Step 6: Mock-up an outside corner

•To measure a coped piece of molding that ends at an outside corner, make a mock-up of the corner from two 12-inch-long molding scraps. Make an outside miter cut on one piece, as in Step 3. Repeat this process for the second scrap piece, but rotate the saw blade to the opposite 45-degree angle. Glue and nail the pieces ends together.

•Hold the mock-up in place and mark the ceiling where the two pieces of molding come together.

•Measure from the top edge of the first piece you installed (Step 2) to the ceiling mark. Transfer that measurement to the coped length of molding (Step 3). Swing the saw back to its original 45-degree position and cut the molding to length.

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    Tools List

    • miter saw
      Power miter saw with 10-inch carbide-tipped blade
    • drill
      for drilling pilot holes for nails
    • 16-foot tape measure
      Tape measure
    • pneumatic finish nailer
      Pneumatic finishing nailer with 1½- to 2-inch finish nails,
      to fasten molding to wall
    • framing square
      Framing square,
      for laying out molding on walls and ceilings
    • chalk line
      Chalk line,
      for snapping installation lines on the wall
    • coping saw
      Coping saw,
      for coping molding at inside corners
    • utility knife
      Utility knife,
      for trimming coped joints
    • rasp
      Wood rasp,
      for fine-tuning coped joints
    • studfinder
      Electronic stud finder,
      for locating studs and joists
    • hammer

    Shopping List

    1. 4d, 6d, and 8d finish nails

    2. 1/16-inch drill bit

    3. Wood putty

    for filling nail holes

    4. Acrylic or other flexible caulk

    to seal gaps between molding and walls and ceiling

    5. Carpenter's glue

    for adhering outside corners and returns