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RE: Anyone living with unfinished cabinets? (Follow-Up #19)

posted by: CEFreeman on 01.20.2015 at 05:37 pm in Kitchens Forum

Oh, heck with all this stuff.

Get yourself some Latex, Exterior, DARK paint base. BM is a 4 or 6.
It goes on shockingly white, but dries absolutely clear. And ridiculously inexpensive in the face of all finishes.

Paint base gives such a matte finish, you won't be able to tell where you left off, so don't stop in the middle of a door.

I've been using this on antique doors I stripped down to raw wood. I didn't want any sheen whatsoever, because I wanted an unfinished look. The Exterior part of this has all the UV and moisture resistance you'd expect of an exterior paint. But without any pigment it's just a protective layer.

Interestingly enough, I used some over some paint that was chipping, because I liked the rustic look. It glued the chips down without the gooey look of poly. You can't see it, but you can't chip the chips off.

Oil is a finish. This is actually a finish, too. But this is a truly invisible one.
Oh - I also used it on my mahogany front door I stripped. It's holding up great after 2 years. Still looks like gorgeous, raw wood.


clipped on: 01.21.2015 at 10:59 am    last updated on: 01.21.2015 at 10:59 am

RE: Anyone living with unfinished cabinets? (Follow-Up #11)

posted by: feisty68 on 01.18.2015 at 12:36 am in Kitchens Forum

If you want an easy DIY option for finishing "ready to finish" cabinets, you can do Rubio Monocoat Oil. It's a single coat process and designed for floors, so durable. There are lots of colours, or just plain. I did that on my cabinet fronts - the finish is quite matte, and with the "5% white" colour it actually looks unfinished (doesn't really change the colour of the unfinished wood). My fronts aren't completely installed so I don't have much experience with living with them. But I researched it to death and decided it was a good option for me.


clipped on: 01.21.2015 at 10:55 am    last updated on: 01.21.2015 at 10:55 am

RE: Anyone Honed Marble in Place? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: coastalhp on 11.25.2008 at 09:53 pm in Bathrooms Forum

Stone Tech Pro also has honing and polishing powders. ( This isn't to promote one brand over another, but my personal preference is Stone Tech.

Question: What type of grout was used on the installation and what is the depth of the joint compared to the face of the tile? If a sanded grout was used (I have no idea why anyone would use a sanded grout with natural stone... I only know that some folks do) then you may want to rethink doing the floors yourself.

All in all, these honing powders are available to homeowners, but they are really designed for stone professionals. It's not that it can't be done in a DIY setting, but it's really not recommended for an on-the-job-training type project.

If you really, really want to do it yourself, read the tech sheet for whichever honing powder you use (here is the one for Stone Tech: Powders.pdf) and let us know.

Also, what are the dimensions of the floor and how many and how deep are the scrathes we're talking about?


clipped on: 01.09.2015 at 12:12 pm    last updated on: 01.09.2015 at 12:12 pm

RE: Can a layman hone marble if it is polished? (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: bill_vincent on 07.27.2010 at 08:54 pm in Kitchens Forum

The heck with having someone do it. This is not rocket science. If it were granite, that'd be one thing. It's a much harder material, and tougher to do a good job. But with marble, all you need is a good orbital sander, and a STACK of 600 wet or dry sand paper. It should take you give or take, about 15 minutes to 1/2 hour per 12x12 tile. to hone. If the sand paper starts filling up, take a dry scrub brush, hit it a bit, and go back to sanding. Once it stops dong anything for you, obviously it's time to change the sand paper. You can do this!!

Tell you what-- try it with one tile, and see if you're up to it. If not, all you've lost is one tile. My bet is you are. And then you've saved yourself a BUNDLE of money.


clipped on: 01.09.2015 at 12:09 pm    last updated on: 01.09.2015 at 12:09 pm

RE: Cost for installing rectified porcelain tile (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: lynn2006 on 10.10.2008 at 01:26 am in Flooring Forum

Mirage Slate is a rectified through-body
porcelain that is appropriate for residential
and commercial use. The wide range of
color variation imparts a slate feel, yet the
rectified edge and slight texture
give it a contemporary flair. It is important
to blend tiles within each carton, and from
different cartons during installation to insure
a proper range of variation.

A rectified tile is defined as a tile that has had all edges mechanically finished to achieve a more precise facial dimension. Rectified tile is ever increasing in popularity. Most popular are the larger size formats often used in conjunction with smaller modular sizes to create patterns. Rectified tile is also selected for its ability to allow tighter grout joint spacing. From a homeowner or other end user perspective this seems a very desirable product attribute, one they are willing to pay a little extra for. In the sales and selection process what often fails to get any consideration, and therefore no additional compensation, is the increased challenge that the installer faces in achieving those goals. Large tile combined with minimal grout joints creates a host of installation issues and this article both explores and explains some forthcoming changes as well as challenges in achieving an aesthetically pleasing and correctly installed rectified tile product. Some parts of this article are going to be a little rougher reading than most. As you will see, with the proliferation of tile types, sizes and tolerances, the tile professional will be soon be using their calculator for more than totaling up a sale or estimate.

First let�s explore just what is "rectified tile." Currently, it is whatever the manufacturer wants it to be! I have heard numerous descriptions of what constitutes rectified. There are no current standards to address this product category, however help is on the horizon. Ceramic tile (porcelain tile is a ceramic tile) is a product that shrinks to size as it is made. This is true for all types of ceramic products. A rectified tile is made by either sawing or grinding tile that has already been fired to a specific size, thus allowing minimal size variation between pieces. How minimal is currently up to the manufacturer; I have heard variations of .50 %, .039 %, and .025 % used for rectified tile. Normal non-rectified porcelain tile can have a variation of up to 1.5% under current standards regardless of size. There are proposed standards that have been balloted and will likely be soon adopted under ANSI A-137.1, the American National Standards for Ceramic Tile. This revised standard provides new definitions and will set a specific range of variation that a tile must fall within to be considered either calibrated or rectified based on size. The new tolerance range for regular calibrated porcelain tile will be + or - .5% up to a maximum of .08 inches based on size. For the first time a separate standard will be published for Rectified tile which limits the range of variation to + or - .25 up to a maximum of .03 inches.

Elsewhere in this article is a partial chart (Table 1) showing what the allowable variations will be for a rectified porcelain tile compared to normal calibrated or non-rectified tile. Under this new standard there is also a specific definition for rectified tile that alludes to the edges being mechanically finished as opposed to pressed. Standards are about setting basic performance guidelines so all may compete fairly. The new product standard, when published, will be a great improvement for everyone in the industry. It will provide clarity that is not currently available.

Now let�s move forward to the installation side of the equation and address some challenges faced by the installer. While customers are seemingly willing to part with an extra $.50 to 1.00 for tightly sized tile product, little if any financial consideration is given to the installation. First, let�s talk about the much sought after small grout joint. One recent ad I saw says "do away with grout joints, use only rectified tile." Another is not quite so brash and says 1/16" grout joint recommended. These are all things consumers want to hear and the marketing departments are more than willing to tell them. However, such statements make technical services departments and installers shudder because they are very difficult if not impossible goals to achieve. Let us look at the first statement, 1/16" grout joint recommended. If the manufacturer were to use the allowable variation under the soon to be published standard for a rectified 12"x12" tile, the maximum allowable variation would be .06 inches. A grout joint of 1/16" equals .0625. in essence at .0025 inches, there could well be no grout joint! Some manufacturers may be able to produce at levels 50-75% tighter than this, but at .0025 you still see the problem. The standards committee, being composed of both manufacturers and labor looked at this and decided the time had come for specific grout joint recommendations.

Until recently it was understood but not written, that a grout joint width 3 times the actual average variation of the tile was a prudent recommendation. With new standards addressing and adding tighter tolerances to tile products coupled with the desire for ever tighter grout joints, the labor side of the standards committee has suggested that a recommended joint width of 3 times actual variation be adopted in the installation standards, ANSI A-108 (The American National Standards for Ceramic Tile Installation) along with the newly revised tile product standard. This proposal will be introduced in spring of 2008 and passage is expected. Seeing a use for those calculators now? Bottom line, whether calibrated (normal) tile or rectified tile, grout joints must allow for the natural variation in tile products.

Another consideration that receives little thought but can cause the appearance of poor workmanship is tile warpage. All tile has some amount of warpage. It is not considered a defect unless excessive. The chart elsewhere in this article (Table 1) also shows at what point warpage is considered excessive. In modular patterns this variation can become very apparent. The issue is probably at its worst when using a larger formats in a staggered pattern, either calibrated or rectified. If the tile is manufactured as a 12"x 24" the lowest amount of warpage will be on the 12" side of the tile, the highest on the 24" side of the tile. When installing this size tile in a running bond pattern the lowest point of warpage is placed right in the middle of the adjoining tile which is at the highest point of warpage. The best installer and the best substrate can not change the fact that all tile has a certain amount of surface variation as part of the firing process. Warpage will also be less in smaller size tile when multiple sizes are used in a modular pattern. The bigger tile gets, the more apparent this naturally occurring part of the manufacturing process becomes.

Last but not least on the list of challenges with rectified tile installation comes "normal" substrate tolerances. It would be an accurate statement to say anything over 12" in size is not going to have an adequately flat substrate to facilitate tight joints unless tighter tolerances are specifically requested. Normal substrate tolerances seldom seen even when specified call for maximum surface variation on flatness of no more than a 1/4" in 10�, nor more than a 1/16" variation in 12". In new construction, this is the job of substrate trades and covered in their industry documents and recommendations. In existing or remodeled applications this tolerance recommendation typically falls to the tile or flooring contractor. Elsewhere in this article there is a picture of a 12"x24" tile with a 1/16" drill placed under the center representing a 1/16" variation in a 12" area. That small amount of variation caused a 1/8" displacement in one tile! That 1/8" becomes 1/4" in the next tile and 3/8" in the following after only 6� of area. Large tile with normal grout joints requires a very flat floor in more than likely the 1/8" in 10� range, not at all typical of the normal construction process. Large rectified tile requires what is known as a "super flat," which is well beyond the equipment and ability of most in the substrate trades. This leaves the job to the flooring professional that has the knowledge, skill, and products available to him. The time to flatten the floor is prior to the installation. Using a medium bed mortar may allow for minimal build-up providing a minor degree of flattening but that would be an adequate measure in only the smallest of installation areas. All this goes to say that if you are planning on doing big tile it would be prudent to figure some floor prep. If you are using big or rectified tile with small joints you should plan on a lot of floor prep.

The final word: as large rectified tile gains in popularity, particularly in modular patterns, the need grows to educate the end user, sales personnel, and installers about the properties and limitations of both the product and installation. The requirements to provide satisfactory installations of rectified tile with tight grout joints are exacting and not inexpensive. The substrate flatness required for narrow grout joints is well beyond reach of the typical mason or carpenter. Unless all appropriate parties are properly educated about the product and installation needs of large rectified tile and narrow grout joints, great resistance can be expected in getting the appropriate compensation for the additional substrate work which is inevitable.

Dave Gobis
David M. Gobis CTC CSI, a third-generation tile setter, is the Executive Director of the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation. Mr. Gobis is an Author of many trade related articles and a frequent speaker at industry events.

Here is a link that might be useful: Even porcelain tiles can be Rectified- research I found out when looking for tiles- maybe a fairly new concept?


clipped on: 01.06.2015 at 09:08 am    last updated on: 01.06.2015 at 09:09 am

RE: floor tile with red birch cabs and PA soapstone counters (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: hollysprings on 08.29.2014 at 10:15 pm in Kitchens Forum

Porcelain slate lookalikes will have zero shaling, won't scratch, and will never need sealing. Look for ones that have a V5 variability. I'ma big fan of Mannington's Serengeti Slate in the Midnight Mist color after I saw it at LWO's grand opening of her showroom. It was very realistic. Here's a pic from her Houzz page.


clipped on: 08.30.2014 at 04:56 pm    last updated on: 08.30.2014 at 04:56 pm

Corner susans in pantry: Attn, CEFreeman

posted by: Bellsmom on 01.19.2013 at 04:04 pm in Kitchens Forum

Here is a Photoshop mockup of what I meant with making the corner susans in a pantry as large as possible and D-shaped. Not sure if the picture makes sense. I really wish I could do this, but I have a post in the front at the angle where the shelves join.

 photo cornerpantrysusanmockup_zps45f6066c.jpg

I have six 16'' susans cut, mounted to the bearings, and installed. Good play on a cold day. I'll post pics in a day or two.

This is a really inexpensive project: the bearings are $5 or so from Amazon plus modest shipping when you buy a bunch. I bought a sheet of marked down damaged B/D plywood from my favorite lumberyard for $10. I can get 10 or 12 16'' circles out of the one sheet, I think.

This post was edited by Bellsmom on Sat, Jan 19, 13 at 16:22


clipped on: 08.11.2014 at 10:33 pm    last updated on: 08.11.2014 at 10:33 pm

bathroom tile FAQ's

posted by: bill_vincent on 07.01.2008 at 09:31 pm in Bathrooms Forum

This is going to take me a while, so I'll post as many as I can each night until it gets done. To start, here's the first set of questions and answers:

Okay, here we go. These questions come from the thread on the discussions side where I solicited questions from everyone for this thread. These are in the order they were asked:

Q) What are the different types of tiles you can use in a bathroom and what are the advantages/disadvantages of each?

A) There are several types of tile available. They fall into two general groups: ceramic and natural stone. I'll take these one at a time:

Ceramic tile-- For purposes of this discussion, there's glazed conventional, unglazed porcelain, and glazed porcelain. All three are good tiles for bathroom use, but the porcelain is a better choice only because of its density and lack of water absorbsion, which makes upkeep and cleaning easier. Also, with reference to steam showers, you DO NOT want to use natural stone, being that the steam would tend to permeate into the stone even more readily than liquid water, and could end up giving you algae problems, as well as mold and mildew problems, unless you don't mind being tied down to your bathroom.

Natural Stone-- There are several types of stone that are used in bathrooms. It doesn't necessarily mean that they're all GOOD IDEAS for bathrooms, expecially the softer (and more absorbant) stones, such as slate or limestone. Now, I know I'm going to get a world of flack about this from epople who have bathrooms finished in these materials. I know they CAN be used.... so long as you're aware of the extra upkeep involved. But if you're someone who doesn't like to keep after things, you may want to pick an easier material to maintain. Generally speaking, the softer the stone, the more the upkeep. Limestone being the softer of the stones, and that would include travertine, next would be many slates (although some would actually be harder than even most marbles, such as brazilian and british slates), then marbles, with quartzite and granite rounding off the list as the harder and more dense stones that you could use.

Q) What should I be sure to look for when choosing tile for a bathroom?

A) Short answer-- something that you like! The bathroom is the one place that just about anything the showroom has can be used. The only limitations are basically the upkeep you want to put in, and slip resistance on the floors of your bathroom and shower. Now, although ceramic tile is basically maintenence free, you don't want to use something with a texture to it that will catch all kinds of junk in the shower, making it more difficult to keep clean. At the same time, you don't want to use a polished stone or bright glazed ceramic tile for the shower floor, either. These both CAN be used, but again, it comes down to upkeep for textured wall tile, and doing something to rectify the slippery floor.

Q) Where should I use tile and where not?

A) Tile can be used on every single surface in the bathroom, if that's what you like. This is all a matter of taste... for the most part. About the only place where there's a requirement is any place there's a showerhead involved. If tile is to be used either in a shower or a tub/ shower combo, The tile MUST go up to a minimum of 72" off the floor. Past that, it's up to the disgression of the owner.

Q) What size tile and what layout patterns to use in various areas?

A) Again, this is a subjective question that can really only be answered by the owner. The ONLY place where there's a recommendation for mechaincal reasons is on a shower floor. TCNA recommends that mothing bigger than 6" be used on shower floors due to the cone shape of the floor's pitch. In addition, most installers will request no bigger than 4", and prefer a 2x2 tile to work with on the shower floor. This is also advantageous to the homeowner who'll be showering in there, because the added grout joints will add more traction to the floor.

Now, I've heard many times that you shouldn't use large format tiles in a small area like a powder room floor, and if you have a wide open bathroom, you don't want to use real small tiles. My response to both is the same-- HORSEHOCKEY. I've done bathrooms both ways-- 24x24 diagonal in a 3' wide powder room, and 1" hex ceramic mosaics in an open 100 sq. ft. bathroom floor. The rule of thumb is if you like it, it's right!

Q) How do I find/choose someone to install the tile?

A) Many people will tell you to get names from the showroom you get your tile from. This is no good, unless the showroom is willing to take responsibility for the installer by either having them on payrool, or as a subcontract. Then they have something to lose if they give you a bad installer. Many people will also tell you to get references and to actually check them out. This ALSO doesn't work. I've been in this work for just under 30 years now, and I've yet to find a single installer who ever gave the name of someone they had a problem with. They say even a blind squirrel will find a nut once in a while. The same can be said for "fly-by-nights" and good work.

