A drywall taping tool is used to cover the seams between the drywall. When you use drywall to create a wall and ceiling, you will want to cover the joints of two or more drywall panels. That’s when drywall taping is required, covering the joins and forming a continuous surface without any jag. Not only covering joins, but drywall taping can also fix the crack or hole of drywall.
If you are looking for drywall taping to cover joints and give your wall surface a smooth look, then below list of best drywall taping tools is exactly what you are looking for.
Types of Automatic Drywall Taping Tool
Automatic drywall taping tools are bazooka and banjo taping tools. These tools are easy to use, but you need previous knowledge for using these tools. They are expensive, but you will be able to do lots of work in a minimum time. So it is a good idea to spend some amount on a better tool that will help you do lots of projects easily.
Bazooka Drywall Taping Tool
The Bazooka Drywall Taping Tool is the latest inversion, and it has a long handheld tool that is used to apply drywall tape to seams and corners. It has a built-in cutting blade that scores the drywall tape so that it can be easily torn to the desired length. The tool also has a comfortable grip and a trigger that allows for easy one-handed operation. This drywall taping tool has a cubbyhole for storing drywall muds to be used on one side. It is able to hold more mud than typical banjo taping tools and can be used to fix high ceilings.
Banjo Drywall Taping Tool
The Banjo Drywall Taping Tool is a great way to get professional-looking results when taping drywall seams. This easy-to-use tool applies pressure to the drywall tape, allowing you to get a tight, clean seal. The Banjo Drywall Taping Tool is also great for applying touch-ups to your drywall work. This is a bit less expensive than a bazooka but has limitations such as a shorter barrel, less mud storage.
List of 5 Best Drywall Taping Tools
Now I am providing you the list of 5 best drywall taping tools at the market right now.
1. Goldblatt G15301 Banjo-Dry Tape
With the body made of rugged lightweight aluminum, Goldblatt G15301 Banjo-Dry Tape can hold up to 500 feet roll of drywall tape. This banjo drywall tape has two sections. One section holds the tape roll, and the other is for the joint compound, called mud.
The partition between the two sections doesn’t let mud reach the tape. So tape stays dry, and mud sticks to only one side of the tape. Remember to position the tape above mud in the mud section to get mud on the correct side of the tape. You can use 40 feet to 45 feet of tape to fill joins before mud in the mud section gets finished. After that, you have to refill the mud section.
You don’t need any extra tools to cut the tape as Goldblatt banjo has a serrated tip to do this work. Just above the serrated tip, there is an adjustable knob that you can use to control the mudflow. So you can use the required amount of mud without wasting any.
Latched side is smaller than the other side, leaving a gap in the back of the tape holder portion. Through this gap, you can check how much tape you have used without opening the banjo. The handle is made of wood and includes a thumb rest that will not let your thumb slip away while working.
- Lightweight body
- Adjustable screw to control mudflow
- Tape stays dry
- Can hold up to 500-feet tape roll
- Jagged tip to cut the tape
- No user manual included
2. MARSHALLTOWN TapeShooter Drywall Taper
With the body made of lightweight aluminum, MARSHALLTOWN TapeShooter Drywall Taper is made for both right-handed and left-handed people. This tape-shooter or drywall banjo has two compartments, one is for tape, and another is for holding the mud.
There is a spool for holding the tape roll. By opening the latch of the tape compartment, you can easily fit the tape roll in the tape compartment. Remember to set the tape clockwise to roll easily and insert the tape through the groove in the bottom, which connects two compartments.
In the mud section, the tape should stay above the mud so that when you use the tape-shooter, the bottom side of the tape will be coated with mud, and you can easily tape your drywall joins.
There is an adjustable screw in the front of the banjo, which controls the mudflow. Just under the screw, there is a piece of steel which, whenever you tighten the screw, will push the steel beneath it, and the steel will pinch the tape, resulting in a thin mud coat on the tape. Now, if you want a thicker mud coat, all you have to do is loosen the screw to your preferred way.
The tip is serrated, so it is very easy to tear the tape off when you are done taping a join, and obviously, you won’t need scissors. Side handle on the opposite side of the latched side will help you to hold the tape-shooter while you are taping easily.
