We are prepping to build a earthbag house in the mountainous region of VA (we were able to find an architect willing to work with us in order for us to get approved by the permitting board. Woo!) and I want to start slaking lime as soon as the permits go through so it's nice and fat by the time we actually need to use it to make the plaster finish. But the only source I can find in the US that sells quicklime (not hydrated or hydraulic, just regular ol' CaO ) doesn't sell it in powdered form. The smallest I can buy it is granular fines. Will granular fines still slake okay, or will this lead to a wonky, gritty lime putty? We could get hydrated lime in powder form a little easier, but we'd prefer to work with slaked quicklime as that's the most eco-friendly option (while hydrated lime is just made with water, it's made in a special industrial hydrator, and we would much prefer to just let it sit in sealed recycled 50-gal drums than buy a product that needs any more processing than necessary) So will this granular fine quicklime work? If not, can anyone help us with finding a powdered quicklime supplier? Or are we stuck with hydrated lime?
I haven't worked with quicklime, only hydrated, but I suspect that it may take longer to slake down to a smooth consistency, but once fully hydrated it would... be fully hydrated, and therefore smooth, especially once mixed with sand for use.