Step 3: Cut the Parts and Attach Nailing Strips

cutting the parts an assembling a nailing strip for three-piece crown molding
Photo: Wendell T. Webber
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Measure the length of each run and cut fascia and soffit boards to size. If the fascia has a decorative edge, miter the ends of the boards to make the edges match up. The soffits should be mitered first: Make the cuts across their widths so that the long points will rest on the wall for inside corners and the short points will rest on the wall for outside corners. Then bevel the ends of the fascia across their thicknesses to follow the angled ends of the soffits.
Next you'll add nailing strips to keep the attachment of the fascia and soffit square. Cut 1x1 strips for the fascia to size. On the back of each fascia, draw a line 1¾ inch from the decorative edge so that there's room for a reveal when the soffit is installed. Use wood glue and 1¼-inch nails to affix the strip to the fascia along the line.

Tip: When attaching the nailing strip, nail through one end first and hold the strip to the line as you drive nails along the strip's length. This technique will remove any natural bowing in the strip.
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    Tools List

    • studfinder
      stud finder
    • chalk line
      chalk line
    • miter saw
      miter saw
    • coping saw
      coping saw
    • drill
      drill/driver
    • brad nailer
      nail gun
    • hot glue gun
      hot-glue gun
    • hand clamps
      spring clamps
    • caulk gun
      caulk gun
    • sandpaper
      fine-grit sanding sponge
    • chisel-tip paintbrush
      paintbrush

    Shopping List

    Primed crown molding. Select a larger profile for the upper run and a smaller one for the lower run. To calculate how much to buy, round the length of each wall to the nearest foot and add the lengths together. Get tips on sizing crown molding to suit your space

    Primed fascia board with a decorative profile on one edge.

    Primed 1x6 soffit board

    2x2 for cleats on the walls and ceiling, to which the half beams will be attached.1x1 for the nailing strip that will help you join the soffit and fascia boards.

    2x4 to rip at an angle for making backing blocks for the gable ends of the room.

    Painter's tape

    1¼-inch and 3-inch screws

    1¼-inch and 2-inch finishing nails

    Toggle anchors

    Paintable caulk

    Semigloss paint