Author Topic: Drywall Hire or DIY?  (Read 17088 times)

dragoncar

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Drywall Hire or DIY?
« on: August 15, 2016, 07:51:31 PM »
I've got a small drywall job -- perhaps 300 sq ft.  I'm not scared of learning new things, but I'm also not scared of paying someone to do a tedious job.  A bunch of stuff I've read online says that drywall finishing is something that should usually be hired out.  For such a small job is it worth buying the tools and learning it myself or would you just pay someone?  I assume I'll pay a premium because tradespeople hate small jobs.

Fishindude

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2016, 06:14:57 AM »
It's not difficult to do, but it is messy and dirty.
Tools would be pretty cheap; a mud pan, 6" knife, 10" knife, utility knife, sanding pole & sanding block.
Newbies tend to put too much mud on per coat, requiring way more sanding than necessary.   Watch a few youtubes and you can figure it out.

Spork

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2016, 06:23:14 AM »
Agree with Fishindude.

The hardest part (for me) is actually buying the drywall, getting it home and hauling it in to the room you are working on.  If it is around a corner and up the stairs ... it's a pain in the ass.

The pros do it faster than I do.  They can generally do it in fewer coats.   They require very little or no sanding.  But I think the end result is very similar.  I've done several one-room jobs.  They all turned out fine. 

My only suggestion: I've had much better luck as a DIY'er with fiberglass mesh tape than with paper tape.  It seems more forgiving.

GuitarStv

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2016, 06:56:43 AM »
I enjoy drywalling.

Cutting the drywall can be a little annoying when you have to make holes for lights on the ceiling or for electrical boxes, but screwing it up on the wall is kinda fun.  It transforms a room very quickly.  Mudding is also kinda fun to do.  Sanding is the only part I don't like - miserable, messy, and terrible.

The beauty of getting good at drywalling is that it means you also become good at drywall patching.  I don't know if there's something wrong with me, but I am forever knocking holes in and needing to patch over bits of drywall.  That is a useful skill to have.

Papa bear

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2016, 07:01:36 AM »
I'm an avid DIYer, and I started to hire out my bigger drywall jobs.  I've realized that the pros can do a much better, cleaner, and faster job than I can.  However, small projects I still do myself. 

For you?  There's no better time to learn.  Jump in and see how you do.  You'll always have the tools handy for repairs or small projects.  Only after you've done a few can you make the call on DIY or pay the pro for future work.


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CowboyAndIndian

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2016, 07:48:04 AM »
It is dusty and my drywall jobs never look like the professionals. Also, if you have ceilings to do, it is a pain without the lifts.

I would give it out. Especially if this is in a high visibility area.

Khaetra

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2016, 07:53:47 AM »
Drywall is truly a PITA.  I did a whole room once, never again.  Small patch jobs I can do myself, but if we're talking big sheets forget it.  I would hire it out.

Spork

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2016, 08:53:02 AM »
It is dusty and my drywall jobs never look like the professionals. Also, if you have ceilings to do, it is a pain without the lifts.

I would give it out. Especially if this is in a high visibility area.

To do a one man ceiling install, google "drywall deadman".  It can be as simple as a 2x4 with a 1x4 scrap nailed on top of it.  For a 4x8 sheet, I usually use 2 of them.  I get one in place with the drywall "mostly up there somewhere".  Then you wiggle the second one in and get it straightened out.

snogirl

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #8 on: August 16, 2016, 08:57:27 AM »
It is dusty and my drywall jobs never look like the professionals. Also, if you have ceilings to do, it is a pain without the lifts.

I would give it out. Especially if this is in a high visibility area.
X2 I do a lot of DIY but drywall is my least favorite. A skilled dry wall pro bangs in out better & faster.  That alone saves my serenity which is priceless. I'm older now though maybe that explains it :)
Drywall is truly a PITA.  I did a whole room once, never again.  Small patch jobs I can do myself, but if we're talking big sheets forget it.  I would hire it out.


