Have you tried one of these? They are great for mixing mud fast and no mess. Even better mixing dry, whether it is texture or setting type mud. They are great! I got one this week. Bet you'll like it.
for the last 3 years now I have not pulled mud out of a bucket with a knife to load my pan or hawk:thumbup:
keep your sides clean and at the end of the day add water...at the start of a new day suck it up with the tube and shoot it out a the sheep in the back yard :yes: