Friday, January 9, 2015

Say It, Don't Spray It

So once the drywall was all finished, it was time to get priming. The purpose of priming is to even out the color and texture for your paint, and also because bare drywall is very porous and sucks up paint like crazy.

I had purchased a pneumatic paint sprayer from Harbor Freight for about $15 to speed things along. With a paint sprayer, the first thing you want to do is cover up everything you don't want sprayed, like windows, bathtubs, built in bookshelves, etc.

I used plastic drop cloths and masking tape.

So remember how I said I got a paint sprayer so things would go faster? Yeah, about that...

This is about an hours worth of finagling with the sprayer. Then I gave up until David got home. He played with all the knobs for about 20 more minutes before he got it going. Whew.

It was a bit of a messy job, and I highly recommend wearing a mask if you are doing a lot of painting. I wore a dusk mask because that's all we had and I still had paint all up in my nose and mouth.

It took about 2 1/2 hours of work to get the whole basement primed, then we jumped in the shower and ran to a New Year's party, because, yes, we like to spray prime the basement at 8:30pm on New Year's Eve.

Then we were living in a world of white.

After the primer went on it made some less than stellar areas in our mudding much more apparent, so we reluctantly and with much dramatic sighing pulled out our mudding tools again and touched them up.

We also noticed some areas where the bare drywall had been roughed up during sanding which were sticking out like a sore thumb. A quick google search told us this was a pretty common problem with sprayed on primer and a little light sanding with fine grit paper would do the trick.

After our touched up mud had dried and been re-primed, it was time for paint. We at first used the sprayer for this, as well, but despite my best efforts to get good even coverage, there was still a lot of striping going on. So we went to the good old fashioned roller instead. The roller also helped a lot in covering any inconsistencies in texture, so I'm glad we went that route, even though it took a little longer.

I'm in love with the living room color. I stayed up until 2am on New Years deliberating over paint colors. It's called Grey Squirrel by Behr.

It's just the right mix of brown and grey and was exactly what I was going for.

The bedroom is Ashes by Behr and it admittedly looks a little like a prison right now. I used this same color in the upstairs office, so I know how nice it will look once we get some white ceiling and trim up.

The laundry and bathroom are Sparkling Sage by Valspar which is another color I've already used in the house.

After applying our final paint, there were still a couple areas where you can see edges from our mudding, but our attitude right now is pretty much, "No one's perfect and I'm too sick of this to fix it." If we ever get in the mood down the road, it will be easy enough to do later.

Some eagle eye readers might have noticed what we are working on now: ceiling and window trim. In the laundry room photo above, you can see we have the angle pieces for our drop ceiling up on the wall. We needed to do this because our ceiling will actually come down below the level of the windows, so we had to box things out a little.

Here's our freshly sprayed plywood pieces for the window, along with the bannister spindles, while I was at it (goodbye, golden oak!). This will all make more sense in my next post, hopefully. Stay tuned, things are finally starting to look more finished!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Drywalling Til I Can Drywall No More

On the day after Thanksgiving, about 3,000 pounds of drywall and cement board was delivered to our carport.

After 36 trips up and down the stairs and about two and a half hours time, it was all carried downstairs.

Once we had recovered, we got started hanging it on the wall.

This step took quite a lot longer than I had anticipated. You never really think about how much area and how many little pieces of wall need to be covered by drywall until you get down to it. For anyone wondering, the green drywall on the bottom is mold and mildew resistant. We used it on the bottom half of all the walls and everywhere in the bathroom.

After a couple weeks, it was all up and then it was time for the dreaded task of mudding. We are far from experts at this, though we have vastly improved from our first efforts. We watched many a YouTube video on the subject.

In my previous post on drywalling, which goes into more detail on the step-by-step, I mention that I used the powdered mud that you mix yourself. This time around, we decided to go pre-mixed since having to mix up a new batch of mud all the time was going to slow things way down. In the end, I still prefer the mix-it-yourself mud, but for a large job like this, the convenience of pre-mixed wins.

While carrying those 12' sheets of drywall down the stairs, I was regretting my decision to go with them as opposed to the 8', but after  having to mud that many fewer seams, I was really glad we went for it. I just wished the green drywall came in 12' lengths, too.

We spent what felt like approximately 10,000 years applying three coats of mud, then sanding, then marking spots that need touching up, then sanding and touching up and so on. We found that shining a flashlight parallel with the wall was very helpful in finding any uneven spots.

Once we were finally satified enough with the smoothness of things, we put up the cement board in the areas we would be tiling.

Then it was on to the painting stage. That will be for another post though, since one is already plenty long enough. I can't even express how happy I am to be done with drywalling. Woo hoo!