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Old 12-10-2016, 01:18 AM   #1
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Default Non-shrinking caulk for trim

I paint hi rise condos a few times a year in Chicago. Built in 1960, some of the walls are concrete. As such, sometimes the baseboards are not able to be secured close enough to the wall and there sometimes is up to a 3/16" gap. Is anyone here familiar with any caulk that does not shrink a lot or should I just plan on caulking twice where the gaps show shrinkage? Maybe fill the larger gaps with the light foam spackle first, then caulk?

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Old 12-10-2016, 02:39 AM   #2
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Just use the quick dry caulk and hit it twice...
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Old 12-10-2016, 08:26 AM   #3
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Tower tech or big stretch both don't shrink, in fact both will expand with the gaps. Both are a bit expensive bit its all we use now. DAP is crap, always having shrinking issues.
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Old 12-10-2016, 09:07 AM   #4
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Tower tech or big stretch both don't shrink, in fact both will expand with the gaps. Both are a bit expensive bit its all we use now. DAP is crap, always having shrinking issues.
DAP really has turned to crap. I used Alex+ since the first day I started painting. It was great for years, then about 5 years ago it turned to junk. Runny, would continually goop out of the tube upon opening, air bubbles galore, shrinks, etc. I ended up trying some of DAPs other stuff, same thing.

They really shot themselves in the foot.
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Old 12-10-2016, 09:17 AM   #5
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DAP really has turned to crap. I used Alex+ since the first day I started painting. It was great for years, then about 5 years ago it turned to junk. Runny, would continually goop out of the tube upon opening, air bubbles galore, shrinks, etc. I ended up trying some of DAPs other stuff, same thing.

They really shot themselves in the foot.
Funny how that happens to products when they start selling out to the box stores isn't it. Yet there are people who still swear by Kilz and Zinsser products!
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Old 12-10-2016, 10:43 AM   #6
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Funny how that happens to products when they start selling out to the box stores isn't it. Yet there are people who still swear by Kilz and Zinsser products!
They're cheap and they work.
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Old 12-10-2016, 10:46 AM   #7
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Tower tech or big stretch both don't shrink, in fact both will expand with the gaps. Both are a bit expensive bit its all we use now. DAP is crap, always having shrinking issues.
The local BM dealer only stocks Tower Tech for the last several years. I have used it before. It takes 4-6 hours before it can be painted, but I generally can leave caulking unpainted until the next day, so I am going to give it a try. Thanks,

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Old 12-10-2016, 10:47 AM   #8
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Caulk is only flexible. Sealants have elongation and memory. The better sealants adhere to ASTM standards for elongation and memory properties. My favorite is Tower Tech II. Has excellent adhesion, elongation and memory properties, and tools very well. Since it was 1960's vintage, the building as acclimated and should receive an elastomeric acrylic urethane sealant well and easily withstand a 3/16 gap. Tower Tech also gives substantial linear feet per tube over cheaper caulks. Big Stretch works well too but doesn't have the tooling properties of TT II. Check the technical data sheets. Sealants are formulated for dissimilar surfaces. Caulks only work for similar parallel surfaces with little movement. A V shaped cavity is best but a parallel cavity is ok too.
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Old 12-10-2016, 11:01 AM   #9
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Funny how that happens to products when they start selling out to the box stores isn't it. Yet there are people who still swear by Kilz and Zinsser products!
I am inclined to agree with lilpaintchic, at least for 123, Gardz, Coverstain and BIN. Zinsser also makes the mold covering primer, the only one I know of at this time.

If you have better alternatives to the above I would be happy to hear, especially for Gardz. At some point I would like to try Draw-Tite.

I am not married to any one product. I was able to switch the GC I paint condos for from Kilz 2 to Zinsser 123 and we are both happy about that. If you have something noticeably better than 123 (and reasonably priced) for priming new drywall as well as skim coated plaster I am interested to know. Hopefully I can convince him.

As many here know, I am a big fan of Gardz. I have promoted it so much to this GC that whenever I mention it he covers his ears and runs away screaming. He needs to have something white over the work before it is painted so he can see all the imperfections and be able to skim coat those before touch-up priming, then painting. It is rather difficult to see imperfections on a wall or ceiling with just a coat of Gardz. White really seems to show up all the dings and holes that were missed.

At any rate, can you recommend a non-shrinking caulk? Or should I just fill the larger gaps with Easy Sand, Durabond or light foam patch?

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Old 12-10-2016, 11:25 AM   #10
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I'd follow the advice of @NACE and use Tower Tech II. It's a little more expensive, but it works very well.


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Old 12-10-2016, 11:40 AM   #11
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They're cheap and they work.
Kinda I guess if you don't mind a little extra labor expense every now and again. Just money after all.
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Old 12-10-2016, 11:46 AM   #12
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I am inclined to agree with lilpaintchic, at least for 123, Gardz, Coverstain and BIN. Zinsser also makes the mold covering primer, the only one I know of at this time.

If you have better alternatives to the above I would be happy to hear, especially for Gardz. At some point I would like to try Draw-Tite.

I am not married to any one product. I was able to switch the GC I paint condos for from Kilz 2 to Zinsser 123 and we are both happy about that. If you have something noticeably better than 123 (and reasonably priced) for priming new drywall as well as skim coated plaster I am interested to know. Hopefully I can convince him.

As many here know, I am a big fan of Gardz. I have promoted it so much to this GC that whenever I mention it he covers his ears and runs away screaming. He needs to have something white over the work before it is painted so he can see all the imperfections and be able to skim coat those before touch-up priming, then painting. It is rather difficult to see imperfections on a wall or ceiling with just a coat of Gardz. White really seems to show up all the dings and holes that were missed.

