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Old 01-15-2010, 02:30 AM   #1
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


What is meant by the "butt" and "rail" edges of a sheet of drywall?

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Old 01-15-2010, 01:57 PM   #2
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


the butt is the tapered side of the drywall, that allows it to be butted to another sheet of drywall this allows room for you to tape and mud easier. In most cases the butt joints run vertical around the wall. The rail is the end that is not tapered generally these are fastened to the floor and cieling.

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Old 01-15-2010, 02:54 PM   #3
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


I'm willing to be wrong, but I have always known it to be just the opposite of that. The butt has always been the 4 foot end to me.
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Old 01-15-2010, 03:35 PM   #4
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


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I'm willing to be wrong, but I have always known it to be just the opposite of that. The butt has always been the 4 foot end to me.

Same concept as a stile and rail.
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Old 01-15-2010, 03:37 PM   #5
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


I am no expert so I could be wrong, I just assume the butt end is called that since its meant to be butted to the other drywalls and the rail end is where you would place a chair rail. I was really curious about this before I posted originally and searched around for the official definitions and couldn't find anything except for one post that said you should only nail the rail ends, so thats where I figured its the 4' section.
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Old 01-15-2010, 04:45 PM   #6
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


Did you see the terms in a written context? If so, where?
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Old 01-15-2010, 07:15 PM   #7
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


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I'm willing to be wrong, but I have always known it to be just the opposite of that. The butt has always been the 4 foot end to me.
Me too. Maybe I have had it all 90 degrees wrong for years. No wonder my layouts suck and I spend so much on the stuff, tape and mud.
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Old 01-15-2010, 07:17 PM   #8
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


Butt ends are the 4' non-tapered ends
Butt joints are the ones that need a special mudding tool to blend them in
A simple google search will explain this, never known a man not too look for butt on the Internet
The tool is curved slightly to form a joint over the butt joints



http://www.tape-finish-texture-drywa...g_drywall.html




Butt Joint


Recessed Joint


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Old 01-15-2010, 08:05 PM   #9
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


But , where does "rail" come from?
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Old 01-15-2010, 09:22 PM   #10
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


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But , where does "rail" come from?
Who cares. It refers to the long edges of the sheets.
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Old 01-16-2010, 12:20 AM   #11
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


You can make finishing your butt joints easier and flatter by using a butt board. Let's see how many questions that statement creates.......
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Old 01-17-2010, 01:36 AM   #12
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


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But , where does "rail" come from?

think of studs and trusses like long train tracks- rails , then think of drywall as the cars , if you put the drywall parrell to the rails studs trusses like a train car its called railroading. such as standing up sheets , its bad to railroad ceiling sheets so dont do it , it needs extra framing.
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Old 01-17-2010, 07:46 AM   #13
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


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You can make finishing your butt joints easier and flatter by using a butt board. Let's see how many questions that statement creates.......
I LOVE them... especially on ceilings.
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Old 01-17-2010, 11:02 AM   #14
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


With all due respect to everyone, and to the drywall tradesmen in different areas, I have never (in this area) seen drywall hung as the man in the picture is doing around here. He is hanging the sheet vertically, whereas the sheets on the other side of the wall studs appear to be hung horizontally, as we do around here. We start at the top working down, and stagger the sheets. I was taught that by hanging the sheets perpendicular to the framing, this would make a stronger wall. Is this a regional thing, or a tradesman's preference? Thanks, David
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Old 01-17-2010, 07:22 PM   #15
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What's the "Butt" and "Rail?"


I'm not a tradesman but I have done my homework. In most cases drywall that is hung on the wall is hung horizontally. Yes, you end up with butt joints (commonly called 'bastard joint' by the finishers) but many can be eliminated by using 12' board lengths. If you are totally adverse to finishing butt joints then, by all means, incorporate a butt board and place the butt joint between the framing rather than on it. It creates a recess just like an edge joint.
Gypsum board does have a grain to it and it is stronger along it's length, weaker across it's width. That's why it's hung on a ceiling perpendicular to the rafters. Doing the same on walls should therefore make the application stronger as opposed to placing the board vertically. It also places the tapered joint at waist level and the finishers love you for it. On the other hand, if your layout is such that you can place your board vertically and eliminate butt joints altogether and you or your finisher don't object to mudding the joint from floor to ceiling, then that is your preference. There really is no right or wrong on walls, but simply what works best for your situation or what happens to be customary for your rock men.
As for the guy in the picture, I doubt he's really a pro, but rather just some actor they used for the photo. No respectable tradesman would carry a framing hammer on his tool belt..........
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Last edited by Ron Franck; 01-17-2010 at 07:27 PM. Reason: text added about photo
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