Drywall, Taping, and Texturing
Drywall is a term used to describe the boards that cover the framing on the inside of your house. Drywall is also known as sheetrock is created from compressed plaster or gypsum which is then covered by several sheets of paper to form a board. These boards come in 4 x 8 or 4 x 12 sheets either 1/2” to 5/8” thick and will line the interior walls of your house.
Once plumbing and electrical have been run through the framing cavities and insulation has been installed, these cavities are ready to be covered by drywall. The sheets of drywall are mounted and either nailed or screwed into the framing. This can take anywhere from one to three days depending on the size of the house.
Mudding and Taping
At places where the boards meet each other, there will be a very small gap. This gap is unsightly and also allows a place for heat or cold to escape. Also, very close to these gaps, there will be numerous spots were nails or screws used to secure the drywall for the wall will show. This will be unsightly. So at these joints, another group of subcontractors called “Tapers” will do there job.
The first step is to mix a spackling compound (affectionately known as “mud”). This compound is pressed into the joints between the sheets of drywall. While the mud is still moist, the tapers run a strip of tape over the gap, pressing it into the mud to hold it in place firmly. The tapers then run a roller over the tape to flatten it completely against the walls so that there are no creases. As the mud drys, the tape will be held securely in place covering than nails and gaps. The walls will thus be completely smooth.
This is the walls ‘finish’. A compound is spread over the surface of the entire drywall and is then given a decorative texture. Often this is the same compound that is used for sealing the tape. Once it is dried it will be ready to be painted over for the final look.
There are various forms of texture for the finish. For example, a common one is known as the “orange peel” look. It is spread in such a manner that leaves the wall looking literally like the surface of an orange peel, except that it’s not orange, unless of course you paint it orange.