Monday, May 26, 2008

Bathroom Update

The long weekend has provided some time to work on the bathroom. Between that and the knee walker project at work, I've done little else this whole weekend. Last I mentioned, I was faced with the conundrum of a purchased medicine cabinet that needed to be returned because there was no hope of it fitting into the hole in the wall. As it turns out, that particular cabinet is meant to be slapped right up against the wall - not set into it. Scanning the local hardware stores revealed no "framed" cabinets (i.e, meant to be set into a wall pocket) anywhere close to the right dimensions. It's not like medicine cabinet sizes are standardized, so unless it were new construction, I wouldn't have had much hope anyway.

So, I fell back on plan B - built my own. Norm Abram (I mean Naaahhm Abraahm) I am not, but I've got some power tools and enough experience to do a decent job of it. The only bugger of the situation is that it'll take me a fair bit of time, and materials alone will cost twice what a prefab cabinet would be. Ah well. I relish the challenge.

For some reason, I took our smaller car to the hardware store to get the first supplies. Stupid me - I could'a had the station wagon. Now I know that it is exactly 10 feet from the back of the trunk to the front of the windshield. I had to get clever to get a 4x8 sheet of thin plywood home, too. Namely: chop it in half, lash it to the roof, drive at 35 mph, and hope the winds don't get you.

First order of business - the base frame. I could have gotten fancy with dovetail joinery, except that without the proper jig, it'd take me about ten times to get it right, and being set into the wall, no one's ever going to see it anyway. Instead, I just did a simple rabbet joint, and will rely on the sheet of plywood in the back to keep the box rigid. Some work with the table saw and router, and things were looking pretty good.

The cabinet frame even fits into the hole about right, especially once I did a little extra trimming around the jagged opening.

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