interior window trim
My first time posting! We built an addition and thought we had exactly 5/8″ around the windows for the drywall. But the drywall sticks out in many spots. We started cutting out some of the drywall so the trim wood can lay flush against the window. It is hard, time consuming & messy. Any suggestions?
I lay the casing where it should be, then mark the wall with a pencil along its side, score the drywall along this line and then slice whats left into small squares.You can easily pop these squares out with a putty knife.It is messy but only takes a few minutes.
Windows are made for a standard method of construction. 2x4 framing at 3 1/2", 1/2" sheathing, 1/2" drywall. Any variation from this construction requires additional work. If 3/4" boards are used for sheathing, 2x6 are used for framing or thicker drywall is hung, you need to fur out the window. How much depends on what construction was used. If you are off by 1/8", you would typically add 1/8" strips around the window jamb. In 2x6 construction, you may need to add 2 1/2" strips. These are called extension jambs since they extend the window jamb to be flush with the drywall. Making these is simple for a carpenter with a table saw, not so easy if you don't have the machine.
If the framers kept all their parts nice and flush, there usually isn't much difference to deal with. 1/16" +- isn't a big deal. If, however, the framing is not kept flush and varies, you may have to taper the extension jambs to account for the difference. This is more challenging than ripping an even sized strip. More advanced carpentry skills are needed to either cut the taper or plane it to fit. Carpenters don't usually cut the drywall. The square edge on the drywall may get beveled back so the casing doesn't rock on the edge. Drywall has no structural strength if the paper is removed, it can crumble.
Beat it to fit / Paint it to match
Mark the outside line of the casing with a pencil (very lightly), and then take a sharp utility knife and cut (shave) the drywall holding the knife blade on an angle pointing in towards the window, so that you end up with a tapered drywall edge.
You can then clean it up further with a small rasp. Ideally you leave the drywall untouched where it clears the outer edge of the casing.
Unless it sticks out a lot, just mash 'er flat.
take the hammer and tap tap tap along where the SR abutts the window jamb, breaking it down there so the casing tilts slightly to fit to the jamb
If more than an eigth inch, you may have to cut and shave like others mentioned. If more than a quarter inch, you need extension jambs.
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Second this suggestion from Piffin.
I use my big rubber mallet for anything under 3/16. You may have to adjust the miters when cutting (hold the casing in the saw as it will sit-or lean-on the wall). No Coffee No Workee!
Does anybody have a good video reference that shows how to use shims at the miter saw for the purpose of making the miter joints tighter? It is not easy to 'splain in written word.
No video, but for years, I just stick a flat pencil under the keeper side of the trim. close to the blade for a back bevel, and farther away from the blade for more back bevel.
It works well for most situ's I have trimmed, if you need more than that, it's time to explore what's going on..and take it from there. Maybe a jamb ext, or tilt the saw head..but any if more back bevel is needed than the skinny side of a pencil..something is outta whack.Spheramid Enterprises Architectural Woodworks
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I agree with Sphere, and...
I don't use any shims, you can simply guess the small bit it will be sitting out. Just tip the back up a bit before you cut the miter. Shouldn't be more than a quarter. Also, I don't know how you do casing, but I always cut legs first, then cut the head about 1/8 to 1/4 long. That way you can test the miter and adjust the degree and tilt as necessary. I wouldn't go trying to tip the miter bevel...but that's just me. Do it whatever way is most comfortable for you, but you have to allow for that tipped-on-the-drywall-ness either way.
Are you painting or staining this casing (a good point brought up earlier)? It only matters depending on your skill level. If you cut the casing as I have described here and have a good skill level, you can get the miters tight with minimal fill. Otherwise it'd be better if you were painting so you can use a little caulk or (my favorite) glazing compound. I also suggest those miter spring clamps, which I have ordered but do not yet have.
No Coffee No Workee!
Edited 11/23/2008 3:38 pm ET by Jed42
let,I think Jim Chestnut (Clam Clamps) has a good piece on his site. This is from my (bad) memory.Harry
Why 5/8" on the walls? Remember if you decide to cut/smash the sheetrock to get the trim to fit, your 45° won't work as good. They will be open at the bottom and you will have to adjust the setting on the miter saw. If you are staining this is important. If you are painting, you'll use alot of caulk if you don't adjust.
The "mash the drywall" method outlined by Piffin is the easiest way. An alternative is to plane the back of the molding slightly. That has the advantage of not tending to force the miters open. You do have to be careful to not take off too much wood, especially if casing won't be caulked and painted.
Another alterintive is to clamp a straight edge on a table saw at an angle and cope out the back of the trim. Plasteres tend to build up around the windows and this method works well.
That's first I've heard of that technique. I like it.Steve
Depending on your skill and or tools, I found that it is easier to make extension jambs that make your trim 1/16 proud of the sheet rock. i say this because your eyes are going to look at the window and where the trim meets the window before you look at the spacing or the thickness of the trim where it meets the wall. thus giving the illusion of a flawless trim job. alittle caulk between the trim and sheetrock is allot faster than messing with fancy mitering.
I'm almost always doing fairly wide trim with butt joints, so the most important thing for me is to have it lie flat, not tilting in or out. To that end I usually wind up either doing jamb extensions, or rabbeting the back of the trim board a little bit if the sheetrock is proud. If I modify the sheetrock it's usually by holding the trim up, scoring the drywall along the edge of the trim, peeling away the paper and surforming the gypsum away till the board can lie perfectly flat and still touch the jamb.
Then I kreg-screw everything together and put it up as a unit.
Is all that screwed on, filled (with wood putty)and painted?. You say thats the style you use quite often?, not trying to be critical at all but why? seems like extra work and also seem quite plain jane when done. Is this to match something older maybe?
Yes it is. It's to match existing trim in a house from about 1820 that had extensive remodeling in the 1880's and again in the 1920's. The casings are matching what was substituted for the original casings when the windows were replaced throughout the house in the 1880's. The original casings were most likely a simple flat casing with a bead on the inner edge, but there was no trace from that incarnation. The wainscot matches one lone buried piece of wainscot from the circa 1820 era of the house. This particular house was a rather plane-jane tenant farm house originally.Most of the work I do around here is on mid-to-late 19th century houses. Lots of Greek Revival. Almost everthing is in pine for paint. Grander examples have grander trim. I like to screw everything together because I know it's going to stay together. At least until some poor sap has to come along and remove it later. Inevitably that poor sap is me, but at least I know roughly where the screws live and where they are likely to be torx-head T15 or T20 or T25. Sometimes I curse myself for using bondo as my filler though ;-)Steve
Edited 11/23/2008 10:44 pm by mmoogie
Bondo less likely to shrink and crack? Trying to match trim from a hundred years ago sounds like a fun project. Its nice to see that some people admire the looks of the original stuff, would enjoy doing that myself, off the shelf trim and woodwork bores me to death. A custom woodwork project like that would get me excited again. Nice work man.