Ten Tips for Great Stucco
From framing to finishing, craftsmanship makes the difference
Article by Bruce Bell – Published in JLC, The Journal of Light Construction
The History of The Sacramento Valley Bureau for Lath & Plaster
In 1954 the Sacramento Valley Bureau for Lath & Plaster was incorporated in Sacramento, California as an organization to promote Lath & Plaster. The first director was Khalil Bennett. Notable Directors during the next fifty years were Clyde Bell, Tony Schiro and Floyd Gates. The current director, Bruce Bell is Clyde Bell’s first son.
The Bureau’s goal and purpose is to educate the Architectural, Inspection, and Building communities on the best uses and practices for Portland Cement Plaster, Gypsum Plaster and Synthetic Plaster wall systems.
To this end the Bureau:
Assists and consults on Plaster Details for planned building projects
- Interprets the Building Codes and Standards that relate to plaster for the International Conference of Building Officials jurisdictions in Northern California
- Diagnoses the cause of plaster failures, and consults in remediation
- Acts as an impartial trusted third party mediator and expert witness in litigation issues
- Promotes new products that raise the standards of quality for plaster installations
- Conducts free seminars to Architectural Firms on the proper installation of Plaster
- Conducts free inspection seminars to City and County Building Departments
- Consults with Home Builders on proper installation of all types of Plaster applications
In 1965 Clyde Bell helped compile the Lathing, Furring and Plastering in California Reference Specifications as Director for the California Lathing and Plastering Contractors Association Inc. The pre-cursor to the Lathing and Plastering Systems Manual that went out of print in 1988. The book was to help define the minimum requirements for a satisfactory plaster job.
I was eighteen years old and attending University of California Santa Barbara as an English Major and had no clue what plaster was other than that I should stay away from the lime pit behind the garage where I grew up.
In 1970 after an unspectacular stint as a college student I moved to Sacramento to find my roots and get a job in a bank or as a teacher. I ended up as a Hodcarrier working clean-up on a condominium project at 4th & P in Sacramento, having been given the referral from Tony Schiro (Director for the Bureau for Lath & Plaster) to go see Dutch Florin, business agent for the Hodcarriers Local Union. Blisters, cramps, hemorrhoids, a sore back and old guys who hated college punks were my introduction to plastering. 34 years later I’m a journeyman plasterer, the Executive Director for the Sacramento Valley Bureau for Lath & Plaster and would like to acknowledge Cornelius Bell, my grandfather (a plasterer whose trowel handle I used on every finish trowel while plastering) and Khalil Bennett (The first Director for the Sacramento Valley Bureau for Lath & Plaster and current President) and the Plastering Industry for allowing me to make a living.
As the Director for the Bureau, I’ve tried to paint as clear a picture of the process of plastering to The Building Community as I could. Hopefully this website will be of some additional value.
Director, Sacramento Valley Bureau for Lath & Plaster