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Fishindude

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2016, 09:08:47 AM »
Just an observation, but it is funny how folks who promote riding a bike to the grocery and ten miles to work every day, push mowing lawns, hand raking vs leaf blowers, going without air conditioning, etc. think that a simple 300 SF drywall job is too difficult, time consuming or messy to take on.

I'd drywall every day, before I started riding a bicycle to work :)

J_Stache

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2016, 10:31:11 AM »
If you never plan on spackeling ever again, I'd sub it out.  If you are up for a learning experience, 300 square feet isn't a huge commitment.  It will take a lot longer than you expect. 

A few tips:
1. Get your drywall to minimize seams.  If you have an 8x11 wall, get two 12'x4' sheets (assuming you can get them into room. 
2. Green lid is setting compound.  Use this for your first coat (aka fire taping or bedding coat).  This stuff does not sand well, so get:
3.  Blue lid is for 2nd and 3rd (and touch up) coats.
4.  As far as timing, I'd expect one day for hanging drywall and for applying the first coat.  1st coat will dry pretty quickly, so you can possible squeeze 2nd coat into that first day.  2nd and 3rd coat will take 24-48 hours to dry.
5.  After the 3rd coat, you should be able to sand.  If everything looks good after sanding, apply a coat of primer/drywall sealer.  Once primed, you'll be able to see any small touchups that are needed.

Goldielocks

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2016, 11:57:26 AM »
I do my own 300 sq.ft sections, if not in a prime location where it needs to match the surrounding area, like a front entrance leading up a vaulted stairway...

Bedrooms, garage, kitchen ceiling (with flat paint and track lighting to obscure the "errors" after dropped ceiling light removed).. easy.

300 sq.ft is about my limit, though.  We definitely hired out for larger jobs, and it is so worth it. The professional crews are very fast, excellent quality, and compared to other handywork, cheaper by the hour.   Cheaper here than painters, even.

If you have the extra time, just adding more and more mud and sanding it all down to nothing with huge piles of dust, will make the work turn out well for the beginner.  No glossy paints though! 

Spork

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2016, 01:30:22 PM »

I will also add: Texture hides a load of mistakes.  I'm not sure what style you are trying to match or what your preference is, but I like a nice light knockdown.  It looks nice and it really does hide a shit ton of mistakes.  It's not particularly hard to match an existing knockdown, either.  Take a spare sheet of drywall and try it until you get a nice match.  Once you have the "formula" down... it is pretty easy.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #13 on: August 16, 2016, 01:40:32 PM »
Thanks, it seems pretty split maybe I should have added a poll!  I will have to match a light knockdown pattern, and will have to work High up.  I'm guessing it's a wash between renting/buying scaffolding for myself and paying extra for someone to work high and bring their own.  There would also be a lot of corners, it's not all flat- maybe 40 corners?  It's also pretty visible but the area already has some poorly matching renovation work.

Not really sure how any of that changes the equation, besides making it equivalently a bigger job than the nominal 300sq ft.   What would you expect this to cost if I hire out?  Some estimators put it around $1k?

I love tools, but I'm worried about accumulating too many just like kitchen unit askers,

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2016, 01:55:38 PM »
If it is high up, you may can ignore my advice on using a deadman.  I suspect you can do that on top of a scaffold... but that might just be the complicating factor that makes me want a drywall lift.  Still do-able if you can find a lift that goes that high... but you may be running against the cost to rent vs cost to hire line. 

Captain and Mrs Slow

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #15 on: August 16, 2016, 02:06:36 PM »
I DIY'd our first place and to be honest I'd never do it again. The savings were minimal as I had to hire people to do stuff I couldn't. The ikea kitchen was an absolute nightmare 65 flat pack boxes, than you get nickled and dimes to death on all the small stuff. Anyways shortly after moving in we got relocated so we rented it out. Fast foward a decade and we're moving back in (good bye landlords!!!!!) we decided to renovate the whole place. This time I'm out sourced the whole job and it looks a million times better.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #16 on: August 16, 2016, 04:03:33 PM »
It's high but no horizontal (ceiling) sheets. Was thinking I could just screw some handles to the sheets for maneuverability and patch the holes later.

It's looking like I really just need to put in the work to get some quotes on this and make a gut call on my time vs hiring out. Sounds like I can be expected to have good quality if I take my sweet time or am willing to redo parts I mess up, but it may be better to just get it all finished quickly.  I probably can't work with the 20 min compounds


Goldielocks

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #17 on: August 17, 2016, 08:07:04 PM »
Thanks, it seems pretty split maybe I should have added a poll!  I will have to match a light knockdown pattern, and will have to work High up.  I'm guessing it's a wash between renting/buying scaffolding for myself and paying extra for someone to work high and bring their own.  There would also be a lot of corners, it's not all flat- maybe 40 corners?  It's also pretty visible but the area already has some poorly matching renovation work.

Not really sure how any of that changes the equation, besides making it equivalently a bigger job than the nominal 300sq ft.   What would you expect this to cost if I hire out?  Some estimators put it around $1k?

I love tools, but I'm worried about accumulating too many just like kitchen unit askers,

I hate high up drywall....corners take me a while to do too...   I reverse my other post and say to hire it out.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #18 on: August 17, 2016, 11:56:10 PM »
Thanks, it seems pretty split maybe I should have added a poll!  I will have to match a light knockdown pattern, and will have to work High up.  I'm guessing it's a wash between renting/buying scaffolding for myself and paying extra for someone to work high and bring their own.  There would also be a lot of corners, it's not all flat- maybe 40 corners?  It's also pretty visible but the area already has some poorly matching renovation work.

Not really sure how any of that changes the equation, besides making it equivalently a bigger job than the nominal 300sq ft.   What would you expect this to cost if I hire out?  Some estimators put it around $1k?

I love tools, but I'm worried about accumulating too many just like kitchen unit askers,

I hate high up drywall....corners take me a while to do too...   I reverse my other post and say to hire it out.

Would you hire it all out or just the finish work?  I think I can get the scaffolding for around $300, which would be useful for other home projects, so maybe I could hang it myself?  But then I'd need to rent a truck probably to get the drywall home unless I cut it down in the HD parking lot.

Goldielocks

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #19 on: August 18, 2016, 04:04:45 PM »
Thanks, it seems pretty split maybe I should have added a poll!  I will have to match a light knockdown pattern, and will have to work High up.  I'm guessing it's a wash between renting/buying scaffolding for myself and paying extra for someone to work high and bring their own.  There would also be a lot of corners, it's not all flat- maybe 40 corners?  It's also pretty visible but the area already has some poorly matching renovation work.

Not really sure how any of that changes the equation, besides making it equivalently a bigger job than the nominal 300sq ft.   What would you expect this to cost if I hire out?  Some estimators put it around $1k?

I love tools, but I'm worried about accumulating too many just like kitchen unit askers,

I hate high up drywall....corners take me a while to do too...   I reverse my other post and say to hire it out.

Would you hire it all out or just the finish work?  I think I can get the scaffolding for around $300, which would be useful for other home projects, so maybe I could hang it myself?  But then I'd need to rent a truck probably to get the drywall home unless I cut it down in the HD parking lot.

It is such as small area, that the cost difference will be minor, and your hassle is contracting any part of it in the first place.  In for a penny, in for a pound... I would hire it all and have done with.

Duchess of Stratosphear

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #20 on: August 21, 2016, 08:16:23 AM »
The carpenters who helped me build my house did the drywall and I did some sanding and taping. It was probably the stupidest decision I made. It took us several weeks (yeah, weeks) to do it ourselves, whereas the pros could have knocked it out in a few days. And, now it looks shitty--you can see the seams in a lot of places. A friend asked me if she and her husband should try to drywall their basement themselves, and I said, don't do it, you will get divorced. I would never do it again, but that's just me. A smaller project might be okay. Good luck! I would say have fun, but you won't, although you might feel satisfied when it's done.

SwordGuy

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #21 on: August 21, 2016, 08:24:31 AM »
Drywall isn't that hard to learn.

Biggest issue for me is the weight of the individual sheets.   Ceilings and 2 story high rooms are much harder than regular walls.

Tools are cheap.  Materials are pretty cheap.   If you totally botch the job then either try again or hire it out. 

I would advise doing it yourself.

