Attaching Trim to Walls in an Insulating Concrete Form House

Foam-form concrete houses make provisions for attaching trim, but the details can be a bear. This thread supplies several tips. November 19, 2005

Has anyone installed trim in a house that was build with Polysteel insulated concrete forms? I tried to screw the base moulding to the metal studs that are in the polysteel forms but the screws strip out and just spin before the head sinks below the surface of the moulding. I have also tried to nail it up with a 15 gallon finish nailer, but the nails just pull back out. Any help is appreciated.

Forum Responses
(Cabinet and Millwork Installation Forum)
From contributor W:
If its possible to make a material choice for the Baseboard, choose MDF. MDF will offer little resistance pulling away from the surface it's applied to. Use a latex based adhesive caulking on the back-side of your baseboard.

Fasten the baseboard with 1 13/16" 18 gauge brads. Shoot your brads in on an angle in an x-pattern, this will lock the baseboard to the drywall only, and not bounce off the Polysteel. (Dont go crazy with the brads). Use just enough nailing to hold the baseboard while the adhesive caulking dries.

From contributor R:
I had to do one years ago, and I removed a 3'' strip of drywall from the entire home, then screwed 1/2 plywood to the metal studs. I countersunk the screws in the plywood and shot the base on with 1'' brads. The one I worked on had 2 x 4 trimmers in openings to set the pre-hung doors.

From contributor J:
Remember, construction adhesive and hot melt work well together, but you must plan properly.