Friday, April 29, 2011

The Wonder of Pex

I've been putting off the task of moving the copper plumbing for a while now. The space between the joists, and over the walls, is so tight that the soldering process was going to be very tricky. This is when Pex became a much better alternative. The flexible piping was able to be bent and fed through the joists rather than notching the joists for straight copper. With just six push fittings and 20' of Pex, the job was done, pressure tested, and there are no leaks so far.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Ready to Assemble

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Our new kitchen is here, albeit in hundreds of pieces. There were four pallets that arrived totaling a weight of 1500lbs. After some lengthy research we decided that ordering ready to assemble cabinets from The Cabinet Joint ( was the best balance between cost and quality. For now we have simply moved everything indoors and gone through the boxes to make sure everything we ordered is there. After several times of miscounting and recounting we finally decided that we got everything we will need. We'll see if that is true when we start putting it all together in a couple of weeks.
Here are all the cabinet boxes lined up in the guest bedroom.Guests can sleep on the couch if they wish.
The doors and drawer fronts are all wrapped up to protect their recently added silky smooth finish. There's a faint smell of chemicals in our living room now. Maybe it'll cover up the other smells.The circles and large pacman shapes are the lazy susans for the corner cabinets. Six in total, to ensure plenty of laziness.Just because these drawer boxes are sitting on the table saw it may seem that I built them. I don't have that much time on my hands. Luckily, the drawers come assembled and are all nicely dovetailed together.

Monday, April 25, 2011

High Voltage

The big project for this weekend was moving some electrical wiring. There was a panel of four switches that became homeless when we removed a wall next to the island so they needed to be relocated. It sounded simple enough but somehow it took us the entire day on Sunday to get it done. There was lots of sweat and perhaps a small amount of blood. There were no tears, thankfully, nor any electric shocks (surprisingly). This is the mess of wires we had to start with:
Here is what was inside the panel once we opened it up:
We had to reroute the wires up through the ceiling and down through a different wall (also note the PVC drain pipe that Rodney moved a couple of weeks ago... we've even tested it and no leaks yet!)Master electrician at work:
The rerouted wires are all going to their new blue box. Now, to get everything crammed in there and connected properly...
Voila! And by some small miracle, the switches worked once we turned the power back on! And there was much rejoicing!

Friday, April 22, 2011

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I found this old video. This was about 10 years ago now. Jen's brother Steve took us skydiving. I'm glad we decided to get the video, even though it seemed pricey at the time.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The destruction continues

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We are still mostly in demolition mode. In a couple of weeks we will have our new cabinets so there is still plenty to be done so that we are ready to get those installed. A lot of the kitchen has been ripped apart and we're hoping that it goes back together without too many headaches. The first task this week was to try scraping the popcorn texture off the ceiling. We are going to have to patch the various holes in the ceiling and we don't plan to mimic that 80's look, but rather go with a smooth painted finish. It turns out that with a few sprays of water and a scraper on a pole, the paint peels off quite easily. You can see in the photo below that Jen has finished about half of the ceiling. (click photo for large version)
The second task was to dismantle the triangular island. It will be replaced with an L shaped island and removing it gives us better access for rerouting some electrical and the central vac system.The triangle was an inefficient use of space. The new island will have twice the cabinet space.The toughest task of the weekend was going to be the removal of the old ceramic tiled floor. Jen suggested we rent a power demolition hammer to speed the job up. It made everything much more manageable. Dust curtain up, dust masks, eye and ear protection on and we were good to go. Keeping Sophie out of the kitchen was a task too. If you look at the large version of this photo you'll see her sneaking in through the curtain.Two hours later and we had six boxes of broken tiles. It was warm work and we were glad to get the masks off. Although, when we saw how much dust was on the outside of the masks we were glad we had them. Sophie was happy to be allowed back in the kitchen after the dust had cleared and all the shards of tile had been cleared. Next we'll be doing some electrical work before we remove the rest of the old cabinets.