Rural

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #22 on: August 21, 2016, 05:00:58 PM »
 We did everything on building our house ourselves. We even rented the jackhammer that we needed to hammer out the bedrock to get the foundation in place. We hired out the drywall, and I'm still happy about that today.


I'd patch a hole myself, but I'd hire out a room in a heartbeat.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #23 on: August 22, 2016, 09:37:48 AM »
DH hangs the sheet rock and I do the mudding and sanding.  I have done 7 rooms in various houses.  It took me forever in the beginning.  Now I am now somewhat faster.  First thing was to plan out where the joints were going to be.  And to get DH not to cheap out on the sheet rock.  He was initially using up some sheets and leaving me with joints that didn't have the channel for building up a layer of compound.  I have figured out the sanding part - don't do too much of it. I only sand at the end.  I am not yet good at inside corners for some reason.  Second to last room was a bedroom in our basement.  It was a very complicated room with bulk heads and recesses and nooks.  It had old walls and new walls and not quite perfect corners.  Took me the whole summer because I couldn't work over my head for the whole time it took to do a coat. Then DH thought he would help out by sanding all the compound back off.  It was a tense weekend in our house.  It now looks as good as a pro would do it according to a pro that checked it out after I was done.  I am glad I have the skills because I too am often repairing holes.  We hired a pro for the bathroom a long time ago and he did the whole room in two visits and charged us $300.00.  But since then, getting someone to come and do a small job has been next to impossible and I can just putter away at it.  It is a very satisfying type of job in my opinion. 

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #24 on: August 22, 2016, 11:31:06 AM »
Well if I can get someone to do it for $300, I'll jump at that.  I'm just worried it will be expensive in my location because we have a building boom going on, it's prime real estate season so people are trying to remodel houses for sale, and so on.  Maybe I can hang the rock and my wife can live with that for a few months (not likely)

I was wondering if there's an easier way to do this.  I've seen videos where people use a "magic trowel" to skim coat their walls to remove texture.  They use a diluted mix of mud and basically squeegee it on.  It takes multiple coats, but because each coat is really thin it's harder to mess up.  Would something like this work for new drywall?  I could just skim coat the entire wall with multiple coats.  This won't help me with the corners much.

Spork

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #25 on: August 22, 2016, 11:39:15 AM »
Personally, I wouldn't skim coat the whole thing unless you're looking for a rustic look with heavy trowel marks.  I say that because... that may very well be what you end up with.  It's pretty easy to just hide the screw/nail holes and just hide the valley where the tape is.

For corners, get a dedicated corner knife.  It makes life MUCH easier.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #26 on: August 22, 2016, 11:53:32 AM »
Personally, I wouldn't skim coat the whole thing unless you're looking for a rustic look with heavy trowel marks.  I say that because... that may very well be what you end up with.  It's pretty easy to just hide the screw/nail holes and just hide the valley where the tape is.

For corners, get a dedicated corner knife.  It makes life MUCH easier.

Are you familiar with the method I'm talking about?  There shouldn't be heavy trowel marks since you are using a thin wet layer and a squeegee.  But maybe I'm fallng or the marketing? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxkd9DaiEPU

Spork

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #27 on: August 22, 2016, 03:43:35 PM »
Personally, I wouldn't skim coat the whole thing unless you're looking for a rustic look with heavy trowel marks.  I say that because... that may very well be what you end up with.  It's pretty easy to just hide the screw/nail holes and just hide the valley where the tape is.

For corners, get a dedicated corner knife.  It makes life MUCH easier.

Are you familiar with the method I'm talking about?  There shouldn't be heavy trowel marks since you are using a thin wet layer and a squeegee.  But maybe I'm fallng or the marketing? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxkd9DaiEPU

Nope.  I wasn't.

Are you talking about skim coating some old icky drywall to cover up blemishes?  Or are you talking about skim coating new drywall?  I just wouldn't do that with new drywall, since it's already damn near perfect.  The only "blemishes" are nails/screws/joints.

