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Old 01-06-2014, 09:26 PM   #1
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What do you think of this drywall job?


I'm renovating my basement, and one of the rooms is slated for use as a music practice room for electric and bass guitar. The volume is not earsplitting, but the sound used to carry at a subtle level throughout the house and was an annoyance for my wife. For this reason, we wanted to add some sound insulation to reduce the noise levels somewhat.

It seems that a popular standard for home theatre rooms is to hang two layers of 5/8" drywall on resilient channel, with a layer of Green Glue sandwiched between the drywall sheets and mineral wool inside the wall cavity. All seams and gaps are typically sealed with acoustic caulking to make an "airtight" room.

My contractor put Roxul (a brand of mineral wool) inside the wall and hung double 5/8" directly on the studs - the work was done right before the holidays and there was not the best communication regarding soundproofing.

I'm concerned that the gaps around the drywall are kind of large for an installation intended for sound attenuation. I don't have experience with drywall hanging, and would be grateful for comments on the overall quality of the drywall job shown in the pictures below.

Gaps around window:


Large gap at corner around bulkhead:


Large gap along wall/floor junction:


Big hole for electrical box:


Another electrical box:


Vent hole:


I have discussed this with individuals having experience in recording studio design, where the consensus was that the drywall install was not up to the standards usually applied for soundproofing. In fairness to the contractor, I realize these standards might be very high and not reasonable to expect from somebody who's not a specialist in soundproofing. I am posting here because I would be very grateful for general (non-specialist) opinions on whether this represents a decent drywall job by "everyday" standards.

Thanks in advance,

P

PS I realize that:
- there is no such thing as total soundproofing
- reducing the sound from a cranked electric guitar or bass to low levels would be a very expensive proposition requiring a lot more than a couple of layers of drywall (I play at "bedroom" levels, which still carry and any attenuation will help)
- special treatment and design is required for vents; this was actually done

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Last edited by Proton; 01-06-2014 at 11:14 PM. Reason: clarity/typo
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Old 01-06-2014, 09:47 PM   #2
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What do you think of this drywall job?


I would definitely classify that as a poor hanging job. From the looks of the tape coat, the finishing will also end up poor. What made you choose this installer? Did you not see any of his previous work?

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Old 01-06-2014, 09:56 PM   #3
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What do you think of this drywall job?


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I would definitely classify that as a poor hanging job. From the looks of the tape coat, the finishing will also end up poor. What made you choose this installer? Did you not see any of his previous work?
Thanks for the comments -

The installer works for a large GC firm that has proven to be good in some areas and less so in others. It was a large and complex project (ok by my humble standards), which involved jacking up the house to build a new foundation under an old addition that had been on concrete pillars over a crawlspace. The GC we chose was the only firm that really seemed confident in their ability to manage the entire project, but I have to say I did not see previous drywall work by their group (and if I did it probably would have been by a different guy).

The same installer has done some other framing work in this job that I'm very happy with, but they put on a mad rush before Christmas and I think they called in some really junior help to achieve as much as possible and this is the result.

This is my third large-ish home renovation project and I still find I have a lot to learn...

This kind of feedback really helps me, as I usually just see the finished product and don't really have the experience to say with authority that this is a sloppy job (even though it certainly looks to be). Shoddy work here will, in addition to looking bad, undermine the soundproofing for which I'm paying a fair amount - not good!

I looked at the manufacturer's recommendation for the product used (SHEETROCK Firecode X) and they call for gaps no larger than 1/8"

P

Last edited by Proton; 01-06-2014 at 11:19 PM. Reason: I can't spell
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:05 PM   #4
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You would be amazed at what a good drywall finisher can do with a sub par job. You will need to find someone who is very good at finishing to end up with a satisfactory project. Some of the hanging may need to be redone. Whoever started the taping there is not the guy you want doing the rest of the finishing.
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:11 PM   #5
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Thanks six,

I've contacted the GC with my concerns, and am hoping they will take them seriously. My uneducated feeling has also been that some of the drywall should just be re-done.

Kind regards,

P
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:25 PM   #6
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What do you think of this drywall job?


I'm not seeing a single thing that was done right.
For sure that's not going to be sound proof done like that.
Since you built up the floor I would have added blocking between the studs to have something to attach the rock to.
Looks like he has one area tight to the floor and the other wall up an inch.
Must have been the first time he's ever used a Roto ZIP.
Seams are not wide enough.
I would not even pay for a job done that bad.
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:28 PM   #7
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What do you think of this drywall job?


The taper will backcharge someone- hope it's not you
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:31 PM   #8
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I'm not seeing a single thing that was done right.
For sure that's not going to be sound proof done like that.
Since you built up the floor I would have added blocking between the studs to have something to attach the rock to.
Looks like he has one area tight to the floor and the other wall up an inch.
Must have been the first time he's ever used a Roto ZIP.
Seams are not wide enough.
I would not even pay for a job done that bad.
Yikes! That's what I was afraid of...

The framing around the floor looks like this:

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Old 01-06-2014, 10:34 PM   #9
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I am no electrician, but shouldn't there be some staples holding the wires near the boxes?
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:39 PM   #10
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What do you think of this drywall job?


Quote:
Originally Posted by TheEplumber View Post
The taper will backcharge someone - hope it's not you
Both the taper and drywall hanger are employees of the GC firm. The room was done the day before Christmas break and it was clear they were really rushing.
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:53 PM   #11
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Guess there electrical inspections going on there.
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:57 PM   #12
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They even used the wrong style boxes. There's no way to slide the sheetrock over boxes like the one he used.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Steel-Cit...30R/202601209#
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:58 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Guess there electrical inspections going on there.
I'm in Montreal, Canada ...

For some reason, the municipality does not generally do electrical (or other) inspections in these residential jobs. We are doing this totally legit, with a city permit and all licensed trades. When I lived in the US, you had to have an inspector check the wiring before closing up the walls. Maybe they don't do inspections because the work is being done by a licensed electrician?

P

Last edited by Proton; 01-07-2014 at 07:19 AM. Reason: clarity
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Old 01-07-2014, 07:24 AM   #14
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Hi and thanks again for the replies.

So far, I'm not hearing anyone chime in to say

"no, no, it's not that bad - this is normal, and although it looks rough a good drywall finisher will fix that so it looks perfect... all those cracks will be covered with baseboard/moulding"...

I've contacted my GC about it, and I suppose he could invoke the above arguments.

P
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Old 01-07-2014, 07:52 AM   #15
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What do you think of this drywall job?


Sorry but this is bad and going to be hard to fix. This is not just bad soundproofing, this is bad drywall. As Joe said I really don't see anything right.
If it was me since they didn't use the right boxes, didn't know enough to staple the wire at the box, their entire wiring job would be suspicious to me.

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