Drywalling 15' x 8.5' wall

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I have a wall in my living room which is paneled. The paneling is nailed right to the studs, no drywall. I want to replace the paneling with drywall. On walls, I have always laid drywall horizontally (the 8' dimension running parallel to the floor). Trouble is, the ceiling height is about 8.5', so 2 widths will not cover it the height. I'm thinking the best approach is to have the 6" gap in the middle, since this will mean only one horizontal joint. I'm planning to use 5/8" drywall for the bulk of the space, I'm thinking if I use 1/2" for the 6" gap in the middle, there will be a nice depression for mudding. Does this sound like the best approach? Any suggestions appreciated.
TIA
Dan
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If it were me, I'd use 4 10' sheets run vertically. No butt joints. Your way will work, but since I don't believe you can get 16' sheets (I think 14 is the max), you will have butt joints to deal with.
Plus, unless you install double nailers all across the wall, your way leaves the long seam relatively unsupported. Installed vertically, every seam will fall on a stud. I suppose you could avoid this by rocking over the paneling...
My $.02
Paul F.
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Dan wrote:

Thought about molding on the top or bottom or even both?
Lou
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Not a bad idea. Also eliminates having to mud the top of the wall into the ceiling. House is contemporary, only has very narrow molding (about 2") at the bottom right now. I've been thinking of doing something with that (just getting started on this house) but I don't think crown molding would look right.
I do think going with the vertical sheet application would be better.
Thanks for the reply.
Dan
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I'd think twice about hanging the sheets vertically. Not only is it usually not as aesthetically pleasing (the seams are often more noticeable) but it is a real PITA to do a good job finishing seams that run all the way from the floor to the ceiling (consider how many times you're going to go from crouching on the floor to up a ladder and reaching to the ceiling - all the while trying to make a nice smooth joint).
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Dan wrote:

Your welcome. Please post back what you finally do and how it worked out.
Lou
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I had the same problem. Messed up one end of a 18x30 addition and hired 'rocker to finish the job. He ran it horizontal with the joint in the middle. Made it look simple on the taping.
If you hate taping as much as I do, you will run horizontal also. Pencil it out and you will find about 1/3 less footage of seams going that way. Then there is the fun of trying to do decent taping job on a verticle seam, bent way over to get down by the floor and crawl up on something to work near the ceiling. Any butt joints can be made to fall over/under doors/windows assuming, of course, that wall has openings.
Harry K
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Did exactly that Lou.
Converted a carport to living space. Ceiling slightly more than 8' since it sloped a tad back to front. Came out OK if ya ask me.
See: http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic0u8k7d&s=2
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Dan wrote:

Hang horizontally. You can get 54" (width) wallboard. Plan on using that for the upper course and possibly the lower too, depending on the actual height of the ceiling. (hint: it's easier to trim 6-1/2" than 1/2" unless you have the proper tool.)
If you use 8' sheets you're going to end up with three butt joints, One on top and two on bottom. (You want the butt joints to be staggered.) If you can get 12' sheets into that room you'll avoid that problem.
Drywall lifts work for hanging walls - rent one.
Don't forget the outlet and switch boxes. You want them to end up flush with the drywall. Either buy box extensions or reposition them before hanging.
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Dan wrote:

Let's back up a step: If the wall is covered with paneling, why the drywall?
You're gonna have to paint the drywall, but I bet you could paint the paneling...
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Since you're only dealing with one wall most of the concealment techniques would involve working on the other walls which is more work. Stick with the one wall unless you want to mess about with moldings and bigger baseboards in the rest of the room.
I'd put the 6" strip at the bottom. By far the least noticeable place to put it.
The bottom of this article from Fine Homebuilding shows how I deal with butt joints - 'cepting I use scrap plywood instead of buying them. http://www.taunton.com/finehomebuilding/PDF/Free/021164076.pdf
R
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Thanks for posting the link. Maybe a stupid question....can't you grate the edge of a butt edge to taper it and turn it into a seam? Would that help avoid a ridge?
--Jeff
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.
That is what I did and it is hands down the most miserable place to try to tape a joint. Even the pro that I hired to finish my mess was cussing it.
DON'T DO IT!
Harry K
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I wouldn't do a whole house that way, but the OP has only one wall to do.
BTW, if anyone has one of those mechanic's rolling stools, they're great for scooting around while seated. Really saves the back and knees when working lower down. http://shopping.msn.com/specs/shp/?itemIdP1431978
R
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on 10/4/2007 11:54 PM Dan said the following:

1/2" Sheetrock comes in 4' x 9' sheets too. Hang them vertically.
--

Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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Only if he wants the wall to look like "sheet"... Vertical seams are impossible to hide, and the wall ends up looking like the surface of the ocean. Wavy gravy. Professionals only hang sheets vertically if the wall is less than 4' long.
The drywallers that did my parent's addition used 16' sheets for one wall so they must be available. Two 16' sheets, and one 8' sheet to cut the 6" filler out of. Put the filler at the top, not the middle. Two seams right close together like that, especially with no depressed edge on one, will look like a stucco chair rail.
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snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com wrote:

...
Not necessarily. A good tape/finish job on a well hung wall can make any joint disappear to where it won't even be possible to tell where it was when properly primed and painted.
Professionals tend to use horizontal for simply the fact it is fewer linear feet of joint to finish in most instances and for them, speed equates to pay rate. For the DIY'er, the time is typically essentially immaterial.
--
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Thanks for the continued input on this. I see what you mean by finishing a vertical seam. The paneling is this ugly cedar board stuff, with a ~1" wide by .5" deep depression between the boards, hard to describe, but like there's another board on the back between every 2 you see on the front. Also has a very rought finish. It's stained at the moment, could be painted, but it would still look like crap. I know the best way to go is horizontally, it's just dealing with sheets that size & getting them here. Was planning on using that rental truck HD has available, but I don't think the bed is more than 8' long. I think I'll further investigate the sizes available, as well as renting the equipment to hoist it into place, then just have the sheets delivered. I *HATE* drywalling anyway, best to plan it out so as to limit the mudding!
Thanks again for all the helpful replies, and thanks R for that good article.
Dan
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on 10/5/2007 1:51 PM snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com said the following:

So a 16' long seam horizontally is possible to hide?

--

Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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<snip>
Of course it is, just as verticle seams are. It is a lot easier to do a good horizontal than a verticle though. It also has to do with the way the eye sees it, and how the light affects it, a fair verticle _will_ show up while a fair horizontal won't.
Harry K
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