I'm in the process of building the storage area under the stair case. Since I'm already having 15 sheets of 18mm full size plywood each 4'×8' in size, I'm framing the entire project using only this material. Only the door rail and it's suspension race are of the aluminium.

Since I want to have wall-like finish with all screws are invisible, I'm thinking if it is possible to skim the plywood surface with stopping compound.

Is this a good idea? Will it stick or flake off after sometime? I'm living in Malaysia and here the climate is constant thru the year. Thus wood expansion and contraction will not be the problem.

  • I'm having trouble invisioning an area under the stairs that requires 15 4x8 foot boards to enclose. That's a pretty big room. Why not use drywall? – Gary Bak Sep 24 '18 at 0:17
  • "I'm framing the entire project using only this material"... please tell us that you are using some dimensional lumber or other structural framing members? – Jimmy Fix-it Sep 24 '18 at 0:20
  • Not all 15 sheets will be used on this project. But no other lumber will be used except plywood. – soosai steven Sep 24 '18 at 0:31
  • @JimmyFix-it Dimensional lumber are created using glued strips cut from the plywood. The aluminium rail is 3cm in thickness and will be sandwiched between plywood walls. Thus I will need dimensional lumbers of 3cm thickness to maintain eveness. As such, i decided to create my own out of the plywood sheets. – soosai steven Sep 24 '18 at 0:33

Yes, you can skim coat the plywood. Use an oil based primer first, then instead of topping compound use setting type compound aka "hot mud", the type of compound that uses plaster of paris. This type of mud is stronger and adheres better than premixed topping compound. You will mix it a bit watery, like thick paint, and can put it on with a roller, then use a squeegee to level it off. I did this over wooden paneling, and it worked pretty well. It will probably take a couple of coats to level out everything, especially at the joints.

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  • Why must apply oil based primer first? Won't it seal the wood fibres and cause the Plaster to lose grip? – soosai steven Sep 24 '18 at 11:53

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