Drywall Paper Tape vs Fiberglass Mesh

By | February 26, 2016

Drywall paper tape vs fiberglass mesh has been a topic for years. It comes down to personal choice when taping drywall seams. With over twenty years experience I have mine as well. Mine are based on the ease of use and the quality of the finished job.

Drywall Paper Tape vs Fiberglass Mesh

 Fiberglass Mesh

     The fiberglass mesh has an advantage of sticking to the drywall. This allows you to put it on and then Spackle over it. You can fill with mud and wipe clean at the same time. You will feel this saves time but the advantage ends there.

     The fiberglass mesh has ends that never cut evenly and stick out from the Spackle. I have wasted so much time on this that I stopped using it. There is nothing worst then putting a second coat on and having a string stick out of it.

     The fiberglass tape can be used in corners. I never liked doing this. It often sticks to one side and sites uneven. You have to keep pulling it off and readjusting it. I find it difficult to wipe the corner without exposing the tape.

     Fiberglass tape is stronger than paper. I may occasionally use it when I need the extra strength. A good example of this would be on plaster or repairs with Durabond.

Paper Tape

     The paper tape requires putting the Spackle on the seam with no holes or voids. Then you run the tape over it and wipe it clean. This is a little more work, I find it easier to wipe smooth and without the problems of loose strings sticking out.

     With paper tape you have less of the Spackle bubbling out if the seams in the drywall are not tight. Paper is much easier to wipe clean because it is smooth.

     The corners are easier because the paper tape has a crease down the center you can fold. I fold it in half and use my knife to set it squarely in the corner. Wipe it smooth to the paper without the fear of exposing the fiber strings.

     Paper tape is used in the taping guns to allow much faster taping, This is not possible with mesh. You load the tape into the gun with Spackle, then just pull it out and stick to wall. Wipe it clean and smooth to complete the taping.

     When I am asked about drywall paper tape vs fiberglass mesh my first choice will be paper. For the inexperienced trying to tape for the first time, both have advantages and drawl backs. I would still recommend the paper tape.

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