Step 8: Cut Out the Stud

man sawing stud out of wall for wall niche installation
Photo: Laura Moss
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If a stud is located within the opening, use the reciprocating saw to slice it at the top and bottom, even with the opening, as shown. Then slip the blade behind the stud and cut any nails holding the stud in place so that you can remove it. Whether your studs run on the flat, as with some older homes, or on edge, measure the depth of the opening to ensure the niche will fit fully into the wall.
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    Tools List

    • utility scissors
      Utility scissors
    • studfinder
      Stud finder
    • straightedge guide
      Straightedge, to mark cut lines between the lath pieces
    • utility knife
      Utility knife, to score the drywall
    • flat prybar
      Small pry bar
    • reciprocating saw
      Reciprocating saw, to cut any lath and plaster and to remove any obtrusive studs
    • circular saw
      Circular saw, to cut the 2x4 blocking
    • drill
      Drill/driver, fitted with a 1⁄8-inch drill bit
    • caulk gun
      Caulk gun
    • paintbrush
      Paintbrush

    Shopping List

    1. Niche
    Choose a dense polyurethane niche in a design that mimics surrounding moldings.

    2. Cardboard
    to create a template.

    3. Pole system
    (or painter's tape) to hold the plastic sheeting in place.4. Plastic sheeting

    5. Painter's tape
    to secure plastic around work window.

    6. Adhesive caulk

    7. Paint