Thursday, January 12, 2017

Bathroom vanity

The bathroom vanity was a builder's grade, $130 tri-fold from Home Depot.  The shelves were pressed fiber board stretching across 34 inches with no center support, so they were warping from weight of the items on them and the moisture in the bathroom air. 

I found a design from Kohler that I liked while browsing Lowes, but I wanted a three mirror front at 36 inches wide.  It turns out Kohler doesn't make one like that, so the search continued. 

I went to a few bathroom renovation shops in San Francisco, and one person tried to sell me on a single mirror, slide up front medicine cabinet that was nowhere near 36 inches (I wondered if she even listened when I told her what I was looking for) with a tv built into the mirror for the low price of $4,800!  Yes, I walked out. 

I found one that I liked on Home Depot's website made by Pegasus.  It was 36 inches wide, had three mirrored doors, aluminum frame, mirrored interior, and glass shelves.  Awesome!  I ordered it on-line for in store pick up.  At this point, you would think I measured the space from the top of the tiles to the vanity light.  I did not.  All vanities are the same height, right?  It would take about a week to arrive, so I started looking through pictures from the demo and rebuild to see where studs were and what my options may be for surface mounting versus recessed mounting.  My cousin insulated the walls, and reframed the space where the old medicine cabinet was recessed.  Translation: no recessed mounting unless I wanted to redo the whole wall.  Part of me thought about tearing out the wall from the back side, since I could just dry wall the hole, but it would be way more of a mess.  Anyhow, surface mounting was the only option, I decided.  Good thing all medicine cabinets have a standard height, right? 

I measured the current one - 28 inches tall - as I flash backed to the day we installed it.  Chuy asked if I did the measurements for the tile and light height to make sure it would fit.  Nope.  We dry-fitted it, and luckily it fit.  It had these little double sided stickers for the back of the cabinet to attach it to the wall.  I thought it was flimsy as hell.  Gil asked, "You wanna make sure it stays on?  We can glue it. We have hella glue left."  "Hell, why not?  I don't want it to possibly fall.  Plus, whey would I ever swap this out?!"  Liquid nails was applied to the backing when we installed.  We put it right at the top of the tile, and there were still about 2 inches of room to the bottom of the light.

I'm sure you can see where this is going.  The Amazon link above actually shows the height in the title.  Home Depot's does not.  I figured they're all about the same height because why not, right?  Well, this one is in fact 31 inches when surface mounted.  Since it's got a mirrored interior, there are no places to drill inside.  It has all external mounts including a bottom bracket and four top brackets.  Nowhere on the instructions does it list the total height needed to surface mount.  In case you're wondering, it's 31 and 5/16 inches.  How much space did I have from the top of the tile to the bottom of the light?  1/8 inches above 30 inches.  Great.  No problem.  I'll just chisel out some tile.

I looked at my safety goggles and gloves when I grabbed the chisel and hammer from the tool box.  "You won't need these, it's just 6 tiles," I told myself.  I chiseled the grout first, then went to work separating the tile from the wall.  The first one came out without issue.  The second one cracked in half, and my ninja quick reflexes kicked in, and I caught it before it shattered on the counter top.  Ouch, that was sharp.  Back to chiseling.  Four tiles down, I noticed my hammer was getting sticky.  The black handle still looked black, keep chiseling.  As pieces of grout and tile started flying, I decided to put an old towel over the counter.  Shoot, while I'm being safe, I might as well grab my gloves and goggles, too.  I put on my goggles and notices there's blood on them.  Fresh blood.  WTF, there was nothing on the hammer...  But, the tiniest cut on my finger was getting blood all over.  UGH.  Wash, bandaid, gloves and goggles on, I returned to chiseling.  I got all the pieces of tile off and looked at the wall.  

I measured from the new top of the tile to the bottom of the light - 32 and 7/16 inches.  "oooh, I can mount the bottom bracket 5/8 inches above the top of the tile, and I can cover the screws and bracket with a 1/2  inch of tile! 

Mounting was easy.  Thanks to all the framing inside the wall, three of the fours screws are studded, and only one needed a hollow wall anchor.  Sandra helped me dry fit the medicine cabinet.  I marked the holes for the top, then removed it.  Again, thanks to all the excess framing inside the wall, three of the four screws were studded, and I only needed one wall anchor.  Sandra helped me mount the medicine cabinet again, and I secured the screws on top. 

I did not install the side mirrors.  The shelves went in easily.  I wish I could adjust the height of them.  They're secured by a top and bottom bracket.  I wish at least one side had some sort of silicone coating to prevent the shelf from sliding. 

A few things I didn't quite love about this cabinet: each door's mirror was beveled all the way around.  There are 1/2 inch gaps in between each door.  Each shelf has printing on it that show where it was made and that the glass is tempered. 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Candlestick Seats IV

I brought the glass shelf in to work today.  The guy over at Data Glass snapped it for me.  It literally took him about 2 minutes to do.  He said I just needed to press harder.  :-/ FAIL, Rob.  

I got home today and removed the seats from the brackets.  I laid them down and used a 2x4 scrap to hold up the bottoms.  All the bolts came out relatively easy... except the last one.  When the drill kinda got stuck, it torqued the whole piece and scratched the top of it.  Paint was removed - UGH.  I applied a coat of paint to the bottom of the seats then left for Home Depot. 

