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When hanging drywall, it can be tough to get the holes for the outlets in the perfect spot. Danny Lipford’s home improvement site has a tutorial up for using lipstick to transfer a location marking right from the outlet box to the back of the drywall for perfect positioning every time. I knew there had to be a practical use for this stuff.

Becky Stern

Becky Stern is head of wearable electronics at Adafruit Industries. Her personal site: sternlab.org


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Comments

  1. KurtRoedeger says:

    They make grease pens specifically for this purpose. They cost less and are usually easier to remove extra if you accidentally mark something you don’t want to. As an added bonus, I don’t have to explain why I have lipstick in my toolbox or tool belt to my friends. Cheapest route to go is get some colored kids sidewalk chalk, that doesn’t mark as well, but is even easier to remove and the cheapest. One big chunk will last years in your toolbox. Or kids watercolor paints. A couple drops of water in it so it’s kind of sludgy and use your finger to transfer it.
    You also only have to make a small mark at the four corners, no need to outline the whole thing.

    I understand the idea and it’s not a bad one, but there are better ways to go.

  2. RocketGuy says:

    Don’t use your wife’s lipstick.

    Particularly, don’t use your wife’s *incredibly expensive* Lipstick.

    And above all, don’t put the incredibly expensive lipstick back afterwards.

    Not that I did.

    Hi honey.

  3. Eric says:

    This is the old-school way to do it. It works, but requires you to hold sheet of drywall up and get it back against the boxes. Fairly easy for outlet boxes in big sheets, far harder for higher boxes.

    The cool way is to take some basic measurements where the boxes are and write them on the floor (you only need within the nearest inch). Then you put the sheet up lightly over the boxes with a few screws (it needs to contact the boxes but not be tight), and then you take your drywall router, plunge the bit into the middle of the box, move it till you hit the box, pull it out slightly and re-plunge on the outside and then rout around the box.

    Way faster and easier than the mark-and-cut method, and you can use it on ceilings with recessed lights as well.

    Plus, it gives you an excuse to buy a drywall router…

  4. ERNIE says:

    EASY WAY…….YOU ALWAYS HAVE SPIT WITH YOU…..SPIT ON YOUR FINGER AND WET THE EDGE OF THE BOX……PLACE DRYWALL AGAINST BOX AND REMOVE…….PRESTO, YOU HAVE AN OUTLINE OF THE BOX MOISTLY TRANSFERRED TO THE BACK OF YOUR DRYWALL……WORKS EVERY TIME AND NO TOOL OR LIPSTICK TO LOOSE…

  5. Tia D. says:

    When you install drywall sheets you have to raise the sheet flush against the wall so it butts tight to the upper sheet. You have to shim your drywall sheet up 1/2 to 1 inch or more (with a drywall foot/kicker lifter). When this occurs either lip stick, blue chalk or spit will not work because as soon as the outlet box comes in contact with the back of the drywall the MESSY lipstick etc.. releases and all you have is a big smear mark on the back of the drywall with no exact outline. It does not work when installing drywall sheets that have multiple outlets and switch boxes especially if you are working with 14 or 16 footers. There is a new clean inexpensive patented Mark-n-Cut Transfer Sheets product that solves this problem and allows you to do multiple impressions out of long sheets of drywall. Using Mark-n-Cut Sheets you are able to maneuver your sheet in position without the ink releasing. The releasable ink has been manufactured to release after pressure is applied to the drywall. (The ink does not go over your hands) These Mark-n-Cut Sheets cost less than a stick of lip stick or wax pen and it is a cleaner product. Each sheet cost approx $1.00 a sheet and each sheet can be reused to make over 20 outlet impressions. The Mark-n-Cut Sheets are 8″x 8″ allowing them to be used on high hats. They make marking and cutting out toilet drain flanges out of plywood or backerboard a breeze to do during bathroom floor installations.
    The product was displayed on the Show Ask This Old House.

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