Thursday, October 27, 2011

Who Needs Instructions....Hah!! I Do!!

The tools of the trade. Electric drill, square with level, laser stud finder, pencil, instruction sheet.
Yesterday, I went to Lowe's to get the brackets and shelves for my fabric stash storage room -
Sometimes I think it would be best if we didn't have so many choices; it can be mind-boggling. I pretty much knew I wanted one of those easy do-it-yourself adjustable systems. I've toggled back and forth about whether to get solid shelving (laminate) or the wire shelving. With my new folding method, I determined the wire would not work, so laminate it is. And I'm partial to white even though there were numerous options including an oak look which I'm also partial too, but hey, it's a closet and ain't nobody gonna see it but me, and the white laminate was the least inexpensive. So after mental quibbling with myself at the store I made my selections and brought them home and waited for Marty to come home from work, then go to the gym, then eat his dinner before I could get him to find the drill and get started. I'd already taken care of using the laser stud finder and leveler to get the top rail placement identified. I've just never used the drill or electric screwdriver before. After he put the rail up, I then tried to hook the slotted 'uprights' onto the rail and...huh?...why won't they fit over the edge? I got the WRONG ones!! and at 8:00 at night I wasn't going to go back and exchange them, so had to wait until this morning...after my physical therapy (which was better today...he did a little more to 'earn his money'). The new uprights fit perfectly, but are shorter, so had to get separate extender pieces and in the long run, combined, they cost more than the single correct-length 'wrong' ones. :( (And I loved Marty's sour face when I told him what all the components cost. Keep in mind, as procrastinators, there are a lot of "fix-it" projects around here that will cost that and more simply because we've procrastinated...the fun of home ownership...but I wouldn't have it any other way. Oh, and I could've hired a handy-man at 3x the cost.)

See these funny looking doo-hickeys?
They're wall anchors, which you have to buy separately in a hardware pack that includes the screws you need to install the uprights...except with the extensions, they came with a set. Go figure. Funny looking aren't they? My brain just wasn't wrapping around how to use them. There's also this black nail-like thing called an anchor key. And there were no directions, not at the store, not attached to any of the original pieces, though there is a hard-to-read direction on the extender pieces I got today. Needed my specs to read that! But yesterday, I didn't have the extenders, so I went online to the Rubbermaid site and found some directions. Funny thing those directions. Viewing them online was like looking at a copy, of a copy, of a copy, of a copy and it didn't improve by printing them out, so by looking at the picture and even reading it wasn't real clear about those anchors (other than they'd only be needed if you weren't able to put the screws into studs). Marty and I both looked at those things and tried to figure out how to push that straight edge out in order to push the anchor into, and flush with, the wall, even after drilling the 3/8" hole to insert them. It just would not work. The instructions don't show how to do that. So while at Lowe's today, an employee was there in the aisle, a man, and I asked him. He didn't know either, but opened a package of parts and looked at it, and fiddled with it doing the same thing Marty and I did, bewildered as well, but then, like a light bulb coming on, tackled it differently. He pushed the flat side inward instead of trying to pull it out, which then folded the anchor into the necessary 'nail-shape'. See how I have that cream-colored one clipped? Like that, it would fit through the hole and then flare back out to 'anchor' against the hidden side of the drywall. And once through, then you use that little black tool to push that straight side back out in case it didn't do it all the way on its own. After all that, I don't think we'll need to use the anchors, but we'll know how they work if ever we should.

And, ok, well, I tried to do the pre-drill hole and have managed to get the bit stuck in the wall. I can't get the drill chuck tight enough I guess. OK, got it out. Tried to drill the first screw in. I even leaned into the drill and ... oh good grief! Reverse!! Success, the first screw is in! When I was taking carpentry lessons from my dad by observation, he used a screwdriver and a hammer, and these battery powered things didn't exist; that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it. My wrist is holding up well too :) Maybe I won't need ALL of those therapy appointments after all, that would make me real happy. One upright & extension solidly in place! (The one on the right is done. The one on the left is just hanging there, and that other thing dangling...that's the chain for the ceiling light. I didn't edit my pictures. I'm going to wait till Marty gets home for the other one; I want his opinion as to why I'm getting the reading I get with the stud might be electrical wiring and I don't want to go drilling into that, or it could be a horizontal board between the studs?. Not sure why it would be, but I guess some boards are for fire breaks, and in this house...wiring could be anywhere. It was built in '66. There is wiring to the light in the closet ceiling, as well as to a hall outlet, and a room outlet, both on walls that abut the closet to the left, so...I'll wait. Because I'm a big chicken. And because I have to leave pretty soon to pick Nick up from school.

Hope your day is running smoothly.

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