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Old 08-28-2010, 04:10 PM   #1
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


Partly due to the fact that the walls aren't straight and corners are whacko, and mostly because I'm a novice, I'm going to need to fill some gaps on my crown molding project. What is the best brand and type caulk to use? Also, somewhere I read to use non-shrink spackling to fill the nailholes instead of caulk. What is non-shrink spackling?

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Old 08-28-2010, 04:29 PM   #2
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


Gaps of 1/8 +/- can be filled with a latex caulk. I use Dap 35 year latex caulking. Non shrink spackling has little or no water. It's the evaporation that causes the shrinking. There's a spackle that's in a black and orange can (name escapes me) that is terrific. It's sold at Home Depot among other places.
I'll post the name when I find the can.
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Old 08-29-2010, 12:03 AM   #3
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


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Old 08-29-2010, 04:25 PM   #4
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


I have used drywall mud to get the best results. Grab a bag of 20 minute mud, mix up a small batch and patch away. Once it dries, go over with sandpaper, prime and paint. Your seams will become invisible.
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Old 08-29-2010, 05:28 PM   #5
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


Can someone please explain these angles to me? The settings on my compound miter saw have crown molding miter at 33.9 with a preset bevel (measurement evades me off the top of my head.) In any case it seems to work but that math doesn't add up. If the walls are 90 degrees, 33.9 + 33.9 doesn't add up to 90. I know I should stop thinking so much but it is making me crazy.
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Old 08-29-2010, 06:56 PM   #6
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


You not thinking in terms of the spring angle of the molding.

If you stand up a piece of 1x4 and set the saw angle at 45, it will cut a 45 degree angle across the edge, but square across the board. Now lay the 1x4 flat on the saw table. It will now cut 45 degrees across the board, but the cut will be square on the edge.

Now, if you nest the 1x4 on a typical spring angle, usually 50/40 and make the cut, neither the cut on the edge or across the board will be a 45.

BTW, those crown settings on the saw only work for a specific spring angle, so it's best to cut opposing miters on short pieces and nest them at the wall/ceiling/corner intersection in order to determine where to attach the trim to make the miters fit properly.
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Old 08-29-2010, 07:42 PM   #7
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


"Nesting" means that you look at your miter saw like this: See, or envision, the lower surface (where the wood rests) as a substitute for the surface of your ceiling. Hence, the fence (the back vertical part) can be envisioned as a representation of your wall. They obviously meet at 90 degrees... just like your ceiling and walls do.

"Nesting" cutting dictates that you are going to have to begin by placing your molding on the saw base upside down. In other words, the top edge of your molding (the edge that will go against the ceiling) is placed against the part of your saw you are pretending is the ceiling surface. That part is the base surface, the section with the slot the saw blade drops down into when cutting. The molding sits on its edge, front part toward you, on the base with that top edge of the molding downward.

The other edge of the molding tilts back and rests against the fence of the saw. Remember that we are calling the saw fence a substitute for the surface of the wall.

The molding rests, "nests", at an angle against these two surfaces just as it soon will be "nesting" when it is installed in your home. Notice how the back edges of your molding have small, flat surface edges running their full length? Look closely at those two edges when the molding is sitting on your saw as I have tried to describe. See how they probably are NOT flat against either the saw base plate nor the fence? Slide the tilted molding forward or back a little bit (toward you or away from you) till you can see how the two flat back edges soon fit flush and smooth against their respective surfaces.

When the angled, or 'tilted'. molding is sitting firmly and flatly against both surfaces at the same time, the molding is known as being properly "nested" . It is now sitting ("nested") at the same angle it will assume when installed up there above your head.

Do not be dismayed that it is upside down. This is how you want it for now. You will cut all of your pieces this way, always. Upside down.

Not only that, but you will also cut all your pieces "backward". (because your saw setup is the opposite of, or upside down to the actual position and orientation of your walls and ceiling) In other words, a piece that will fit on your ceiling on the LEFT of a corner as you are looking up at it up there, will be cut on the RIGHT side of your saw blade down here. And a right hand piece will, likewise, have to be cut from the LEFT side of the saw.

This is commonly referred to as the "upside down and backward" method (How about that?).... or "nested" cutting.

I have another post on this that explains this strange sounding method in more detail which I'll try to dig up.

In the meantime, think of this kind of molding cutting as you would experience trying to paint a picture while looking at your canvas through a mirror, and things might begin to make more sense. You're working in reverse, so you do have to alter your normal thinking a bit.

In case I didn't mention it, you never bother to use ANY of those confusing angle markers and settings when using the "nested" method. You leave the bevel tilt of your saw on ZERO the whole time. All you ever do is swing the blade to 45 degrees, either right or left, nothing more than that simple adjustment. (Well, I said 45..... sometimes your walls are not always built at a true 90 degrees, so there often IS some minor adjustment of a degree or two required for perfect fits.)
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Old 08-29-2010, 08:01 PM   #8
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


CLICK HERE for the other crown cutting post (and there is yet another link when you get there)
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Old 08-29-2010, 11:53 PM   #9
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


Willie is correct about cutting crown. The only time this is not done (as far as I know) is when your saw doesn't have enough clearance for big crown, such as 7" crown. In these cases you would lay the crown flat and cut it with a compound bevel. It's more of pain to do it this way.

If you think about cutting a rectangular board for trim (2x4, 4x4, whatever), you would place it in you saw with the long dim is vertical vertical. You turn your saw 45 and make your two cuts. The you nail these boards to the wall. Look down the cross section of the rectangle and mentally replace the rectangle with a crown section on an angle. Or, conversely, imagine a piece of crown on the wall and mentally add material around it until the cross section forms a rectangle or a square.
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Old 08-30-2010, 07:58 AM   #10
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Old 08-30-2010, 10:52 AM   #11
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


All I'm trying to get at is how you think about cutting crown. Attached is a pic. If the red line is a rectangular piece of pine that the crown is cut out of, then imagine turning it upside down and cutting your bevels. Now imagine the same process, but with the red lines removed. To those who cut crown all the time, this is no big deal, but to those who are cutting crown for the first time, this analogy may help.
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Old 08-30-2010, 07:00 PM   #12
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


I just pick up a can yesturday and used to fill up some gaps in my base boards.

Ready Patch is great, if you can stand the smell of it. it works wonders

thank you very much for the info.
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Old 08-30-2010, 07:49 PM   #13
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


I assume you put up a crown molding that will be painted. A continuous bead of latex paintable caulking along the upper and lower edges will make your work look 100% better. Not too heavy. Make sure the tube says "paintable".
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Old 08-30-2010, 08:08 PM   #14
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Crown Molding - Angles & Filling in gaps


My molding is white so it won't matter weather its paintabe or not but the next time I do it I will check it out. Last time I ended up getting some wood puddy and then painting over it but this stuff is so much better wish the good people at home depot had told me when I asked them about it.

Easy to work with.
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:50 PM   #15
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My molding is paintable and I did add the caulking this weekend and it looks so much better. Haven't patched nail holes yet as I'm waited to buy some of the product recommended here. Thanks!

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