Canadian Woodworking

Drywall dust, paint drips and future projects calling my name

Author: Rob Brown
Who Turned Out the Lights?

We’ve been plugging away at the basement reno over the past week. Drywall is up, mudded and sanded, and just yesterday I was able to get a good coat of primer on.

I forgot how awful it is to sand drywall. Drywall dust rained directly down on my head while working on the ceiling, and sanding the walls further saturated the air with a dust that sticks to sweat and forms a substance just short of thick glue.

The air conditioning was on, but with the basement windows open and a fan in the window to encourage some of the dust to move outside, the basement was getting uncomfortable. It was about 30°C outside and the humidity was high, so things got a bit sticky.

I didn’t even notice how much dust had settled on my glasses until I stopped and went outside, and found I had trouble focusing on the house and trees across the road. My glasses were covered in a surprisingly thick layer of white dust. The caked-on dust on my head and face was next level, and even a shower didn’t entirely rid me of this sticky, yet surprisingly dry, substance. It’s essentially like talcum powder, but somehow more insidious.

Next comes one of the hardest tasks of all – choosing two paints colours. Hopefully, that painful exercise is going to wrap up tonight so I can buy the paint and get it on the walls tomorrow. While the white primer is a nice step up from patchy drywall, a solid colour will bring the entire renovation alive in a bold way.

Keep it clean

I’m a pretty neat and tidy painter, but not having a finished floor to worry about is a luxury. It’s amazing how much easier it is to do a job in the correct order, and not have to worry about where paint drips fall. Having said that, only three or four drips of primer hit the ground yesterday. I hope I didn’t use up my luck on the white primer, as I still have to cut two wall colours into the white ceiling.

Who Turned Out the Lights?
After a slow but steady buildup of sanding dust accumulated on my glasses I wasn’t aware of what happened until I tried to focus on the colour and details outside of the drywall dungeon I was working in. Needless to say, a dust respirator was mandatory while sanding.

Who Turned Out the Lights?


What’s next?

It’s been hard to stay out of the shop recently, as I got a shipment of clear teak from Mys-Teak about a week ago. This is plantation teak from Costa Rica that’s been growing for the past 30 years or so, waiting patiently to be turned into a few patio tables by a woodworker like myself. I’m looking forward to that project.

Teak is an interesting species. Its oily properties make it a wonderful material for the outdoors. I often shy away from wood for outdoor projects, as it can be labour intensive to keep it looking great. When it’s nicely finished, wood looks great outdoors, though U.V. rays, moisture and temperature swings wreak havoc on it, causing the finish to deteriorate and the wood to change colour somewhat quickly. I’ve been in contact with the people from Mys-Teak about how to ensure the finished colour and overall look of the teak I use stays even and rich for years to come. I’ll turn this project into an article for our pages in the magazine, so you’ll have to wait and see how the tables turn out.  Follow us on Instagram and you’ll likely see an update or two of the build.

Okay, back to those colour swatches. Oh, so much fun.

Gravity Only Works So Well
A lot of dust eventually fell to the floor, though it’s so lightweight a lot of it stays airborne, waiting to filter through the rest of the house, as well as my lungs, if I let it.

Gravity Only Works So Well

Calling My Name
This teak is calling my name, waiting to be turned into a few patio tables. Sadly, it will be a few weeks until I can spend some quality time with this beautiful material.

Calling My Name
Published:
Last modified: August 12, 2022

Rob Brown - [email protected]

Rob is a studio furniture maker and the editor at Canadian Woodworking & Home Improvement.

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