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We're looking for a solution to cover or fix a crack that keeps reappearing around a a steam pipe we have. No matter how well we patch it and paint over it, it keeps coming back. Can anyone recommend a modern cover or a way to solve this issue. I have included a close-up photo below showing the crack around pipe.

enter image description here

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up vote 12 down vote accepted

Your crack is forming over and over because the steam pipe is getting hot, expanding, and cracking your plaster.

The solution is to cut the plaster back about 1/4" from the walls of the pipe all the way around, then to cover the seam with an escutcheon that hides the crack.

Example of a smaller escutcheon: enter image description here

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Thank you Evil Greebo for the prompt reply. Now I have the name of the proper cover (escutcheon) that I need to look for. Any shops you think I might be able to find these? I looked on google but nothing really comes up for a diameter that big. thx – macutan Sep 24 '12 at 14:42
You might have to make one or have one made. There are a number of ways you can accomplish this - for instance you could get a piece of composite (aka plastic) "shoe" molding and a heat gun and heat form it into the proper shape to fit, (with a small gap) then glue it in place with caulk to the pipe. – The Evil Greebo Sep 24 '12 at 14:46
Look in the plumbing dept. of your local home improvement store.You may have to ask for help finding them. There are models that have a hinge to allow you to go around the pipe and then close it. – mikes Sep 24 '12 at 14:54
@macutan See this at Home Depot. Other sizes available and should also be at Lowes and plumbing supply houses. – bib Sep 24 '12 at 15:43
@macutan Yup. Per Greebo's original answer, "cut the plaster back about 1/4" from the walls of the pipe all the way around". – Jeremy W. Sherman Sep 24 '12 at 16:27

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