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Old 12-02-2011, 02:42 PM   #1
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Drywall Patching


Well, I removed the old pull down attic stairs that the previous owner had installed to replace with newer ones. When I took the casing off, I found that the previous owner must have had 1 too many when cutting the drywall, because it was all butchered up. I suppose that he didn't own a drywall saw. Anyways, some of the drywall is broken to the point that I can see directly to the 2x4 ceiling joist. Yes, that is correct---I have 2x4 joists/rafters in the attic! It's just small areas that are broken/missing around the rough framing for the stairs. The casing covered it, so I never noticed it before. I was told that I can just fill the broken/missing sections with drywall compound (several layers at a time), and tape it with mesh tape. On 1 or 2 spots, the "backing" that the mud will adhere to would be the actual 2x4 joist. On other areas, there is broken drywall with still the paper on the back end of it. Will this produce a strong bond? Once the entire project is finished, most of the butchered area will be covered with new casing, but I just want to make sure by repairing it first. I'd hate to have to cut the ceiling drywall out and frame in a whole new patch area.

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Old 12-02-2011, 03:18 PM   #2
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You need to cut out all the rough edges, and piggy-back some 2x's wherever you need to. You'll appreciate it when you go to tape it.

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Old 12-02-2011, 03:47 PM   #3
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Drywall Patching


are the new stairs the same size as old ones? the 2X4's you're seeing are probably the trusses? usually made of 2X4 wit lots of bracing and metal plates over joints for sturdiness. drywall mud, is not going to stick to the exposed wood to be structurally sound. it will fall out eventually! if the stairs are same size? why cant you just cut the butchered drywall back to back of framed joist, add 1 1/2" piece of drywall on same framing member, shim and install stairs, replace casing with wider casing, even if need baseboard size? or leave a bit larger reveal with casing held back from finished stair wood. to cover crack. no mudding involved. it's way above eye level, I doubt anyone but you would ever know it's there?

just a thought

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Old 12-02-2011, 03:51 PM   #4
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Thanks! The broken areas are just along where the 2x4 is. It doesn't extend (breaks) beyond the 2x4. Anything beyond the 2x4 area are minimal paper tears, etc. Not sure if I follow you, but are you saying to cut out the small damaged areas and fill that with a 2x piece of wood to the depth of the drywall by nail/screw to the 2x4 ceiling joist. Then mud/tape over that to the adjacent drywall?
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cougar01 View Post
Thanks! The broken areas are just along where the 2x4 is. It doesn't extend (breaks) beyond the 2x4. Anything beyond the 2x4 area are minimal paper tears, etc. Not sure if I follow you, but are you saying to cut out the small damaged areas and fill that with a 2x piece of wood to the depth of the drywall by nail/screw to the 2x4 ceiling joist. Then mud/tape over that to the adjacent drywall?
When you cut out the bad stuff (not little pieces, but 1 1/2" back from the opening the whole length of the side you're working on, so your new strip of drywall will be 1 1/2" by 2' or whatever the full length is. You'll probably have to drop 2x scabs on the back side of the joist or head-out to re-nail the edge of the ceiling to (when you cut out the 1 1/2 the drywall is probably flopping in the breeze now).
Replace the strips, then tape unless the new trim covers.
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Old 12-02-2011, 09:33 PM   #6
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OK. Thanks! I got it now. There are 3 butchered sections about 6-10 inches in length each. The overall length is approx 54 inches. So, I should just be able to cut out the 3 small sections? Square it off and cut to the back end of the ceiling joist and patch in 2 new pieces of drywall and tape just to be safe. I still enough "good" drywall along the joist to screw the original ceiling into the joist to secure it better so it won't flop as mentioned. Just hope that with such small sections to patch, the drywall screw doesn't break the gypsum. Is it OK to 'glue' in the small pieces to the joist to avoid the possibility of breaking the gypsum? I have some construction adhesive laying around somewhere.

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