So if you can't trust recommendations, and checking references is a lost cause, what do you do? REVERSE THE PROCESS!! Instead of finding an installer and getting references, get references, and thru them, find your installer!! No matter where you live, if you drive around, you'll find constructions sites and developements. Stop and ask who the GC uses. Get a name and phone number. Sooner or later, after asking around enough, you're going to find that the same names will begin to show up time and time again. THESE are the guys you want to use. But don't expect a bargain price, and be prepared to wait, because these guys will be in high demand, even in the worst of times, and they may demand a bit higher price, but they'll be worth every penny, if for no other reason, just because of the peace of mind they'll give you in knowing you're getting a good quality installation. Ask anyone who's gone through this experience, good or bad-- that alone is worth its weight in gold.

Q) What are the proper underlayments for tile?

A) There are several, and I'll take them one at a time:

CBU (cementitious Backer Units)-- This is the term that generally covers all cement boards (such as Wonderboard or Durock) or cement fiber boards (such as Hardibacker). This is the most common used tile underlayment. Generally speaking, it comes in two thicknesses-- 1/2" and 1/4"-- and each has its use. !/2" must be used for wall installations, due to the fact that the 1/4" is way too flimsy with nothing to back it up, and would flex too much to last. Besides, the 1/2" CBU will usually match up nicely to most sheetrocks. The 1/4" is used for floor installations, unless the added height of the 1/2" is needed to match up to other floorings. Being that neither has very much structural strength, so long as the subfloor is 3/4" or more, the 1/4" CBU is all that's needed. Keep in mind that even though it's basically fiberglass reinforced concrete, the only thing it adds to the floor is a stable bonding surface, so the 1/4" will do just fine. One place where alot of contractors will try and shortcut is by using greenboard instead of CBU for shower walls. This is expressly forbidden in the IRC (International Residential Code) by the following code:

IRC Greenboard Code:
The 2006 International Residential Code (IRC) states in
Section R702.4.2 that "Cement, fiber-cement or glass mat
gypsum backers in compliance with ASTM C1288, C1325
or C1178 and installed in accordance with manufacturers�
recommendations shall be used as backers for wall tile in
tub and shower areas and wall panels in shower areas."

The 2006 IRC also states in Section R702.3.8.1 that
"Water-resistant gypsum backing board [Greenboard] shall
not be used where there will be direct exposure to water."

Membranes-- There are several around that work well over many different surfaces. Most of them are what's called "Crack Isolation Membranes". Just about every manufacturer has one, from trowel ons or roll ons, such as Hydroment's Ultraset or Laticrete's 9235 or Hydroban, to sheet membranes such as Noble's CIS membrane. All will give the tile a little more protection against movement than just going over CBU. However, there's another class of membranes called "uncoupling membranes" of which the most popular by far is Schluter's Ditra, that are made from bonding two layers together, usually a fabric fleece backing and a plastic sheeting with dovetailed waffling to "lock" the thinset in place ( as opposed to accepting a thinset BOND). These membranes will, as their name implies, uncouple their two layers in case of movement, to save the floor, and for thinset floors, it's the most protection you can give your tile floor.

Plywood-- This is one where I get the most flack. I'm one of a dying breed that still believes in tiling directly over plywood. However, I can very well understand the reluctance of the industry to embrace this installation method, even though the TCNA DOES approve of its use for interior installations (Those with a handbook can check Method F-149). The reason I say that is it's a very "tempermental installation method. You need to be very familiar with what you're doing, or you risk failure. There are even many pros I wouldn't trust to tile using this method. Everything you do is important, from the species of plywood used, to the direction the grain is laid with relation to the joists, to how it's gapped, and a host of other specs, as well-- many of which won't be found in the handbook, and if you miss just one of them, you're flirtin with disaster. All in all, when people ask me about it, I tell them that with the membranes available, there's no need to go directly over plywood. There are other methods that will give you just as long lasting a floor, and aren't NEARLY as sensitive.

Mudset-- This is the oldest, and still, after THOUSANDS of years of use, the strongest installation method available. In a mudset installation, a minimum of 1 1/4" of mortar called "drypack" (mixed to the consistancy of damp sand) is either bonded to a concrete slab, or laid down over tarpaper or 6 mil poly with wire reinforcement, packed, and then screaded off to flat level (or pitched) subfloor. This is what most people see when tiling a shower pan. Initially, the mud will be a somewhat soft subfloor. But over time, if mixed properly, it'll be stronger than concrete.

Q) What are the proper tile setting compounds?

A) This is one where I could write a book. It all depends on what kind fo tile you're installing, and what the underlayment is that you're going over. I'll give a generalized list:

Polymer/ latex modified thinset: For all intents and purposes, this is the "cure-all". For almost any installation the modified thinset, which is basically portland cement, silica sand, and chemical polymers added for strength, will work. There are some that are specialized, such as the lightweight non-sag thinsets (such as Laticrete's 255 or Mapei's Ultralite), or the high latex content thinsets (like Latictrete's 254 Platinum or Hydroment's Reflex), but with the exception of going over some membranes, there's a modified thinset for every installation.

Unmodified thinset: This is the same as above, but with no polymers added. It's usually used in conjunction with a liquid latex additive, but will also be used mixed with water for going over some membranes. It's also used as a bedding for all CBU's.

Medium Bed Mortars-- This is a relatively new class of setting mortars, used mainly for large format tiles, where the normal notched trowels just don't put down enough material, and with thinset, it would be too much, causing too much shrinkage as it dries, causing voids under, and poor bond to, the tile, but at the same time, there's not enoough room for a mudset installation. This mortar is usually used with either a 1/2x1/2" or 1/2x3/4" notched trowel.

Mastics and Premixed Thinsets: THESE HAVE VERY LIMITED USES!! Let me say that again-- THESE HAVE VERY LIMITED USES!! They work well for vertical installations, where the tile used is 8x8 or less, and it's not a wet area. ALL THREE of those conditions must be met!! I know just about every pail of type 1 mastic says it can be used in showers except for the floor. DON'T BELIEVE IT!! Also, both mastic and premixed thinset (which is just mastic with a fine sand mixed in to give it bulk) claim they can be used for floor installations. Unfortunately, for the amount of material needed under virtually all floor tiles to bond to the subfloor, neither of these will fully harden. I had a personal experience where I helped a sister in law across country, telling her husband exactly how to do his main floor, what to use, and how to use it. Unfortunately, he went to the big box store to get his tile and materials, and they talked him into using premixed thinset. I didn't hear about it until SIX MONTHS LATER when his tile and grout joints started showing cracks all over the floor. When he called me I asked him what he used for thinset, and sure enough, this is when he told me. I told him to pull one of the tiles, and SIX MONTHS LATER, IT WAS STILL SOFT!!! DOn't let them talk you into it!! Use the proper thinset, and don't try and shortcut your installation. You're spending alot of money for it to be "just practice"!!

Q) How do you deal with different thicknesses of tile?

A) Whatever it takes. I've used membranes, built up the amount of thinset being used, I've even doubled up tiles when it worked out that way. Whatever it takes to get the two tiles to be flush toeach other.

Q) What are the typical tools required to lay tile?

A) Generally speaking, this is a list for just about all installations. Some may require specialized tools, but this would be for all:

Proper sized notched trowel
measuring tape
chalk line
margin trowel
high amp low speed drill and mixing paddle (best would be 6 amp or better and less than 400 rpm)
several buckets
score and snap cutter for straight ceramic cuts
4 1/2" grinder with a continuous rim dry diamond blade for ceramic, anything other than straight cuts
wet saw (can be used for ALL cuts, ceramic or stone)
grout float
hydra grout sponges (2-- once for grouting, one for cleaning)
24" and 48" levels (for vertical work)
heavy duty extension cords
screwgun or nailgun (where CBU will be used)

Q) What about tile spacing and tpes of grout?

A) According to Dave Gobis from the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation in Pendleton, South Carolina, there will finally be a new standard for ceramic tile next year. The tolerances are shrinking. There will also be a standard for rectified tile. Along with that, there will be a revision to the installation standards that will specifically recommend a grout joint no less than 3 times the variation of the tile. For rectified tile the minimum grout joint width will be .075 or just over a 1/16".

As for grout, there's only one thing that determines whether you use sanded or unsanded grout, and that's the size of the grout joint. Anything less than 1/8" you use unsanded grout. 1/8" or larger, you need to use sanded grout. The reason is that the main ingredient in grout is porland cement, which tends to shrink as it dries. In joints 1/8" or larger, the grout will shrink way too much and end up cracking ans shrinking into the joint. The sand give the grout bulk, and the sanded grout won't shrink nearly as much and therefore, can be used in the larger joints.


clipped on: 06.06.2014 at 09:44 pm    last updated on: 06.06.2014 at 09:44 pm

RE: Toekick drawers under kitchen cabinets (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: Bellsmom on 02.22.2014 at 04:44 pm in Kitchens Forum

below is a link to really simple DIY toekick drawers:

And finally here is a link to floor mount drawer glides that come with attached sides and slots for bottom and back. Using the techniques above and these glides it should be easy-peasy. I have the guides waiting for me--just gotta quit doing other things.

Here is a link that might be useful: Rockler's floor-mounted drawer guides.

This post was edited by Bellsmom on Sat, Feb 22, 14 at 19:48


clipped on: 02.24.2014 at 03:43 pm    last updated on: 02.24.2014 at 03:43 pm

RE: Kitchen cupboard paint color (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: CEFreeman on 01.03.2014 at 11:23 pm in Kitchens Forum

It's going to depend upon your lighting.

Why don't you do a search on "white kitchens" to get 100s of recommendations. Plus, you can look at the great kitchens. People seem to stick with a few BM colors, but there are obviously more.

Whatever you do, I strongly suggest using Cabinet Coat, which is now owned by BM. It's clean-up is water, but this stuff is designed for trim and cabinetry. It dries HARD as a ROCK.

When the prep is done well, it goes on like butter. I also recommend Stix, which is an adhesive primer, also now owned by BM. Both used to be by Inslx, but BM buys a good thing.


clipped on: 01.07.2014 at 02:30 pm    last updated on: 01.07.2014 at 02:30 pm

RE: Insulation (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: mongoct on 09.24.2013 at 11:57 am in Remodeling Forum

"At the top of the studs is the top plate that supports the ceiling joists, or upper floor joists if you will.
Between the joists and top plate are those annoying make my job easier I am thinking of using
low expansion foam to insulate.those spaces.
Are there any reasons why I shouldn't do it this way? "

I agree with the others, it sounds like you're describing the rim joist area. If this is DIY and you're contemplating using cans of low-expansion foam, instead consider a combination of rigid foam and canned foam.

Cut a piece of rigid foam about a half-inch smaller in each dimension than the size of the rim opening. Set the piece of rigid foam in place, then use canned foam to fill the 1/4" gap on all four sides of the piece of rigid foam.


clipped on: 09.25.2013 at 01:35 pm    last updated on: 09.25.2013 at 01:36 pm

RE: Vessel sink doesn't drain (Follow-Up #18)

posted by: MFFJM on 09.22.2013 at 11:40 am in Bathrooms Forum

I had the same problem with my vessel sink and adapted the previous post to install a "studor" vent above the p-trap with parts available at Lowx's or any local store for about $17. Now it works like a champ! Please see pics.


clipped on: 09.25.2013 at 01:21 pm    last updated on: 09.25.2013 at 01:21 pm

RE: Vessel sink doesn't drain solution (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: fireman-175 on 10.20.2012 at 06:47 pm in Bathrooms Forum

I put four non-overflow vessel sinks in my house. All drain slow and have the same issue as most of you. It is not your plumbing or venting. I read of a solution on another site whereas he installed a automatic air vent on the tailpipe before the p-trap. I did it and it works great and doesn't have a chance to leak water.

You probably have 1 1/4" tailpiece going straight down. You will need a Watts automatic float vent p/n 4a821. Need to get it from a plumbing house. A3/8" MIP x 1/8" FIP pipe bushing (lowes/HD), 1" x 3/8" pipe bushing (Lowes/HD), 1" PVC compression tee, 1" PVC elbow threaded.

Attach the Automatic Float vent to the smaller bushing, then that to the bigger bushing, then that into the elbow, that into the compression tee. use teflon tape on threads. Remove the tailpipe and cut it in half removing about 1.5" of pipe. slide the two pieces into the compression tee leaving the 1.5" gap and hand tighten. Make sure the float is upright. open the black cap on the vent 2 turns. Install the tailpipe back in line and hand tighten those plastic nuts.

Test out the system. it should work fine and cannot leak as the valve has a float in it that allows the trapped air out and blocks any water from escaping.


clipped on: 09.25.2013 at 01:19 pm    last updated on: 09.25.2013 at 01:19 pm

RE: Insulation (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: energy_rater_la on 09.21.2013 at 11:18 am in Remodeling Forum

if you are going to access these areas to caulk...
use a good caulk with a long life.
attic temps are extreme, & cheap caulks fail.

invest in a good product rather than an inferior one.

I like Dap's Alex brand 25-50 year life.

best of luck


clipped on: 09.22.2013 at 11:03 pm    last updated on: 09.22.2013 at 11:03 pm

Building Kitchen Cabinets

posted by: Shezzy_in_SJ on 03.24.2005 at 05:26 pm in Woodworking Forum

Help. DH is being boon-doggled by his DB into us making our own kitchen cabinets. I'm in the midst of getting quotes from various sources, and DBIL is riding in on a blaze of horse flesh riling up DH into thinking they could do a fine bang up job of it.

Now mind you, I'm not entirely opposed to this sort of idea, not that my two words in sideways could drown out their yipping and backslapping. But I want to know the REALITY of such a lightbulb moment.

DBIL just made his own panel saw. You know, the kind HD has on the metal scaffold and a circular saw is mounted to it. He says it works like a charm on the edge of a dime. So cutting the piece work might not be such an ordeal. DBIL also has a planer, and we have a compound miter saw, a plate joiner, sanders, fixed and plunge router, and more time than money. So tools are checked.

Any plan books out there, or is it pretty self-explanatory in that we're really just making a series of boxes - well-cut, well-squared, well-fastened boxes, but boxes.

Hardware I can resource on the net. Check.

Material: ??? There's some nice finished plywood in Alder that I like. Where would I use that in the construction to its best advantage, and where can I cut costs on the other parts of the construction?

Any good online sources for Alder finished plywood?

Staining: ??? I am fascinated by staining. Haven't done anything yet, but am looking forward to the learning curve. Where do I find the best information about staining alder? What about the do's and don'ts? In shopping for kitchen cabinet manufacturer's some brag about their catalyzed (??) finish, or their baked on finish, or their seven-step process. Is all that really necessary? We don't want wood cabinets that end up not looking like wood. (Brookhaven cabinetry, as beautiful as it is, is so darned wet-sanded that when you touch it there's nothing telling you it's real wood.) But we want to produce a final finish that will wear extremely well. Read: extremely well.

So.....your job.....if you decide to accept to give me all the reasons why we don't want to do me out with all the questions I just asked if you think it's doable. Good Luck.



clipped on: 04.22.2012 at 03:47 pm    last updated on: 08.22.2013 at 12:28 am

Connecting a wood panel door to a fridge door, to open together.

posted by: davidro1 on 12.03.2008 at 10:16 am in Kitchens Forum

A few fridges sold as fully integrated fridges are white boxes that have a kit to attach the fridge door to a wood door panel that has its_hinges on the_wall or on_cabinets. When they both open, there is some movement between the two doors as they both pivot on their separate hinges and go through their range, so they need a slider that holds them together.

This is not overlay panels on built in fridges or on other fully integrated fridges.
Examples of each are E.g. Liebherr HC-1001 and E.g. Liebherr HC-1011

What to use for clip-slider-connectors?
What key words or what do I need to know to get started?
Clips and sliders to attach a wood door to a fridge door to make them move together. A built-in install.
Ability to connect plastic / slider / hardware so that opening a wood door panel opens the fridge door with it.

Here is Why: I don't need to fully integrate to lineup to other cabinets, it's a stand-alone that I'd hide as a column with custom doors, so any fridge that Can Be built in will do fine. I don't know where to get the connecting hardware -sliders- or where to start looking. Instead of reinventing all the necessary dimensions and building it from scratch I think it would be good to ask who might know.



clipped on: 05.05.2013 at 12:19 am    last updated on: 08.03.2013 at 12:55 am

Kerdi Shower Part Deux

posted by: mongoct on 12.17.2009 at 12:22 pm in Bathrooms Forum

Here's Part Deux. The original Kerdi Shower thread lost virtually all of the photo links when the forum they were on changed their software and dumped the links. That forum's administrator doesn't know if they're recoverable, so I did a little editing and here's Part Deux. I may ask Gardenweb to delete the original thread.

This thread is to show a few techniques for working with Kerdi membrane.

Shower is a walk-in, about 5' by 7'. Door is at a 45 degree angle in one of the corners.

Walk in to the shower and on the short wall to the immediate right are two supply valves, the lower one supplies the wall mounted handheld, the upper supplies an overhead 12" rainshower head.

Moving counterclockwise from that wall, the long wall to the left of the valve wall is an exterior wall and will get nothing but tile.

To the left of that long exterior wall is the shower's short back wall, it gets a 2-shelf niche. The niche is about 36" wide and 30" tall. The lower niche space is 15" high, the shelf itself is 4" thick, the upper niche space is 11" high.

To the left of the short niche wall is another long wall, this wall has the wall-mounted hand-held. If I recall, the sliding bar is 40" tall.

