Friday, March 14, 2014

Spring Cleaning 2014 Indoor Projects

With the warmer weather starting to finally thaw our frosty demeanor, the inevitable spring cleaning projects have begun. Since the ground still has some snow cover, hence there is still a frost line, the current projects are all indoors. Later on this spring, I should have some information on outdoor projects that will be happening. And let me tell you, there is a long list.

The first project that was tackled was prompted by yet another microwave dying on us. It is always fun to turn on the microwave and have blue light from electrical arcing light up the kitchen and hear noises normally associated from scenes in Frankenstein Monster movies. Hmmm... does that make me Dr. Frankenstein, or Igor? Moving on.

Our kitchen has a little desk as part of the design, and we originally had the microwave set there. With this new setup, as shown in the picture, we moved the microwave over, to the adjacent counter. This required Kristen cleaning up the pile of paperwork, toys, books, and other miscellaneous junk stored there. I think we ended up only keeping 1/100th of the stuff that was stored there. Okay, maybe 1/10th.

My addition to the desk was to make the shelves. I took some more of that cheap melamine particle board I picked up from the Menards discount rack, and created what you see here. I still need to put some iron-on edge banding, but so far, we are absolutely loving how this is working out. The kids school iPads are now off the breakfast bar when charging, and I have a place to put my keys/wallet/phone when I get home that is out of the way.

Another project was to remove the upright piano we had in our living room area, as we have hardly used it since we acquired it. It was a free piano that we received a few years ago, but essentially failed to use. My guess is that to have it tuned up and put back into a state of true usefulness was going to cost way more than it was worth. And so, it was dismantled, piece by piece.

Most of the teardown was actually pretty easy, which really surprised me. For a short while, I thought this was going to be one of my easier projects. Well, once I hit the soundboard, my theory fell apart. In the picture, I am working on removing some components so I can get to the screws that hold the cast iron plate that holds the strings. At this point I had already cut the piano strings out. Tristen, looking oh so manly, was tearing apart the bench.

After removing the metal, I started into tearing apart the sound board. This took a considerable amount of energy, as it was fairly well constructed. When I started thinking about this project, I was thinking I could reclaim much of the wood. However, it appears that it was made from veneered pine for the most part, so pretty much useless. The only pieces I think I may be able to salvage are the six posts that strengthened the sound board on the back. They look to be solid hardwood, and my be useful in building my next set of bunkbeds.

Once we finish our demolition, we cleaned up, moved the sofa back 6 inches, put in a storage shelf, repositioned the TV and TV stand, and moved a bookshelf. The final result was a much more open and organized living space. Hopefully the picture helps for those who have been to our house.

So those have been the major indoor Spring clean up tasks so far this year.