I'm skeptical about where they went over a tape joint in the video with a big glob of mud and smoothed it out with their "magic trowel".  Drywall mud shrinks by design (which is why it takes multiple coats... you're filling in a shallower and shallower trough.)  I also sort of think that magic trowel looks a lot like a squeegie.  I always used a wide squeegie for doing knock down.  You blast diluted mud onto the wall with a texture hopper in big blobs, wait a few minutes, then run over it with a squeegie. 

But... someone always does figure out better ways to do things.  Just because I am skeptical doesn't mean it doesn't work.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #28 on: August 23, 2016, 12:25:22 AM »
Personally, I wouldn't skim coat the whole thing unless you're looking for a rustic look with heavy trowel marks.  I say that because... that may very well be what you end up with.  It's pretty easy to just hide the screw/nail holes and just hide the valley where the tape is.

For corners, get a dedicated corner knife.  It makes life MUCH easier.

Are you familiar with the method I'm talking about?  There shouldn't be heavy trowel marks since you are using a thin wet layer and a squeegee.  But maybe I'm fallng or the marketing? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxkd9DaiEPU

Nope.  I wasn't.

Are you talking about skim coating some old icky drywall to cover up blemishes?  Or are you talking about skim coating new drywall?  I just wouldn't do that with new drywall, since it's already damn near perfect.  The only "blemishes" are nails/screws/joints.

I'm skeptical about where they went over a tape joint in the video with a big glob of mud and smoothed it out with their "magic trowel".  Drywall mud shrinks by design (which is why it takes multiple coats... you're filling in a shallower and shallower trough.)  I also sort of think that magic trowel looks a lot like a squeegie.  I always used a wide squeegie for doing knock down.  You blast diluted mud onto the wall with a texture hopper in big blobs, wait a few minutes, then run over it with a squeegie. 

But... someone always does figure out better ways to do things.  Just because I am skeptical doesn't mean it doesn't work.

No, it'll be new drywall.  I was thinking about a combination of this Magic Trowel (here's another non-promotional video -- you can use a normal trowel too, supposedly... the "secret" is very thin layers and watered-down mud):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kAgc_b9fSU

and this idea of using veneer plaster instead of mud:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzTvF9xO2cU

I was really leaning towards doing the veneer plaster, but there are two problems: (1) it's not for sale at my big box stores, so I'm not sure where to get it, and (2) I'm in earthquake country so I'm pretty sure it would end up cracking (even my drywall joints have a decent number of cracks).  On the other hand, this kirk guy is in my area, so maybe it's fine to do the plaster veneer.

« Last Edit: August 23, 2016, 12:31:01 AM by dragoncar »

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #29 on: September 21, 2016, 05:27:17 PM »
So I got a quote for $1500 to hang tape finish and match texture.  That's like $40 per approx. 3-ft long corner (there are no butt joints).  Worth it?  I actually already bought the drywall ($100 worth with a lot of wastage) and hung some of it... Think I did a decent job

1500 at a generous $100/HR means can I do this myself in 15 hours? 

topshot

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #30 on: September 21, 2016, 08:33:33 PM »
Even if you had a friend help, I'd be amazed if you could hang, tape, finish, and texture match in 15 hours. Especially since you're apparently dealing with a cathedral ceiling.  I like to drywall and mud, but haven't done one of those. I also have a hard time envisioning how you have 40 corners in just 300 sq ft.

Another tip I didn't see mentioned but did see many complaining about sanding and dust is DON'T SAND. :) Use a damp sponge. If you put on light coats it only takes 2-3 swipes per seam/corner and 1-2 swipes per screwhole between coats.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #31 on: September 21, 2016, 08:44:20 PM »
Even if you had a friend help, I'd be amazed if you could hang, tape, finish, and texture match in 15 hours. Especially since you're apparently dealing with a cathedral ceiling.  I like to drywall and mud, but haven't done one of those. I also have a hard time envisioning how you have 40 corners in just 300 sq ft.

Another tip I didn't see mentioned but did see many complaining about sanding and dust is DON'T SAND. :) Use a damp sponge. If you put on light coats it only takes 2-3 swipes per seam/corner and 1-2 swipes per screwhole between coats.

