If you find yourself involved in a home improvement project such as hanging drywall, painting or wallpapering, having the proper plastering tools are essential. Fortunately, all of these items are available at your local hardware or home improvement store.
A trowel is an important plastering tool that allows you to smooth the plaster after applying it to the wall. This tool is used to flatten the plaster down over the area intended for plastering. It’s important to have a good, clean surface on the trowel to provide for a uniform finish.
A hawk is used by the professionals to carry the plaster with them as they move down the wall. An advantage of this, over carrying plaster in a pan or working from the bucket directly, is the amount of drywall compound that that can be picked up by the trowel in each “scooping” action. As plaster sticks to the hawk after a few seconds the hawk can be tipped up at a 90 degree angle whilst scooping plaster off with the trowel.
A mud pan can be used instead of a hawk for the less experienced plasterer. While it can be more wasteful, time consuming and laborious scooping plaster material out of the pan, it is harder to spill material onto the floor with the pan than with a hawk.
A utility knife or scissors will help cut plaster tape to size. The utility knife is employed to square out the edge of the hole to be plastered over if repairing damaged walls. Straight edged holes are easier to smooth over for an even surface.
A wet sponge is used to smooth out unevenness that may occur after plastering the wall.
Coarse grit sandpaper is used quickly to smooth out large areas of rough unevenness, and then the finer grit is used to finish up the area.
A jointing knife is essential for defining a straight line and edging into tight spaces such as corners and those areas that are tight, such as between a window near the wall and the wall that is perpendicular to it. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes as needed. Angled jointing knives help reach hard to reach angles.
A step ladder is an invaluable tool for reaching the holes in the walls at the higher areas. Try to get a ladder which includes a pan shelf at the top. You can carry the materials and tools you are using in the pan to reduce fatigue and time spent going up and down the ladder.
Never discount the importance of a couple buckets of clear, fresh water for keeping tools clean and for wetting the sponge during the project.
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