In the ceiling is a 12" rain shower head. Also four can lights for illimination and a fan for ventilation. Ceiling will be tiled.

The wall construction? Kerdi is a vapor barrier, so no barrier is needed on these walls. Tile backer? With Kerdi you can use drywall. I prefer cement board on the walls. Wonderboard or Durock. I used Wonderboard on these walls. The ceiling and niche is done in Hardie, which is a fiber-cement board. Hardie is less brittle, so for me it's easier to cut into narrow strips to trim out the niche, and not as prone to snapping when installing full sheets overhead. I work solo 95% of the time, so it's not uncommon to hold the sheet up with one hand and have the screw gun in the other.

ABOVE: Valve wall

ABOVE: Niche wall, and on the left you can see the stub out for the hand held

ABOVE: Shows the Wonderboard walls and the Hardie ceiling.

ABOVE: With Kerdi, you don't have to mesh tape and thinset the seams. You can fill the seams with thinset as you hang the Kerdi on the walls. No need for tape as the Kerdi will bridge the joint for you. Just make sure your walls are smooth. If you have any thinset blots or chunks of cement that mushroomed when you drove a screw, knock them down so the walls are smooth. Here I'm striking a pose with a carborundum stone.

ABOVE: Setting a plumb line to hang the first sheet. Just like hanging wall paper. I hold the first sheet about an inch from the inside corner. Sheet is about 39-1/2" wide. I want the thinset to extend about 1" past the edge of the sheet. So I drop a plumb line about 41-1/2" or so from the inside corner, and mark the line vertically every foot or so with a tick mark using a sharpie.

ABOVE: Thinset. This is a little thicker than I want. I want it stiff enough so I can flat trowel it on the wall without it dripping all over or running down the wall, as well as it being able to hold a ridge after it's combed out. Not too stiff, though as you don't want it skinning over before you hang the sheet.


clipped on: 07.29.2013 at 12:08 am    last updated on: 07.29.2013 at 12:09 am

RE: Slightly OT: Slate Flooring (x-posted) (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: yillimuh on 02.13.2011 at 09:13 pm in Bathrooms Forum

I used dark grey slate in our master bathroom that we finished this summer. I had our contractor cut 12x12 tiles into 3x6 tiles. It cut nicely, but did take him a while to cut enough for the entire shower. I haven't seen 3x6 slate tiles available anywhere, but it is possible that they exist somewhere. The tile I used was a special order tile from Home Depot and was $3/square foot. We used black grout.

These aren't the best pictures, but here you go:

I also found this pic on Houzz that has a dark grey subway tile. No idea if it is slate:

Roman tub/shower modern bathroom

I hope this helps!


clipped on: 05.08.2013 at 11:49 am    last updated on: 07.28.2013 at 11:56 pm

How do you open and close your toekick drawers

posted by: lalitha on 08.15.2012 at 06:45 pm in Kitchens Forum

How do you open and close your toe kick drawers? I seem to remember a mechanism to push, click, open and close. I do not want to put any knobs or pulls .. my cabinet guy says "whatever you want".. What should I want?



clipped on: 06.14.2013 at 02:40 pm    last updated on: 06.14.2013 at 02:41 pm

RE: Waterlox questions (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: lazygardens on 04.27.2013 at 03:58 am in Kitchens Forum

I have used Waterlox on countertops and floors ...

1 - Put a couple of coats on the underside of your counters to prevent warping.

I didn't do it on a small test counter and even though it was laminated beech, it warped almost an inch in the center.

2 - You can sand between coats with a fine sandpaper if you want, or not.

I wiped it on with a lint-free cloth in thin coats - 3 or 4

The floor was sanded with 80, then 120 grit, then several coats
The countertops were sanded with 120 or 150 grit

The first coat really soaks in, apply it liberally. The second coat soaks in some places where the wood is most absorbent. By the 4th coat, you should be wiping on a thin coat and having even coverage.

The wood is holding up well - some scuffing and scratching on the kitchen counters, but it is patina in the making.


clipped on: 04.27.2013 at 10:09 pm    last updated on: 04.27.2013 at 10:09 pm

RE: Pls help... undercabinet outlets & lighting (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: a2gemini on 04.24.2013 at 06:38 am in Kitchens Forum

Here is my post to my final reveal - there are some pictures close to the top of the plug mold

Here is another post of PlugMold questions - we used something called WireMold and looks like a power strip on steroids and then mounted on an angled piece of wood.

And here are some additional pictures to help you
The first one shows the angled strips - We did put a trim on the bottom of the cabinets to keep invisible. The only problem was a cold air return that got in the way of one of the plug spaces - so we had to bridge that one and if you are short, you can see the bridge - I might try to paint the wires to match the backsplash.
 photo IMG_7012.jpg
 photo IMG_6832.jpg
The bridge is under these cabinets, between the glass cabinet and the end cabinet - I didn't take a picture of the bridge but it doesn't show when looking straight ahead, just when you are little and looking up - but then you would see the lights and plugs anyway...
 photo IMG_7261.jpg


clipped on: 04.26.2013 at 11:47 am    last updated on: 04.26.2013 at 11:47 am

RE: Appliance Garage (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: holligator on 01.06.2008 at 10:20 pm in Kitchens Forum

My favorite "appliance garage" (just in case you haven't seen it) is julie7549's. I wonder if you could make a cabinet like this one so you don't need the slide out? Here it is closed and open:

And here's the whole thread with other pics of her gorgeous kitchen: julie7549's gorgeous kitchen


clipped on: 04.22.2013 at 11:13 pm    last updated on: 04.22.2013 at 11:13 pm

RE: Best steps for painting kitchen cabinets (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: lovetodream on 04.16.2013 at 01:45 pm in Kitchens Forum

I had saved this in my clippings back when I considered painting my cabinets. Don't know anything about the process and how it works but here it is:

RE: Paint these kitchen cabinets? (Follow-Up #38)
posted by: bbstx on 07.30.2012 at 10:36 pm in Home Decorating & Design Forum

There was a person who used to post on the kitchen forum quite frequently. She had re-done several houses. She advocated painting cabinets as follows (I've cut and pasted her advice from several different threads):
I only use high quality nylon (Purdy) brushes. I prefer them for wood finishes. They cost more but they last forever!

This is exactly what I use:

Sherwin Williams PrepRite ProBlock Interior Exterior Seals and Bonds, Latex primer (be sure you get exactly that says BONDS on the label). It's made to cover shiny surfaces and bond tightly, and I've used it in several kitchens, and on all of my interior woodwork and it does BOND!! No sanding, just wipe down your cabinets with either a TSP and water mixture or a little vinager and water to get rid of grease.

This stuff is wonderful. I've converted many naysayers to the primer because you really don't have to sand or use a deglosser, and even if they're will BOND and you'll have a finish you can then paint on. :O) It's so much easier. I just love it (I just picked up another couple of gallons last night). And the finish will be tough as nails by the way. I personally also like to use a high quality sherwin williams paint.

I use one coat primer and let it dry a day at least, then two coats (one day between at least) of paint with a good Purdy brush (which is important). With just one coat the grain still effects the paint, but with the two on top of the primer you get that nice smooth look :)

I'm a paint freak, so forgive me for saying this if you know. Don't use rollers for wood. I like a 1 1/2 inch and a 2 1/2 or 3" brush at the most. The smaller works well on the small areas so you don't drip or oversmear the sides of the project.

I have painted several cabinets using the SW primer without any other prep work, except making sure the cabinets were relatively clean. So far they have held up fine.


clipped on: 04.18.2013 at 11:14 am    last updated on: 04.18.2013 at 11:14 am

RE: Can we MacGyver a custom panel refrigerator? (Follow-Up #22)

posted by: circuspeanut on 01.08.2010 at 03:51 pm in Kitchens Forum

Ha! I found it. Hettich makes one (a "refrigerator cabinet door fixing mechanism") for about 14Euro.

Download the PDF here!

... or on German eBay. (Once I found the name, they're all over the place -- who knew?)

In German, for amusement's sake, it's a Schleppbeschlag, or "drag fitting." :-)

Just don't confuse your Schleppbeschlag with a K�hlschrankumbautent�rscharnier, which is a different hinge used for an entirely separate refrigerator cabinet door, apparently also a common practice.

Here is a link that might be useful: Get yer Schleppbeschlag here


clipped on: 03.15.2013 at 02:44 pm    last updated on: 03.15.2013 at 02:45 pm

RE: Smeg 36'' dishwasher (Follow-Up #15)

posted by: lee676 on 10.06.2012 at 08:36 am in Appliances Forum

GW seems to have corrupted my links - they're all still on Smeg's website. Try copying and pasting these links into your web browser:

Website page describing dishwasher:

US full line catalog, p.40-43 showing dishwasher and cutout dimensions, additional drawing on p.48 showing dimensions in metric (use these if possible for slightly more accurate cutouts)

User guide (global) + Installation manual for STO905 US/Canadian model - at the very bottom of the installation manual there are several photos, including some with the lower panel partially open.

It looks like I was right about the lower panel lowering and jutting out some to make way for the bottom of the opened door to to cross inward beyond the plane of cabinet doors. Still, it seems there is room for a full-height drawer underneath it - the cutout is 33-7/8" wide x 22-13/16" tall, and the distance from the top of the usual 4" toekick to underneath the usually 1-1/2" thick counterop is about 30", making the top of the counterop 36" high. That leaves room for a full-height (roughly 6" tall) drawer beneath the 36"w dishwasher. The lower panel's movement when opened may also allow it to clear any handles or knobs on that drawer.


clipped on: 03.05.2013 at 12:04 pm    last updated on: 03.05.2013 at 12:04 pm

RE: When planning a kitchen - words of wisdom (Follow-Up #11)

posted by: buehl on 01.09.2010 at 06:01 pm in Kitchens Forum


clipped on: 02.13.2013 at 04:31 pm    last updated on: 02.13.2013 at 04:31 pm

RE: When planning a kitchen - words of wisdom (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: sweeby on 01.09.2010 at 12:21 pm in Kitchens Forum

Great wisdom so far. Let me add a bit more.

One: Go through what you have now and give away or throw out the stuff you never use. How many coffee mugs do you have that you never use? How many cheapo spatulas that you'd only use if pigs flew? How many freebie koozies in the back of the drawer? How many mismatched plastic cups and plates you'd never use? How much lidless Tupperware? How many grody pots & pans leftover from your college days or Hubby's bachelor pad? Get that junk out of your soon-to-be-beautiful space! Use the 'Would I buy it at a garage sale?" test if you're not sure.

Two: Once you've thrown out the junk, inventory the stuff you have, and classify it by function and frequency of use. For example:
- One 36" drawer of daily use pots & pans,
- One 36" drawer of weekly/monthly use cookware,
- Two 24" shelves of every day china dishes,
- One 24" shelf of every day glassware,
- Two 36" shelves of fancy (Holiday) china and glassware.

Having this inventory is invaluable for planning your new space. Without it, you just won't know how much of what type of space you need, and you could end up with too little storage, or else sacrificing something you'd really like for storage space you didn't need. The security of knowing that 40% of your storage could actually go into a back room pantry (turkey roaster, lobster pot, espresso maker...) with hardly any loss of functionality gives you a huge amount of design flexibility.

Three: Prioritize lifestyle choices and preferences. Things like:
- One seat near the prep area so I can help Sonny with his homework while I cook dinner,
- Buffet zone for casual entertaining,
- Cozy seating area for two for morning coffee with Hubby,
- Open sight lines to the TV-watching area or PC so I can supervise the kids,
- Closed sight lines to the dining area so I don't have to see the mess while I eat!

This may sound crazy, but make a list of how your ideal kitchen will function, then rate the items on that list for how important they are to you. Which are deal-killers and which are 'nice to haves'? Also include what activities are daily and what are annual. There's an old adage in real estate: "Don't build the church for Easter Sunday." Apply that to your kitchen plan; plan for your maximum regular use, not for your maximum ever use.

You may not be able to get everything on your list (who can?), but at least you'll be able to choose wisely. By having my inventory and lifestyle choices, I was able to confidently choose the design that met 95% of my lifestyle wants and all of my storage needs over a design that offered much more storage and counter-top space but only 80% of my lifestyle list. Knowing that I didn't need more storage space got me a much better kitchen!


clipped on: 03.03.2012 at 11:39 pm    last updated on: 02.13.2013 at 04:26 pm

RE: What My Kitchen Must-Must-Must Have... (Follow-Up #34)

posted by: buehl on 08.02.2011 at 07:38 pm in Kitchens Forum

Re: Trash foot pedal. You don't have to have frameless to use the Hafele foot pedal. One of our own GWers posted pics in the Gallery about how to use them w/face frame overlay (not won't work w/inset)


From the "Pull Out Trash" thread started by ColdTropics on Fri, Jul 20, 07 at 2:43

Posted by metoo2 (My Page) on Wed, Aug 15, 07 at 19:27

Posted by metoo2 (My Page) on Wed, Aug 15, 07 at 20:01

muscat: The rails are always attached to the door-regardless of whether your trash cans hang from a rail, or your trash cans sit on a base. In your picture, the cans sit on a base.

I believe that my modifications will also work with your situation (cans sitting on a base). However, you will need to make one minor modification that I did not do. That modification has to do with the elastic cords that come with the pedal.

Elastic cords (ie, bungee cords) pull the door open when the pedal is kicked. You would have to alter where the front of the cords are mounted inside the cabinet. Very easy to do.

Earlier posts on this thread refer to a version of the Hafele pedal for trash cans which sit on a base. I have not seen this product. I suspect they use the identical pedal, but altered the instructions relative to the location where to mount the elastic cords.


Hafele foot pedal (502.15.113) for bins sitting in pullout "drawer/shelf":

Hafele foot pedal (502.15.220) for bins hanging from rails:
.....Unable to find this one today.


clipped on: 08.07.2011 at 01:50 pm    last updated on: 02.13.2013 at 04:24 pm

RE: Foot Pedal for Trash Can (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: buehl on 08.07.2008 at 12:07 pm in Kitchens Forum

The only one I know about is the one made by Häfele. Others have asked and no one seems to know of any other either.

You should be able to find installation info on either the Häfele site or one of the sites that sells it. There are two for trash cans mounted on rails (like yours) and one for trash cans mounted in a drawer-like base. Note that both are designed for frameless cabinets. However, a resourceful GWer posted what s/he did to adapt hers/his to framed cabinets. S/he has the rail type. See the info below.


From the "Pull Out Trash" thread started by ColdTropics on Fri, Jul 20, 07 at 2:43

Posted by metoo2 (My Page) on Wed, Aug 15, 07 at 19:27

Front View when cabinet is shut:

View of foot pedal when cabinet is open:
Keep in mind this view will be hidden when trash cans are in the cabinet.

Metal plate mounted on bottom back of door:
This is the plate that is 3.5" tall--to deal with a face framed cabinet.

Finally, looking at the bottom of the cabinet:
Glued a scrap of wood to the back of the face frame.

Posted by metoo2 (My Page) on Wed, Aug 15, 07 at 20:01

muscat: The rails are always attached to the door-regardless of whether your trash cans hang from a rail, or your trash cans sit on a base. In your picture, the cans sit on a base.

I believe that my modifications will also work with your situation (cans sitting on a base). However, you will need to make one minor modification that I did not do. That modification has to do with the elastic cords that come with the pedal.

Elastic cords (ie, bungee cords) pull the door open when the pedal is kicked. You would have to alter where the front of the cords are mounted inside the cabinet. Very easy to do.

Earlier posts on this thread refer to a version of the Häfele pedal for trash cans which sit on a base. I have not seen this product. I suspect they use the identical pedal, but altered the instructions relative to the location where to mount the elastic cords.

Posted by lowspark (My Page) on Fri, Jul 20, 07 at 11:02

I'm not sure what the door mount kit is, but you have to have a pull out trash in order for the foot pedal to work.

In other words, your trash bins should be hanging from a rail attached to the door OR sitting on a shelf attached to the door. The door should pull open like a drawer (not swing open like a normal cab) and as it pulls open the trash bins come out with it.

Note that Häfele makes two different pedals, one for the bins hanging from rails and one for the bins sitting on the shelf. I'm not clear on which one you've linked to above. Also note that these foot pedals are designed for frameless cabs. I don't know if they can or have been used on framed cabs and would be interested to hear about that if anyone has.

Here are the links I have to the two kinds of Häfele pedals:

Pedal for trash can which hangs from rails:

Pedal for trash can which sits on base:


Note: In the two links above, the foot pedals are on the bottom of the pages. Click on the "Specs (PDF)" link below the picture. Other places than KitchenSource also sell these. (When determining your "best" price, be sure to factor in tax and shipping!)



clipped on: 04.23.2012 at 12:16 am    last updated on: 02.13.2013 at 03:45 pm

What are zones and how do you design with them in mind?

posted by: buehl on 05.04.2011 at 08:23 am in Kitchens Forum

Kitchen work zones, what are they?

"Zones" are areas in your kitchen where the work occurs. Work in the kitchen is broken down into three primary work zones. Everyone has these three zones, everyone!

Prep Zone...This is the zone where food prep takes place. Food prep can be anything from making a sandwich to preparing a multi-course meal. It includes cleaning/rinsing food, cutting, mixing, processing, etc. For many people, especially those with small kitchens, their Prep Zone is also their Baking Center for rolling out dough, etc. 70% of the work and time spent in the kitchen is spent prepping. It's the most often used and longest used zone in your kitchen!

