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Building Shelves Myself

Building Shelves Myself

Old 09-28-2020, 06:45 AM
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I live with a carpenter/contractor and so, over the years I have not had to learn a lot about building things with wood. Every time I mention that I want to build something, he jumps in and gallantly tells me that he will do that for me. (Not that he actually does it. It just gets put on his very, long list...actually, it never gets done.) The way it usually goes is that when he finally does build it, I paint it. (He hates to paint.) So, I have become a very good painter over the years, but not so handy with power tools. It's all a very sensitive dance that we have played for over 40 years.

So...I've decided that I'm gonna build my shelves in my sewing space, but I'm not going to tell him about it. It will be my, "secret project." I will have to buy, or rent power tools and a few other small tools like a square, etc. I don't know where I'll store these things, but I'll find a place. I'll work on the project while he's gone and clean it all up before he gets back. My Dau says she wants to help. She totally understands the dance. She's a bit of a blabbermouth, so I don't know if I want her in on the game.

I know...very deceptive, but totally effective.

I promise to be careful with the tools and check online for well, thought out instructions on how to build shelving. The shelves will go in a triangular space, up in the loft. There will be lots of shelves to hold those 6-7 inch high plastic bins. That way, I can slide out one bin at a time without having to take out a whole stack of bins to get to the one that I need. Later, I want to replace those plastic bins with ones that I can make out of wood.

I think that when it is all done, it will look amazing! I'll post pix as I progress.
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Old 09-28-2020, 06:53 AM
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My father was always remodeling whatever house we lived in so I watched him. I now have my own power tools in the back garage and know how to use them. I also have a very handy construction neighbor that will show me how to use a tool if I've forgotten how as I don't play with them as much as I used to. My sewing room is in the basement of an older 120 yr house so it tends to seep moisture from the concrete floor in the spring. I used to have bookcases until I realized I had a leak on that side of the room so replaced them with freestanding shelves so off the floor. My walls were covered with chipboard so no problem finding a stud while screwing the brackets in. I also acquired 6 more feet of shelving this way too.YEAH!!!!! The old bookcases got sprayed with bleach to rid it of the mold that developed and then taken up to my Library so I could finally unbox my hardback book collection. Really happy with these shelves too.

Good luck building your shelves and keeping it secret from your hubby.
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Old 09-28-2020, 07:55 AM
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Can't wait to see what you come up with & how it goes by doing it yourself. So, if your DH is a carpenter/contractor doesn't he have tools that you could use while he is gone. My DH has tons of tools so I never have a need to go buy something that I need. However that being said, he would never approve of me using something like a circular saw or sawzall. Anything with an electrical blade would totally freak him out if I was using it. He "might" be o.k. with a jigsaw (but I doubt it) but we don't have one of those.
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Old 09-28-2020, 08:05 AM
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Thanks for the encouragement. Congrats on your finished project, Suz.

I do know my way around a construction site and mainly how to use most tools. We've built 4 houses of our own, so I've absorbed a lot.

Yes, my DH does have lots and lots of tools, but I am not allowed to use any of them. Plus, they're always on some job site. It's also a male ego thing. He doesn't want his wife outdoing him when it comes to construction. (Like I'm really going to go and build an entire house...crazy! Why would I do that when I have him to build it for me?) He also steals any tools that I go out and buy. I don't know how many orbital sanders I've bought over the years. Now, I buy them in multiples and hide them t/o the property. I'm down to only 2 now...he's found a few of them.

None of this should be taken too seriously. It's a silly game that we have played since we first met in 1973. However, he has suddenly discovered gardening, (one of my dearest passions,) and is now stealing my tools, sprinklers and re-routed all of the water to his new veggie patch. This might lead to, "war!" All I can say, is that he'd better leave my sewing machine alone, or there might be blood! (Just kidding, of course.)

I'll keep y'all posted on those shelves.
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Old 09-28-2020, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by tropit View Post
Thanks for the encouragement. Congrats on your finished project, Suz.

I do know my way around a construction site and mainly how to use most tools. We've built 4 houses of our own, so I've absorbed a lot.

Yes, my DH does have lots and lots of tools, but I am not allowed to use any of them. Plus, they're always on some job site. It's also a male ego thing. He doesn't want his wife outdoing him when it comes to construction. (Like I'm really going to go and build an entire house...crazy! Why would I do that when I have him to build it for me?) He also steals any tools that I go out and buy. I don't know how many orbital sanders I've bought over the years. Now, I buy them in multiples and hide them t/o the property. I'm down to only 2 now...he's found a few of them.

