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justinwillsie 01-07-2009 11:41 PM

Mixing Drywall Mud
I do alot of eveything for the company i work for, we general contract jobs and do everything from exterior work too flooring too drywall mud and tape, cabinets, but im having trouble lately with air pockets in my mud. Im not sure if its how im mixing it or what tricks are too stop this??

Termite 01-08-2009 08:28 AM

I'm no pro drywaller, but I think it is pretty normal to have some voids due to small air bubbles in the first coat of mud. When it dries the second coat fills any such voids.

The only thing I'd do is try not to whip air into the mud by mixing it at high speed. When using a drill to mix it just do it at very low RPM.

When I mud anything I use a hawk and I pull my mud right from the box and mix it on the hawk with my taping knife. Sounds disgusting but I always spit in it to thin it out very very slightly.

AtlanticWBConst. 01-08-2009 08:47 AM

Mix in a little liquid dish soap. Seriously.

jerryh3 01-08-2009 08:51 AM


Originally Posted by AtlanticWBConst. (Post 209269)
Mix in a little liquid dish soap. Seriously.

Second that. The soap should break the surface tension of the compound cutting down on the bubbles.

Termite 01-08-2009 10:07 AM

That's a pretty cool idea. How much dish soap per box of mud? Like a tablespoon?

RippySkippy 01-08-2009 10:27 AM

Are you adding water to the mud? I always thin down the pre-mixed stuff before applying, I like it thin. If it's stiff...the air pockets are a bit more difficult to work out. What kind of mixer are you using...some whip more air into the mix exacerbating the problem.

Lots of finishers ad a little bit of liquid dish soap, don't over do it. No Pock Pro is an additive formulated for use with drywall mud that will do the same thing...but will cost more.

AtlanticWBConst. 01-08-2009 11:07 AM

Dependant on the particular brand of redimix compound, it is good to mix the product. Sometimes you may need to add a little water (as already suggested). This thins out the compound, and makes it more pliable and easier to work with. Sometimes, if the compound has been allowed to freeze, you may end up with inconsistency and more air bubbles.

The liquid dish soap is an old trick. You don't need alot of it. Add as you need it, dependant on the amounf of bubbling your getting. 1/4 cup to start or so.

justinwillsie 01-08-2009 06:46 PM

thanks guys, ya i talked to someone about it before i did 3rd coat today and i used a drill with a variable speed too slow down the mixing and that helped alot, i will try the soap trick though too!

Bob Mariani 01-09-2009 02:08 PM

Bubbling is also caused by lifting the mixer out of the surface of the mud, thus mixing in air. Adding water reduces the mud, and is against proper mixing directions but is always done.

RippySkippy 01-09-2009 04:38 PM

yeah...when I started...I didn't thin...and OMG...I fought and fought it. There must be a fairly large margin of error with regards to the quantity of water...I like it relatively thin and have never seen signs of it adversely affecting it's performance. Lucky maybe...

DUDE! 01-10-2009 08:57 AM

mudding is an ongoing challange. Seems sometimes it goes so so smooth and other times you fight it to get a good finish. I am very jealous of the pros. This definitly falls into the catagory where more is not better.

bjbatlanta 01-10-2009 12:21 PM

Always add a healthy squirt of Lemon Joy when mixing mud (my own personal preference, love that lemony smell), and water. The tricky part is the amount of water as mfgrs. change redimix consistencies with seasonal temp changes. Add the water in small increments until you get the consistency you're comfortable working with. You can always add more, can't take it out....

Jack of most 01-21-2009 09:37 AM

You must be using a premixed joint compound. I always use a powdered joint compound. Hand mix this. NO POWER TOOLS! You don't want to incorporate too much air. I like the 90 min. set time. It's enough work time and yet dries fast. Since I started using this I have not had an air bubble problem. It also seems to give a smoother finish and easy to sand.

bjbatlanta 01-21-2009 10:09 AM

For small amounts of setting type (powder) compound, mix by hand in a mud pan. Large amounts can be mixed with a drill and paddle in a bucket. Adding a bit of dish soap reduces the bubbling effect. Also helps to have a variable speed drill for mixing powders at a slower speed. Less sloshing product out of the bucket and less air introduced.....

PaliBob 01-21-2009 10:39 AM

For mixing setting type (powder) compound in a mud pan Myron the Drywall Guy at the Las Vegas Remodeler's Show did DW classes at the USG booth, useing a small cake mixer attachment chucked into his cordless drill to mix the mud in the pan.

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