Wednesday, March 23, 2016

One Step at a Time: Kitchen Edition, Getting a New Head of Steam

The project has been slowed by Renaissance Handyman Nick's schedule which has in turn been slowed by the weather and by my poor scheduling of orders. We're still without a working kitchen sink or dishwasher.

1. Counter top.


It has been snowing a couple inches each day this week, Tuesday - Thursday. It also melts each day except in the shadiest of areas. I took advantage of the sunny weather on Friday & Saturday to get the counter top sanded down to bare wood outside.

You can see some of that snow from earlier in the week just on the other side of the fence in the shade. It was clear and sunny out, but it was not warm. Saturday's high was 51F and I am sure I had finished before it reached that temperature

I used Dad's belt sander and 80gr belts to get the majority of the decades of tung oil off. Then used 100gr paper and my palm sander to finish it off. The other section of counter is about 40% the size of this and together these took about 4-4.5 hours to get down to bare wood over two days.

When I finished I sat my carcass in the sun on the wood shed steps to warm up, listening to a podcast with my earbuds when all of a sudden...


On Monday, Renaissance Handyman Nick was able to come alter the counter for the sexy new sink! That means I can get it stained and start finishing on Tuesday! There are still several days* of work before we can install the sink and faucet, but now that we can at least make progress each day it feels more like we're getting closer. Renaissance Handyman Nick has added blocks to the cabinet carcass so that we can attach the counter from underneath - like civilized humans - which means I don't need to finish the counter in place. And that means that I can keep the stink and vapors out of the house by finishing it in the shop! Of course, there is that little, separate piece of counter top under the mysteriously stuck upper cabinet that will be finished in place, but there will be soooo much less surface area off-gassing on that. Plus, it's no where near a water source or steam so I probably won't feel obliged to put several extra coats on it.

Shoot. I didn't get all I needed to sanded down to bare wood. I even thought that I'd over compensated. D'oh! More sanding.

2. Refinishing the cabinets.

I just keep plugging away at this. I got the last of the only-uppers finished, including replacing the glass in the doors with zinc-plated steel and was able to reload the contents which makes room on the dining table for the contents of other cabinets. Sigh. I think I have decided to go ahead and at least prime inside them to lighten them up a bit. And I have to empty them to replace the shelf paper anyway.

Just waiting on those special ordered hinge screws...

Another good thing about finishing the counter top in the shop is that I can feel confident moving forward refinishing the lower and tall cabinets since I won't have to mask them off with plastic. And in the insides with better lighting! YAHOO!

The original list of the order I thought the projects will happen. Line through for complete items, italics for additions. I'll let myself do partial line throughs for partial completion, because it's good for my morale.

1. Light fixtures
2. Remove corner shelf in order to...
3. Remove wallpaper and repair walls (& ceiling) as necessary, get temp solution for backsplash
4. Paint walls above cabinets, around wood stove, paint laundry/bath hallway.
5. Cabinet repair, move, modify
6. Refinish cabinets
8. Level, repair, and refinish counter tops
11. New sink and faucet and the counter modifications that go with it.
10. Replace outlets, switches, plates.
9. Install backsplash, probably tile
7. Maybe try to do something with that terrible brick veneer wood stove surround?

* By which I mean, probably nearly two weeks.

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