Cooking Zone...This is the zone where you take the food you've already prepped and apply heat...cooktop, oven, MW. Only 10% of the work and time spent in the kitchen is spent actually cooking. This is the least used Zone, relatively speaking. Think about it, you usually don't spend the entire time standing in front of your oven or cooktop watching it cook. Sure, there are some things that do have to be stirred constantly, but most things are not. And even then, you usually still spend more time prepping before you begin cooking.

Cleanup Zone...This is the zone where the dirty dishes are handled! Dishes, pots, pans, etc. 20% of the work and time spent in the kitchen is spent cleaning up.


OK, so now we know what the primary zones are. So now, how do we design a kitchen keeping them in mind?

Prep best when it contains a water source and is next to or across an aisle no more than 48" wide or so from the Cooking Zone. Trash & recycle bins should also be in the Prep Zone.

Cooking best when next to/across from the Prep Zone (see Prep Zone). It's also nice to have a water source nearby as well as trash & recycling nearby.

Cleanup best when separated from the Prep & Cooking Zones. This can be on the opposite side of a one-sink kitchen from the Prep Zone or it could be in a completely separate location (the latter usually only works well if you have two sinks). Obviously, it also needs a water source and the DW.

What else do we need to keep in mind regarding planning a kitchen and zones?

Dish best when it's near the DW and near the serving/eating locations (island, DR, Nook, etc.)

Food best when it's near the "action". It's nice to be able to store staples, etc. at their point-of-use, so food storage can be spread throughout the kitchen. E.g., flour, sugar, etc. in a "Baking Center", spices in the Prep or Cooking Zone, Cereal close to where breakfast is eaten, etc. If you have a dedicated pantry, it's nice to have the pantry near the point where the groceries enter the house as well. best on the periphery of the kitchen so it's easily accessed by people working in the kitchen as well as "outsiders" looking for a snack without the "outsiders" getting underfoot of those working in the kitchen. It should also be near the Prep & Cooking Zones inside the kitchen and, if possible, near the main meal location(s) for ease of access during mealtime.

Microwave (MW)...this also works best on the periphery of the kitchen so it's easily accessed by people working in the kitchen as well as "outsiders" looking for a snack without the "outsiders" getting underfoot of those working in the kitchen.

Zone-crossing - avoid!...When planning zones, etc., try to minimize zone-crossing. For example, if you can avoid it, don't put the refrigerator such that you have to cross through the Cleanup Zone to go b/w the refrigerator and the Prep or Cooking Zone.

Protection...of all the zones, the Cooking Zone should be the most protected from through-traffic as well as general-kitchen traffic. The Cooking Zone contains the range/cooktop where you will be dealing with fire (if gas), hot foods, etc. You also do not want to have to cross a busy aisle when taking a pot of boiling water from the range/cooktop to the sink for emptying...or anything else hot, for that matter!

Zones and Kitchen Workflow

When designing your kitchen, ideally, the zones should follow the normal/usual workflow in a kitchen:

Refrigerator --> (Prep) Sink --> Workspace --> Cooktop/Range --> Table OR (Cleanup) Sink --> (Cleanup) Sink --> Cabinets (dishes, pots/pans, etc.)

Which translates to:
Refrigerator --> Prep Zone --> Cooking Zone --> Serving Zone --> Cleanup Zone

You don't necessarily have to have this exact flow, but something close. For example, you might have the Cooking Zone located between the Refrigerator and Prep Zone. This isn't necessarily bad b/c these two zones are tied so closely together. On the other hand (OTOH), it's not a good idea to put the Cleanup Zone between the Refrigerator and Prep or Cooking Zones on the same run or on the same aisle if it's a narrow aisle. In this case, the DW and someone cleaning up and/or unloading the DW will be in the way of anyone prepping or cooking because the refrigerator is an integral part of both prepping and cooking. And, of course, the reverse is true....someone prepping and/or cooking will get in the way of someone cleaning up!


Common Zones, Appliances In That Zone, and Suggestions For What To Store There:

  • Storage--pantry & refrigerator--Tupperware, food, wraps & plastic bags

  • Prep(aration)--sink & trash/recyclables--utensils, measuring cups/spoons, mixing bowls, colander, jello molds, cutting boards, knives, cook books, paper towels

  • Cooking--cooktop/range & MW (and near a water source)--utensils, pot holders, trivets, pots & pans, serving dishes (platters, bowls, etc.), paper towels

  • Baking--ovens/range--utensils, pot holders, trivets, pots & pans, casserole dishes, roasting rack, cooling racks, cookie sheets, foils, rolling pin, cookie cutters, pizza stone, muffin tins, paper towels [often combined with Cooking Zone]

  • Cleanup--sink & DW & not too far from trash--detergents, linens, dishes & glasses, flatware

  • Eating/Serving--island/peninsula/table/nook/DR--table linens, placemats, napkins, dishes & glasses, flatware

  • Utility--broom, dustpan, swifter, mop, cleaning supplies, cloths, flashlights, batteries, extension cords

  • Message/Communication/Command Center--keys, phones/answering machine, charging station, directories/phone books, calendar, desk supplies, dry erase board or chalkboard, pens/pencils, sticky notepaper

Less Common Zones:

  • Tea/Coffee Bar--tea/coffeemaker (and near a water source)--mugs, teas/coffees, sugar, teapot

  • Snack/Beverage Center--near MW & refrigerator or small refrigerator--snacks, snack dishes, glasses [often combined with Tea/Coffee Bar]

  • Pet Zone--feeding area--food, snacks, leashes, medicines (if no small children in the home), etc.

Overlapping of Zones

Due to space constraints, some zones often overlap. If this is the case in your kitchen, be sure there is enough work space in the overlap for both activities. Zones that commonly overlap...

  • Prep & Cooking Zones--These zones should be adjacent to each other, so this is a common overlap and is generally not a problem. Just be sure you have enough room for prepping as well as landing space for the range/cooktop. (It is strongly advised you have enough room for emergency landing space on both sides of a range/cooktop.)

  • Prep & Cleanup Zones--If there is only one sink in the kitchen, these zones will be adjacent to each other because of the need for a water source for both zones. However, true overlapping is not generally a good idea. Instead, try to keep the cleanup area separate from the prep area by putting the sink between them. E.g., DW on one side, Prep Zone on the other side. (You should strive to keep the DW out of the Prep Zone as well as out of the path between the sink and Prep & Cooking Zones and between the refrigerator and Prep & Cooking Zones.) Also try for at least 36" (42" or more is better) of room on the Prep Zone side of the sink for ample workspace as well as accommodating the inevitable dirty dishes that will accumulate next to the sink.


clipped on: 02.13.2013 at 03:39 pm    last updated on: 02.13.2013 at 03:39 pm

Other Things... (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: buehl on 11.30.2011 at 12:31 am in Kitchens Forum

Other things to consider...

  • If you must have filler, consider filler pullouts. Rev-A-Shelf, for example, has 3"/6"/9" base filler pullouts and 3"/6" upper filler pullouts.
  • Consider deeper upper cabinets. Even an extra 1" can make a difference. Keep in mind that cabinets are measured based on overall measurements, that means the exterior measurements, not interior space.

    So, a 12" deep cabinet is really 12" on the outside. Once you factor in the thickness of the back wall, you now have only 11.25" to 11.5" interior depth. If you have framed, the interior depth is reduced again by the thickness of the frame.

    However, if you have overlay, you only lose depth due to the frame along the walls, the rest of the cabinet can use the frame space b/c the door sits in front of the cabinet.

    If you have inset cabinets, OTOH, you lose that space b/c the doors & drawer fronts sit inside the face frame, so those 12" deep cabinets are now down to 10.5" to 11" deep (depending on the thickness of your back wall & frame).

    So, a 12" diameter plate will not fit in a 12" deep upper cabinet. If you add an inch to the cabinet depth (13" deep), you now have that 1/2" to 3/4" back. 15" deep uppers are even better.

  • If you have the space, consider deeper counters either with deeper base cabinets or by pulling the cabinets out from the wall a few inches.
  • Staggered-height cabinets are personal preference, even with 8' ceilings. If you like them, get them.

    One thing to keep in mind, however, is that dust does accumulate on the tops of cabinets that are not to-the-ceiling. One way to make cleaning easier - line the tops with newspaper. When it's time to clean, just remove the newspaper with the dust that collected on top of it (and not on the cabinets themselves) and replace it with clean newspaper.

    If dust allergies or asthma are a concern, I recommend all cabs to the ceiling.

  • Double-bin trash them!!! Dogs cannot open them! (Our dogs learned how to open the step-on ones in our old kitchen!) With two bins, one can be used for recyclables and the other for trash.

    However, put it in the Prep Zone...and, if possible, near the Cooking and Cleanup Zones. If you only have one sink, your Prep Zone will end up on the side of the sink closer to either the range/cooktop or refrigerator. So, put the trash pullout on that side. Put the DW on the other will also keep the DW out of the Prep Zone (and the DW will not be an obstacle to work around while prepping.)

    Oh, and consider getting a foot pedal so you can open it hands-free.

  • Keep in mind aisle widths should be measured counter edge-to-counter edge, not cabinet-to-cabinet.
  • Strive for adequate aisle space, seating overhang, etc.
  • Measure your space 3 or 4 times (or 5 or 6 or 7 or....)!!
  • Measure from at least 3 different points vertically when measuring wall/space width...a foot or two off the floor, 4 or 5 feet off the floor, and near the ceiling...walls are not straight in most homes & you need to know your smallest measurements!

    Likewise, measure ceiling height at various points in your kitchen

  • Regarding different ceiling heights, plan for crown molding that's at least 2 pieces - the decorative piece for the top and a "plain" (or "filler") piece b/w the cabinet and the decorative piece. This "filler" piece is then cut to size to accommodate different ceiling heights...leaving the decorative piece the same size throughout the kitchen.
  • Above all...come up with a good functional layout before ordering your cabinets!!!!

Good luck!


clipped on: 02.13.2013 at 03:36 pm    last updated on: 02.13.2013 at 03:36 pm

RE: 2LittleFishies Yellow Kitchen Reveal- Part DEUX!!! (Follow-Up #18)

posted by: 2LittleFishies on 02.11.2013 at 06:53 pm in Kitchens Forum

Hi p.ball2- The containers were recommended by breezy. Here they are from Specialty Bottle. We have the 4 oz ones:

I did chalk labels from Etsy and bought a chalk ink marker. I loved making them & b/c they are chalk you can wipe them off if you need to. : ) I was going to buy a label maker but thought these were easier & cuter!


clipped on: 02.12.2013 at 01:22 pm    last updated on: 02.12.2013 at 01:22 pm

RE: Deeper drawers are they worth the price? (Follow-Up #16)

posted by: jakuvall on 02.12.2013 at 09:36 am in Kitchens Forum

back of drawer- sides left tall where lids would be


clipped on: 02.12.2013 at 12:31 pm    last updated on: 02.12.2013 at 12:31 pm

RE: Deeper drawers are they worth the price? (Follow-Up #13)

posted by: jakuvall on 02.12.2013 at 08:07 am in Kitchens Forum

quiltgirl-drawer box is say 9"- part of the back is cut down< scooped, lower to say 5 1/2" , just a tad higher than dividers. Allows handles of pots to hang over the back into the extra space behind the cabinet- typically 2-1/2" with undermounts.
Some configurations it can be helpful, it is cheap to do. Most often I don't have this done but am putting one in the showroom, just gotta get some pots and pans for here :)


clipped on: 02.12.2013 at 12:30 pm    last updated on: 02.12.2013 at 12:31 pm

RE: FAQ/Answers Bathroom Plumbing for dummies (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: mongoct on 06.25.2008 at 09:07 pm in Bathrooms Forum

Let me know if this is the sort of info you're looking for, if it's too basic, or not inclusive enough. It's a rough first draft and can be edited as required:

The sort of where, what, and why of pressure-balanced versus thermostatic:
Pressure-balanced or thermostatic temperature control valves are code-required in bathroom plumbing because they eliminate potential scalding and cold water shocks that can occur in a shower.

If you are using the shower and a toilet is flushed, as the toilet uses cold water to refill the tank, the pressure in the cold water line drops a bit below what it was when just the shower was running. If you had a non-balancing valve, youd still get the same amount of hot water that you originally were getting, but with the drop in pressure in the cold water line youd have less cold water coming out of your shower head, creating a potential for scalding. Vice-versa, if someone turns on a hot-water faucet elsewhere in the house, the hot water pressure drops and you get a shower of mostly cold water.

A pressure-balanced shower valve is designed to compensate for changes in water pressure. It has a mechanism inside that moves with a change in water pressure to immediately balance the pressure of the hot- and cold-water inputs. These valves keep water temperature within a couple degrees of the initial setting. They do it by reducing water flow through either the hot or cold supply as needed. Because pressure balanced valves control the temp by reducing the flow of water through the valve, if your plumbing supply is already struggling to keep up with the three shower heads and nine body sprays that you have running in your shower, if a pressure balancing valve kicks in and chokes down the water supply to keep you from getting scalded you could end up with insufficient water flow out of the heads in a multiple shower head setup. When it comes to volume control, in terms of being able to turn on the water a little or a lot, for the most part pressure-balanced valves are full-on when water is flowing or full-off when the valve is closed. Flow-wise, think of them as having no middle ground.

Where flow and volume control are important, as in a shower that requires a high volume of water, a thermostatic valve may be the better choice. They also control the temperature, but they do not reduce the amount of water flowing through the valve in doing so. Thermostatic valves are also common with 3/4" inlets and outlets, so they can pass more water through the valve than a 1/2" pressure balancing valve.

Which should you choose?
In a larger multi-outlet master shower, while a 1/2" thermostatic valve may suffice, a 3/4" thermostatic valve might be the better choice. But it does depend on the design of your shower and the volume of water that can be passed through your houses supply lines. In a secondary bathroom, or in a basic master where you have only one head, or the common shower head/tub spout diverter valve, a 1/2" pressure balancing valve would be fine.

If you want individual control and wanted multiple valves controlling multiple heads, then you could use multiple 1/2" valves instead of one 3/4" valve and all would be just fine.

What do the controls on the valve actually control?
While it may vary, a pressure balanced valve is normally an "all in one" valve with only one thing you can adjustthe temperature. The valve usually just has one rotating control (lever or knob) where you turn the water on, and by rotating it you set the water to a certain temperature. Each time you turn the valve on youll have to set it to the same spot to set it to your desired temperature. For the most part you really dont control the volume, just the temperature. With the valve spun a little bit, you'll get 100% flow but it will be all cold water. With the valve spun all the way, youll get 100% flow, but it will be all hot water. Somewhere int eh middle youll find that Goldilocks "just right" temperature, and itll be atyou guessed it100% flow. So with a pressure balancing valve, you control the temp, but when the valve is open, its open.

A thermostatic valve can be all inclusive in terms of control (volume and temp) or just be temperature controlling. If its just temperature controlling, you will need a separate control for volume or flow. Example, with an all inclusive youll have two "controllers" (knobs or levers) on the valve, one to set the temperature and a separate one to set the volume. In this case you can set the temp as you like it, then use the volume control lever to have just a trickle of Goldilocks water come out of the valve, or you can open it up and have full flow of Goldilocks water coming out of the valve. You can leave the temp where you like it when you turn the volume off after youre done showering. The next time you shower, turn the volume on, the temperature is already set. Some thermostatic valves are just temperature valves with no volume control. Youll need another valve/control to set the volume. Read the product description carefully to see what you're getting.

What size valve should I get?
Yes, valves actually come in different sizes. The size refers to the size of the inlet/outlet nipples on the valve. For a basic shower, a 1/2" valve will suffice. For a larger multi-head arrangement, a 3/4" valve would be better. Realize that youll need a water heater that can supply the volume of heated water you want coming out of the heads, so dont forget that when you build or remodel. Also realize that if youre remodeling and have 1/2" copper running to your shower, capping 1/2" copper supply tubing with a 3/4" valve provide you with much benefit as the 1/2" tubing is the limiting factor. You can, however, cap 3/4" supply tubing with a 1/2" valve or a 3/4" valve.

Is one better than another?
Thermostatic valves are "better" in that with them you can control both volume of flow and temperature, so you have more control, and they hold the temperature to a closer standard (+/- 1 degree). They also perform better if you are running multiple outlets in the shower, as they do not choke down the amount of water in order to control the temperature. But you pay for that added flow and added control. Pressure balancing valves can be had for about $100-$200, thermostatic valves can be twice that amount. And more.

Will I suffer with a pressure-balancing valve?
For what its worth, when I built my house over 10 years ago I put pressure-balancing valves in my own house. While I have two outlets in my shower (sliding bar mounted hand-held on the wall and an overhead 12" rain shower head on the ceiling), I have a two separate pressure-balancing valves, one valve for each head. With both heads going in the shower, I notice no loss of flow in the shower when the toilet is flushed and the sink faucet is turned on simultaneously. I also notice no change in temperature. So they work for me.

If you are remodeling, if you have your existing sink running and you flush the toilet and notice a drop in volume coming out of the sink, then a thermostatic valve might be the better choice even if you're not having a multi-head setup installed.

