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Old 09-23-2013, 06:50 AM   #1
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Best method for locating studs when installing drywall


I'm looking for a consensus on the best method for locating/marking stud locations when installing a 4x8 sheet of drywall.
It appears that the pros tend to eyeball it, but I haven't had much luck with that. I'm doing a large basement finishing project and need a method that will allow me to work quickly and accurately (i.e. not miss the studs with my screws).
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Old 09-23-2013, 06:57 AM   #2
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Best method for locating studs when installing drywall


I put 1 1/2" tape markers on floor & ceiling. Then pencil in a light line with a straight edge once the panel is up.

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Old 09-23-2013, 11:04 AM   #3
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Best method for locating studs when installing drywall


A pencil line will make your work easier, especially if you draw the line with a 4' level. Then you don't even need a line - you can just make a mark every 12" down the level for each screw.

Normally what I do is make a mark on the side that's covered. For example, let's say your ceiling is drywalled and your walls are not. The first drywall sheets will go up against the ceiling. So make a mark with tape or pencil on the ceiling drywall where the wall studs are. Then put up your sheet of drywall and put the screws along the top. The studs are exposed on the bottom, so it will be clear where to screw on the bottom. Now that you have a location at the top and bottom, it should be easy to eyeball the 3 remaining screws on that stud line.

Repeat this for the bottom sheet of drywall. Now you'll need to mark the floor for the stud locations. For the top edge, of course you can just guage off the screw head in the drywall sheet above it.

Technically they say it's best to start the screws in the middle of the board and work out. That might make a difference when hanging on a ceiling, but on a wall I doubt it makes any difference.
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