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Drywalling under stairs

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  • Drywalling under stairs

    Hey everyone,

    I've basically completed hanging drywall in my basement, but I'm at a bit of a loss on how to drywall the underside of the stairway leading to the upstairs (ie, the ceiling above the stairs going to the basement).

    What's the typical approach to working that high (9' in my case) on the stepped surface of the stairs? Do people build custom scaffolding for this purpose? I have an articulating ladder, but I don't know how feasible it would be to use in this scenario; doesn't seem like I'd be able to position it in a safe configuration and location.

    Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Jeff

  • #2
    Re: Drywalling under stairs

    Do you intend to do the vertical and horizontal parts of the stairs?

    Most would hide all of that with a straight piece that runs along the bottom of the entire unit.

    As far as the height issue......if you are doing the small pieces, a simple ladder should be safe enough. If you intend to do larger pieces you can get help and two ladders, or a drywall lift to hold the piece and use a ladder for yourself.

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    • #3
      Re: Drywalling under stairs

      Originally posted by rofl View Post
      Do you intend to do the vertical and horizontal parts of the stairs?

      Most would hide all of that with a straight piece that runs along the bottom of the entire unit.

      As far as the height issue......if you are doing the small pieces, a simple ladder should be safe enough. If you intend to do larger pieces you can get help and two ladders, or a drywall lift to hold the piece and use a ladder for yourself.
      Yeah, I'm planning on hiding the steps with a straight plane of drywall just under the steps.

      You think a ladder is going to be okay with footings on separate levels? I suppose I could clamp a stop on the stairs to ensure any jostling doesn't result in it slipping off a step; just seems like the angle of the ladder wouldn't be ideal.. I would probably work with that, though.

      --Jeff

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      • #4
        Re: Drywalling under stairs

        Originally posted by carbonBased View Post
        Yeah, I'm planning on hiding the steps with a straight plane of drywall just under the steps.

        You think a ladder is going to be okay with footings on separate levels? I suppose I could clamp a stop on the stairs to ensure any jostling doesn't result in it slipping off a step; just seems like the angle of the ladder wouldn't be ideal.. I would probably work with that, though.

        --Jeff
        I guess I have a visualization issue here. If you are doing the bottom of stairs, I wouldn't expect the flooring you are working from to be uneven. I guess I'm still thinking "basement".

        If you are working from some stairs I'd just buy a little lumber and build a small platform that can be moved from stair to stair and provide a flat, stable support.

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        • #5
          Re: Drywalling under stairs

          Originally posted by rofl View Post
          I guess I have a visualization issue here. If you are doing the bottom of stairs, I wouldn't expect the flooring you are working from to be uneven. I guess I'm still thinking "basement".

          If you are working from some stairs I'd just buy a little lumber and build a small platform that can be moved from stair to stair and provide a flat, stable support.
          Sorry, yeah, I didn't explain fully -- I'm working on stairs above my head, from stairs underneath; in other words, the stairs to the top story are directly above the stairs going to the basement, and I'm trying to drywall the underside of the upper set of stairs.

          I was wondering if a stair "flattening" platform might be the way to go.

          Cheers!
          --Jeff

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          • #6
            Re: Drywalling under stairs

            What I do is put a ladder on a stair step and lean it against against the headwall of the staircase. Then run a plank from the landing to one of the ladder steps. You can raise the height of the plank by using your articulating ladder as a platform on the landing. Place the plank on it and run it to the appropriate step on the ladder that is against the headwall.
            Seldom is the plank exactly level but you should be able to get it close enough to level to be safe.

            Tom

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