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To cut a hole in drywall for an electrical box, you measure X, then measure Y, transfer those to the drywall, and cut out as needed with a saw or rotary cutter.  It’s simple in theory — but in practice there’s a lot of room for error, especially if you’re a DIYer for whom this isn’t your regular job. The Blind Mark Electrical Cutout Tool system, with its two-part magnetic template, takes out the guesswork and helps you avoid costly mistakes.

The Blind Mark kit comes with three targets and one target locater template. Before the drywall goes up, you place the targets inside the electrical boxes. After the board is secured, slide the target finder across the drywall until the magnets lock together. Mark a line around the template, cut out a hole for the future switch or outlet, and remove the target. It simplifies the multi-step process and helps eliminate mistakes. The kit sells for $25 at the official site as well as at Lowe’s and Home Depot.

Blind Mark [Official Site]
Street Pricing [Google Products]

 

9 Responses to Take Some Of The Guesswork Out Of Drywall

  1. Eric says:

    I have used a product called Handy Mark (http://www.handymark.net/index.html) which, in my opinion, is quicker and easier to use. You place the Handy Mark in the box, bump the drywall up against it to mark the back of the sheet, then use a saw to “connect the dots” to make your cutout. I will say, though, that Handy Mark doesn’t seem to be in major distribution, making it a little harder to find. I got a case of them donated to a Habitat affiliate that I used to work with, and the volunteers really like using them.

  2. Fred says:

    Am I misreading the copy? I’m more a plumber than an electrician , but I always thought that the face of the box needs to be flush with the front face of the board. The box is roughed-in proud of the stud face to accommodate the thickness of the board?

  3. Joe says:

    @Eric: I’ve used the Handy Mark as well. Sometimes the marks are a little hard to see, especially when you’ve trying to hold a 10′ piece of board against a ceiling and then bump it hard enough to put some dots in it.

    @Fred: The box sits proud of the framing so that it’s flush (or a little behind) the face of the drywall once it’s installed.

    Anyone know if there’s any products that will do the same thing when the outlet or switch is already wired? I’d love to find something like this that has plastic tabs that I coud plug into an outlet for positioning.

    • Alford Johnson says:

      I know about a new invention that marks anything for a cutout with or without the receptacle installed. In fact, they mark ANYTHING that needs a cutout. Saw them at the 2016 National Hardware Show. The call them POINTS Mark the Spot! Check them out at their website, http://www.dresseldesigns.com. I was able to cut out for three box cutouts, all at one time, without measuring. Perfect sizes and relative placement. I was truly impressed. They sell them on Amazon, too.
      Hope it works as well for you as it did for me.

  4. Frank Townend says:

    The HandyMark ($10) says it works “with a quick modification” with receptacles in place. http://www.handymark.net/

  5. Simon says:

    or lipstick on the box works…

  6. Joe says:

    @Frank: I’ve used the Handymark – the quick modification is to break out the center plastic tab. It works OK, but the Handymark has one flaw that I forgot to point out.

    It’s exactly the right size to clip into a standard plastic box. If you’ve got metal boxes, the Handymark doesn’t fit.

  7. Frank Townend says:

    Thanks Joe.

  8. Jason says:

    I’m a commercial electrician, never once had to cut out drywall for my boxes. Maybe if you are a general?

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