How do I repair ceiling sheetrock damage?

How do I repair ceiling sheetrock damage?
After more than 100 visits over the last 25 years to my unfinished truss-built attic, I finally stepped through the ceiling below.
I made an X-shaped pair of cuts in it, one cut about 3 feet and the other about 2, crossing in the middle, with 2 opposite pieces hanging down, one a little bit, held up by the light fixture at one edge, and one a lot, held up only by the paper.
I want to make as good a temporary repair as I can, working alone. What should I do?
I think I can go up in the attic again, and nail a 1x4, or 2x2, or 2x4, between the two bordering trusses, right where the the two dangling pieces would go; and then use sheet-rock screws to attach the two dangling pieces to the new wood. The trusses are every 24 inches.
Maybe two more pieces of wood, one above each of the pieces that are not danglng. Almost all of all four pieces is between the same two trusses.
OR, maybe with the right brackets pre-attached, I could put in a piece of plywood, 22 1/2 inches by a foot or a little more wide.
Is there some sort of bracket/hanger in the hanger section that would make this easier so I could get the height of the new wood right?
Thanks.
I had put a lot of 16" wide 8-foot pieces of plywood there as a floor, but I was carrying a 12" tv with one arm, and trying to move things with the other so I could put the tv where I wanted it, and I stumbled and went an inch or two beyond the bottom of the trusses, through one of the few places in the middle area that had no "floor". I had only been up there once in the last 2 or 3 years, and I think I forgot how incomplete the "floor" was.
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I would suggest doing the repairs from below. In this case ladder work is easier than kneeling in an unfinished attic
I'm not sure what you mean by temporary; my idea of temporary & my wife's are more than a bit different. :) Here's how I would do it (the temporary part, imo, would be ih the degree of "finish")
This may seem like the method that is more work but working from a uniform starting point is always faster than trying to fit an irregular cut.
Cut the damaged area to nice rectangle or series of rectangles. Cut them flush to the truss chords edges (this will save the attachment for the undamaged drywall) Trusses on 24" centers can be spanned with drywall w/o additional framing.
If you want to use 1x4 to span between the trusses, screw a short "sister" to the sides of the truss chords, sub-flush by the thickness of the 1x4. If you decide not to use 1x4, the sisters can be flush.
Screws the 1x4's to the sisters. If you make the sisters about 4" longer than the opening, the 1x4's can be used to overlap the "free edges". Now you have a uniform & completely framed opening ready for drywall.
WIth the ceiling open, you might consider ripping some plywood 24" wide (or ??) & throwing them up there to give you more walking surface.
As Smitty Two says "Put up a new chunk of drywall, and call that your temporary repair. The finished repair will be when you tape, mud, and paint it. "
cheers Bob
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Takes me back. I did it too, years ago. Unfortunately in wifes closet needing to dust off a lot of clothes but OTOH, looking at it today all I did was nail a scrap piece of verneer over it and paint white. You never see it unless you open the closet and shine a light at the ceiling.
But, drywall repair is mainly cosmetic and any thing that will support it will be OK. Taped, mudded and painted will make as good as new.
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Using wood to bridge the space betwee the loists is what most follks do. You will have to cut the sheetrock where it inged down and tape all those points. The paper surface will not be flat once it has been cracked, so all the perimeter will have to be cut and the paper removed and then taped. The biggest problem is to get the wood at the right altitude so the reconnected sheetrock is level with the rest of the ceiling. SOme folks use wood bridges, but don't connect tto the joists, but only to firm sheetrock so that there is no altitde question, the patch is exactly as high as the untouched sheetrock by virtue of the existing sheetrock being used as the basis for the wood bridgess.
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Smitty's advice was sound. Hang it now and finish it whenever.
How big is the total area if you cut it out to the nearest joist?
Even at my age with a bad back I can lift, and secure with cheats a 2x4 piece of 1/2" board. What is an extra seam or two to mud and tape?
--
Colbyt
Please come visit http://www.househomerepair.com
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wrote:

I've never put my foot through (though have come close) but I did have a tub leak (the moron builder put the gasket on the wrong side). Repairing drywall is pretty easy, following just the above instructions (though "smitty" forgot the screw part). It takes a little time for mere mortal homeowners, but it's not difficult at all.
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You have seriously never patched a piece of sheetrock before ?
You cut out the damaged sheetrock back to good sturdy stuff which is undamaged...
You then use strapping 1x4 pieces at all the edges so that you can create a good joint at the seam... These pieces of strapping need not be attached to anything other than the sheetrock...
You do not have to cut the sheet back to the center of the nearest stud/joist/truss... You can support the patch with the straps you install to manage the seams...
Mud and tape the joints, sand, repeat as needed... Texture to match the rest of the ceiling... Prime and paint...
It isn't rocket science...
~~ Evan
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On Tue, 23 Nov 2010 00:54:19 -0800 (PST), Evan

Cover the hole with several layers of duct tape. Overlap each strip of tape. Paint it to match the color of the ceiling. Replace insulation in attic above the tape.
You're lucky you didn't fall thru the sheet rock and into the room below. (I did that once in someone elses house. I fell into their bedroom. The people in that room were having sex when I *dropped in*, and I landed on top of their tv, which was turned on at the time). The tv did not survive!
How about putting some flooring in that attic so this dont happen again.
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re: "How do I repair ceiling sheetrock damage? "
You Google "How do I repair ceiling sheetrock damage?"
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