There I said it. Wow does that make me feel better! Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if I, you know, knew what I was doing. But alas I am a complete novice.
I thought for sure it wouldn’t be much of an issue. Throw up the sheets, spend a few days mudding, bam, done! Hahahahahahahaha. Oh and let me add Hahahahahaha.
Putting up the sheets – not too horrible. Heavy, awkward, but doable. Time: 2 Days
Quick set Compound – made fast work of all those screw heads and large gaps. When it says 45 minutes set, they mean it. It very quickly goes from goop to solid in the container and on the knife. I tried mixing it up and using a gallon bag with a cut corner, you know like icing a cake thinking it would be easier to squeeze out and with no air maybe it would prolong the hardening agent… And it worked fairly well. I should have thinned it a bit more. Then it hit the magic time mark and became a solid, warm lump in the bag. SO partial win. And the remaining bags were confiscated for the homemade moon dough sensory box so had to abandon that idea. We used almost a whole bag. Time: 2 days
Feather the tape lines – this took a bit of skill and finesse. Most of it turned out really good… a couple of spots, not so much. I just kept stepping up on the knife sizes until I got to the 10 inch. I originally purchased 1 bucket of mud… and had to get 2 more! I had no idea we would use that much! Time: 3 days (3 coats)
Knife scrape and Wet Sand – we didn’t sand much honestly. I diligently followed the “easier to add more layers than sand them off so keep it thin” motto! Hit everything with the drywall knife to knock off the big stuff and went on. After the 2nd feathering coat we wet sanded the bumps and ripples. Not to bad. I bought 1 of the “drywall sponges” to see how it compared to regular blue kitchen scrubby sponges. While the drywall sponge is way bigger we felt the kitchen sponges did a quicker job. Plus it was 6 for $3 instead of 1 for $6. After scrubbing for a while in the same spot though it does start to turn the mud blue (the primer later covers it). They say you wipe a bit and then rinse before the dust starts flying. We found that if you went just a bit longer it scrubbed/sanded even better and the dust was still pretty minimal. (Since we do sleep up there I wanted to keep the dust low.)
The skim coat – the part that took FOREVER! I’m not a fan of textured walls but figured that would be my fall back if I couldn’t get the drywall smooth. And oh it is so incredibly aggravating! Trowel it on, scrape it off. Easy enough right? HAHA! Push to hard on one spot and create a raised bump that has to be smoothed… which would cause the other side of the knife to dig into the fresh compound on another spot. Rinse, lather, repeat. For all 480 square feet of drywall upstairs. Then I found you could just roll on the layer with a plush roller… and I only had a sponge roller… which worked well enough but there are reasons they say a thick nap. Like because it holds a ton of mud (and weighs about the same!) so you could roll on more than 3 linear foot… I quickly purchased needed roller and continued. And went over everything I did the first time with the hand trowel. Had similar issues with the edges but add in the issue of “if you don’t apply enough pressure you end up with a funky texture from the roller”. But it cut the time drastically! Like an hour for one wall vs almost half a day. Time: 4 days
Final wet sand – The final step – to smooth the skim coat and knock out all those lovely ridges and dents. After all that sanding, in hindsight I wouldn’t have stressed so much about the raised parts and let them be. Those dug in/dips were a million times harder to sand smooth! Then a final wipe down. Time: 1 day
Primer – A gallon of Killz says it covers 400 square feet. It is a liar for new drywall. It took 2 gallons. Time: 1 day
Finally after a million hours, give or take a few, the walls are done 95% smooth and we are ready for the next phase – the built-in’s! Whoo hooo!!