Compounding that Joint

When we had the room all free and clear of studs and pipes and electrical cords, it was officially time to seal up that big ol’ hole in the wall and actually get this room to looking more like, well, a room. After chatting with another friendly Lowe’s associate, we came back home with all our new spackling gear and got ready to drywall this joint.

How to patch plaster hole
Big Old Hole

In all honesty, we came back with a lot more loot than I was planning. Being the frugal little lady I am, I thought Jay could like buy one trowel and a putty knife and call it a day. Lucky for Jay (unlucky for me) the guy at Lowe’s that helped us was like a drywalling duuuude. Like I think his middle name was drywall mcgee. This man was in his element when talking about all the tools we needed.

While grabbing 12  tools from the wall (and insisting we needed all of them), he told us stories of days gone by while making dramatic motions depicting exactly how you drywall, tape and apply joint compound. I guess I was so mesmerized by his actions that before I knew it, we had a whole arsenal of drywalling gear in our cart. Jay was smiling, I was still trying to figure out what all those hand movements meant from the theatrical performance.

Tools Needed for Drywall
Drywalling Tools

After one (rather lackluster, sorry honey) drywalling experience prior, Jay was sold on one thing. He wanted to get the big joint knife. No 4″ tools here, he wanted 12″ and up. Since a larger joint knife will smooth out the entire line to that plane, Jay’s experience was that this was the best tool of the trade for the work he was doing. Since I wanted him to be equipped this time to knock this job out of the park, I relented and let him get all the goodies at the store. Before Jay had a chance to use all his new tools, we had to cut the drywall outside to fit.

How to cut drywall
Cutting the Drywall

For some reference, here is how the whole room was looking before we added in any of the drywall, or started the mudding process.

How to fill hole in wall
Wall Opening

Since we have an old house, and plaster walls, we found that the actual wall height between the dining room and living room walls – well – lets just say there was some variation. After popping the drywall in, there was still a considerable gap.

How to patch hole with drywall
Adding Drywall

Since adding two pieces of drywall stacked on top of each other would have been too high, we opted (per the pro’s consultation) to put one piece in, and then use joint compound to fill the rest. Lots of joint compound, to turns out. This also helped a bit with the variation in wall height since we could gradually merge the two surfaces together. We thought a bag of joint compound mix would be enough – no dice. 2 bags it was. It was pretty chunkalicous at first, so we (Jay) really had to get in there and mix this for a bit before we had the right consistency to put up on the wall.

How to mud drywall
Mixing Joint Compound

Here he is applying the first coat. It was a pretty thick first coat, probably a solid inch around the entire wall opening.

How to mud drywall
Mudding the Wall

After the initial coat was on (we used the smaller, 4″ trowel for this part), we moved on to smoothing all of the joint compound out on the wall, to give it as finished as an appearance as possible. This is the point where the big old mudding knife came in handy. Look at that concentration.

How to fill hole in wall
Smoothing Out Joints

Now that we have the entire hole in the wall coated, it’s time for some sanding, second coats (and third coats), and then – paint!! Wishing we could just hop to the paint step, but, some things are worth the wait.

5 thoughts on “Compounding that Joint

    1. Ha ha – funny you should ask … We are working on the floor right now! 🙂 We are going to try to thread it in with some red oak (what’s on the floor now) and then we will come through and refinish it all.

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