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Old 09-05-2011, 08:57 PM   #1
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


Is it possible to hang 12 foot 1/2" drywall horizontally on the walls by an individual (especially the upper 4 feet)? If so, how? I have a drywall lift but it only appears to be good for the ceiling.
Are 1 1/4" screws good for 1/2" drywall?

What is the longest that 1/2" comes in? The local store looked at me very funny when I asked for 14 foot sheets.(almost like I'd just stepped out of a time machine)

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Old 09-05-2011, 10:15 PM   #2
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


That size, you should rent a drywall lift, otherwise, you can cut the panel in thirds, or hang vertical Easier with the lift, or just call a couple of buddies. If this is your first time doing, it is cheaper to just pay a crew to hang and tape.

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Old 09-06-2011, 07:21 AM   #3
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That size, you should rent a drywall lift, otherwise, you can cut the panel in thirds, or hang vertical Easier with the lift, or just call a couple of buddies. If this is your first time doing, it is cheaper to just pay a crew to hang and tape.

I've done some before but always had help hanging plus I rented a lift to do the ceiling. The problem now is that I'm working at my cottage and most of my friends are a bit too old to ask them for help.
I bought one of those $150 lifts and was able to do the ceilings but the problem for me now is how to do 12' horizontal sheets on the top half of the walls. Will a lift work for the walls? If so how?
I intend to get someone to mud. I have done it before but I'm painfully slow.

thanks, Gulb
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Old 09-06-2011, 08:33 AM   #4
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


You might want to try something like this.

The 'buttboards' are just a smarter way to do butt ends..... you can go ahead and hang the old way and fight with the 'butt bulge' as most of us have in the past. That's certainly your choice.
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Old 09-06-2011, 09:12 AM   #5
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


Interesting! That's a great working-solo trick.
So by not ending the drywall on the stud, it will minimize the bulge?
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Old 09-06-2011, 09:16 AM   #6
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You might want to try something like this.

The 'buttboards' are just a smarter way to do butt ends..... you can go ahead and hang the old way and fight with the 'butt bulge' as most of us have in the past. That's certainly your choice.
Thanks Willie,
It looks like the buttboards are 1x4. Good idea. I have one wall longer than 12 feet so I'll use them there. It took me a while to understand what the 2x4's were for but I see they are for supporting the sheet and adjusting the height (only one nail in each). I was hoping to use my lift for the walls. My lift is a cheapie and doesn't angle very far vertical. I'll try both methods and declare a winner!
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Old 09-06-2011, 04:25 PM   #7
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


Why 4x12 if you are trying to do this yourself? Between 1/2 inch thick 4x8 and 4x12 you have a 28 pound difference just in sheet weight. 4x12 is 82 pounds and 4x8 is 54.
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Old 09-06-2011, 04:53 PM   #8
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


I take a 2x 4- 8ft, rip the side of it to a 10 degree angle with the angle back towards the wall when I screw it to the studs like the pic above. I put the drywall on milk cartons(the steel or plastic kind) with the paper face to the wall. Flip it over on the 2x 4 and adjust it according to where the studs fall. If you are strong enough to handle the 4x 12 drywall, this system makes it real easy to install by one person.
FWIW, the largest drywall I ever had the displeasure of working with was 4x 16 5/8" fire rated. I hauled 6 railcars of it in one of the local malls. It took me and another dimwit a week to stock it.
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Old 09-06-2011, 07:24 PM   #9
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FWIW, the largest drywall I ever had the displeasure of working with was 4x 16 5/8" fire rated. I hauled 6 railcars of it in one of the local malls. It took me and another dimwit a week to stock it.
Because obviously you were lazy and only working 4 hour days, with breaks. I honestly have never seen a piece of 4x16x5/8 but once. I couldn't fit sheets that long easily into restoration project without cutting them down first. But why did it take you a week? With one under each arm at only 141 pounds and some ounces each?

And why. I didn't work on industrial so this may be typical fire code or something but 16' sheets seem inhumane if the goal was to save on mud and tape. Bet nobody messed with you accumulated muscle mass after hours! Did you pick up an toss Honda Civics for free drinks?

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Old 09-06-2011, 08:00 PM   #10
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deja-vu sdsester Drywall installation...longer better?
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Old 09-06-2011, 08:35 PM   #11
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Why 4x12 if you are trying to do this yourself? Between 1/2 inch thick 4x8 and 4x12 you have a 28 pound difference just in sheet weight. 4x12 is 82 pounds and 4x8 is 54.
I like the longer sheets to reduce the number of joints especially butt joints. I would like to get 14 foot sheets but they are a thing of the past around here.
I was actually wondering how much these sheets weigh. My wife and I can easily handle the bottom 12 foot.
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Old 09-06-2011, 08:41 PM   #12
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[quote=TrapperL;722557]I take a 2x 4- 8ft, rip the side of it to a 10 degree angle with the angle back towards the wall when I screw it to the studs like the pic above. I put the drywall on milk cartons(the steel or


good suggestion for installing alone. I can easily lift the sheet up from the milk cartons but my problem would be getting the sheet from the next room and putting it onto the 2x4 and cartons I think. I'll give it a whirl. All great one man ideas on this forum.
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Old 09-06-2011, 09:19 PM   #13
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


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Thanks Willie,
It looks like the buttboards are 1x4. Good idea. I have one wall longer than 12 feet so I'll use them there. It took me a while to understand what the 2x4's were for but I see they are for supporting the sheet and adjusting the height (only one nail in each). I was hoping to use my lift for the walls. My lift is a cheapie and doesn't angle very far vertical. I'll try both methods and declare a winner!
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BUTTBOARDS are NOT just 1x4's. RESEARCH the subject to find out how to MAKE or BUY a buttboard.
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Old 09-07-2011, 05:39 AM   #14
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BUTTBOARDS are NOT just 1x4's. RESEARCH the subject to find out how to MAKE or BUY a buttboard.
Thanks Willie, I looked them up and all I can say is that you learn something new all of the time.
I called a rather large building supply which specializes in drywall and they had never heard of them. It looks like we are in the dark up here. I'll have to make mine I guess. As I only require a few I wish that I could have bought them.
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Old 09-11-2011, 04:16 PM   #15
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Hanging horizontal drywall by one person


It is POSSIBLE to hang 12' sheets "solo" if you're used to hanging and are in reasonably good shape. I'm in my late 50's and can still do it, though I prefer to have a helper these days. (And 14' sheets are available at a drywall supply company. If you don't have a lift (I THINK you can use them on the wall, though I've never used one), tack nails across the top edge of the sheet so when you get it butted to the ceiling you can drive them into the top plate(s) to hold the sheet until you finish fastening it. Of course I'm "old school" and use nails and glue on wood framing, so it would be hard to use screws (1-1/4" are fine, by the way). Willie's method suggested above will likely work fine. Just more time consuming (but less strain on the old back)....
Best of luck

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