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This one was new to me, maybe you've seen it so it isn't to you. Dunno.

I was in Boston supervising the installation of a new kitchen in a rental property we have there. The cabinets went in a different configuration, leaving a couple of holes in the wall which at one time, I guess, were for electric service for shelf lights or something.

Anyway, as I was struggling with patching the holes, reinforcing the back, etc. one of the contractors says to me, "Oh, you're making it much too hard. Do this." I did, and it worked great.

Basically, you square out the hole. Doesn't really matter to what size, let's say it ends up being the size of a paperback book.

You cut a piece of scrap drywall the size of the paperback book plus 1"-2" on every side. A 4x6 book becomes a 6x8 patch piece, OK?

Now turn the patch piece upside down, center your "imaginary paperback book" and score the patch it to the size of the paperback book minus a quarter to a half inch on each side. Now break the piece along the score, and peel away the edges from the paper on the front of the piece. Do this on all four sides.

You will now have a piece of drywall just small enough to "put in the hole", and it will have "wings" on all four sides, ready for basting.

Put some mud on the wall, put the patch in the wall, put some mud over the wings, voila. You push the wings down into the mud, just as you would when joining two pieces with tape. It dries. You sand. You're done.

I did it on two pieces, one small (2x2) one fairly large (6x8). I asked the guy "how big can you do this?" He replied "as big as you want, within reason." He said he'd done them as big as 2 foot by 2 foot (which also puts it across a stud, which he screwed into for support.)

It sure saved me a bunch of time putting braces behind the roughed opening, then putting a patch in place, then screwing the patch to the braces, then mudding up, putting tape along the edges, etc. etc. etc.

Just thought I'd pass it along, since I've been doing it for 30 years the other way - and thought maybe you have too. If this is for a piece of wall which requires a lot of structure - like where a doorknob smashes it, this is probably not appropriate. But for over a kitchen counter or along a wall where a tenant has smashed a hole hanging a picture, it's great!
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