If, as part of the remodel, you plan on running new supply lines through your house to the new bath, then properly sized runs will take care of that flow restriction and you can probably do a pressure balancing valve instead of a thermostatic.

So in a house with tricky plumbing, or with a restricted water supply, or with multiple outlets running off of one supply valve, a thermostatic valve might be the safer choice.



clipped on: 07.26.2012 at 01:21 am    last updated on: 02.10.2013 at 11:27 pm

Paper Towels--To Those With Built In Holders

posted by: 2LittleFishies on 06.08.2012 at 08:53 pm in Kitchens Forum

For those that have these.... do you still like them? Is it an issue with dirty/wet hands grabbing the towels (dirtying cabs and/or getting them wet)??

Would you do it again?

beagles I think?-




clipped on: 02.10.2013 at 08:39 pm    last updated on: 02.10.2013 at 08:39 pm

RE: concrete countertop. Pictures and experience? (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: Angie_DIY on 09.29.2011 at 08:04 pm in Kitchens Forum

Here are some threads and other resources


clipped on: 02.07.2013 at 01:24 am    last updated on: 02.07.2013 at 01:24 am

RE: DIY Spray foam kits? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: mongoct on 05.04.2012 at 04:31 pm in Remodeling Forum

Two companies that I can recommend, they've been around for quite some time now:


clipped on: 01.01.2013 at 03:15 pm    last updated on: 01.01.2013 at 03:15 pm

RE: Wooden counter advice needed please (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: BeastBaby on 11.26.2012 at 01:37 pm in Kitchens Forum

Something like this (only stained)?

This is finished with a waterlox brand tung oil which is waterproof for years. then you just apply 1 more coat to keep it that way every few years.

I put a link to the way they recommend doing a waterproof finish. Don't know about it being outside. But this will take care of the water issue!

craft art wood countertop finishing instructions - for waterproofing

Here is a link that might be useful: the 2 products they recommend are here (need both the waterlox brand ones)


clipped on: 11.26.2012 at 07:11 pm    last updated on: 11.26.2012 at 07:11 pm

Pebble tile floor is done!

posted by: deedles on 09.16.2012 at 07:12 pm in Bathrooms Forum

I've mostly lurked on the bathroom board but have gotten a bit of good advice from you all too, so...

I was going to wait to post any pics until we were completely finished but DH did such a great job on the pebble floor that I couldn't wait to show it off.

He estimates laying about half of the stones one by one both for my design and to avoid any seam lines. I'll always remember my 6'5" dear sitting cross-legged on the floor with a butter knife and a pile of single pebbles: applying the goop, placing the stone and calling out "ONE"....wait a little bit... "TWO"..... "THREE". And so on for five days.

anyway, here it is! (sideways, sorry)





clipped on: 09.16.2012 at 11:23 pm    last updated on: 09.16.2012 at 11:24 pm

RE: Tiling conundrum - Question about construction of niche (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: mongoct on 04.18.2012 at 02:13 pm in Bathrooms Forum

1) Backing: Yes, add a small piece of plywood on the attic side of the studs. The piece of ply just needs to be wide enough to hit the two studs, and tall enough to go from right above the 2-by joist to a height above the top of the niche.

2) Insulation. Though it's not the perfect way to detail the vapor barrier, take your existing kraft faced insulation that is in the niche stud bay and peel away the FG batting from the paper. Don't separate them into two independents pieces...just pull them apart so they are still connected and hinged at the top, like two pages in a book connected by the book's binding.

Have the kraft paper go on the bathroom side of the plywood and 2-by joist. Have the insulation go on the attic side of the plywood and 2-by joist. From the attic side, if you can, add additional fiberglass batting behind the niche area. That'll help insulate the transition area where the batting is between the studs in the two bays adjacent to the niche stud bay, and where the insulation is "in the attic" in the niche stud bay so to speak.

I'd give you different advice were this a true exterior wall versus what it is; conditioned space (bathroom) versus unconditioned space (attic). Or if your barrier were something other than kraft. No worries though.

3) The hardie in the niche: Install the back piece first. Construction adhesive to adhere it to the drywall and to the 2-by. You can use a couple of screws to attach it to the plywood.

Use your hardie pieces that line the sides, the top, and the bottom of the niche to "pinch" the edges of the back piece of hardie in place. You can screw your liners into the studs.

Aside: When framing the niche, I pitch the bottom piece of 2-by-4 a bit for drainage into the shower versus installing it flat. Then when I set the hardie liner on that I know the liner piece will be pitched, and as a result, the tile or stone on the bottom of the niche will be pitched.

4) Here's an excerpt from an old thread where I framed a niche that just so happened to be on a wall lined with plywood. This was on a Kerdi Shower versus a HydroBan though.

ABOVE: Niche construction. Cut into an existing wall, I had to remove portions of two studs in this partition wall. You can see the stud marks on the drywall in the back of the niche opening. Use kiln-dried lumber, not green or pressure-treated. This wall is skinned with 3/4" ply. But that's another story in and of itself!

ABOVE: It doesn't show in this photo, but even the framing is pitched for drainage.

ABOVE: Though the shower walls are lined with cement board, the niche interior is lined with strips of hardie. Cment board tends to crack/crumble when cut into thin strips, hardie is a bit more accommodating. I then pretty it up with thinset, squaring the corners, etc. You can see the shelves are pitched for drainage.

ABOVE: Finished niche. Finished dimensions; the top opening is 11" tall, the bottom is 14-1/2" tall. Both are 36-1/2" wide and 4-1/4" deep.


clipped on: 08.19.2012 at 02:03 pm    last updated on: 08.19.2012 at 02:04 pm

Window in shower how to Kerdi

posted by: cabinlife on 01.14.2008 at 05:13 am in Bathrooms Forum

Shower over tub
Tub set in alcove (meaning tile will be on three walls)
Aluminum clear window in shower
Window installed incorrectly by previous owners = rotten rough opening due to water intrusion
Original tile was on drywall by previous ownders = mold everywhere
Completely replace everythingincluding window
New window is vinyl, tempered, obscured glass, casement/safari-style
I know having a window in a shower is frowned upon. However, in our situation we have no choice but to replace it. We did not budget to update the exterior of our house.

I have been sifting through all the posts on this website regarding Kerdi.
- I did see Mongos post titled "Kerdi Shower". This is just what we need for tiling the three walls in the shower.
- I did see bill_vs website where one of his customers had a window in a shower

1. How do we install Kerdi to the wall with the window?
2. After install of Kerdi, how are windows tiled?
3. How do we prevent water intrusion where the Kerdi meets the window?
4. We have the window but havent installed it. Any tips or rules to follow to ensure we dont repeat the past? Do we treat this like any other window in another part of the house?
5. Do you place cement board on the inside of the window?
6. Anything else we should know?

I am hoping someone can provide step-by-step instructions that we can follow...fingers and toes crossed.

We are new to tiling and want to make sure to get it right the first time.



clipped on: 08.19.2012 at 02:01 pm    last updated on: 08.19.2012 at 02:01 pm

RE: mythreesonsnc - are you still around? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: mythreesonsnc on 03.05.2012 at 09:45 am in Building a Home Forum

Sorry I missed this, Buckheadbilly sent me a heads up! Thanks!

I'm so excited for you that you've broken ground, congratulations!
One day I was driving around and saw a house with paint colors I really liked. I stuck a note in their mailbox and got a call back. The nice lady gave me her paint cans so I could sample it! The main color is Duron "mushroom," and the trim color is Duron "October Frost." I am happy with the colors --- It is hard to say if it is more in the greys or the tans, which I like. When I did the paint sample the trim and main color looked so similar, but up it is a subtle contrast, but enough.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Keep us posted! Can't wait to see your beautiful house go up!


clipped on: 08.05.2012 at 04:39 pm    last updated on: 08.05.2012 at 04:39 pm

RE: FAQ/Answers Bathroom Plumbing for dummies (Follow-Up #35)

posted by: mongoct on 02.27.2011 at 07:09 am in Bathrooms Forum

"What I don't understand is where does the vent stack end? Through the roof? If that's the case (and it's what I think from the book) how does debris not fall into the pipe?"

Simplified, yes, the vent stack runs vertically through the house. The upper end terminates through the roof, the lower end ties in to the pipe exiting your house, either to your septic or to the town/city sewer line.

Rain, snow, hail, things like that can enter the roof vent. No big deal, the water just goes into the sewer line. I've never seen any instances of wildlife or tree leafs/debris entering the open vent and causing problems. I think I did read way back when about bee nest being built in the stack opening. Rare occurrence though.

Some places do have debris screens on them. But in some locales they are prohibited. Once in a while I've heard of rime ice building up and restricting the screened opening. Never seen it, but have heard of it.

Vents prevent siphoning. You know how you can siphon gas out of a gas tank with a hose? Gas can be siphoned up vertically out of the car tank, then down into a gas can? That can happen as long as there are no "holes" in the hose to allow air to enter. Air can break the siphon. That's what vents do in a house. They allow air into the drain system above a waste/drain p-trap so that when you flush a toilet, or so when you pull the sink plug to drain a sink, the slug of water going down the drain pipes doesn't siphon the water out of the trap, causing the trap to go dry.

Having that slug of water in the trap prevents sewer gasses from entering your house through the drain.

Every once is a while someone posts about sewer smells coming from a seldom used bathroom. Or smells in their basement. My first reply is to tell them to run water down the bathroom drains, or if in the basement, the utility sink or floor drain. Without regular use, water can evaporate out of a tub, shower, or sink trap, essentially opening the trap to allow sewer gas to enter the house.


clipped on: 07.26.2012 at 01:26 am    last updated on: 07.26.2012 at 01:26 am

RE: FAQ/Answers Bathroom Plumbing for dummies (Follow-Up #10)

posted by: mongoct on 06.26.2008 at 12:51 pm in Bathrooms Forum

How to get the water out of your walls:
A fixed shower head high on the wall, an adjustable hand held, an overhead rain shower head, or body sprays? Or all of them?

Normally 1/2" copper tubing is run from the valve or diverter body to carry the water to the location of the outlet. If you're going to install something permanently, or if you're going to make a connection in a sealed wall, then its normally a soldered fitting.

For things like showerhead arms, or body sprays, these are normally threaded connections. A threaded connection allows you to change out the shower head and arm for a different one if the old breaks, or for a new style if remodeling. When making up a threaded connection, you'll want to use something on the thread, either teflon tape, teflon pipe dope, or some other sort of thread sealer that will allow you to break the connection at a later date.

A common way to connect your outlet to your spray head is to run your copper tubing to the location of the outlet, then solder a 90 degree drop ear fitting to the copper tubing.

You can see that the fitting has a smooth inlet for the 1/2" supply tubing to be soldered to, two holes in the "ears" to nail or screw the fitting to the framing, and a threaded outlet where the water will come out of. These fittings are manufactured in different configurations for different applications.

That brass drop ear fitting will be buried in the wall or ceiling. If you are connecting a shower head, then the arm of the shower head gets screwed into the drop ear fitting and the shower head gets screwed on the other end of the arm. That works if it is a wall or ceiling mounted shower head. For a body spray, youll need a brass nipple like this:

One end of the nipple screws into the drop ear fitting, the other end gets screwed into your body spray. Nipples come in various lengths to compensate for varying wall thicknesses.

For a hand held shower, the outlet for the hand held is mounted just like a body spray head is mounted. I usually mount the outlet for a hand held down low near the bottom of the bar and offset to one side. That way when the head is hung on the bar, the hose hangs in a graceful "U", right up against the wall. Do a dry run with a piece of rope or string the same length as your hose, you don't want your hose laying on the shower floor.

Hand held shower are usually mounted in a vertical bar, the head can be slid up or down the bar to adjust the height of the head. If you dont want a bar, then there are wall brackets that the hand held head can be set into. You can use multiple bracket, one high for tall people, one lower for shorter folk, even one low on the wall to hold the head for the leg shaving crowd.

Both the bar and the brackets are surface mounted in the wall, they are held on the wall with screws. Youll normally drill a pilot hole, insert a plastic anchor into the pilot hole, then attach the bar or bracket by driving the screw into the plastic anchor. Its easier to drill a pilot hole through grout than it is to drill through tile. Prior to inserting the anchor or driving the screw, I always squirt a glop of sealer into the hole, it helps prevent water intrusion.

As to the hose for the hand held, some are plastic, some are metal. I prefer metal as they lay against the wall more consistently than plastic hoses. One end of the hose screws on to the outlet that you screwed into the wall. The other end snaps or screws onto the hand held shower head. Get a hose long enough so that it can reach all corners of your shower, and then some. It helps with rinsing and cleaning the shower, shaving legs, bathing young kids, or even the family dog.

For wall mounted handhelds, you can get everything in one kit, or you can mix and match. Just make sure that everything is compatible so that you don't end up with a head that won't attach to a bracket.

A good combination is a "standard" wall mounted shower head, OR a "standard" head as a hand held, combined with an overhead rainshower head. "Standard" heads give that nice spray that is strong enough to easily rinse your body or rinse shampoo out of your hair, they often have multiple spray patterns as well.

Rainshower heads give a much gentler flow of water. They provide a different experience than a standard spray head. A rainshower head's flow might not be adequate to quickly rinse shampoo from hair. Some manufacturers have rainshower heads designed to mount on a standard arm that comes out of the wall. Those might not be a good idea, as the rainshower heads work best when they are mounted level, not on a tilt. If the head is mounted on an angle, instead of the shower of raindrops, you might something more like a garden hose effect coming out of one side of the head. Since the water "drops" out of the head instead of spraying our of the head, it's better to not have them too close to the wall. I think rainshower heads work best when plumbed to a central location on the ceiling.

If you can only have one head in your shower, than a standard type head with adjustable spray patterns might be your best bet. When I was a kid, most of the hand held shower heads were of very poor quality. Hose fittings leaked or sprayed water everywhere, the multiple spray heads leaked or sprayed water all over. Today's handheld's are of much better construction.

Construction note: If in a freezing climate, try to keep supply plumbing tubing out of your exterior walls. And if running plumbing for an overhead rainshower in the ceiling, if it's unheated attic space above then you'll want to insulate above the plumbing in the ceiling. Also, pitch the horizontal run of plumbing downwards a bit as the plumbing goes towards the rainshower head, so that when you turn the water off, the water in horizontal run of tubing will flow out the rainshower head instead of pooling and being captured in that horizontal run of tubing.



clipped on: 07.26.2012 at 01:22 am    last updated on: 07.26.2012 at 01:22 am

Part Deux (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: mongoct on 06.26.2008 at 02:30 am in Bathrooms Forum

Part Deux:

Controls and Diverters
This may be almost impossible to thoroughly attack because there are so many variations in what people want and in what different manufacturers offer.

In general

You need a volume and temperature control. You can buy just the valve body, which is the chunk of expensive brass that gets buried in the wall, and buy a separate trim kit, or you can buy a package that includes the valve body and the trim kit. The trim kit is the bright sparkly metallic knob/lever/escutcheon bling that you overspend for so your friends and neighbors will go "oooooh" and "aaaaah".

If you buy a pressure balanced valve, the valve in and of itself will turn on the water and allow you to control the temperature. If you buy a thermostatic valve, most valve bodies have two controllers on them, one to control volume and one to control temperature. Read the fine print though, because some thermostatic bodies just control temperature. Youll need a separate valve body to provide volume control.

Stops. Some valves come with "stops" some do not. What are stops? Stops stop water flow at the valve itself so the valve can be taken apart without having to turn the water off to that branch circuit or to the whole house. They are normally incorporated onto the hot and cold water inlets on the valve body, and they can be opened or closed with a screw driver.

While Im on this, Ill also mention that some valves might mention having a "stop screw" to limit the maximum temperature. While a pressure balancing or a thermostatic valve will prevent you from being scalded if someone flushes a toilet, there is nothing to prevent someone from being scalded by setting the valve to allow 130 degree water to pass through it. Your first step is to lower the temperature on your water heater to about 120 degrees. For valves that have these stop screws, its then a simple matter of setting a screw that limits how far the temperature knob can be rotated. What you do is rotate the knob to set the water to the max temp that youd ever want out of the shower, then you turn the set screw until it bottoms out. It will now prevent the temperature knob from turning past (hotter than) its existing position.

Downstream of that volume/temp control is where things get dicey. You can have a simple setup where your V/T control just runs to a single shower head. Easy to do. You can have a standard tub setup with a shower head and a tub spigot, where the diverter can be a lever or push button that sends water either to the tub spigot below or to the shower head above. Also easy to do.

If you want to supply water to more than one shower head, to a shower head and body sprays, or to both, either simultaneously or one at a time, then youll need more chunks of expensive brass to bury in your wall.

If you want separate controls and the ability to have differing temperatures come out of differing fixtures, then its easiest to go with multiple V/T controllers. One V/T controller for the shower heads, for example, and a separate V/T controller for the body sprays. This allows you to run different volumes and different temperatures out of the different heads. Your shower head can be 105 degrees and your body sprays 110 degrees.

