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Impatient with the setup time required by drywall jacks or lifts, John V Santiago invented Free Hands drywall supports as a cheap and easy solution for wrestling sheets of drywall solo.  Free Hands also allow you to adjust and align sheets of drywall before securing them, all by yourself.

Made from high-quality, high-impact Lexan plastic, Free Hands only weigh 4 ounces, and they’re small enough to fit in your pocket.  The bright yellow color ensures that you won’t forget ’em on the job site and you’ll be able to find ’em in your toolbox.

To help justify your purchase of a pair of Free Hands, the website claims you can also use ’em as temporary stops for a doorjamb, or as temporary support.  What?  Pay for a doorstop?  If you can’t make a pair of these from some wood scraps, maybe you shouldn’t be hanging drywall by yourself.

If you’re still interested, on their website a pair of Free Hands runs $9 plus shipping and handling.  Street pricing is surprisingly higher at $13 a pair.  If anybody knows why the hell you’d buy a pair of these, let us know.  We must be missing something.

Free Hands [Corporate Site]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]

 

11 Responses to An Expensive Alternative To A Few Scrap 2x4s

  1. jeff says:

    What does one do when they’re in the middle of the ceiling with no wall members to screw these to?

  2. JT says:

    For ceiling drywall, you flip them (screw them into the joists) and use the part in the bottom of the picture to hold up one edge of the drywall, and then secure your end. I used these on one house, and it was cheaper that renting that drywall lift. More work on the laborer, but less cost, and much easier to pack up in a tool box.

  3. fred says:

    We often put up oversized boards – 12-16 footers – reduces taping, problems with joints, etc.
    We own several lifts – and have the crews to use them.

    A few 2×4 T-Braces might also help the DIY’er

  4. KMR says:

    fred brings up a good point, I am often astounded by how many “Pro contractors” I’ve seen using typical 4×8 sheets of drywall when they can minimize their joint work by going to longer sheets. I used 4x12s where needed I did my house, definitely minimized the number of joints.

    I always wonder why the guys using 4x8s set them horizontal on walls, rather than standing up right. That way you have no joint crossing intersections, all of your joints are on the factory recessed edges.

  5. fred says:

    Re KMR:

    I think that the practice of horizontal joints follows the notion that the joint may then end up below eye level and be less likely to be seen especially under oblique lighting.

  6. Bren R. says:

    The reason for running drywall horizontally is that you can set up a “brick pattern”, so on an 8ft wall, your longest vertical joint is 4 ft instead of 8 ft.

  7. asbestos says:

    I helped a buddy once do a drywall a ceiling. then some time later I did a small room myself, and rented a lift. even though it was just 2.5 sheets for the lid it was worth the $30.00 and the trip to the rental store. I have fought with stuff enough in my life. which is certainly to short to struggle with drywall.

  8. Bob The Drywall Guy says:

    That thing is kinda neat, I like how it’s useful for ceilings too. Too slow for me though.

    Vertical seams are really easy to see on long walls, especially ones that see morning or evening sun. horizontal seams are supposed to flow with your eyes a little more. Also sheets are always supposed to staggered to prevent crosses. those are too hard to make disappear with compound.

    Using solely 4×8 sheets is crazy talk! The added bulk of a 4’x12′ sheet is well worth not having to tape an extra joint. I just wish I could find a place to get 16′ drywall in Canada. I think that’s all custom order.

  9. Rob1855 says:

    Because they’re bright yellow, and easy to find in your toolbox.

    Scrap 2×4’s tend to disappear in the woodpile.

  10. olderty says:

    I’ve always heard that the pros lay the drywall horizontal so that you don’t have to go up and down a ladder all day to tape and mud. And if you know what you’re doing, butt joints aren’t really a problem. Personally, I like using the factory tapered edges no matter how much ladder time is involved. Plus, I end up using a 5 gallon bucket of mud on a butt joint only to sand 4 gallons off.

  11. fred says:

    My taping guys use stilts and sometime banjos – so it isn’t ladder climbing that the issue.
    The 16 footers still make sense.

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