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Is it common not to have wood under the stucco on walls on a new home ?? my builder has left 4 or 5 4 x8 sections with no wood under the stucco and says this is very common to just wire lathe and stucco over the insulation?

  • that's a newer practice, so "common" might not apply because most houses don't even have stucco, and those that do that are old will have a sturdy underlay. nowadays, the practice you describe is not uncommon. – dandavis Jun 4 '18 at 18:20
  • Depends on location and local building code. For example, Vancouver, Canada will have lots of stucco but almost every wall will have plywood to prevent shearing due to seismic activity. Where are you located? – Jeffrey Jun 4 '18 at 20:40
  • Depends on the seismic zone. – Lee Sam Jul 8 '18 at 1:12
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Original three coat stucco used a 17-ga or 18-ga wire in a hexagonal mesh similar to chicken wire. Over-lapping horizontal layers of black tar paper would be attached to the studs or to sheathing and the wire mesh fastened to the studs and sheathing through the tar paper.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihp0QaUZc18

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqYgqbiwqNs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQ5N69SoAJE

A house now under construction in my neighborhood was entirely sheathed in green ZIP OSB. Part of the exterior is stucco. The installers put black felt over the ZIP board and then nailed a metal mesh different from the original type over that. I assume they nailed into the studs and in between. I saw them apply the first coat. I don't know how many coats are used in this application, but I suspect it is only two.

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