- Mud can be loaded in one hand
- Both right-handed and left-handed styles are available
- The side handle is adjustable
- Very efficient in mud controlling
- Good mudflow setting
- It can get heavy when filled with mud
3. PAHAYU Gypsum Board Joint Tool
The body of the PAHAYU Gypsum Board Joint Tool is made with durable polycarbonate plastic which makes the body impact resistance, long-lasting and unbreakable. The huge advantage of the body being made with plastic is that the banjo is very lightweight and can be handled easily when doing your taping work.
Adjustable handle straps on both sides have made the taping tool more efficient because you can switch hands to continue your work without any interruption when you are working for a long period. This taping tool will suit you easily as you don’t have to worry, whether you are left-handed or right-handed.
PAHAYU Drywall Banjo Taping Tool has a single latch with a hinged lid that will help you to load tape roll and mud at once. So making the tool ready for work is very easy and less time-consuming. As the drywall taping tool has both a corner applicator wheel and a flat applicator wheel, you can tape flat or straight surfaces as well as corners or angles. Both flat and corner applicator wheel is attached to a single attachment which can be reversed easily according to your preferred applicator wheel.
The flat applicator wheel is the serrated wheel used for taping on the flat or straight surface. The corner applicator wheel is the bigger wheel that is used to tape corners. You can switch between multiple modes with a four-position switch. So you can have your preferred working mode easily to give yourself a convenient experience.
- Handle straps on both sides
- Applicator wheel for both flat and corner
- Very lightweight
- 4-position switch for changing modes
- One single latch for easy loading mud and tape
- The tape needs to be cut manually
4. Delko Plastic Drywall Banjo Taper
As Delko is a trustable drywall tape manufacturer, you can easily trust Delko Plastic Drywall Banjo Taper for taping board joints and corners like a professional. From loading the banjo with mud to taping the joints or cracks, everything will take less time, making your taping more productive.
The body of this drywall taper is made up of high-quality plastic, and plastic makes the taping tool lightweight so that you can easily carry and control the tool while working. The plastic handle on the top will make carrying the taping tool a lot easier.
With a tape holder in the back and a mud compartment on the front, this taping tool can hold a tape roll of 500-feet of tape and can contain 5-lbs of mud at a time. Loading mud is easy as you only have to remove the side cover by removing latches. The removable side sits perfectly after closing the latches, so you don’t have to worry about leaking mud out of the mud compartment and making your work messy.
Delko Plastic Drywall Banjo Taper comes with both an internal corner applicator as well as flat joints or surface applicator. You can easily attach or detach your preferred applicator according to where you want to tape it. When you are taping the internal corner, just attach the corner applicator wheel or creaser wheel. The Creaser wheel will let you crease the tape at a perfect 90-degree angle and make your corner taping smooth and effective. When you need taping flat joins or cracks, just attach back the flat applicator.
An adjustable knob or dial will help you to control the mudflow. So you have control over how much mud coat you want on the tape.
- Lightweight plastic body
- Mud can be controlled with the control knob
- Easy attach and detach of the corner as well as flat applicator
- Faster than other traditional banjos
- Easy to wash
- Tape doesn’t roll easily if the mud is thick
5. LEVEL5 Automatic Drywall Taper
Level5 automatic drywall taper will let you work like a professional by applying joint compound and tape at a time. You can reduce your work time and increase your perfection level while taping with this tool.
So the first thing to mention is the creaser trigger in the bottom of the taper, which lets you control the creaser wheel at the top. This trigger gives an easy switch between flat surface taping to corner taping or vice versa. So whenever you need to apply tape into the corner, just pull the trigger upward, which will lift up the wheel and let you continue your work.
Right above the trigger, there is a tape dispenser where you can place the tape roll. You have to twist the tape to make the tape go into the head. As a tape has a front and a back, make sure that you twist the tape in the right direction when you are feeding your tape through.
