Carpentry Guides Stud Wall

Making a Footlifter

Plasterboard is awkward stuff to deal with, especially if you are working alone. It is heavy and cumbersome and even holding it in place against the studwork is tricky at times. One of the ways to lessen this problem is to make yourself a simple tool called a Footlifter or Rocking Wedge.

A footlifter is a wedge of material (wood in this case) which slips under the bottom of the plasterboard and allows you to lift the board up to the ceiling with just your foot, whilst you hold it in place and nail it.

You can make a simple footlifter using an offcut of 75mm x 50mm softwood, which should be at hand if you have just made a stud wall. A small piece about 250mm long will be perfect.


On the side of the block, draw lines with a pencil from the top left corner to the middle bottom of the block, and then from the top right corner to the middle bottom. Use a try square to get the lines nice and straight.

Now cut away the two triangles of wood at the bottom of the block to leave yourself with a simple see-saw wedge shape. One end of this wedge goes under the bottom edge of the plasterboard you want to lift, whilst your foot rests on the other end. With gentle pressure from your foot, the “see-saw” will tip and the board will slide up to touch the ceiling. It is now very easy to hold this position whilst you hammer in a few nails to hold the board in place.