Remember, the more hot water that you want to come out of your shower, the larger your supply tubing and valve bodies need to be, and the larger your water heater has to be. For sizing purposes, most shower heads and body sprays have a gallon per minute rating applied to them. In theory and planning only, if your hand held shower head is, for example, rated at 3gpm, your rain shower head rated at 4gpm, and each of your 8 body spray heads is rated at 1gpm, and you want to run them all at the same timeyoure looking at a flow of 15gpm. You need a water heater that can supply you with 15gpm of hot water, then you need supply tubing that can get 15gpm of hot water from your water heater to your bathroom, and you need valve/diverter bodies that can pass the required amount of water through them so you get decent flow out of each fixture.

Typical plumbing is 1/2", typical valves are 1/2". For high volume situations, 3/4" tubing and 3/4" supply valves may be required. Out of the valves you can usually run 1/2" tubing to your shower heads and body spray heads.

Back to the hardware. If you want a shower head and body sprays, and want to run either or both off of one valve, then youll want a diverter valve.

Diverter valves can be anything and everything. They can be simple A/B valves, where you can run the water through the valve to only "A", your shower head, or only to "B", your body spray heads. But not both at the same time.

Which leads to the A/B/AB valve, where you can send water only to "A", your shower head, or only to "B", your body spray heads, or to "AB", simultaneously to both.

And from here things go wild. There are A/B/C/AB/AC/BC/ABC valves, and things just can go on and on from there.

Diverter valves are usually described as having a certain number of "ports". 3-port, 4-port, 5-port, etc. Realize that one port is where the water goes in to the valve, the other ports are where the water comes out. So an A/B/C valve that has three outlets might be listed as a "4-port valve", with the fourth port being the inlet.

Not all 4-port valves can do A/B/C/AB/AC/BC/ABC, youll need to look through the description to find out where it can send the water to. A 4-port valve might just be an A/B/C valve, or it might be a more versatile A/B/C/AB/AC/BC valve. Read its description.

If you cant get the customization you need from a single volume/temperature controller and a single diverter, you can run multiple diverters off of one V/T controller, or multiple diverters off of multiple V/T controllers. It all depends on how much brass you can afford, how much water you can supply, and if you have the space to hide all that brass in your walls.

Diverters can be knobs, levers, push buttons, the choice is yours. But do remember that you need to match up the valve body to the desired trim kit so that the bling that your neighbors can see will fit on the expensive chunk of brass that they cant see. You dont want your plumber to bury that expensive chunk of brass in your wall, then tile, then find out later that your bling wont fit. Very depressing.

Its all about reading the fine print.



clipped on: 07.26.2012 at 01:21 am    last updated on: 07.26.2012 at 01:22 am

RE: pendant question - how many over island? (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: holligator on 03.12.2010 at 11:29 pm in Kitchens Forum

Two pendants is plenty for a 5-foot-long island, even if they are pretty small. As for placement, I'd ask the GC why you can't decide after the island is there. I liked being able to hold the lights up to check the placement over the island before committing.

The best way to decide where to place them is to divide your island into the same number of sections as pendants and place each light in the middle of each section. That is, with two pendants, you'd divide the island into two 30-inch sections and then place the pendants in the middle of those sections (15" from the edge and 30" between them). With three, you'd have three 20-inch sections. You want to space them this way to distribute the light evenly to the whole island.


clipped on: 07.26.2012 at 01:17 am    last updated on: 07.26.2012 at 01:17 am

RE: DIY backsplash question (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: kathec on 07.22.2011 at 02:27 am in Kitchens Forum

There are spacers you can buy that push your outlets out so they're in line with the tile. I just bought some at Lowe's last night, so it's pretty fresh in my mind. The kind I got are Ideal brand outlet spacers. Some people call them caterpillars. They are a bright flourescent yellow/green color that you fold like a fan and snap over the screw. Each segment is 1/8", so you just determine how many you need and cut to fit. I bought the larger pack of 25, I think they were about $6 a bag.

I found them in the electrical section, but they can be hard to spot. Here's some pics to help you find them:

Another thing, check out Bondera tile mat from Lowe's. Home Depot sells a similar product, but it's not as good. Bondera is great for a backsplash or small project. It's just not recommended for areas that are in constant contact with water. Basically it's a double stick, foamy mat. You cut it to size, stick it to the wall, peel the protection film off and press your tile on. Beware, this stuff is super sticky and a bit hard to get off if you accidently get it on the counter. Ask me how I know this. Just have some Goo Gone handy. I used it to tile around my daughter's bathroom mirror. It worked great and has held up really well since I did it almost a year ago. Sorry no pics of it and DD is sleeping.

Once you stick up the tiles, you can grout the same day, unlike traditional thin set where you have to wait.

And although it may sound like I work for Lowes with all this free advertisement, I don't. It's just closer to me than the other guys.

I've also attached a "how to" link for you.
Good luck and post pics!

Here is a link that might be useful: How to tile a backsplash


clipped on: 07.25.2012 at 12:25 am    last updated on: 07.25.2012 at 12:25 am

RE: Finally finished! Walnut, quartzite, idea kitchen with pics (Follow-Up #36)

posted by: vsalz on 01.04.2012 at 11:44 am in Kitchens Forum


You can totally do it. The one thing I was afraid of was staining and finishing. The tung oil takes care of it.

Cost for all my ikea boxes and drawers: $900
Cost for doors: $1500
Cost for extra walnut cut to order, veneer tape, and oil: $900

For an entire kitchen.

Here's what I did. Plan your kitchen like you would using any cabinet line. Then, when you figure out what boxes you need, go to ikea or the web and order. The one problem is that they have limited sizes. For example, I originally ordered a 27" oven, but Ikea doesn't make a cabinet that size. The ikea hackers site shows you how to cut down a cabinet, but DH didn't want to so we just reordered the 30" oven.

Then, we installed the cabs. Putting together an ikea cabinet is as simple as assembling a kids toy. All you need is a flathead and philips screwdriver and a hammer. Their pieces all fit together perfectly and you just turn the screws to lock in place. The hammer is for nailing on the back with little finishing nails. Do one and the rest take literally 10 minutes each. You could order the doors before you do that by simply ordering doors identical to the ikea sizes. The sizes are all online. We waited until cabs were installed because we had some wonky sizes (we also repurposed two existing drawer bases that were in the kitchen before.
I had the doors predrilled for hinges (full overlay frameless hinges you can buy at lowes in packs of 10). The ikea drawers come with Blum pieces that you just screw into the back of the drawer front then snap into the drawer. We covered the edges of the cabs with walnut veneer tape just in case there were spaces between the doors. That way you wouldn't see white in the crack- it would be wood. The veneer tape cuts with scissors and irons on. I oiled it and it looks exactly like the wood.

On the end panels- I had ordered toe kick cut from a local woodworker. I specified 3/8 inch by 4 inches. I needed 309 inches and they gave me 309 feet (another story). We used that wood to build shaker end panels with nothing more than a nail gun and chop saw. But if you didn't want to do it yourself, just order doors large enough to use as end panels. I planned to do that until I ended up with all that wood.

I oiled the backs of the doors before we put up. I also oiled the toe kick before. Everything else I oiled in place.

Before, I have used thomasville and kraftmaid. Their cabs have never been less than 10k. For the difference in money I got the cooktop I wanted and put in the windows. I would do this again in a heartbeat. DH was very skeptical about all of it- online unfinished doors, veneer tape, ikea cabs . . . And now he agrees it was the smartest kitchen we have ever done. It looks like a 40k kitchen for half the cost.


clipped on: 06.21.2012 at 10:40 pm    last updated on: 06.21.2012 at 10:40 pm

RE: Kitchen cabinet construction (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: jakuvall on 06.20.2012 at 07:38 am in Kitchens Forum

All manufacturers I know of make face frames from 3/4" solid wood. You will occasionally find 1" available from higher end companies, most often for aesthetic reasons not for strength.

How the frame is made? This is more definitive of quality than almost anything else that you can easily find out about. Less expensive brands will use pocket holes and screws to join the frames. Next up are doweled frames. At the top end there are true mortise and tenon. A few mid range companies offer loose tenons or a variation on dowels. That sounds nice but in my experience the results are not done as well as doweled cabinets.

How are the boxes kept square? Plastic corner reinforcements, wooden corners (better), full plywood struts along each side (even better), and finally at the top end full sub tops or dust tops. Inset cabinets should always have full dust tops in my opinion.

Sides- How are the sides joined to the cabinet and what are they? First off what are they? (note particle board will often be called furntiture board, long grain flakeboard, and occasionally incorrectly MDF. Of the 500 or so mfgs out there only a handful actually use MDF for boxes) Cheapest will be 3/8" particle board, that is a case wherer you should upgrade to ply. Then comes plywood-3/8". 1/2" for standard sides are common- 3/4" for standard sides is not common but can be found at local custom makers. It keeps customers happy and is easy for them to just buy it. It is unnecessary in a framed cabinet.
3/4" (or 5/8") is more common in flush finished sides and desireable. There is often debate over plywood versus particle board. I find nothing wrong with particle (especially for frameless) depending on what it is, some of the plywood used is simply no better. But a lot of folks will argue this.
How good the particle or (ply for that matter)is will vary. If looking at manufactured cabinets I would go more by price/reputation than worrying about the specifics. It is unlikely that the salesman can answer with authority what type, where it came from, what grade, etc. When I'm looking for a mfg the reps usually have to put me in touch with the factory to get those answers. Local shops are less likely to use particle. Domestic or Canadian particle or ply is better than Mexican (particle) or Chinese (any)

More importantly is how the sides are joined to the box. Most of that you can only tell by looking at an uninstalled cabinet. Best are into dadoes and glued, staples are ok if the glue is done properly and the fit is tight. Lots of staples is a bad sign. A little glue exposed is a good sign. I would rather see some glue that was not cleaned up than get a glue starved joint.

Almost everyone will give you dovetail drawers. There are other constructions used by local shops and often are fine and will still last 30 years. 1/2" box sides require better wood than 3/4" sides. I will not sell a cabnet with Chinese drawer glides- I only consider Grass/Mepla, Blum, KV or Accuride glides. (in that order for undermount)

What type of finish- full conversion varnish is arguably the best but nothing wrong with pre-catalyzed varnishes used by local shops. How much is used and how well it is applied matters more. Almost no one can tell you what the "wet build" is for the finish on their cabinets. (you should see the look on reps faces when I ask that :) Run your hand along the bottom edges of drawer faces- feel smooth and consistant- good. Best way to tell finish.

Warranty- mfgs will give you a "limited lifetime warranty" This is a great marketing tool. If you are going to have a defect it will be in the first year, after that everything is wear and tear. So you are then left to the good graces of the mfg. Better mfg will take care of things forever as a courtesy, cheaper ones will be less likely to do so. Hardware is almost always for life and not usually difficult to bet taken care of.
What "grade" of wood is used for doors AND what they consider a replaceable door. If you are getting light colored woods you want a better grade of cabinet if you are fussy. Some manufacturers will replace a door if the salesperson asks, others require it be warped a specific amount (as much as a 1/4") some want it to acclimatize for a year, some have a size limit on doors for warranty.


clipped on: 06.20.2012 at 08:18 pm    last updated on: 06.20.2012 at 08:18 pm

RE: It's finally done, my GW inspired kitchen (pics) (Follow-Up #13)

posted by: pabiabi on 12.17.2007 at 02:25 pm in Kitchens Forum

Thanks so much everyone. We are truly loving it. It's so great to have it finished just in time for the holidays. Yesterday I spent five HOURS making cookies with the kids. This whole process ususally stresses me out and I only do it for the sake of tradition... but yesterday was such a joy! My husband kept taking pictures of us and saying like we looked like we were in a Family Fun magazine.

I was so excited to post, I forgot the details... so here you go:

cabinets: custom made by local craftsman, birch, full inset

hardware: Restoration Hardware: Dakota

flooring: simplefloorsdotcom: reclamation plank: indian red

fridge/freezer: Electrolux Icon

DWers: KitchenAid

Range: Dual Fuel GE Cafe

Counters: Soapstone: M Texeira: Brazilian Black; also some maple butcherblock

Faucet: scrimped here, some off brand I bought on overstock

paint: BM chesterfield buff with mystic gold glaze over

brick: RObinson Thin Brick: English Pub

Thanks again for all the kind words.


clipped on: 06.17.2012 at 01:53 pm    last updated on: 06.17.2012 at 01:53 pm

It's finally done, my GW inspired kitchen (pics)

posted by: pabiabi on 12.17.2007 at 10:07 am in Kitchens Forum

I can't believe it, it's DONE! We started in June with a 700 sf addition that included a kitchen, family room and mud room with a full (partially finished) basement below. And now it's done!

I received so much inspiration and advice from this forum, I am indebted to all of you. I often read and took note, and many of you (you know who you are) were highly influential in tweaking my plan... and I am thrilled with the results. I am finding it to be a perfectly functioning kitchen for our family.

So... no more words... here you go:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The deck is gone now! A new one coming in the spring.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

After the deck was removed.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

My "old" kitchen. The cabinets were originally stained, previous owner had painted white, a few years ago, I painted them red. The oven door broke in the middle of the demolition.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

It's hard to stay tidy when you are cramped for space! Laundry was in the kitchen, hated that!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The "old" family room was not big enough for a family of six, and if they had friends over it was impossible. This room is now a study.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

You can see the framing for the new mudroom here. The white door leads to the outside and another door to the garage. Uhmm we ran out of money, so the washer and dryer are in there... the cabinets and lockers for coats, backbacks etc are on uhm..."hold" until we find some funds.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Our NEW family room, where we all fit, and we can even have a few friends over!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Thanks for looking everyone!


clipped on: 06.17.2012 at 01:45 pm    last updated on: 06.17.2012 at 01:45 pm

RE: Undermount sink w/wood countertops? (Follow-Up #24)

posted by: andersons on 09.04.2010 at 11:22 am in Kitchens Forum

If you want a finish that will hold up better than Waterlox, use Smith's Penetrating Epoxy and/or Epifanes Marine Varnish. We have 15-yo spearguns used heavily in the California sea and sun that look perfect.

Those of you who have finish deterioration in your Waterlox, fix it now! If you let it go, the wood will eventually split, crack, and check, and the wood damage is basically unfixable. If you keep up with the integrity of the finish by adding coats as needed, you can keep the wood underneath as good as new.


clipped on: 05.31.2012 at 08:45 pm    last updated on: 05.31.2012 at 08:45 pm

RE: Walnut top-oil & waterlox compared/pics/color difference? (Follow-Up #25)

posted by: circuspeanut on 02.14.2012 at 09:37 am in Kitchens Forum

Mmmm, walnut, yummy walnut.

Christine, you can use Waterlox over stain. Waterlox is really not an oil finish in the sense of Osmo, Rubio, beeswax or plain mineral oil. It's a cooked polymerized wiping varnish and behaves like oil-based polyurethane in that it helps darken the wood with a slight amber tint (useful for bringing out the depth of walnut; water-based finishes alone can make walnut look gray.) I like Waterlox and it's behaved nicely on my wooden bathroom floor, but find it a bit too shiny for my taste.

If you've reached the color you want via stain and want to lock it in and protect it with a cover coat, I can warmly recommend water-based Polywhey as a finish. Nontoxic and food-safe when dry. Dries in about an hour. Wears like iron. Unlike Waterlox it barely has an odor when wet.


clipped on: 05.24.2012 at 07:00 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2012 at 07:00 pm

DIY Duct Sealing, Pls Evaluate

posted by: cebury on 09.05.2011 at 01:14 pm in Heating & Air Conditioning Forum

About 2 years ago I improved my ducting by tying it down, tightening joints then sealing with mastic and metallic tape.

Last week, a duct test revealed ~14% leakage (just under our Code/Reqs). The local vendor can install new ducting that targets 9% or the top-line at 6%. They are going to run numbers for me on costs/benefits.

1) Would you consider 14% a poor/adequate/good job for a DIYer?

I'm wondering if there are points of leakage out of my control, such as within the gas-pack or the sheet metal interfaces between the roof.

2) If I slightly increase tonnage (+0.5) on new HVAC, I may replace it all anyway (vs. just increasing return and a few new supply lines). Outside of that decision, would you think it's worth upgrading ducting to gain a 6% improvement just on its own? It's probably going to run a couple/few thousand.

Opinions? As always, thank you for volunteering your time.

Duct Details: I'm in Central CA, have 20yr old grey R4 flex duct in the attic, with a 14" return feeding about 10 supply vents to condition ~1150sqft. The original Carrier 48NLT gas-pack on the roof is still in place (replacing soon with a 14seer).


clipped on: 05.15.2012 at 10:42 pm    last updated on: 05.15.2012 at 10:42 pm

sink installation photos (Follow-Up #52)

posted by: ship4u on 05.05.2012 at 08:20 am in Kitchens Forum



clipped on: 05.10.2012 at 11:15 am    last updated on: 05.10.2012 at 11:16 am

RE: H�fele Foot Pedal for Trash...want a chuckle? (Follow-Up #11)

posted by: buehl on 10.04.2008 at 08:17 am in Kitchens Forum

Jnjmom...I ordered it from TrashCansAndMore. They have both versions...the one for trash bins hanging from rails and the one for trash bins sitting in a base.

