Step 1: Stir compound and prep surfaces

drywall installation
Photo: Allen Penn
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•Cut band on top of the bucket with a utility knife or tin snips and pry off lid.
•If there’s water on top of the compound, chuck a mixing paddle into a 1⁄2-inch drill. Mix at slow speed until water is blended and compound is smooth. If there’s no water, the compound is ready to use.
•Look for any screwheads poking above the drywall surface and drive them until slightly recessed.
•Tear away any loose or torn paper from drywall (especially at corners and cut edges) to prevent bits from ending up in the compound.
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    Tools List

    • drill
      Drill/driver
      for blending compound
    • drywall tape dispenser
      Drywall tape dispenser
    • swivel head pole sander
      Swivel-head pole sander with drywall sandpaper
      for smoothing first coat of compound
    • sanding block
      Sanding blocks
      for sanding corners
    • mud box
      Mud box
      for holding small batches of compound and cleaning knives
    • drywall knife
      5- and 10-inch drywall knives
    • mallet
      Mallet
    • drywall corner clincher tool
      Corner clincher
    • shop vacuum
      Shop vacuum

    Shopping List

    1. Medium-grit sanding screen or drywall sandpaper for smothing first coat of compound

    1. Fine-grit sandpaper for smoothing second and third coats of compound

    2. Joint compound

    3. Paper tape