I picked up a worklight, an extension cord wrap, and another bracket for the Giants case.  I got home, paint was still tacky, but I wrapped the cord, then plugged in the light.  AWESOME!  I had direct light on the seats now... and hella yellow spots showing.  I put a light coating over the yellow areas then collected some things to put in the case upstairs.  I was pretty excited to finally do this! 

I opened the case, tried to put in a bracket and ... nope.  Denied.  The slots were too small for the brackets I got. WTF.  I thought these were standard??  The ones currently in there were a little under 1/4 inch tall.  Time to go return these.  Maybe the 10 inch shelves are different sizes.  These brackets were for 12 inch shelves.  Fail #2 today. 

 In the garage, I applied one more coat of paint.  I'm pretty sure that part is all done now.  I'm hoping I can assemble the seats tomorrow! 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Candlestick Seats III

I went to Home Depot this morning, and they had tons of ratchet bits all in stock.  Deep 1/4 inch 9/16's acquired!  I also got another bottle of Rustoleum and a box of LED lights (3 for $20 versus 1 for $9?)  I thought there was something else I needed, but I couldn't remember, so I left.

I put on a third coat to fully cover any remaining yellow areas.  It looks like it's finally painted.  Well, it's painted except for the bottom where it's bolted to the base.  At least I have a bit to remove them, though! 

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Candlestick Seats

I hit up Lowes this morning.  I wanted to get the ratchet head to remove the seats from the base.  The Lowes out by Evolve in San Bruno didn't have a huge selection.  I asked the woman if 3/8 was standard, and she said yes (it's not.  1/4 inch is standard).  I got two bits - the 13 mm and the 9/16, a new hose, and a new hose rack.

Got home, installed the new hose rack, coiled up the new hose.  It looks nice.  I doubt this will pop this time.  Either way, I saved the warranty info this time.

I hosed off the seats, then sanded them a little more then hosed them off again.  I thought about putting some grease in the hinges, but decided to wait until after they were painted.  I left them standing to dry, then went to jiu jitsu. 

I returned the two ratchet bits since they were 3/8's, but the Lowes in SF didn't have any 1/4 in 9/16 in.  Doomed, I know.  Defeated by Lowes.  

They were pretty dry when I got back, so I wiped them down to make sure before painting.  I stood the brackets on a piece of cardboard, then sprayed each one individually.  After one coat (it's hard to see how well it coated with the lack of direct lights in the garage), I left them to dry while I showered and washed my gi and ate.

The paint was not tacky after about an hour, so I laid down another coat.  Some of the yellow primer that was originally on there was still showing.  Two coats pretty much killed the bottle of Rustoleam.  Looks like I'll be going to Home Depot tomorrow morning. 

Hormigas Part IV

Yes, there's a part IV.  The cabinet has been empty for the last few days.  One or two scouts have been reconnoitering, but everything is really clean now.  I'm hoping they stay away.  We'll find out when it rains again!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Candlestick Seats

In lieu of insulation, I decided to do up the Candlestick seats!  I had already bought a wire brush and high gloss black Rustoleum spray paint, so I thought I was set.  I started with wiping down the seats with some diaper wipes (yep, we still have tons of those).  I took the seats apart to separate the plastic from the metal but left the vertical parts bolted on to the bases.  Go figure all the bolts came out relatively easily, but the battery on the drill kept dying.  UGH.  Then, the very last bolt was stripped.  Why is it that it's always the last one that's the most difficult?!  I used a hammer and chisel to break the bolt and set the seat free.  9 PM, loud hammering from the garage - I hope no one nearby is asleep.  I would've removed the bases, too, but the bolts were bigger than any of the ratchet heads I had.  My sets went up to 1/2 inch, so I was guessing they were 9/16 or 13mm.  I'll need to hit up Lowes or Home Depot. 

I'm also pretty thankful I changed the light bulb in the garage to an LED.  It really makes a difference.  I can't find my work light, and the last time I remember using it was when a contractor was working in the crawlspace without light. I ran an extension cord and put the light in there for him.  I hate when I notice shit's missing way too late. 

With the seats pretty much completely in pieces, I used the wire brush to scrap off any loose paint and rust.  I was going to rinse them off then sand them down a little more, but when I turned on the hose... PLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSH! It looks like hanging a rubber hose on a bike rack hook (existing) was a horrible idea.  There were so many kinks that the hose just exploded all over. I guess the project is on hold for now.

Insulating the Crawl Space

Sandra and Robert were heading out of town the an extended weekend, so I decided to insulate underneath the back room and bathroom while they were gone.  I got out of work today and headed home to take some measurements.  It had been raining for the last few days, but traffic wasn't bad getting home.  I climbed into the crawl space and saw water dripping off the floor joists - yes, dripping.  Four of the joists under the bathroom were completely soaked, and water was dripping off them.  So much for insulation! I can't insulate while there's water coming in, so there goes that project. 

My sister had a paint bubble in her wall above where the water was coming in.  I don't know if the two are related.  I'm going to have to put this project on hold and wait to figure out where the water is coming from.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Hormigas Part III

There's no food in the cabinet, but they're all over the dishes!  I threw everything in the dishwasher, peppermint soap sprayed everything, then dusted with ground cinnamon again.  WTF.