Trash bins sitting on base: ($35 + 6.99 shipping)

Trash bins hanging from rails: ($59 + free shipping)

Another site that sells them: & [Note the $12 shipping + $10 minimum order fee/surcharge]


clipped on: 04.23.2012 at 10:19 pm    last updated on: 04.23.2012 at 10:19 pm

RE: My finished kitchen, mixed cabinets, doors and counters, Pics (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: jenanla on 05.07.2009 at 11:12 pm in Kitchens Forum

I'll try this again. When I previewed the pictures were much larger.

lesmis-good guess, you only missed the Copper.







clipped on: 04.16.2012 at 11:54 am    last updated on: 04.16.2012 at 11:54 am

RE: Breezy- thanks for your storage idea (Follow-Up #22)

posted by: empet on 04.07.2012 at 10:02 am in Kitchens Forum

I was going to reply earlier but I had to get my camera out for this one - the advantage of having a father in law who loves carpentry projects! I asked for a removable caddy that held standard-size spices, with space for storing bulk spices in bags underneath. If I built it again we'd do it better, but even as-is, I love it!

* middle drawer of a 21" 3-drawer base cabinet, drawer interior dimensions 17.25 wide x 20 deep x 9.5 tall.
* The top caddy holds standard 4-oz spice jars (a 4.5-in height clearance for 4.15" tall jars). Size 17.125 square.
* Lift that out, and there's storage for bulk bags of spices underneath (also about 4.5 inches height).
* Caddy sits on runners that put a 3" wide space behind, to fit a row of tall things.
* The drawer is next to the stove, since I'm more of a "toss some seasonings into the pot" than a "measure into the mixing bowl" style, but if I want to do a complicated recipe I can always take the caddy to the prep area.
Things I'd fix:
- It started out really heavy. It was a real "oops! bad design" feeling until we fixed it. I'd been wanting to standardize my collection of 40 jars in 6 different sizes/shapes but felt it was kind of a frivolity - I justified by replacing with plastic instead of glass, which cut the weight down enormously! It's no longer a two-hand job. (though some of them are still glass at this point; I didn't change them all out, and I'm using 8oz canning jars for some of the large things (cinnamon sticks, parsley, chili powder))
- The tray should be cut down to rectangular instead of square, to allow a little more "tall" space in the back of the drawer. This would also help with weight. And sliding around. At one point I tried to convince my husband to do the modification, but he was unenthusiastic about that (understandably - it's kind of a fussy disassembly). Ideal size, 17x14 instead of 17x17? Depends how many jars you think you'll have.
- It rattles quite a bit; drawer liner helps keep the jars from sliding, but the eventual plan is to take a 1.5" hole saw and cut a grid of circles in 1/4" plywood so each jar has a little round hole that it sits into. When we have a spare evening and pigs fly. With no drawer liner, the jars pile up in one corner as soon as I pick it up, and the balance is off, making it not just heavy but awkward.

I planned this all out because these standard-shape 4oz bottles wouldn't fit standing up in the top drawer... at least the didn't in my old kitchen. As it happens, I could totally have fit them in these cabinets, but by the time we had the cabs here and I realized they'd fit, I was in love with the caddy + bulk storage idea, so I went with the middle-drawer concept. I like it. I hope this wasn't too much of a hijack of the thread!

Here is a link that might be useful: 4 oz plastic spice jars ~4


clipped on: 04.08.2012 at 12:08 am    last updated on: 04.08.2012 at 12:08 am

RE: Finished yellow cabinets w/ mirrors mix DIY (Follow-Up #27)

posted by: jterrilynn on 10.29.2010 at 09:20 am in Kitchens Forum

Thank you Doonie and bmorepanic!

Irishcreamgirl, I took some visuals along the way to help others as I was completely tortured by the electric. Although husband did electric he had a great mentor in a friend and fellow co-worker (thank you Mikey). Me, I did the ordering of all the angled plugs, under cabinet lighting and such but also had to do a lot of studying on the new products I was not familiar with…my head does not wrap around electric well.
Anyway, we used a waterproof flexible electric line (see photo). To give you an idea of how it works think about how a pull-out faucet spray works under your sink with a weight, the flexible line behind drawer is lightly weighted and moves easily with the drawer when opening and closing. The pictures start with the electric at back of cabinet area on peninsula wall. I hope this helps. progress pictures/?action=view¤t=008-1.jpg" target="_blank">Photobucket


clipped on: 03.20.2012 at 09:10 am    last updated on: 03.20.2012 at 09:10 am

RE: Counter window hight -- please help! (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: buehl on 03.28.2008 at 01:28 am in Kitchens Forum

We just went through this. We had a bay window that was only 22" above the floor. We raised it so we could put our counter into the bay and up to the sill as well. The two side windows open, the middle window does not. It is difficult and you may or may not get it exact...err on the side of slightly higher than lower, though, b/c you can have a very short sill (~1/4" or so) and still have the same look.

Besides being sure your window is at the right height, be sure you can open the window (if it will open).

  • Get a casement window (crank open rather than lift up to open) b/c trying to open a window when leaning over a counter can be a "stretch" :-)

  • Be sure you have enough room b/w the counter and the crank so you can turn the crank w/o running into the counter

Usually, the window should be 36" off the finished floor. The height of the window itself is up to you want it almost to the ceiling or a different height? In our case, we were constrained by the fact that our bay was an actual bump-out of the house so we were limited to the height of the bump-out...14" lower than our 8' ceilings.

OK...this is what you have to do...

  1. First, are you replacing your current floor? If so, will it be before or after you put in the window?

    • If before, you need to know the thickness of the floor and the materials used to put in the floor.

      E.g., our tile floor went in after our window. So, we had to know how thick the tile was (3/8") + thickness of thinset + subfloor (if new subfloor will be put down).

      Then, we had to subtract the thickness of the vinyl that was still in place but was going to be taken out later (1/4")

    • If the window will be going in after the new floor or you are not replacing the floor, you can skip this step.

  2. Next, find out the height of your cabinets themselves. Most are 34-1/2" high. But, if you have raised or lowered your counters you will have a different height.
  3. Now, determine the thickness of your countertop material.

    • If granite, is it 2cm or 3cm? Generally (in USA), the west coast has 2cm and the rest of the country has 3cm. (1cm = 2.54 inches)

    • If 2cm, you will need to know the thickness of your plywood subtop.

  4. Add these numbers together and that's how high off the floor you will need to place your window. And, like I said before, it's better to err on the side of too high than too low.

Fothia has her counter running into her bay window. Her window was/is my inspiration and what I used to show what I wanted to the window people and our remodel contractor. I've linked her 99% finished kitchen thread. It has a closeup picture of her window.

If I missed anything, please let us all know!


Here is a link that might be useful: Pics of 99% finished Kitchen Reno


clipped on: 03.06.2012 at 10:09 am    last updated on: 03.06.2012 at 10:09 am

RE: Wood island countertop people...more questions (sorry!!) (Follow-Up #11)

posted by: breezygirl on 01.17.2012 at 02:27 am in Kitchens Forum

Hi Babs. Sounds like you're making good progress!

My plank, black walnut top was made by a local woodworker. I got quotes from a few of the big names mentioned here and was also surprised at the cost so began looking for cheaper places. I got a quote from Craft Art and another local shop for a DIY finish top, but with the house reno, DH's work schedule, the kids, lack of workspace, and our tight timeline at the end of our project, we knew we wouldn't be able to DIY it ourselves. The cost of the unfinished top from either place plus the cost of someone to do the finish work wound up costing as much as using the local woodworker to make the whole thing. Plus, with a sink in the island, we were concerned that the cutout be done correctly.

So, with the cost of the counter fabrication, sink cut out, upcharge for insetting of the sink higher into the top to decrease the undermount depth, sink mounting, runnels, finishing, delivery, and installation worked out to about $110 sq ft. Yes, it was more expensive than I thought it would be, but cheaper than it might have been.

I rarely get compliments from visitors on the new kitchen in general, but most people comment on the beauty of the island. It's really amazing IMHO and worth the splurge.


Mine is finished with Osmo Polyx Oil only because my woodworker has been using it on counters for years. It's a green, food-safe product. I had planned on using Waterlox, but decided to trust and go with the flow. I really like how it doesn't look like it has any sort of coating on the wood. It is matte, yet has subtle glow. Looks natural. The other benefit is that I can quickly rub on more Osmo on an area if it needs it, like around the sink, without having to do the whole top.

We've only had the top a short time so I can't comment on longevity, but I've gotten scratches and even dents from dropping something heavy. Comes with the territory. My woodworker came over the other day to look at another project and brought his sander with him. He gave the top a quick sand and a new coat of Osmo. Scratches gone in only a few minutes! I could never do that with my marble. ;)

Keep searching around. Ask your customer. You never know what will happen.


clipped on: 01.18.2012 at 10:18 am    last updated on: 01.18.2012 at 10:18 am

RE: Paging ALKU05 - Prep Sink Question (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: alku05 on 01.03.2008 at 08:27 pm in Kitchens Forum

Ok, Dave I took some pictures for you! I hope you can see what you need to. I'll do my best to talk you through the pictures. In a nutshell, there's plenty of room in the cabinet for plumbing stuff and storage. However, the surface space (countertop area) is limited b/c the sink takes most of it up.

All we have in the sink base is the sink, a pulldown faucet and an ISE compact evolution disposal with an airswitch. The wierd black thing in the back right corner is a mesh bag that holds the pullout hose so it doesn't get tangled on anything (it came with the faucet). You can easily see the disposal and the plug for it. Take special note of the two vertical black pipes in the rear. These make up the vent and drain system for the sink. It's basically an upside down U-shape that runs behind the sink. That's why we were so limited in the front-back room for the sink and faucet.


Front underside of sink:
We have 2cm granite, so we had to have a plywood underlayment. That's the wood you see by the sink. (If you need to use underlayment, be forwarned that you'll have to route a groove for the sink lip to sit in. This sink's lip is not flat.)


Looking up from the base of the cabinet along the back wall:
(The wood shown in the bottom half of the picture is the back wall of the cabinet, and the wood you see on the top part is the counter underlayment.) Here you can see the vent loop I mentioned before. The airswitch is the cord hanging from the hole in the underlayment located to the left of the sink. You can (kinda) see the shutoff valves in the bottom right.


Faucet corner:
This creative angle was attempt to show the where the faucet is. I think this was a failed attempt, but I included it because you never know...


Shutoff valves:
These are located on the back wall of the cabinet just right of center.


Hope this helps! Let me know if you can't get your bearings with the pictures, or if you need shots of anything else.


clipped on: 12.28.2011 at 08:00 pm    last updated on: 12.28.2011 at 08:00 pm

painting osb subfloor help

posted by: xterra on 03.09.2009 at 02:19 pm in Flooring Forum

we are nearing completion of major kitchen and living room remodel, and we are running out of date we have spent about 90g, we have enough to do counter tops and misc. we want to do mesquite floor but we need about 1000 sq feet. we are considering painting our 3/4" osb subfloor until we can scrape together the money to do what we want on the floor. what is the best paint to use, and do we need to prime and seal. we are looking at about six months before we can put down floor. thanks Gina


clipped on: 12.22.2011 at 04:16 pm    last updated on: 12.22.2011 at 04:17 pm

painting osb subfloor

posted by: xterra on 03.09.2009 at 03:15 pm in Paint Forum

I posted this in the flooring section but thought this would be a better forum. we are close to finishing a major kitchen and living room remodel, and have run out of money. we have 1000 sq.' of floor that is currently covered in 3/4" osb subfloor We would like to paint it until we can afford to put down hardwood.question is what kind of paint, and would we need to prime it and seal it after painting thanks in advance. Gina


clipped on: 12.22.2011 at 04:15 pm    last updated on: 12.22.2011 at 04:15 pm

What keeps soapstone darker longer. . .The answer! ! !

posted by: florida_joshua on 10.24.2007 at 04:47 pm in Kitchens Forum

So I did a little test to answer the question.

The products:

Clapham's Beeswax Salad Bowl Finish
Bee's Oil
Regular Mineral Oil
Mystery Oil

First a brief discription (my opinion)

Clapham's: It is a paste, inbetween a wax and a liquid. Goes on easy and feels amazing after you put it on. On the touch catagory it is the best of the bunch.

Bee's Oil: It is a wax. A little harder to get on but if you heat it up it would be easier. Has stay power. This is at the top when it comes to keeping the patina on the stone.

Regular Mineral Oil: Needs no discription. It's easy to apply. Would keep a bottle around for those lazy days. Feels oily compared to the wax or paste. That feel goes away quickly though (whithin a hour or two if you wipe it down with a rag).

Mystery Oil: It is a liquid similar to the mineral oil. Not so crazy about the warning lable. Feels a little bit more oily than the mineral oil at first. Seems to react similar to the mineral oil. In my opinion I would rather use the mineral oil just because of convienience considering the warning about it being combustable.

The proof:

This is unoiled stone.
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

This is the stone just after application
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

This is a picture of the sheen each gives off
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

A day after the first oiling
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I then oiled it twice more over the next 2 days and waited 4 days to see what we had. Here it is.
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The mystery oil evaporated the quickest, then the mineral oil, contiuing on to the clapham's, and finally the Bee's oil.

I could continue the process but I do believe that you will continue to see the same results. Over time I think you wouold spend less time applying with the wax products but I would keep the mineral oil around for quick touchups or lazy days.

This test also gives people a good idea of how soapstone will react when it is installed in their home. This process of oiling and or waxing lessens with time. Each variety of soapstone can react differently as well. This means some stone evaporates the oil or wax products off quicker and or slower. Some people leave it unoiled some oil it often. Some like it inbetween and only oil it sometimes. . . So it really is up to the owner to choose how the stone fits your lifestyle. I still have not figured out how describe to someone who does not know about soapstone in one or two paragraphs. I know it sounds cheesy but I feel it's an experience. If you don't touch it, feel it, live with it, you'll never really understand it.


clipped on: 12.22.2011 at 01:23 pm    last updated on: 12.22.2011 at 01:23 pm

99% done cottage kitchen

posted by: jrdip on 04.28.2008 at 07:31 pm in Kitchens Forum

I just wanted to thank everyone for letting me vent and ask questions over the past couple of months. Did I thank everyone enough for letting me vent? We are almost done with our complete house remodel of a 1929 bungalow and just in time for baby! It has been a long process filled with many headaches but I wouldn't change a thing and am so glad we decided to do renovate this house. It is a very small kitchen but through careful planning and editing it is a very efficient kitchen for us and how we live and cook, and somehow I managed to stay within my 22K budget. Here is a list of all products used and I hope yall enjoy.
Thanks, Jen

wall and trim color: sw alabaster white
cabinet color: sw mindful gray
cabinets: armstrong cabinets
countertops: honed carrara marble
cabinet hardware: rh dakota 6" pull in aged pewter
appliances: ge profile
sink: whitehaus 30" farmhouse sink (I got this for 300!)
faucet: 75 off of ebay
tile: daltile 3x6 folio subway handmade and handglazed subway tile
shades: lowes sahara roman shades
sliding door track: crown industrial
sconces: visual comfort library sconce
lighting over counter: custom made
stool: antique milk pail










clipped on: 12.16.2011 at 08:35 pm    last updated on: 12.16.2011 at 08:35 pm

RE: help me find chicken wire glass panels! (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: allison0704 on 10.24.2007 at 11:31 am in Kitchens Forum

Thank you, Cleo. :)

I just have chicken wire but it was installed after it arrived to the warehouse. I went over the chicken wire with the glaze leftover from the cabinets (to take away the shine and color).

The photo below is a close up of the coffee station - located between kitchen and laundry room in the hallway. It has two of these lift-up doors with chicken wire.

You can see more/newer pictures of my kitchen in Kitchens We Love (scroll down to the middle of the page). You can click on the pictures to enlarge.

Here is a link that might be useful: KWL


clipped on: 10.05.2011 at 10:44 pm    last updated on: 10.05.2011 at 10:44 pm

Soapstone is IN - midway kitchen reveal (tons of pix!)

posted by: tnhillbillytoo on 07.11.2011 at 12:36 pm in Kitchens Forum

I have been stalking this forum for a couple of years planning our kitchen renovation. Our soapstone is finally in so I thought I'd do a mid-way reveal of the work we've done so far. We built the house in 1998 and the kitchen was what we could afford at the time. It really needed to be reworked to make it more functional. Dh and I are MAJOR DIY'ers. The only thing we've hired out is the counters so it has been LONG and SLOW (we started Dec 26 last year) but we are getting there ;) I still need to paint most of the doors/drawer fronts, but you'll get the idea of where we're going I hope...

We added a 2nd story to the house to accommodate all the kids (4!) and the extra weight cracked the ceiling in the open doorways (2) between the kitchen and living room. We narrowed the doors a bit and added transom windows above.

Before (actually, kind of during. I had already narrowed the door and was working on the drywall :)


This is ::almost:: a before of the kitchen. We had already put the new paint on some of the walls, done the ceiling, added can lights, and painted the cabinets beside the sink window. Notice the dorky white formica with the oak edge. Oy, what was I thinking!?!?!?

We added new crown and trim along the bottom of all the cabinets...

The original refrigerator and cabinets (although we had moved the cabinets UP-- see the red paint line? That was originally where they hung)...

We cut eleventy-billion holes in the ceiling and added a bunch of can lights. The original kitchen only had one light in the center of the room @@. It's nice being married to an electrician ;)

Putting in the bead board ceiling to cover the eleventy-billion holes...