Well if o do it myself I can not sand.  If I ask the contractors to no sand I assume my cost goes up

How about $50/HR and 30 hours? 

I guess I will probably pay... Just think I might regret it in the end.  Much prefer to know I did the job right

Ps it's like 5 cubbyhole things that I had to modify
« Last Edit: October 05, 2016, 10:30:36 PM by dragoncar »

sisto

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #32 on: September 21, 2016, 09:22:04 PM »
 Bite the bullet and do it yourself. You will always have pride in that. I remodeled my house when I bought it 17+ years ago and to this day I admire all the bullnose corners I did. I agree with the sponge idea, definitely easy to do in fact you don't even have to do the light coats if you catch it at the right point during drying you can knock down a big ridge in a heartbeat.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #33 on: September 21, 2016, 10:06:29 PM »
Bite the bullet and do it yourself. You will always have pride in that. I remodeled my house when I bought it 17+ years ago and to this day I admire all the bullnose corners I did. I agree with the sponge idea, definitely easy to do in fact you don't even have to do the light coats if you catch it at the right point during drying you can knock down a big ridge in a heartbeat.

At this point, I feel like I have to be talked into hiring this out.  So many mixed responses.

If I do it myself, what methods do you suggest? 

Three different compounds, two, or just one?  (can you sponge the setting-type?)
Tape or paper faced metal beads?

Basically I'm looking for stuff I can get at the big box store.  Would these two be good?

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-18-lb-Fast-Set-90-Lite-Setting-Type-Joint-Compound-22167H/100320413
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-4-Gal-All-Purpose-Pre-Mixed-Joint-Compound-18720H/100320409

monarda

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #34 on: September 21, 2016, 10:39:24 PM »
Do you think you will be drywalling again in your future? If yes, this project will be a good one to start with.

My spouse and I have drywalled several projects together. For the last one, we bought a drywall lift and a hopper for corner bead.  Because we are pretty sure there will be another project....

For previous projects, we hung all the walls, but hired out just to hang the ceilings. We taped and mudded ourselves.
Early on we mostly used fiberglass tape, but the paper tape (No Coat for outside corners) works great in the hopper. It went really pretty fast. First coat thinned green mud. Then blue, then topping compound for the final coat. Very thin coats and very little sanding. We bought a book and watched videos by Mike Bell. http://drywallschool.com/

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #35 on: September 21, 2016, 10:44:30 PM »
Do you think you will be drywalling again in your future? If yes, this project will be a good one to start with.

My spouse and I have drywalled several projects together. For the last one, we bought a drywall lift and a hopper for corner bead.  Because we are pretty sure there will be another project....

For previous projects, we hung all the walls, but hired out just to hang the ceilings. We taped and mudded ourselves.
Early on we mostly used fiberglass tape, but the paper tape (No Coat for outside corners) works great in the hopper. It went really pretty fast. First coat thinned green mud. Then blue, then topping compound for the final coat. Very thin coats and very little sanding. We bought a book and watched videos by Mike Bell. http://drywallschool.com/

I already hung 1/5 of this job and it took a few hours.  I already set up some scaffolding so it's not any harder than ground level at this point.  I'm not lifting entire sheets overhead -- cutting them to size first and the lifting maybe 1/3 sheet.  It's not physically hard... the hardest part so far is measuring, accurately cutting, and then shimming (I cracked some pieces early on because I screwed them down too tight over uneven framing).

My biggest concern with doing the taping/mudding myself is not the labor, it's the possibility that I will screw up the intersection with existing knockdown texture, it will look like crap, and to fix it I'd have to redo the entire wall

The only reason I sought these quotes is because they came highly recommended so I could be reasonably sure they would do the job better than me.  If I'm taking a crap shoot with the pros doing a bad job, I'd rather just take the chance on myself
« Last Edit: September 21, 2016, 10:46:10 PM by dragoncar »

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #36 on: September 21, 2016, 10:57:05 PM »
At this point, I feel like I have to be talked into hiring this out.  So many mixed responses.

If I do it myself, what methods do you suggest? 

Three different compounds, two, or just one?  (can you sponge the setting-type?)
Tape or paper faced metal beads?

