The DIY Home Project Thread

NationalTitles18

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May 25, 2003
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This is a thread to share your home projects, home project tips, or to ask questions of others as you work on your own home project. Feel free to share pictures, techniques, and ideas and also to ask those questions. Projects can include cabinets, bookshelves, room additions, sheds, electrical, plumbing, walkways and driveways, and so forth.

I am currently working on and planning several projects for my home, including a shelf with small cabinets for the bathroom sink to help organize that mess, towel shelves, a pull out waste bin to replace the current setup that won't stand up to our abuse, a shed, a greenhouse, wall mounting the bedroom TV with new "hidden" electric outlet (which will include a short FMC run along a closet wall), among others.

So let's see those DIY home projects!
 

NationalTitles18

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May 25, 2003
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Thanks. I love working with my hands and so do my boys. We pretty much fix everything in our homes. My next home will have an out building dedicated to these passions in my retirement.
My experience is very limited. I've done a few things, but never anything that major. When my sister got divorced she came to live with us for a while (I was still at home with parents at that time) and my best friend and I enclosed part of a larger room to make her a small bedroom but it was quite an amateur adventure (I was about 20 yo). I installed a jetted tub and made a tub/shower out of it (had to build one wall to enclose it). It wasn't bad for a first try, but again nothing like that. Helped roof my dad's house once. Made some replacement windows in an old fixer upper because the windows were rotting out and made frames for my wife's artwork.

I found a woodworking book at the thrift store many years ago and dreamed of making things, but never had the tools or skills/experience so I'd just buy what I could find or hire someone. After moving here and buying our house I have found skilled people that can be counted on difficult at best to find (and mostly impossible). And since this house has some unique oddities off the shelf item don't work too well for many things.

So I finally bought a cordless circular saw and an orbital sander, assorted drill bits, etc;... and have begun using them. Next on the list is a cordless table miter saw so I can be more precise and get angled cuts. (cordless because I have limited amperage with the way the electric is set up here, but that's another project or two to solve that issue)

My first woodworking project is the bathroom shelves for the sink. I'm about 1/4 of the way through and just found some leveling feet that will work and ordered them. I'm learning and having fun and hopefully meeting our needs in this place.
 
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B1GTide

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Apr 13, 2012
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My experience is very limited. I've done a few things, but never anything that major. When my sister got divorced she came to live with us for a while (I was still at home with parents at that time) and my best friend and I enclosed part of a larger room to make her a small bedroom but it was quite an amateur adventure (I was about 20 yo). I installed a jetted tub and made a tub/shower out of it (had to build one wall to enclose it). It wasn't bad for a first try, but again nothing like that. Helped roof my dad's house once. Made some replacement windows in an old fixer upper because the windows were rotting out and made frames for my wife's artwork.

I found a woodworking book at the thrift store many years ago and dreamed of making things, but never had the tools or skills/experience so I'd just buy what I could find or hire someone. After moving here and buying our house I have found skilled people that can be counted on difficult at best to find (and mostly impossible). And since this house has some unique oddities off the shelf item don't work too well for many things.

So I finally bought a cordless circular saw and an orbital sander, assorted drill bits, etc;... and have begun using them. Next on the list is a cordless table miter saw so I can be more precise and get angled cuts. (cordless because I have limited amperage with the way the electric is set up here, but that's another project or two to solve that issue)

My first woodworking project is the bathroom shelves for the sink. I'm about 1/4 of the way through and just found some leveling feet that will work and ordered them. I'm learning and having fun and hopefully meeting our needs in this place.
I was raised in a home without the money required to pay for professional repairs or construction, so we did it all. Back then it was more error than trial. But today, with the internet, you really can't go wrong as long as you take your time. It really comes down to being patient and willing to ask for advice.
 

NationalTitles18

TideFans Legend
May 25, 2003
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Mountainous Northern California
I was raised in a home without the money required to pay for professional repairs or construction, so we did it all. Back then it was more error than trial. But today, with the internet, you really can't go wrong as long as you take your time. It really comes down to being patient and willing to ask for advice.
True story. You can learn a lot from the internet so long as one remembers one's limitations. (and that's all I've got to say about that)

It's only been in the last several years I could afford many of these tools or to pay someone. My dad worked hard, and most often either lots of overtime or 2-3 jobs. Same for me until recent years, when thank God I only have to work one. Dad did the best could could with mechanical and home repair stuff, but his skills were limited and he passed that right along to me. :D I'm 50, so I'm late to the party; but I'm still having fun.
 

NationalTitles18

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May 25, 2003
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Well, I did add hinges to make my pump house wall a door instead Wednesday after one of my two temperature activated heat lamps blew a bulb and the line out of the pressure tank froze. I had to shave the bottom and work some magic (luck :D ) to get the door into position without help. That job isn't quite finished. I still need to shave the bottom to get the exact fit and then add the latch (and do some more finishing work) to complete the job, but I was out there in single digit temps so... All of that also caused the boys' water line for the toilet to freeze. I finally got that thawed overnight and thankfully no damage. It's been a week around here.
 

B1GTide

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So, just finished an "interesting" project. I have a raised septic field. This means that I have a second tank for liquids, which has a pump to push the liquids up to the raised field. Well, there was a massive system failure and the breaker popped which meant that my alarm did not go off to warn me about the outage.

The alarm and relay system in my home which controls the pump is custom, and there were no wiring diagrams. So I had to figure out what was bad in the control system. I did that. Took a while, but worked it out and made repairs. I was then able to get power to my pump and discovered that it was failing and needed to be replaced. Nasty job. Nasty. Replaced the pump and the floating alarm switch today, wired everything up and everything is working again.

It pays to be able to do this work yourself. All told, my cost for the repairs was about $600. The cheapest estimate that I got for the work was over $3k. Given the custom control system, that was probably low. Probably would have paid upwards of $4k.
 

B1GTide

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Recently had one of our 50g water heaters fail - cheapest quote on a 12 year platinum heater was just over $4k installed. I did it myself for $1,200 but was reminded how much I despise plumbing work...
Yeah, some of these projects might not be fun, but I like knowing that I can fix almost anything that might break in my home.