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Drywall corner clips—attach to drywall…..or not?

John Walls | Posted in General Questions on

There appears to be 2 basic types of clips—-those that are just back stops (no attachment to drywall), and those that are (or can be) attached to the drywall.
It seems that if you adhere to the concept of wanting “floating corners” to avoid future drywall corner cracks, that you would want to use the back-stop variety.

However, web site info from those whose clips do attach to drywall implies that cracking is avoided by bending of the clip. That is, if the drywall (or the wood its attached to) wants to move, the clip will bend and allow movement without cracking. Others say that if you attach a clip to a 2-stud corner, then drywall corners are tied to only one stud, and thus if the stud moves, there would be no differential movement between the 2 corner pieces of drywall (because one drywall panel is screwed to the clip, and the other panel screwed to the stud).

I would appreciate any comments on this. Also, on any preferences on manufacturers, materials, attachment technique, some easier to use than others,etc?

If you’re philosophically a “floater”, do you float both sides (i.e. no drywall attachment anywhere in the corner—whether on the clip side or the wood side)? Whether its a ceiling corner or a wall corner?
Note that my wall stud spacing is 24″ exterior (2-stud corners), and 16″ interior.

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Replies

  1. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #1

    Drywall scrap added like you use wood to back is what is in my own home. The drywall goes on that side first and is floating pinned in place by the opposing sheet. Done. Works. No problems here.

    Drywall centered and spanning any beams is my best improvement to share. Such as stairwells, start with a half sheet so the floor joists hit center on a sheet. And know where not to attach and float over with no fasteners.

  2. John Walls | | #2

    AJ, thanks for your response. Just to be clear, whether you use corner clips or dead wood , you don't attach any drywall at any corners with screws or nails---is that correct? No screws in the corner of the first sheet, and no screws in the corner of the opposing sheet---right?

    As a rule of thumb, would you say that no drywall screws should be used within 16" of any corner (whether vertical or horizontal corner, or whether interior or exterior wall). I'm looking for a simple rule of thumb for a dry-waller who has never used these techniques.

    Also, are you saying that you use drywall scrap as "dead wood"? I plan to use clips, but I'm just curious.

  3. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #3

    John, most of my home used drywall scraps as drywall backstops. The second piece applied has to be fastened or it would flop about. The first piece up is sandwiched in place which is why it stays put with no fasteners. So when taped and done both pieces basically follow each other via the tape and general locality of each.

    Summation, yes you do attach second piece. Drywall clips accomplish the exact same thing.

    My other drywall trick is to add wood glue to your mud when corner beading outside corners and anywhere you desire more strength than just mud. My duo adds a gallon to a almost full mud bucket of mud; Experience... this couple is the best and most experienced in my area.

  4. John Walls | | #4

    OK, thanks, AJ---so you do screw the second sheet to the corner stud.
    My confusion is in looking at the GBA details for 2 stud corners---they show no screws in the drywall in the corners of either sheet.

  5. John Walls | | #5

    AJ, thanks for the new title. I'm attempting to contact Ronco to see if I can get something going with them.
    One last question for you--- do you treat the ceiling-to-wall joint the same as wall-to-wall?. i.e. no corner screws in the ceiling sheet, but attach the wall sheet to the top plate? Or do you skip down some for the first wall sheet screw?

  6. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #6

    You welcome and now with such carnal knowledge we must address you appropriately as, Mr. Walls, the two stud wall, Walls.

    Hmmm... Thinking like Ronco... Late night infomercials... Featureing feats of amazing drywall trickery. Normally $199.99 but the next 50 callers will receive double the scraps of drywall so as to amaze friends and family with corners that never looked so good....

  7. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #7

    Same, second sheet is fastened, not floated. The manufacturers have info, books, and PDFs. How to float over beams and deal with truss uplift and backers. Drywall backer and glue may be just our details though. There are butt joint tricks and more corner tricks too.

  8. John Walls | | #8

    AJ, regarding your Post #1----Do you glue the drywall to the beams (like in stairwells), and then put screws just along the center line of the beam? Or no screws in the beam at all? And no glue to beam?

    Also, as an option, what's your opinion of expansion joints for stairwell walls?

  9. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #9

    Read post one, it is exactly what I do, nothing else.

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