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Old 09-27-2011, 12:07 PM   #1
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Just wanted to get an opinion from the pros, do "real" drywallers use the corner knives or do you do corners with a straight 6" knife?

I am a homeowner who might do drywall once every few years when I get a bug to remodel something. Never could get the hang of taping and mudding and hate it with a passion. I admire the pros who can get a smooth finish without even sanding. Thanks!

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Old 09-27-2011, 06:46 PM   #2
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


I am not a drywall pro, but I do drywall/repairs on a regular basis. I use a corner tool for corners. It makes it a lot easier for me.

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Old 09-27-2011, 06:58 PM   #3
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Corner trowels are for amateurs who do not care about quality. Honestly its easier to just do it right. Use a four inch knife and paper tape. Apply even coat of mud to each side of the corner. Be sure to fill the gaps, then fold paper tape down the crease and push into the corner. Use your knife to pull excess mud out of each side, one at a time. Once the tape drys coat one side of the corner at a time until its ready for sanding. After your first corner you will be a better drywaller than a guy who uses a corner trowel for a lifetime.
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Old 09-27-2011, 10:28 PM   #4
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Also not a pro...I use a corner knife to get the mud up on the wall and evenly applied. Then a 4 inch knife to press the tape in/ push the excess mud out. After that its all straight knives..
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Old 09-27-2011, 11:49 PM   #5
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


I am not a pro drywaller, however I do a fair bit of small boarding jobs and repairs.

I used to use a corner trowell for all my corners, then one day tried my taping knife. Found it much easier and smoother than the corner trowell, now I just use my taping knife for everything.
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Old 09-28-2011, 07:10 AM   #6
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


I'm with Chris: I use a 7" taping knife - I prefer it. I use the plastic ones, too - because they have a rounded corner on them and don't tear the paper. Metal knives have a sharp 90-corner and gouge and shred paper, I hate that.

If my house was a bit more square and plumb I'd use metal corner beads with a paper strip and just tack them up with a roller like the pros do. I do use these on outside corners, though - love them - and a taping knife works fine here, too.

I hate plastic bead strips - it takes extra mud to cover them over.
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Old 09-28-2011, 07:22 AM   #7
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


I have a corner trowel I got in a box of misc. tools at auction.
It's out in the shed..... somewhere.... probably still in that box..... it never came in the house at all during my drywalling stage. In the time it would have taken me to find it, I had already done the corners......

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Old 09-28-2011, 09:19 AM   #8
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehabber View Post
I am not a drywall pro, but I do drywall/repairs on a regular basis. I use a corner tool for corners. It makes it a lot easier for me.
Ditto here.
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Old 09-28-2011, 09:20 AM   #9
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Quote:
Originally Posted by OhioHomeDoctor View Post
Corner trowels are for amateurs who do not care about quality. Honestly its easier to just do it right. Use a four inch knife and paper tape. Apply even coat of mud to each side of the corner. Be sure to fill the gaps, then fold paper tape down the crease and push into the corner. Use your knife to pull excess mud out of each side, one at a time. Once the tape drys coat one side of the corner at a time until its ready for sanding. After your first corner you will be a better drywaller than a guy who uses a corner trowel for a lifetime.
That's pretty presumptuous.
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Old 09-28-2011, 09:22 AM   #10
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Quote:
Originally Posted by OhioHomeDoctor View Post
Corner trowels are for amateurs who do not care about quality. Honestly its easier to just do it right. Use a four inch knife and paper tape. Apply even coat of mud to each side of the corner. Be sure to fill the gaps, then fold paper tape down the crease and push into the corner. Use your knife to pull excess mud out of each side, one at a time. Once the tape drys coat one side of the corner at a time until its ready for sanding. After your first corner you will be a better drywaller than a guy who uses a corner trowel for a lifetime.
That's pretty presumptuous.
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Old 09-28-2011, 09:27 AM   #11
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


regular knife to apply first coat of mud...corner tool to apply next 2 layers...saves time and comes out straight and smooth
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Old 09-28-2011, 11:28 AM   #12
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Everyone is different and its a matter of choice and preference as long at the end results come out good.

I've used them on corners before to set the tape quicker then used a knife to apply pressure to squeeze the excess mud out. Then mud again with a knife.
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Old 09-28-2011, 11:56 AM   #13
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Quote:
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regular knife to apply first coat of mud...corner tool to apply next 2 layers...saves time and comes out straight and smooth
My approach is the exact opposite, haha. I use the corner trowel to lay in the mud for the first coat. It gives me that nice straight line without fuss. Then I straight blade subsequent coats. I found the corner blade cumbersome after the first coat because the mud width becomes larger than the corner trowel to accommodate blending so you'll end up using the straight blade anyways.
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Old 09-28-2011, 01:00 PM   #14
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Wow, seems to be a variety of opinions. This last project I used a straight knife for the corners and have to admit it looks better than using the corner knife. BUT, and a big but, doing one side at a time and waiting for each to dry before doing the other side, after 3 coats, is a royal PIA and waste of valuable time. I am taping the inside of a new 2'x3' closet and the close quarters make it hard to use the corner tool.

I can't believe in this day and age someone hasn't invented a better way to hang drywall. How about drywall tongue-and-groove? Or drywall caulk crack filler? Or roll-on seemless drywall (like rain gutters)?
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Old 09-28-2011, 02:01 PM   #15
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Corner Knives - Good? Bad?


Well I think it strongly depends on your overall approach to taping and your wall-surface/end look.

I texture my walls - so I've found that having a perfectly squared corner works against my efforts to do a skip texture.

If I was doing idyllic smooth walls any imperfection in a bead would work against me - I'd use other tools.

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