #7
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    I have OSB walls in my shop. I needed some more light around my wood lathe and painted that OSB white. Boy, OSB sure is thirsty. I think I used 4 coats of paint!

    If I were painting all the OSB, I would be looking into some sort of primer that lays on top better.

  8. #8
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    I have osb on all the walls and covered it with drywall and a white paint. Love the look, the brightness and I can still attach stuff to the walls without having to find the studs.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Feeley View Post
    I have OSB walls in my shop. I needed some more light around my wood lathe and painted that OSB white. Boy, OSB sure is thirsty. I think I used 4 coats of paint!

    If I were painting all the OSB, I would be looking into some sort of primer that lays on top better.
    Did you mount the OSB smooth or rough side out? I did mine smooth side out & it just took 2 coats. Actually, just the primer coat gave 100% coverage and I could have stopped at 1 coat, but I wanted semigloss so I did 2 coats. The top coat & primer were just cheapish latex.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by dennis davidson View Post
    I have osb on all the walls and covered it with drywall and a white paint. Love the look, the brightness and I can still attach stuff to the walls without having to find the studs.
    ó being a penny pincher, I didnít want to give up the 72 square inches of new shop space for drywall.
    ó I really wanted to get my tools out of storage in my new house.
    ó I kind of like the warm color
    ó a friend had given me 20 4í led lights so light isnít too much of a problem

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Pratt View Post
    Did you mount the OSB smooth or rough side out? I did mine smooth side out & it just took 2 coats. Actually, just the primer coat gave 100% coverage and I could have stopped at 1 coat, but I wanted semigloss so I did 2 coats. The top coat & primer were just cheapish latex.
    shiny side out. It surprised me. I was brushing. Maybe that was it? It may have been all Kilz...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Feeley View Post
    shiny side out. It surprised me. I was brushing. Maybe that was it? It may have been all Kilz...
    I've used Kilz a couple of times & it is a very good sealer/primer, but coverage is not very good, nor is that its intended purpose. It is just a primer. I rented an airless sprayer & did the whole shop, ceiling included in one evening.

  13. #13
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    I used 1/2" radiata pine plywood on my shop walls and ceiling. I bought it from a real lumber yard and the price was reasonable. Goes up easily, smooth sanded surface, and strong enough to hang almost anything anywhere. I put it up with screws so I can take panels down if needed to access wires and such in the wall.

    I found out the lumber yard sold damaged sheet goods for a fraction of the undamaged price, for example $5 a sheet for panels with a corner or side dinged from a fork lift. Maybe they do that near you.

    I also think it might be difficult to put 1/8" ply over OSB and get a nice surface.

    JKJ

  14. #14
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    Eickler house were built in the San Francisco bay area in the 1950's-60's. They used wood paneling for the interior wall covering instead of drywall. They burn so fast that normally by the time the fire department gets there only the wall between the garage and the rest of the house is still standing. I read that one burned down when a worker rubbed the wood paneling and caused a spark. It burned so fast the workers had to run outside before they could do anything to stop the fire.
    So do you really want wood paneling inside a shop, connected to living areas. How fast is response time for the fire department?
    Bill D

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