Basically I'm looking for stuff I can get at the big box store.  Would these two be good?

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-18-lb-Fast-Set-90-Lite-Setting-Type-Joint-Compound-22167H/100320413
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-4-Gal-All-Purpose-Pre-Mixed-Joint-Compound-18720H/100320409

I haven't read the whole thread, but I'm of the "do it yourself" camp.  I did my living room which has a vaulted ceiling with lots of angles, it was hard, but it wasn't that hard. 

I am not an expert, but I like the wet sponge technique.  It fixes a lot of sins pretty easily, it knocks down the high spots and fills in the low spots.  You might have to sand at the end, but it is a time saver overall.  At least for us amateurs. 

Here's the main thing: Don't give yourself a timeline, don't be in a rush.  Just let each step take the amount of time that each step naturally takes.  There is no single step that requires some higher level of skill.  You have to measure accurately.  You have to cut accurately.  You have to spread mud around, hopefully not too lumpy.  You have to sand/sponge.

None of those steps by themselves are all that hard.  Pain in the ass? Yes.  Not fun?  Possibly.  But not hard.     

topshot

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #37 on: September 22, 2016, 05:14:56 AM »
At this point, I feel like I have to be talked into hiring this out.  So many mixed responses.

If you have the time, then by all means, do it yourself. But take your time rather than trying to finish in 30 hours or whatever.

Three different compounds, two, or just one?  (can you sponge the setting-type?)

I normally use two. Regular joint compound to start and light to finish. I would not use the quick set ones on your first time out. If you do it should only be the first coat. Can't say how well it would sponge, but I'd guess it would be fine. I know sanding it is a real pain because it dries much harder than normal compound.

Tape or paper faced metal beads?

Tape for butts, which I think you said you don't have, and inside corners if you get them fit well. Otherwise I'd use the paper faced metal for both inside and outside corners. An inside corner knife makes things easier once you get used to it.

Basically I'm looking for stuff I can get at the big box store.  Would these two be good?

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-18-lb-Fast-Set-90-Lite-Setting-Type-Joint-Compound-22167H/100320413
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-4-Gal-All-Purpose-Pre-Mixed-Joint-Compound-18720H/100320409

If you go with the fast set get the slowest you can (120?). All purpose is fine. If they don't have light, mix in small amount of water for your final coat.

Your hardest task by far in my eyes will be duplicating the existing texture. That is an art. I'd hire that out unless you don't care if it doesn't really match. Practice on some scraps and see how you do.

index

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #38 on: September 22, 2016, 12:18:07 PM »
I would absolutely hire it out. $1500 is too much though especially if you bought the materials. That is an $900-1100 with them buying the materials!

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #39 on: September 22, 2016, 01:01:01 PM »
I can get more quotes, but I'm in an expensive area with a lot of bigger jobs available.  Some people aren't even returning calls.

If I do find someone cheaper, they won't come highly recommended from a trusted source. I could call their references and inspect prior jobs.  But honestly that adds up to a lot of legwork compared to just doing it.  If I hire t out for $1000 and I'm not happy with the way it turns out, I'll kick myself for not just DIY

Which is why I lean toward DIY.  I'll probably try to match it myself this weekend on scraps with what I can get at home depot

GuitarStv

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #40 on: September 22, 2016, 01:11:44 PM »
I still vote to just do it yourself.  Take your time, work slowly, take breaks when you get tired and don't hurry things.  I'm sure it'll turn out great if you follow that advice.

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #41 on: September 22, 2016, 02:33:40 PM »

I already hung 1/5 of this job and it took a few hours.  I already set up some scaffolding so it's not any harder than ground level at this point.  I'm not lifting entire sheets overhead -- cutting them to size first and the lifting maybe 1/3 sheet.  It's not physically hard... the hardest part so far is measuring, accurately cutting, and then shimming (I cracked some pieces early on because I screwed them down too tight over uneven framing).


