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I've been working with drywall for many years on projects. Really self taught and never had anyone with real knowledge teach me. I get by but it seems to take me forever finish. Now that I'm in the remodeling business I would like some pointers from you pros. If you wouldn't mind that is.
What is the proper way to handle a taping knife? 45 degrees? Heavy pressure? This might sound stupid and there might not be a simple answer but how do you work both sides of a corner without marking the first side. I have tried a corner knife but it seemed like a waist of time.
I read here and other places about hot mud. I generally use all purpose for taping and light for top coats. I gather hot mud is stronger and quicker drying?
When I apply the tape, I put a smooth layer of mud down lay the tape, run my knife over it to set it and then put a fine coat over the tape. Is the correct?
Thanks for any pointers you guys might offer. Time is money and I need more time
 

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Finishing answers...

MinConst said:
What is the proper way to handle a taping knife? 45 degrees? Heavy pressure?
Depends on what you're doing. For laying the tape coat (coat that tape gets embedded into), 30 to 45 degrees should be fine, much more than 45 dgrees and you'll start removing the mud. Not what you want to do. After you've set the tape in place, then you'll want to hold the knife at an angle greater than 45 degrees; closer to 90. You want to remove almost all of the mud you just laid down for the tape, so a greater angle is what you'll want. Basically, the smaller the angle, the more mud you'll leave on the wall, the greater the angle, the more mud you'll remove. Any time you're laying mud on the wall, light pressure should be applied, when you're removing mud, heavy pressure.

MinConst said:
...how do you work both sides of a corner without marking the first side.
Best way to make sure you don't mark up opposing sides of an inside corner is to lay one side of the corner at a time. This is the error-proof way. Use quick drying (setting type) mud, and mix the mud with hot water. If you get really good, you'll be able to work both sides at the same time. :Thumbs:

MinConst said:
When I apply the tape, I put a smooth layer of mud down lay the tape, run my knife over it to set it and then put a fine coat over the tape. Is the correct?
Yes, but only after you've let the layer under the tape dry first. When you lay your second coat (over the tape), make sure you use enough so that the layer is about 4-5 inches wide, 1/16" to 1/8" thick.
 

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Thanks ~a,
I guess I've been taping wrong then. I have not been letting the underlayer dry before putting a layer over the tape. I do this in one session.
 

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I might be reading this wrong, but are you saying to apply a layer of mud, then put in the tape then let it dry before covering it?

I have found it possible to tape a seam with a layer of mud, then apply the tape, then run the knife down the tape to embed it, then a layer of mud over the tape, leaving that to dry in about a 4-5 inch width.

2nd layer goes over the first with no sanding, leaving about a 12 inch width. 3rd layer over that going out to about 16 inch, sand when dry.

This of course can all be done in one day with setting compound instead of drying compound if time is a factor.
 

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I guess that's just how I was trained...

...I guess I don't see why it would be imperative to wait for the embedding coat to dry first. Mike, in another thread you told me you will typically use "setting type" compound for the first two coats. If you're doing this, then your first coat should be drying up pretty quickly, in which case you wouldn't have to wait very long at all before applying your second coat. I guess I may be too much of a "method man" when it comes to this. I want to make sure each coat is perfect before starting the next layer, when I probably do not have to do this between the first and second coat, as long as I'm sure I haven't left any air under the tape or anything like that.

Maybe this is the difference between "drywallers" and everybody else? What has your experience been with any drywall pros you've worked with? I would never have thought to immediately apply the second coat before the first has dried completely. Maybe that's just how I was trained, or maybe it's a New England thing, or maybe it's a "drywaller" thing. I'll have to find out for sure. I certainly don't want to give any advice that is going to cause someone to lose money because the process ends up taking longer. I'm pretty sure though that most drywallers will tell you to let the embedding coat dry first before applying the second coat.
 

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I'm a big advocate of setting compound/quik treat/hot mud since 90% of the mudding I do is patch work/blend in after blunt work has taken place on remodel/renovation. Speed is essenctial for me and I've always started the second coat as soon as I can apply it without pulling up the first coat and getting the mud bugers.

Medium sized jobs I'll use 45min mud since it offers plenty of time to work with, throw the fans in the room and usually 30minutes later it's ready for 2nd coat and I'll let that fully dry/cure before doing my 3rd touch up/blend in high spot coat, then sand. I had one roomate years ago that did drywall and now a close racing buddy does most of my bigger projects and the only thing I've really learned watching them is they do it everyday and can lay that mud on so nice and smooth, you could darn near paint after inital coat is dry. So playing off that I make sure every coat from 1st to last is as smooth as can be cuz I hate sanding.
 
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