Paper tape vs. Mesh


Old 12-07-05, 09:27 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2005
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Paper tape vs. Mesh

Just an FYI. Thought Id share something I came across. I was questioning whether the paper or mesh is better so I went to the source and asked the people at USG.

I received an email fom them that explained that paper tape makes a stronger joint. If you use mesh, you need to use a setting compound because the traditional compound shrinks when it dries. The paper allows for the shrinkage, the mesh does not. This causes the mesh to crack, resulting in a weeker joint.

Personally, although I have seen cracks where paper was used it is usually on old work (30+ years) any paper joints I have done are fine. I have used mesh in my house too in my living room and basement, and have at least 6 cracked joints.

Does anyone else have any exeriences along these lines?
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Old 12-08-05, 05:47 AM
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Mesh is fine if you put it on right. First you must pre fill all of your gaps larger than 1/8 inch. Don't be fooled to think that that the mud will ooze through the holes and fill the gap. I like to think of it as the mesh lets the mud out not in. After the pre fill, you have to bed the mesh into either mud or contact glue, like corner bead glue. The adhesive on mesh will not hold for the long run. Then you can finish regularly. For new drywall paper is the only way to go. And the use of a banjo for big jobs is a must. For patches I like mesh because it's the fastest. You can pre fill, and bed all in the same mud. Then let set up and finish.
Old 12-08-05, 07:35 AM
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Originally Posted by coops28
For new drywall paper is the only way to go.
why do you say that?
Old 12-08-05, 09:15 AM
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Paper tape has a better track record.
Old 12-09-05, 02:41 PM
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For use with mesh you use the compound that comes in bags the 45 min r 90 min meaning the time it is workable paper is the best all round tape for the diy person its easy to use just mud the joint place the tape on then trowel it smooth with a 4 inch knife the let dry, after that go with a 6 inch r a 10 inch knife depending on the joint, now for corners insde ones it is best to use paper tape and a corner trowel, and for outside corners metal r pvc will do best the paper and metal don't work good at all as with all sheetrock work the best way to do things is to try what you think will work and when you find what works best stay with it.........................
Old 12-13-05, 04:58 AM
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The reason I think that Coops says paper is the only way to go on new construction, is really twofold. First of all most GC's are going to require it in their specs for the job. Second reason and this is really the important one for a diyer, you can apply paper tape with a tool called a banjo, it will apply the tape & mud at the same time, this allows you to pull tape much faster than doing it by hand and also lets you run long runs with a single piece of tape. The banjo can be bought for about $100 or less or you can also rent them, in my area for about $15 a day. One further note, you must mix & thin the mud in order to run it thru a banjo, can't use it right out of the bucket.

I used to have a link I think it was on USG's site as well which showed lab test results showing that paper tape did indeed have a higher tensile strength than mesh tape. You definitely should use a setting compound when using mesh tape, as was specified in the initial post.

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