If I understand this correctly... This means you have more joints to tape.  And worse: it means more butt joints.  Butt joints are much harder to hide and by their nature make a bit if a "hill".  Bigger sheets == smoother.  The big mcmansions now have 4x12 panels to try to minimize the butt joints.

dragoncar

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #42 on: September 22, 2016, 03:29:46 PM »

I already hung 1/5 of this job and it took a few hours.  I already set up some scaffolding so it's not any harder than ground level at this point.  I'm not lifting entire sheets overhead -- cutting them to size first and the lifting maybe 1/3 sheet.  It's not physically hard... the hardest part so far is measuring, accurately cutting, and then shimming (I cracked some pieces early on because I screwed them down too tight over uneven framing).


If I understand this correctly... This means you have more joints to tape.  And worse: it means more butt joints.  Butt joints are much harder to hide and by their nature make a bit if a "hill".  Bigger sheets == smoother.  The big mcmansions now have 4x12 panels to try to minimize the butt joints.


No butt joints, just corners.

sisto

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #43 on: September 23, 2016, 11:33:09 AM »
Bite the bullet and do it yourself. You will always have pride in that. I remodeled my house when I bought it 17+ years ago and to this day I admire all the bullnose corners I did. I agree with the sponge idea, definitely easy to do in fact you don't even have to do the light coats if you catch it at the right point during drying you can knock down a big ridge in a heartbeat.

At this point, I feel like I have to be talked into hiring this out.  So many mixed responses.

If I do it myself, what methods do you suggest? 

Three different compounds, two, or just one?  (can you sponge the setting-type?)
Tape or paper faced metal beads?

Basically I'm looking for stuff I can get at the big box store.  Would these two be good?

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-18-lb-Fast-Set-90-Lite-Setting-Type-Joint-Compound-22167H/100320413
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Westpac-Materials-4-Gal-All-Purpose-Pre-Mixed-Joint-Compound-18720H/100320409

Sorry, I just now saw this. I would use the pre-mix. If you have deep trowel marks you can sponge them smooth after is starts drying. If you make a mistake you can let it dry more and scrape if off and start over. It's about being patient and not trying to do too much at one time.

shuellmi

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #44 on: October 04, 2016, 08:48:01 PM »
Just finished our basement, I hung drywall for all the ceilings and the walls of 1 of 3 rooms (800 sq ft) Hired out the rest and glad i did.  Took the guy a week but now it's done, would have taken me weeks.  Got quotes from 2k to 900.  Look for a one man operation, aka no overhead, pay cash, 1/2 at 50% and 1/2 on completion. 

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #45 on: October 04, 2016, 08:48:48 PM »
Should add I have a 4 yr old and an infant, do time is on short supply for us

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #46 on: October 04, 2016, 11:15:08 PM »
I finished hanging the drywall and installed corner beads last weekend.  Now I'm on my second coat and it's not looking amazing (from far away it looks good but up close I have streaks but I was just trying to get it into the recesses).  Still haven't done any sanding/sponging, so hopefully my technique will get better.  So far I'm happy I did it myself.  My initial guess was way off, it's only 200 sq ft.

I'll give more updates when it's done... I'm taking my time like you all suggested (first coat took more than 24 hours to dry)

GuitarStv

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #47 on: October 05, 2016, 06:49:05 AM »
Sounds like it's going pretty well.  Light sanding and a second coat should really fix up the streaks.

FWIW, I've had good luck adding a little water to thin out the premixed drywall compound.  This lets it go on a bit thinner, so you might need more coats but seems to make it easier to get smoother application.  YMMV.

topshot

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #48 on: October 05, 2016, 10:24:04 AM »
Last coat or two is where you get pickier. Not sure what you mean by streaks - small ridges or gouges? Make sure you clean your knife off every so often and don't let partially dried stuff get in your mud. If you didn't get any light compound, then thin it just a bit for last coat(s).

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Re: Drywall Hire or DIY?
« Reply #49 on: October 05, 2016, 02:50:32 PM »
The wife and I did our whole house.

Not difficult.. manhandling the sheets (I had up to 8*16ft sheets delivered and the guys carried it into the workspace) is the hardest part.

Use a lift to lift the sheets to the ceiling.

Taping and mudding not hard either.

You won't be as fast as the pros but then it will be lower cost..