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Old 04-17-2007, 11:47 AM   #1
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tools for finishing drywall


Ok, I've gotten all my drywall hung in my 10'x20' addition and ready to finish it. Just wanted any extra tips for finishing and the tools i'll need. This is my list so far.

6",10", and 12" knives.
pan for my compound
paper tape
mesh sanding block on pole
joint compound

not sure which compound i should use, should i use all purpose and then topping, or should i just use all one kind? and how much should i get?
The edges of my sheetrock pretty straight but no where near purfect. Is there any way to knock down some of the rough edges before i start applying mud? How much of a gap is acceptable? Can i just fill in the gap with mud untill i get it smooth?

I have read up on this at drywallschool.com quite a bit and i feel confident that i can handle the job, but i would like any tips not covered and the proper tools i'll need. Thanks JD.

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Old 04-17-2007, 12:21 PM   #2
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tools for finishing drywall


I'm no pro, but I've done a dozen or so drywall projects and this is what I've found works best for me.

I like to use a 90 degree knife for the inside corners.

I use a 6" and 14" knife for seams

I also prefer to use setting compound (the kind you buy in a bag and mix with water). It sets faster and harder and seems to shrink less. If you're doing a big area you can use the 90 minute formula, or the 45 minute formula for smaller patches.

Good luck! Nate

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Old 04-17-2007, 02:59 PM   #3
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Ditto to the 90 deg. knife. Soooo much easier.
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Old 04-17-2007, 04:04 PM   #4
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tools for finishing drywall


Get the Banjo... it do the tapping much better... I spent $50 to get a wet Banjo... it is the best... I did some tapping without it at the end as I missed some joints.. the result is not as good as those with Banjo and it is slower...

I would use durabound for the first coating of outside corner to make it more strong resistance to daily bombarment...

make sure you get yourself a 4x14 trowel, it and 6" knife is can do most of the mudding... you don't really need mud pan, your mud can be put on the 4x14 trowel..

and make sure you have a strong arm... I don't and my arm still suffering from the pain....
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Old 04-17-2007, 04:19 PM   #5
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I am going to respectfully disagree w/ those who suggested durabond or any other ready-mix compound. Yes its harder, yes it dries faster -which is exactly the reason I WOULDN't recommend it for your first time or even your first few times. Finishing drywall is one of those things that you can do well after a while but honestly never until you've done it a couple times. The nice thing is, most of your beginner mistakes are fixable by sanding, but until you get the hang of it, I think using a medium grade premixed compound like the greenlid buckets would be you best bet - There is absolutely nothing wrong with it and its been in use forever. I think you will appreciate the extra working time and ease of spreading that comes along with it and your finished product won't suffer one bit.

Also, I dont' see any plan for corners? Some like straight regular old corner bead. I personally like the paper faced corner bead - particularly the stuff that comes in a roll. Cuts nice w/ tin snips, has metal reinforcement and tapes great to the walls!! They even sell the same stuff in precut lengths too which are wider and bigger for bigger projects.

I personally don't like the use of a corner nife. I prefer to do one side at a time, the corner knife works for many people though.

Prepare for dust!!! If you've never finished drywall - you've never seen dust like this. Its impervious to EVERYTHING including vaccuum filters - so if you have a shop vac, you may want pick up some of those drywall dust bag filters they sell - works great. Or, rent yourself a dustless drywall sanding vac - again, works great but is an added expense.

My second to last tip is, frequently wet you taping knife while applying the compound - it keeps the knife fresh, the compound fresh and more spreadable. Also, compound on the edge of the knife dries faster than you might think - scrape it clean often while working - the slightest hardened bits on the edge will reek havok on your lines.

Last tip is don't try to do too much each coat. Its better to have to many coats than to overdo or oversand any one of the coats. Remember, primer and paint don't hide much. Spend the time to get those joints smooth and you'll be happy.


Good Luck!!
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Old 04-17-2007, 04:50 PM   #6
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Hey thanks for the tips guys. I payed a vist to my brothers at lunch and he has just redone his bathroom, he's a newbie also, but gave me all his tools so i think i'm all set. He used the all purpose compound straight out of the box. It looked really good, said he over done it a little with the applying and sanding. Think i'll get started this weekend. Thanks again, I'll let you know how it goes.
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Old 04-17-2007, 05:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sedwick View Post
Hey thanks for the tips guys. I payed a vist to my brothers at lunch and he has just redone his bathroom, he's a newbie also, but gave me all his tools so i think i'm all set. He used the all purpose compound straight out of the box. It looked really good, said he over done it a little with the applying and sanding. Think i'll get started this weekend. Thanks again, I'll let you know how it goes.

Honestly, I cannot imagine anyone not overdoing it a little their first time applying and sanding - its kind of nerve racking wondering if its right. Another tip I'll give you is when you are feathering, angling the knife very slightly so that the edge is a tad bit closer to the wall at the end than in the middle can help you get a nice taper. If you are sanding, just make sure youi dont' sand down into the tape - this is another things thats hard to get used to.

I'm sure you'll do fine. My first time came out quite well - it took a hell of a lot longer and cost me many many more sheets of sand paper than the last time I did it, but it still looks good. Its just one of those practice things. - I'm really glad you are using the all purpose though, the ready to mix stuff really is kind of intimidating - but once you do get the hang of it, experiment w/ that stuff too - it definitely has its place. In fact, its become my new spackling - I hardly ever reach for spackling anymore - I keep a bucket of durabond in the garage and make up a cup or so when I need to patch - it dries SO quick and so hard that it works wonders even on bigger holes.

last thing- just keep in mind that compound shrinks quite a bit as it dries - thats why its done in at least 3 layers.
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Old 04-21-2007, 07:40 AM   #8
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you also might want to get a dry wall rasp .It works well when you need to just take a little wee bit off a area to make a good joint.Good luck because this part has been the worst part of doing my renovation
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Old 04-21-2007, 09:23 AM   #9
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thanks, i think i have a cheese grader like tool for doing fiberglass work in my tool box, i'll grab it on my way home.

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