This automatic drywall taper is attached with a control sleeve made of hard-coat anodized aluminum that is three times harder than typical aluminum. This control sleeve has three basic functions. The control sleeve stays neutral, and by lifting the sleeve, you can advance the tape. Going back and forth from neutral position to lifting, you can advance the tape more. Whenever you need to cut the tape, you just have to pull the sleeve from the neutral position.
This taping tool has a mentionable feature that is easy head cleaning. You will just need to pop out the thumbscrew for getting access and cleaning the tube. To fill the tube of the automatic taper with mud, you will need a mud pump. You will not want to let the air go through the tube when filling the tube with mud; you have to prime the pump a few times to get all the air out of the pump and the gooseneck.
- Easier cleaning
- Easy controlling of the corner applicator wheel
- Built-in tape cutting mechanism
- Control sleeve for holding the tape
- Wearable parts are compatible with other brands
- Fiberglass mesh tape cannot be used
How to Use Taping Tool
Some Noticeable Factor for Buying Drywall Taping Tools
Drywall taping tools are very popular in terms of taping joins of two drywall boards. From professionals to DIY projects, drywall taper is a must tool to have. Taping with drywall taper has gone to another level as it takes less time to tape joins and make your work more organized.
Drywall taper is evolving from time to time with various new features for making the taping tool more effective. There are mainly two types of drywall taper; one is the automatic drywall taper called bazooka, and another is the drywall banjo taper.
So whatever kind of drywall taper you are planning to buy, you should be well known about what features are must-have for taping and what features do what type of benefit to you.
So I have given a buying guide below with enough information about all the features that modern taper gives to have a clear idea about drywall taper and look for your desired taper.
Drywall Tape Categories
In a drywall taper, the main protagonist is the tape. Tape in drywall taping is usually either paper tape or mesh tape. You should make sure that the tape you are using is compatible with the taper as some type of tape doesn’t work with the taping tool as expected. There are various types of drywall tape for multiple purposes. I will mention here some widely used drywall tape.
Paper drywall tape is the most popular and available drywall tape among other tapes. These types of tapes have factory-built lengthwise crease so that when you apply the paper tape on the internal corner, you can fold in the middle to fit the tape into the corner. Folding can be done with your hand if you are not using any taping tool or a tool named corner applicator for taping in the corner.
Paper drywall tape is not that costly compared to other drywall tapes. Paper tape can be ripped easily with a knife. Remember to press the tape after applying the tape on a surface as there may exist some air bubbles underneath the tape. The air bubble is not a big issue when taping using an automatic taper or a banjo.
Fiberglass Mesh Tape
Where paper tapes can be torn easily, fiberglass mesh tape comes with great strength and durability than paper tape. Fiberglass mesh tape is built with fiberglass threads. These tapes are so strong that you will struggle to cut the tape; instead, you will need a scissor for cutting the tape. The good thing about this tape is the tape has an air bubble resistance feature making the tape easily stuck with the surface. This tape is hard to handle because of the stickiness of the tape. Fiberglass mesh tape is thicker than paper tape, so you may have difficulty folding the tape when applying the tape in a corner.
Ultra-Thin Fiberglass Tape
Ultra-thin fiberglass tape is the updated version of the fiberglass mesh tape where tape got thicker to thinner. The manufacturer claims that this tape is also lighter than paper tape. Ultra-thin fiberglass tape is built with more fiberglass threads and woven so closely that it looks like fine mesh-like fabric. This mesh tape is stronger than other mesh tapes because of its build mechanism. This tape is expensive, and it makes sense because of its thinness, strength, and durability. Tape works well on butt joints and single-spot repair but doesn’t work well on corners.
Metal tape is a special type of tape used to tap into the inside corner. Metal cannot be used on a flat surface and outside corner. The reason which makes the tape only used for a special purpose is how the tape is built. This tape consists of one paper and two metal strips. Metal tape lay on the paper tape side by side in a lengthwise manner leaving a small gap between the two metal strips. So you can easily create the tape for taping into internal corners. You cannot use ordinary scissors or a knife; instead, you will need tin snips for smooth cutting. This tape is also expensive, like ultra-thin fiberglass tape.