None of this should be taken too seriously. It's a silly game that we have played since we first met in 1973. However, he has suddenly discovered gardening, (one of my dearest passions,) and is now stealing my tools, sprinklers and re-routed all of the water to his new veggie patch. This might lead to, "war!" All I can say, is that he'd better leave my sewing machine alone, or there might be blood! (Just kidding, of course.)

I'll keep y'all posted on those shelves.
Good attitude!
My late DH - bless his soul - used to build me something for the practice, which meant it never really got finished. He presented all his finished work to the DIL. I got all the scrap lumber, unpainted, unsanded stuff.
And when he started cooking.....
I miss him....
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Old 09-28-2020, 10:45 AM
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Amazing how we can love someone - a lot - and that same person can almost annoy/irritate us to pieces!

If you build your own shelves, you can't complain that they weren't done to your specifications.
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Old 09-28-2020, 11:14 AM
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I've encountered the same issue for years.
The first step was setting a time limit. So now I set a time frame. The latest project is a raised flower/vegetable bed. DD and SIL will be here Saturday for yard help. So that's the time limit. Then I start thinking how I want it built. Ask him what materials we have laying around and ask for an inventory, negotiating a time frame. In this case it's today. (Forgot to say, he'll drop my project in an instant for a project for DD-use that to my advantage.) I get my measurements and start figuring out how to make this work. Discuss with DD. (He just walked by the window and I think he got the inventory.) Yes! We got a plan. So I set the next time frame. (I guess what I'm saying is I give him 1 short step, reconnect, make a plan and get him on the next step)

The first project I started to get somewhere was remodeling some space in our living room. We lived with exposed studs for years. Then I gave an ultimatum, "Hire a contractor in a week, or I'm moving out." So now it's, do _________ within timeframe, or I'll hire a contractor. And I follow through.

Another option is, "Will you help me with _____________ within a timeframe?" If he says no, I find another way to get it done. And I stay on it until all the clean up is finished. Yes, it's cost $$$. But the up side is, the project is finished, I'm not living with a disaster stareing at me, and we argue a lot less.

One of the keys is, I drop whatever I'm doing when he's ready for the next step. I'm committed or I don't ask him.
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Old 09-28-2020, 11:42 AM
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Originally Posted by petthefabric View Post
I've encountered the same issue for years.
The first step was setting a time limit. So now I set a time frame. The latest project is a raised flower/vegetable bed. DD and SIL will be here Saturday for yard help. So that's the time limit. Then I start thinking how I want it built. Ask him what materials we have laying around and ask for an inventory, negotiating a time frame. In this case it's today. (Forgot to say, he'll drop my project in an instant for a project for DD-use that to my advantage.) I get my measurements and start figuring out how to make this work. Discuss with DD. (He just walked by the window and I think he got the inventory.) Yes! We got a plan. So I set the next time frame. (I guess what I'm saying is I give him 1 short step, reconnect, make a plan and get him on the next step)

The first project I started to get somewhere was remodeling some space in our living room. We lived with exposed studs for years. Then I gave an ultimatum, "Hire a contractor in a week, or I'm moving out." So now it's, do _________ within timeframe, or I'll hire a contractor. And I follow through.

Another option is, "Will you help me with _____________ within a timeframe?" If he says no, I find another way to get it done. And I stay on it until all the clean up is finished. Yes, it's cost $$$. But the up side is, the project is finished, I'm not living with a disaster stareing at me, and we argue a lot less.

One of the keys is, I drop whatever I'm doing when he's ready for the next step. I'm committed or I don't ask him.
Oh...I'm so glad that I shared this story now. I see that others have similar problems. You just have to laugh it all off sometimes.

I've tried the time frame thing...it only makes it worse. Now, I just ask him if he knows of a good carpenter in the area that can help me with my project, or mention that I was looking for someone on CL. Sometimes ya just have to bring out the big guns.
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Old 09-28-2020, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by bearisgray View Post
Amazing how we can love someone - a lot - and that same person can almost annoy/irritate us to pieces!

If you build your own shelves, you can't complain that they weren't done to your specifications.
That is so true! I better do a good job on it. I'm ready!
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Old 09-29-2020, 12:56 AM
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I married a used car salesman. His favorite saying: "That can be fixed!"
Not, "I'll fix that!"

PS: When he asked if I wanted a 2020 car, I said yes. Good, in 10 years you can have one!
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