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patent record for this inventionThe Mastic Applicator

While the patent record lists Merrill Muttart as the inventor of the mastic applicator, employees of Muttart Industries at the time remember Julian Hoveland as the designer of the device. Used to apply the sticky, putty-like substances used by carpenters and builders as an adhesive, filler or sealer, the mastic applicator is one of six Hoveland inventions listed in the patent record. Of these, five, including the mastic applicator, were owned by Muttart.

Drawing of mastic applicator, from Julian Hoveland's patent application, circa 1965Hoveland was born and raised in the Camrose area, but later moved to New Westminster, British Columbia, where he started a business called H & K Tool Specialty. This company was later bought by Muttart, and operated under the name Canusa Tools. Hoveland moved to Edmonton, still working for Canusa Tools and involved in the development of equipment for the dry-wall industry.

An improvement over earlier tools designed for a similar purpose, Hoveland's mastic applicator applied joint cement, or mud over tape, all of which joined pieces of drywall together. The chief improvement came from the amouDrawing of mastic applicator, from Julian Hoveland's patent application, circa 1965nt of mastic that the device could hold compared to previous models. The device also prevented foreign objects, like dust and dirt, from getting into the new seam.  With these improvements, carpenters could join drywall more quickly and with a better end result.

Around 100 of Hoveland's mastic applicators were produced and the tool was used by professionals until 1968, after which time changes in construction and tool design made the applicator obsolete.

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