At any rate, can you recommend a non-shrinking caulk? Or should I just fill the larger gaps with Easy Sand, Durabond or light foam patch?

futtyos
Name one, just one consumer product that's pricing hasn't raised in the last thirty years and I'll believe you if you say these products are the same as they were. Kilz has been the same price since the late 90's. If they haven't been cheapening the resins and pigments in it there would be no way they could do that. 123 as well. I've been selling that since the mid 80's and there is absolutely no way in hell it is half the product is was then. I did an adhesion test with it in the early nineties against several other primers and it was one of the best. Now it has horrible adhesion compared to the best multi-purpose primers on the market. It is 1/3 the price of them though. So if that's what you're looking for then you are on the right track. Don't get me started on coverstain. They've been changing that product every 8-9 months for 4 years now as close as I can tell from my data sheet collection.
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Old 12-10-2016, 11:55 AM   #13
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Don't get me started on coverstain. They've been changing that product every 8-9 months for 4 years now as close as I can tell from my data sheet collection.
So, why'd you use it on your plywood? 123 has gone up in price from $25/gal to $35 since I started using it. I know you've said it many times that it's not as good as it used to be, but I swear I haven't noticed a difference whatsoever in 13yrs.
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Old 12-10-2016, 12:04 PM   #14
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Name one, just one consumer product that's pricing hasn't raised in the last thirty years and I'll believe you if you say these products are the same as they were. Kilz has been the same price since the late 90's. If they haven't been cheapening the resins and pigments in it there would be no way they could do that. 123 as well. I've been selling that since the mid 80's and there is absolutely no way in hell it is half the product is was then. I did an adhesion test with it in the early nineties against several other primers and it was one of the best. Now it has horrible adhesion compared to the best multi-purpose primers on the market. It is 1/3 the price of them though. So if that's what you're looking for then you are on the right track. Don't get me started on coverstain. They've been changing that product every 8-9 months for 4 years now as close as I can tell from my data sheet collection.
PACman, I am not trying to argue with you. I am just asking what you would recommend over the products I mentioned. I am not asking you to defend yourself, I am asking you to sell me. Your opinion is valued here, at least by me.

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Old 12-10-2016, 02:17 PM   #15
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Caulk is only flexible. Sealants have elongation and memory. The better sealants adhere to ASTM standards for elongation and memory properties. My favorite is Tower Tech II. Has excellent adhesion, elongation and memory properties, and tools very well. Since it was 1960's vintage, the building as acclimated and should receive an elastomeric acrylic urethane sealant well and easily withstand a 3/16 gap. Tower Tech also gives substantial linear feet per tube over cheaper caulks. Big Stretch works well too but doesn't have the tooling properties of TT II. Check the technical data sheets. Sealants are formulated for dissimilar surfaces. Caulks only work for similar parallel surfaces with little movement. A V shaped cavity is best but a parallel cavity is ok too.
Tower tech II has been my full time caulk for about the last five years or so. Really good product IMO - never had a failure or problem yet with the stuff. Fairly reasonabible cost wise too.
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Old 12-10-2016, 02:56 PM   #16
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Tower tech II has been my full time caulk for about the last five years or so. Really good product IMO - never had a failure or problem yet with the stuff. Fairly reasonabible cost wise too.
I've been using Tower Tech II for the last couple of months and love it. I used to stick with Alex quick dry, and still do for minor interior caulking (where a very thin bead will do the trick so I can get to painting quickly), but the Tower Tech is so much better. No, it does not dry quickly, but it is worth the wait.

This might sound stupid, but any caulking that washes off my hands easily is one I question, such as the Alex products. The Tower Tech II takes some real effort to get off my skin.
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Old 12-10-2016, 03:04 PM   #17
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I've been using Tower Tech II for the last couple of months and love it. I used to stick with Alex quick dry, and still do for minor interior caulking, but the Tower Tech is so much better. No, it does not dry quickly, but it is worth the wait.

This might sound stupid, but any caulking that washes off my hands easily is one I question, such as the Alex products. The Tower Tech II takes some real effort to get off my skin.
Yet another product I can't get around here. Poop.

That's not stupid at all John. That's pretty much how I'd gauge everything in the paint industry. If you've cleaned your brushes and scrubbed your hands and the stuff didn't come off, it's pretty good. Had a shower and scrubbed your hands some more and it still won't come off, it's damned good. If you've eaten, done the dishes and scrubbed more and it's still there.... You've got a winner.

Only stuff that I've ever used that made it stage 3 was P&L super slow drying oil primer. That stuff was incredible. But not much fun.
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Old 12-10-2016, 04:04 PM   #18
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Funny how that happens to products when they start selling out to the box stores isn't it. Yet there are people who still swear by Kilz and Zinsser products!
So, you're saying that Zinnser is comparable to Kilz? Since when?
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Old 12-10-2016, 04:07 PM   #19
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I paint hi rise condos a few times a year in Chicago. Built in 1960, some of the walls are concrete. As such, sometimes the baseboards are not able to be secured close enough to the wall and there sometimes is up to a 3/16" gap. Is anyone here familiar with any caulk that does not shrink a lot or should I just plan on caulking twice where the gaps show shrinkage? Maybe fill the larger gaps with the light foam spackle first, then caulk?

futtyos

A good elastomeric is the only thing I will use. Used the Tower Tech but it's now been replaced locally for the Allpro label. Either way I will usually just caulk twice or if 1/4 in or more use backer rod.
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Old 12-10-2016, 04:13 PM   #20
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Thanks @NACE for his post. I have been using the Tower Tech stuff since White Lightening was bought by SW. Mainly the Tech II stuff and the fast dry Accelerator (I like how it tools for interior trim).

Now that a local store carries the colors of Tech II it is all we use outside.
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