Friday, May 3, 2013

Something New

Last weekend, Josh and I tackled a big project - new laminate wood floors in the basement office. I can only now post about it, as it took me all week to recuperate from the work. Yes, I am that much of a weakling and have no problems admitting it. Here are some of the highlights:

1. Carpet removal, pad removal and quarter-round baseboard removal were easy-peasy.

2. Not so level concrete makes me hulk-mad and it took us 3-4 (blocked out of my memory) bags of self-leveling concrete mix to made it work. We bought a drill to mix the last bag (haha - not sure why it was a great idea only on the last bag), started mixing and saw smoke and finally realized it wasn't concrete dust. The overwhelming smell of electrical fire/smoke may have clued us in. Our drill crapped out already - not even fully mixed, so we had to hand mix it the rest of the way anyhow.

3. Frustration at the boards not going together until we realized the concrete we poured had some bumps - a few quick hammer-smashes later and it was like magic.

4. 3-4 tries of cutting the wood on the wrong side - doh! I know it was early in the project, but we were tired from the concrete mess!

5. We get to the edge and realize we can't put our tapping board in to get the joint tight... what? Back to Menard's for like the 10th trip. I love you Google - needed a pull-bar, they weren't by the pry-bars and the girl working in "tools" thought we made it up; but did suggest to look in the flooring section - Bingo! The new tool is beautiful and helps us throughout the process, to tap everything together nice and tight.

6. Finally finished and now have to install the laminate "T" threshold between the laminate and carpeting. Bought a NEW drill from Menards, not a hammer drill - the same girl as above said it would work, but would just take longer to get the holes in the concrete. That girl is a liar. Good thing my partner-in-crime remembered the neighbor talking about having concrete tools. Thanks, Mr. Parker, for letting us borrow the super-awesome Bosch Hammer Drill that took 2 seconds vs. the 2 hours we had been trying with our dorky drill. We love our neighbors!

7. Re-install the quarter-round moulding. Should be easy, right? Well.. it wasn't too bad, except for the part where I got a bleeding skull and Josh got a bleeding hand - the only injuries the whole project! Side Note: Don't pick up long, thin pieces of trim at one end and not expect them to snap in half. Those things can kill!

8. I was giving in to the "it's good enough now, right?", but got encouraged to help finish painting the baseboards. And yes, it was worth it - they look awesome.

9. Dragging all the furniture back in and setting up the computers again - oh I missed you!

It's nice to have accomplishments and I think this is a big one - time will tell on how well we did, though! I forgot to note we had some great, great helpers with the project! I really did good not swearing, except for that one time when, "shit, uh, SHOOT," came out. I doubt that replacing the swear with another word right after you say it helps, but I did say the second word a lot louder and with emphasis.

Here's some pictures of the work and finished project:

 Gabriel is ready to measure twice and cut once.

 Snap it in, big helper.

 Drawing the line for the cut.

 Measuring again.

 Logan helping blow away saw dust and carrying the squares.

 I may have suffered a concussion or brain damage, I'm not sure.

The finished floor.

Still to come - adding cool modular shelving/desks on the back wall behind the desk and on the left side.

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