Drywall Taping and Finishing

Tools for Taping and Finishing Drywall

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You will need the following drywall tools to tape and finish drywall:
(Click on links to see pictures)

  • A stainless steel mud pan.  Don't get the plastic mud pan with a (rusting troublesome) metal lip or a non-stainless steel pan that will rust! Get An Inexpensive Stainless Mud Pan Online

    drywall mud pan

  • A 4 inch, 5 inch or  4 1/2 inch steel knife. This should be steel (not plastic), somewhat flexible, and of a quality brand.  It should be no wider than 5 inches so you can tightly fasten tape within the recessed area of a joint. If needed, you can grind down the sides to make it narrower - I did this with mine.

    Drywall Taping Knife 
  • A 10" taping knife as shown at the link. Get a good quality knife with proper stiffness since this is probably your most important knife for finishing the job properly.

    ten inch drywall taping knife
  • A 12" taping knife to finish off your joints.

  • A corner tool as shown here.  Believe it or not, I found that the cheap plastic tool shown works better than its pricier steel counterpart!  I use the plastic tool, even though I also have a "better" steel tool.

    cheap drywall corner tool
  • Paper tape as shown in the drywall tools picture.  I don't like the mesh stuff - neither do nearly any professionals I have spoken too.  I have found the knife glides over the paper tape easily (if the mud is thin as it should be) but tends to hang up on the adhesive mesh.

    drywall tools
  • A bucket of water for wetting paper tape and tools down.

  • Mud.  I like the USG brand compound in the "green bucket" as shown in the drywall tools picture.  It applies easily and draws off easily.  Also, it is probably the cheapest pre-made mud out there.  I don't like the lighter dryer mud in the "blue bucket" since it tends to leave more air pockets and pinholes.  I see professionals using the "green bucket" mud as well for some of their coats however they will also use lower shrinkage mud to minimize steps.

    Check out my other DIY sites:
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  • T-Square for cutting as shown in the drywall tools picture.  This is nice to use and doesn't cost that much. It is very helpful in making an accurate cut. Get an Inexpensive Drywall T-Square Online
     
  • Tape measure and Utility Knife - any type will do.
     
  • Cordless Driver. An inexpensive driver like the one shown works fine for smaller home jobs.  I got this one at a Menards home store and it cost me less than $30. You could also use a power drill as I did for many years. If you want a nicer driver, I would recommend getting a used name brand cordless driver at this site - you can sometimes get a pretty good deal.
     
  • Sandpaper - 100 grit & 220 grit.  Also an 8 inch by 3.5 inch piece of wood for a sanding block. For hard to reach places, a sanding pole as shown in the tool picture is helpful. If you do this all right, you won't need much sandpaper!
     
  • For ceilings, a panel lift is helpful, although a T-bar made of lumber will work.  To find used drywall panel lifts and a used drywall lift for sale, go to this page.

To purchase drywall tools, stop at your local home store or hardware store. To find drywall tools online, check out the sites below.  In checking around, I found the best prices on drywall tools at the All Wall site.  The EZRip tool would be very nice to have as well.

Check out the great selection of Drywall Tools at FantasticTools.com - they specialize in drywall tools

EZRip the Super-Fast Drywall Cutting Tool - The EZRip makes cutting drywall extremely simple, and gives you the most precise measurement possible in the shortest amount of time.

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