Taping Tool Body
The body of the drywall taper can be made of metals like aluminum, steel, etc., or can also be plastic. The body of an automatic taper is usually made of steel, and the body of a banjo can be made of aluminum or plastic. If you want your drywall taping tool to be lightweight, you can go for the banjo of the plastic body, but the plastic body will have less strength than other metal bodies. The aluminum body will have shock resistance and will not rupture that easily. So if you want a durable drywall taper body, then you should go for an aluminum body.
Bazooka vs. Banjo
The automatic drywall taping tool, also called bazooka, is a modern-day drywall taping tool for making the taping more efficient. Bazooka is a long pipe-like tool where there is a tube for holding mud. The head part of a bazooka is the most complex because there are various mechanisms in the head. Head consists of both flat applicator and corner applicator. Usually, there is a trigger for controlling the corner applicator. You will need a mud pump for pumping mud into the tube of the automatic taper.
On the other hand, the banjo is the old-fashioned way of drywall taping. Drywall taper banjo can be of two types: a dry-tape banjo and a wet-tape banjo. The only difference between the dry and wet tape is that when you apply the tape, the tape stays dry for the dry-tape banjo, and the tape gets dry in the wet-tape banjo. There is no performance difference between the dry and wet-tape banjo. Rather, working with wet tape banjo is messy as mud spreads so easily. Loading the banjo with mud is very easy. You only have to open the removable side and pour mud into the mud compartment.
Now the question is bazooka or banjo, which is faster and more organized. In my opinion, the modern bazooka is much quicker than old fashioned banjo, and there are a couple of reasons. The first one is, bazooka or the automatic taper can contain more mud than a banjo can. So after filling mud, you don’t have to pump mud again in a short period. You can also tape your ceiling by standing on the floor, where for a banjo, you will need ladders or stilts to reach the ceiling.
The taper cutter of an automatic taper is smoother than a banjo. Also, holding a banjo filled with mud can be heavy and tough to handle, but the automatic taper is much convenient in case of handling. The complicated part of the automatic taper is filling the tube with mud. You will need an extra tool called a mud pump for pumping mud into the tube, and you also have to be careful not to pump air into the mud tube. Banjo is much efficient in filling mud as you only have to open the banjo and fill the mud.
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Tape Cutting Knife
Most of the drywall taping tools out there have a built-in knife to cut the tape when necessary. The cutting mechanism is easy in an automatic drywall taper where there is a sleeve which by pulling down you can cut the tape, but in a drywall banjo taper, a knife is installed on the tip of the banjo, and you have to give a little bit of pressure for cutting the tape.
There are also taping knives or also called joint knife you can buy for cutting the tape. A taping knife is a wide knife that is used to spread the joint compound or mud. These knives can be of 6-inches or greater. Usually, the 6-inches taping knife is widely used among professionals. A taping knife can be used not only for cutting the tape but also for applying mud, finishing, laying tape, and much more. So whether your drywall taping tool has a built-in knife or not, you must own a taping knife as there are so many things a taping knife can do which a drywall taper cannot.
A corner applicator is a tool that lets to taping on the inside corner in a more organized way. The corner applicator does this after applying tape with the coating of the joint compound, and the corner applicator bends the tape at a 90-degree angle so that the tape can easily fit on the corner. Without the corner applicator, applying tape on the inside corner is difficult as taping will be more time-consuming. The corner applicator works well with paper tape as the paper tape can be bent easily, but other tapes like fiberglass mesh tape may not bended that easily with a corner applicator.
The pre-built corner applicator in the drywall taping tool is usually a big creaser wheel that creases the tape when taping on the inside corner. In the automatic drywall taper, there is a trigger to control the corner applicator. But with the banjo, the corner applicator comes as an attachment which you can attach when you need taping inside the corner. You can also buy a corner applicator attachment for your banjo at a fair price if your banjo has that mechanism of attaching a corner applicator.
A flat applicator is for applying tape to flat surfaces and butt joints. This applicator applies tape and joint compound simultaneously in a perfect way so that the tape stays in a straight line and is applied in the right place where tape needed to be laid.
