Sheetrock, a brand of drywall panels, is manufactured with beveled or gently rounded edges along both of its long sides. The short sides are flat -- without a curve. Beveled edges create recessed areas along the seams, which help you finish the joints with less bulk above the surface for a flatter, smoother wall. Whenever possible, hang Sheetrock with beveled edges butted together. Situate the flat ends at the floor and ceiling when hanging it vertically, or at each end of the wall when hanging the sheets horizontally.
Things You'll Need
- Drywall joint compound
- 5-inch drywall seam taping knife
- 8-inch drywall seam taping knife
- 10-inch drywall seam taping knife
- Drywall sanding screen
- Drywall sanding paddle with extension pole
After hanging the first panel of Sheetrock, butt the beveled edge of the next panel against the beveled edge of the first and fasten it to the wall. Continue around the room or across the ceiling until the surface is covered with Sheetrock.
Spread a thin layer of drywall joint compound along the beveled joint between two panels with a 5-inch drywall seam taping knife.
Press drywall seam tape into the wet compound along the seam. Cut off the excess tape at the end of the seam with a utility knife or scissors.
Drag the taping knife along the seam tape at an angle, pressing down on the tape to flatten it and remove excess joint compound underneath. Avoid excessive pressure, which can remove too much compound and rip the tape. Some compound must remain to bind the tape to the Sheetrock.
Spread another thin layer of joint compound over the tape and let it dry overnight.
Scrape off raised imperfections in the dry joint compound on the second day with the edge of the taping knife.
Spread a second coat of joint compound over the first with an 8-inch drywall seam taping knife. Feather or blend the edges of the compound 8 inches over into the Sheetrock on each side of the seam. Feathering helps avoid a thick line of demarcation along the seams.
Let the compound dry overnight, and apply a third coat with a 10-inch taping knife, feathering out the edges as before.
Let the final coat of compound dry overnight.
Wipe the dry joint compound with a large sponge dampened with plain water, or sand the joints with drywall sanding screen fixed to a drywall sanding paddle and an extension pole.
Tips & Warnings
- Mixing drywall joint compound with water in a ratio recommended on the side of the compound container creates a smoother material with fewer air bubbles and lumps. Use a long, metal paint mixing paddle fastened to a power drill for the best result.
- Drywall seam taping techniques take years of practice to perfect. Don’t worry if your seams aren’t ideal on the first attempt. You can always add another layer of compound and try again until they are attractive.
- Removing too much joint compound under the seam tape will cause bubbling and lifting.
- Sanding joint compound creates a tremendous amount of fine-particle dust, so cover furniture and wear a dust mask. Sponging creates no dust.
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