Ripping up the hardwood floors. I would never, never, NEVER suggest putting hardwood in your kitchen. My dishwasher and ice maker leaked and ruined my floors not once, but TWICE. Never again!!! (FYI - my boys LOVE demo LOL!)

This is the view through the pantry door. We gutted it down to the studded walls and cut holes in the ceiling to move/add lights. My whole kitchen used to be that red color.

The other half of the pantry "L"

Now for the afters :) No criticizing my housekeeping skills LOL! Everything is still junked up from things being out of place, but you get the idea. I used a fisheye lens to shoot most of this so everything would be in one picture but the fisheye lens makes the cabinets and walls look curved on the edges of the pictures. I can assure you, everything is actually straight :)

View through the pantry door. We covered the ceiling with pressed tin...

The other half of the pantry "L"

Slightly different angle so you can see the plate rack we built into the wall :)

New refrigerator and re-worked cabinets :) (there's still hardwood under the refrigerator. We will pull it up when we move it to lay the tile. That sucker is HEAVY!)

Cooktop area (ignore the junked up dining room)...

Looking toward the pantry (the pantry door is nearly in the center of the picture)

Standing in the pantry door looking into the kitchen (see the unpainted doors? LOL!) We have a new oven ordered that is stainless to match the other appliances, but it is not here yet. We're putting cabinet doors over the microwave because we hardly ever use it.

The sink side...

I LOVE that big ol' vein that runs the length of my sink cabinet!!!

Our soapstone was procured from Dorado Soapstone in Atlanta and installed by Premier Surfaces out of Huntsville, AL (yes, we live in TN). If you call Premier, tell Merry that Michelle sent you ;) Merry went above and beyond the call of duty to find the perfect stone for us. She worked with Chris (the owner I think? of Atl. Dorado) and after I talked at length to him on the phone, he hand picked my slabs because I abhor the color green and needed a hard variety of soapstone (the harder the soapstone, the more green it typically is). Since he found my slabs somewhere in NC (!!) I trusted his judgement and told him to purchase them sight unseen. My stone is very, VERY hard, but has very little green. Exactly what I wanted! I actually stabbed the surface of a piece of scrap with a screwdriver l and barely made little pockmarks. Perfect for a house with 4 kids :) The install looks great. I have no water rings or any of the problems some other GW'ers have reported. I'm officially in LOVE!


soapstone source and fabricator
clipped on: 10.05.2011 at 01:23 pm    last updated on: 10.05.2011 at 01:24 pm

ROLLIE's How clean is Too Clean, Part 3

posted by: angela12345 on 09.02.2010 at 05:04 pm in Building a Home Forum

This is a repeat post of one from several years back by a long time poster, builder, and gardenweb member: Rollie. I thought it was a brilliant idea and wanted to share with all you new builders . . .

2004 thread from the Internet Archive Wayback Machine -
I added pictures & some descriptions linked from Rollie's website "Delores House"

How clean is too clean, Part 2
Posted by Rollie (My Page) on Wed, Nov 3, 04 at 10:38

A while back, there was a post about how to clean the subfloors up after the construction was done, and how clean they needed to be before finished floors can be installed. There were lots of good posts, but it has dropped off of the page.

I took some early shots of a project, where I explained that we cover the subfloor with 30 lb felt paper before any framing occurs, then we frame on top of it, and cut it out after final painting is done. Here is a series of pictures that show a couple different stages, and how clean the floor is when we finally strip off the felt.

Framing on top of felt: 30 lb felt covering Advantech. Total time involved 1 1/2 hrs, 2 men. 1400sft, at 200sf per roll,= 7 rolls at $15.80 each = $115 total

After drywall and painting: As you can see, there is considerable dirt, dust, mud, drywall compound etc that collects on this membrane. All of this residue rolls up, is removed from the structure, and is thrown away, leaving the subfloor very clean.

Here you see some prep being done. The Roll-Lath is pulled up, and 90 % of the staples comes with it if you use 1/4 inch staple to hold it down. If you use anything longer, expect to spend time plucking staples and tabs of felt up from the floor. We cut around the perimeter, so we dont get tar marks on the wall when rolling it up. This is especially important when the walls are finish painted. (Usually, I wait till after the finish painting is done, but I couldnt do it in this situation of 3 pics below. Since we were going with infloor hydronic heat we needed to remove the felt protection, to install the wirsbo piping and the 1 1/2" gypcrete cover)

After removal of felt, ready for finish carpentry:

Make sure and run the staples parallel to the roll lath, and they will come up easier.

Note the staple lines: Use of 1/4 inch staples is recommended to eliminate the staples staying in the subfloor like shown in the last picture. 1/4 inch staples will roll right up with the two layers of felt. These guys did not have 1/4 in, and used 3/8 instead. Bad mistake, as they are now learning, as its a real PITA to remove the tabs of felt and staples left behind, although usually it only needs to be done where there is hard surface, and not carpet and pad.

The black marks on the subfloor is some of the asphalt base that leaches out into the subfloor and causes some discoloration.

RE: How clean is too clean, Part 2
Posted by: Rollie (My Page) on Sun, Nov 7, 04 at 23:42

We do felt on a slab also, but usually after framing, at which time you can usually use 15lb felt. I would advise against plastic, as it is too slippery when wet, and it will get wet. When felting a slab floor, we use duct tape to tape all of the seams, and then just roll up the complete mess and haul it out.
We have tried most methods, and have settled on this approach as the most bang for the buck. Covering multiple times is not cost effective, and never achieves the same results as covering before.

As far as cost is concerned, it takes considerably less time to cover a floor before the framing is done, and when the subfloor is new, as opposed to covering all the different rooms individually. Believe me, this approach has been looked at several times, and is considered to be the most cost effective in terms of return. I actually started doing this while building my own personal house, and have implemented it into the homes we build for customers. 15 lb felt does not have the lifespan to withstand the rigors of framing, subs, equipment, drywall and painting, 30 lb will, but like I said, make sure you use 1/4 inch legs on the staples.

Maybe its not for everyone, and I hope I dont come across that way, Only offering something different that works for me, and is appreciated by my customers.

THINGS I HAVE TO ADD : When Rollie first posted this thread, I think he was using 2 layers of 30#felt. But it sounds like from the Delores house descriptions (which he built in 2005) that he has changed to 1 layer ? An idea that I had and have no idea if this would work : since the felt leaves a little bit of stain on subfloor, maybe heavy brown contractor paper can be laid down and then felt on top of it. Another idea I had (for drywall only) - sweep subfloor & lay heavy brown contractor paper before drywallers. They leave an big mess which is tough to get off subfloor. - Angela


clipped on: 09.28.2011 at 02:37 pm    last updated on: 09.28.2011 at 02:37 pm

RE: MDBmom - Can you tell me about your island, please?? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: MDBmom on 06.06.2011 at 11:27 pm in Kitchens Forum

Hi Lake_Girl!

Thanks! We are really happy with the way it turned out. We didn't want to expand the island so much that it got in the way of traffic either. We added a trash cabinet to one end and wanted to add a book shelf to the other. Once we started working on the island though, it felt too tight with the stove on that side so we revised it to have the third post. Also there are 5 of us in our family and we wanted everyone to be able to sit at the island so it allows us to store a small counter stool underneath on that side so we can all sit there. The total overall dimensions of the island are 42x76" (including the counter top). The overhang on the short side from the end of cabinet to end of apron is 9 1/2" and on the long side 14". The posts are 3 1/2" square. On the bottom, we used base board and cut it to the size we needed to save some time and money. On the top we used some ogee trim. I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any more questions. Here are 2 more pics from a different view so you can see the side with the other overhang. Best, Caroline




franklin edge
clipped on: 09.28.2011 at 01:33 pm    last updated on: 09.28.2011 at 01:33 pm

RE: painting walls after cabinet install (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: cleo_2007 on 01.21.2011 at 01:49 pm in Kitchens Forum


If you are going to Benjamin Moore for your paint, I highly recommend the Aura paint for your situation. The 1 hour dry time and fact that it is self priming would mean you can get the whole kitchen done in 1 day.

The advantages...self priming, 1 hour re-coat time, scrubbable and touch up-able. Plus it's low VOC. I touch up paint all the time which is years old and it blends perfectly. This would be ideal for your situation if you are doing half the room. It is the best paint on the market in that price point IMO.

Disadvantage is the price which is about $60/gallon. But you will save a lot of labor and use less paint overall. Plus you don't have to prime and/or pay for primer. I get it for $48 with my rental property business so if you know someone, maybe you can get it cheaper. Don't buy as much as you usually so with regular paint. The coverage is outstanding. I used 1.25 gallons for 2 coats in my 22x12 living room.

Oh and the microfiber rollers are worth the money at Benjamin Moore. Makes for a flawless finish.

Also, if you use the Affinity deck, I just found out that the whole deck is designed to go with every other color in the deck. Makes for easy choosing if you are like me and don't see undertones well.



clipped on: 09.19.2011 at 03:17 pm    last updated on: 09.19.2011 at 03:17 pm

RE: Any way to improve water pressure? (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: lazypup on 08.16.2011 at 01:23 pm in Bathrooms Forum

As a plumber I get this question almost daily, and almost as often when I suggest the solution ppl laugh at me.

Go to any local ACE or True Value hardware store and you can find a generic shower head that is solid brass and just slightly larger diameter than the shower arm pipe. These shower heads have on ring of tiny holes and produce a spray that rivals the output of a pressure washer. And the best part, they are under $5,,In fact, at the plumbing supply house they come in a two pack for $5.

They don't look impressive and you certainly won't have the upscale brandname for bragging rights, but if you want a forceful shower this is the best $5 you will ever spend.

We once put these shower heads in all 200 rooms during a motel remodel and the motel guests were so impressed that the motel sells those shower heads in their gift shop for $14



clipped on: 09.10.2011 at 10:55 pm    last updated on: 09.10.2011 at 10:55 pm

RE: Kitchen Cabinets Have Been I have an issue? (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: GreenDesigns on 09.03.2011 at 11:42 pm in Kitchens Forum

Here is how I would expect a pro to spray paint kitchen cabinets. A brush painted job would differ slightly in that you wouldn't hang the doors to paint. You'd place them on a work table or easel instead. It's time intensive work, and should take 7-14 days to accomplish completely and cost between 3K-7K depending on kitchen size and amount of detail in cabinets.

Remove doors and drawer fronts.
Remove hinges and hardware.
Clean with TSP (tri-sodium phosphate)
Rinse and let dry.
Scrape any loose finish.
Fill any damaged spots or hardware holes that won't be reused.
Sand fill smooth.
Scuff sand the rest.
Tack off dust.
Hang in dust free paint booth with wires through hardware points.
Tack off dust again.
Spray with alkyd based primer.
Scuff sand again.
Tack off dust.
Spray with second coat of primer.
Spray with first finish coat of latex enamel.
Spray with second coat of latex.
If glazing is to occur, that is next.
Spray with conversion varnish.
(If being brush painted, this step is typically skipped.)

Add more molding or decorative details to boxes, filling nail holes and sanding smooth.

Repeat prep process with face frames and exposed cabinet sides using plastic to create a spray booth on site. If interiors are to be done, they are done before face frames and sides. Interiors are difficult, and add both time and expense to the job.

Allow everything to fully cure.
Clean hinges and hardware and clear coat if you're keeping the old hardware.
Install new (or old) hinges and hardware.
Re-install doors and drawers and adjust for proper clearances.

If you are receiving a job without this amount of effort, then you are not receiving a quality professional job.


clipped on: 09.05.2011 at 08:15 pm    last updated on: 09.05.2011 at 08:15 pm

RE: Tips for Ordering Cabinets? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: kompy on 02.27.2009 at 01:21 pm in Kitchens Forum

1. Discuss hinging
2. Finished ends: Any decorative panels?
3. All interior accessories
4. Moldings list (crown molding style and application)
5. Any prep for glass or mullion doors? Who's supplying glass?
6. Go over appliance specs. Then go over them again! .
7. What is ceiling height? IF cabinets go to ceiling...make sure everything is considered (ie. crown appliacation, counter thickness, flooring thickness).
8. Any cabinets need finished, matching interiors?
9. Go over doorstyle, wood, finish selections
10. Door edge profile
11. Hinges? Hinge finish?
12. Who's supply decorative hardware? Will he apply it? Go over location of drilling!
13. If there are any custom designed pieces or non-standard type units, go over specs.


clipped on: 08.23.2011 at 11:16 pm    last updated on: 08.23.2011 at 11:16 pm

RE: Anybody have a polished nickel faucet? (Follow-Up #29)

posted by: circuspeanut on 06.02.2008 at 10:38 am in Kitchens Forum

I use Wenol Ultra Soft (the blue tube) on my polished nickel faucets, and it's gorgeously easy.

(Other fabulous uses for Wenol: getting the scratches out of porcelain coated bathtubs and sinks, and polishing up scratched dinner plates.)

The red tube -- slightly more abrasive -- is great, too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Wenol Blue


clipped on: 08.22.2011 at 11:41 am    last updated on: 08.22.2011 at 11:41 am

Another satisfied Bucks County Soapstone Customer

posted by: mfhoop on 08.31.2010 at 08:19 pm in Kitchens Forum

So, big progress today! Thirteen weeks into the project, we got our counters installed today by Bucks County Soapstone. We think they're fantastic and couldn't recommend them more highly.

Our island is so big that we had to use two separate slabs, but they did such a good job of matching the two slabs that it's virtually impossible to tell. We also splurged on their custom sinks, including the block sink with the bow; it's really, really cool! Here are some pics...










clipped on: 08.15.2011 at 07:31 pm    last updated on: 08.15.2011 at 07:31 pm

Finished! White (with blue island), soapstone, etc. (pic heavy)

posted by: mfhoop on 12.08.2010 at 08:09 pm in Kitchens Forum

We've taken some time off from reading this forum (new baby came 4 weeks after we were substantially complete on the kitchen!), but we just got back the photos that our contractor's professional photographer took, so we thought we'd do the final unveil.

When we moved into this house 17 months ago, we knew we'd need to update the kitchen. It was the size of a postage stamp and cut off from the rest of the house. See original floor plan here:

Existing Floorplan

We really wanted a kitchen that would be open to our family room, would have eat-in space not separated by a brick wall, and - of course - more space. So we decided to take out the wall between the original kitchen and dining room, move the dining room to what used to be a formal living room that we never used, and taking out the wall between the old kitchen/dining rooms and a breezeway type area that was mostly wasted space.

After discussions with several design/build firms and countless hours of looking at floor plans posted to this site (thank you, those who gave us valuable input!), we pretty much designed the floor plan ourselves and then found a contractor who was willing to do it. We did have to convince him that we really did want this design. He wanted us to have a U-shaped kitchen with a peninsula instead of the island, but we really wanted the circular flow plan and felt strongly that we wanted 2 separate cabinet runs that make a disconnected "L" so we didn't have any corner cabinets. (With his design we would have had 2 corners on an 11-foot wall). What we ended up with was mostly like this:

Changes to this design included moving the warming drawer to the island, putting the icemaker to the right of the prep sink, and shrinking down the island a bit. We also moved things around within the mudroom. Generally speaking, this is substantially what we ended up with.

This was no small construction feat - we took out 2 walls, including one load-bearing wall to combine 2 rooms and an old breezeway into a single kitchen and then added a mudroom. From the first sledgehammer to the final nail, it took about 16 weeks. There were a few in the middle when we thought that the baby would come first but they got it done on time and for that we are super grateful!

For those who want to know what is what:
Cabinets - CWP (we originally wanted Crownpoint, but decided we wanted something made closer to where we live - VA - and less expensive). So far we've been pleased though the wainscot still needs to be touched up. We're glad we did the blue island with the white surrounding cabinets. It gives the room some personality, looks great with the soapstone and matches my Polish pottery!
Counters and sinks - soapstone from Buck's County. Love it.
Rangetop, hood and ovens - Wolf
Fridge - 48" Subzero
Warming drawer - Miele - we still don't really use this...
Dishwasher - Miele
Microwave - GE spacesaver. We went through a lot of angst with our contractor on the placement of this. We had this location in a prior kitchen and really liked it but he never did. We still like it!
Wine fridge - U-line
Ice Maker - SZ (found used on Craigslist!)
Backsplash - carrara marble (we originally wanted plain white but hired a designer for a few hours of input and he recommended this - we really like how it ties together the grey in the soapstone and the white in the cabinets)
Knobs and pulls- RH
Latches - can't remember, but found them from the Christopher Peacock look-alike kitchen blog
Faucets - KWC except for the filter/insta-hot which is Waterstone (I thought I would love the pull down one but I actually like the pull-out one at our cleanup sink more)
Pendants - Hudson Valley
Floors - White oak in kitchen, soapstone in mudroom. We had 3 different materials in the 3 rooms that were combined to make this (cork, wood, and slate) and had a hard time deciding what we wanted to have. In the end, we went with wood and stained it to match the adjacent dining room.

The pictures:

The old:
Kitchen 3

The new:

To orient yourself, the pantry to the left of the fridge is in the same location that our old fridge was!






clipped on: 08.15.2011 at 07:30 pm    last updated on: 08.15.2011 at 07:30 pm