A flat applicator is the default applicator for all drywall taping tools that means if you own a drywall taper, you will not need to buy a flat applicator attachment. In the drywall taping tool, the flat applicator is the two small wheels. Both roll simultaneously for rolling out the tape and applying the tape on the flat surface smoothly.
Mud Flow Controller
Among all the drywall taping tool features, the mudflow controlling feature is the most efficient feature of a drywall taper. With a mud controller, you can control how much mud you want when taping so that your taping work doesn’t get messy. When you are repairing a crack between two drywall joints, you will not need that much mud coating on the tape. So just by using the controller, you can make the mud coat on the tape thinner. And when you need to fill joins, mud coating should be thinner. Mud controller makes the taping work cleaner, and using the mud gets much effective as mud doesn’t get wasted that much.
Except for old-fashioned drywall taper, all modern drywall taping tools have mud-controlling features. Usually, mud control exists on the front portion of the drywall taper, where tape gets the mud coating. The mud controller may be a control switch or just a knob so that you can fix how much mud gets out from the drywall taping tool.
A joint compound that is widely recognized as mud is used with tape to cover two drywall seams or repair cracks between two drywall joints. There are various types of mud-like quick-setting mud or hot mud, all-purpose mud, pre-mixed mud, etc.
Hot mud is the powdered mud that, in contact with water, mud starts to harden. As hot mud gets complicated pretty quickly, you have to work fast with this mud. Hot mud is used for filling large gaps and smoothing finishes.
All-purpose mud is suitable for a lot of applications. This mud isn’t usually used for finishing purposes because the mud is difficult to sand. All-purpose mud has excellent holding power, and the mud is used with tape when bedding the drywall seams.
Pre-mixed mud is that type of mud that is already thinned to a smooth consistency using water and ready to be applied. When bedding is in tape, you might have to make the mud thinner using water. You can always make the mud thinner according to in what application you are using the mud.
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FAQs About Drywall Taping Tools
1. What Tools Do I Need for Taping Drywall?
You will need a banjo or automatic taper for taping joints, ladders or stilts for taping on the celling, corded drill, or cordless drill for drilling, but the corded drill is recommended. It is more powerful, mixer for mixing mud, mud pan for carrying joint compound, putty knife for applying compounds, sanding block for holding sandpaper, taping knife for spreading the mud. Tin snips for cutting metals, mud pump for pumping mud into the tube, drywall trowel for hiding joints and seams of drywall, and utility knife for cutting drywall.
2. Is Drywall Taping Necessary?
For taping drywall, various tools are used, like mentioned above. Joints and seams need to be filled with joint compounds to make a smooth drywall surface, and tape is used over that compound to give the compound more strength. Taping drywall makes two or more drywall looks like a single seamless drywall panel. Drywall taping is also needed for fixing drywall cracks, holes, or dents.
3. Is it Challenging to Tape Drywall?
Taping drywall is a bit difficult task to do for the first-timer. Taping drywall might get perfect after practicing a couple of times. Many factors influence an ideal drywall taping. You should keep track of mud consistency and what task you are about to do with that mud. You also have to choose the perfect drywall tape for your application. Even after the mud gets dried after taping, you have to give a smooth look wherever you have applied the drywall tape. So the gist is you have to practice drywall taping or if you find it difficult, just reach for a professional.
4. How Do You Fix Bubbles in Drywall Tape?
Bubbles in drywall tape can be fixed by sanding down the area around the bubble and then reapplying the joint compound.
5. Why Does My Drywall Tape Keep Bubbling?
Many things can cause the bubbling of drywall tape, but the most common cause is moisture. If the drywall tape is not properly sealed or if there is moisture behind the drywall, it can cause the tape to bubble.
6. Should You Wet Drywall Tape?
It is not necessary to wet the drywall Tape with adhesive unless the Tape is not self-adhesive. However, if you decide to wet the Tape with adhesive, make sure you remove the excess adhesive with a damp rag before it dries.
Drywall taping is fun when you get the hang of it. Tools for drywall taping are evolving with lots of handy features which will make you work like a professional. If you are new to the drywall taping tool, an informative guide given above will help you.
By wishing you prosperity in the drywall taping world, this is me, Frank F. Perez, signing off.