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Forget measuring to locate recessed cans when you’re hanging drywall; Blind Mark’s Center Mark tool uses the awesome power of magnets to make finding them faster and easier.

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To use the Center Mark, screw the target into the socket inside the recessed can and hang the drywall.  Then move the Center Mark locater puck approximately where the can should be, and with any luck the puck will snap into place to locate the center of the can. Finally, saw away from the puck until you hit the edge of the recessed can, jump to the outside, and saw around the outside of the can.

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The Center Mark sells for $18. The Home Depot site claims the tool is only available online, but my local Home Depot had them on the shelf.

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Center Mark [Blind Mark]
Center Mark [Home Depot]

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8 Responses to Hang Drywall Without Measuring For Lights

  1. Tim Daniels says:

    I have used their old kit for rectangle boxes.

    I can say this product works great and really makes it much easier to ensure your cuts line up. The magnets are strong, be mindful of pinching your fingers. Makes the job very fast if you have enough to have one for each outlet. (and less sloppy)

  2. heywood j says:

    the only thing I don’t like about this offering is that often you will have a bank of 3 or more can lights covered by possibly one sheet of rock…therefore you will need many of these to take care of that need.

    guess it depends on how much it costs for a single unit.

  3. heywood j says:

    oops…missed the price. at $18, that adds up quick.

    I would rather play around with some pieces of dowel/broomstick, some broken light bulbs (screw base) and buy a bunch of magnets to do the same thing for about $2-3/apiece.

  4. heywood j says:

    oops…missed the price. at $18, that adds up quick.

    I would rather play around with some pieces of dowel/broomstick, some broken light bulbs (screw base) and buy a bunch of magnets to do the same thing for about $2-3/apiece.

  5. Gough says:

    I’ve got to agree with Heywood on this one. I keep a supply of neodymium magnets with my tools: both 1/4 and 1/2 disks. They can be used for lots of different things on jobsites: find fasteners in GWB, transfer specific locations from one side of a wall/ceiling to the other, pick up dropped tools/hardware in awkward spots, etc.

  6. Aleksejs says:

    Very clever indeed, but as said before, price is too steep. And wouldn’t it be better if those magnets had a hole in the middle ( http://www.kjmagnetics.com/proddetail.asp?prod=RX033CS-N ) , you could mark the center right away… I guess if the “bulb” part has strong enough magnet, you could use any washer (or alternatively Bridge City Tool Works could manufacture special precision milled “pinnacle of machining arts” for 299$ apiece :D ).

  7. Bob The Drywall Guy says:

    I loves me some magnets. kj magnetics is a great site! and I keep a couple around incase I miss a box or light behind drywall.

    You gotta watch doing exactly the advertised task though, your magnet will stick to the side of the poitlight aswell as their ‘magnet receiver’ so make sure you’re on the ‘receiver’ and not about to blow your cut. cause that’s not good times….

    Honestly, it would be quicker, and easier to just mark the light location on the wall, or an adjacent sheet of drywall. It’s a method that you can use for every box, light, whatever, and if you use hash marks to locate the size/distance from the stud when you mark, it’s easy peasy.

    it’s just a matter of getting the apprentices to pay attention to what they’re doing….

  8. ChrisNYC says:

    I just use a plumb bob attached to the center of a wood disk that friction fits into the housing. Mark the spot on the floor with a piece of tape. Makes it real simple to locate the cut out locations once the drywall is up. Works perfect every time and practically free.

    You could also rig it so the plumb bob hangs on something that would screw into the lightbulb receptacle.

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