Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Kitchen Steps

I estimated to need about 2 hours to cover the steps from the kitchen to the dining room with laminate flooring. I mean, how hard can this be, cut the laminate for the step, cut some more for the casing, install the step noses and you're done.

I think this was my least favorite bit of remodeling the kitchen yet. Any mistake you make is visible and can't be corrected without redoing the whole thing. It started with me cutting the flooring pieces 3 inches too short. Measure twice, remember right, cut once! The blade in the table saw was dull, too.

When I installed the laminate flooring originally, I didn't have the right stairnoses to measure the gap I needed to leave. I installed it anyways and figured I could cut back the floor as needed later. Bad idea. REALLY bad idea. Laminate flooring is surprisingly tough. Making matters worse is that part of the cuts I needed to make were near or under cabinet overhangs. I tried it with an  -- otherwise really neat -- circular saw attachment for my Dremel tool. It worked great when I tried it on a bit of scrap wood on the work bench. However, it failed miserably with the laminate floor. Not only did it bind in the cut a lot, but also just didn't have enough oomph to really cut through the laminated flooring boards at all. In the end I resorted to the portable saw for the accessible area, and the good old "drill-a-bunch-of-holes-tightly-together-along-a-line" method, followed by the "wood-chisel-and-a-hammer" method. This was a giant mess.

In parallel I needed to cut and fit the cover boards for the pensinula cabinets, so that I have the right lengths for the step noses. Creating a way to mount them without any screws or nails showing on the front was another challenge solved with 2x4 pieces, and angle brackets.

To top it all off, when I installed the second the last finish nail in the step nose, I ran it through the front of the board underneath and cracked the surface. That did not make me happy, and it was a good thing the kids weren't around when it happened, for they would have learned a sload of new bad words one should never use ...

After all I spent almost two days on those two steps and one and half cover boards. It looks ok, and I'm moderately happy with the result, which is about as much as I can hope for at this point.


CHRistIAN said...

Abgesehen davon, daß Du Dir sowieso eine Mordsarbeit aufgehalst hast durch das Renovieren der Küche - und das ist absolut großartig gelungen! macht sich prima und sieht toll aus! hat ein überzeugendes Flair! - und das hatte nun zwischendurch aus den verschiedensten Gründen allen Grund hin und wieder deutliche Worte zwischen (wegen der Kinder)den Zähnen hinauszuquetschen, ist der letzte Schlag an der Treppe sicher die beste Gelegenheit gewesen einmal ganz deutlich zu sagen, was man unbedingt sagen ja hinausschreien mußte!
Ein kleiner Schlag für den Anfänger aber eine riesige Katastrophe für den Perfektionisten und das zum Schluß!!!
Wenn ich mir die Bilder von der Schadstelle ansehe, kaum zu glauben, daß das reparabel wurde!

Bernhard said...

Haha, das ist nicht repariert... Ich habe zum Glueck nicht ganz durch geschlagen.