Given a relatively small area to install a cupboard I turned to the IKEA catalogue. The floor area available was approximately 1 metre wide by 28 cm deep. It so happens that standard Billy bookcases are 28cm deep but they only come in widths of 80 or 40 cm, so I ordered an 80 cm one and added a 20cm Gnedby shelf unit. Both units are 202 cm high.
Although the shelf unit is much shallower than the Billy, this meant I didn’t have to worry about the inside (RHS) corner.
I also ordered two Bergsbo doors, each 50 cm wide.
Having built the Billy I turned it onto its side and attached the Gnedby as I built it, hiding the joining bolts and screws below the base and behind the fixed shelf and top. This didn’t add much to the total weight so it was still quite easy to handle the whole assembly.
I screwed a batten to the right hand wall to match the thickness of the skirting with some packing behind to compensate for the wavy plaster and used decorator’s caulk to seal the gaps. Pre-cut cut outs in the Billy meant it could be pushed tight to the back wall without a batten, with the shallower Gnedby unit also giving plenty of clearance behind.
The only issue was with the doors, which are routed to take three hinges – the middle one of which clashes with the fixed Billy shelf. The doors are not heavy and two hinges are adequate but other doors are available with the middle hinge offset to avoid this potential problem. I drilled the Billy bookcase to fit the hinges, and used one self-closing and one cushioned hinge on each door.
The floor has a distinct slope from right to left and I used a 1.5cm batten (painted white to match) under the left hand end to compensate and keep the whole assembly vertical and aligned with the right-hand wall. Being on a carpeted floor means the gap at the bottom isn’t obvious.
I had some small door knobs that suit the confined location, so I drilled 5mm holes and used those. The end result is very neat and the customer (my mother-in-law!) is delighted.
Beware the tradesman who has time to write a blog.
As it happens, I usually do find the odd few minutes every now and again to update you on what I’ve been doing and about some of the more interesting things I’ve been up to. But there are only so many ways to describe assembling a Pax wardrobe or building a garden shed, and I don’t like to repeat myself.
However, it’s probably a good idea to remind customers – old, new and prospective – that I’m still in business and still able to help with just about any assembly jobs that might come up. Recently, that’s means some stylish wardrobes from B & Q (yes), a few new IKEA items and a pretty big shed that was just about on my physical limit, as well as more humble (and lighter) bedside cabinets, tables, chairs and window boxes. Oh, and loo seats and bathroom mirrors.
All done with the minimum of fuss and bother. As it says somewhere else on this site, if it comes flatpacked or in a box and needs assembling, I’m your man.
I’ve been pretty busy with Hillarys shutters and blinds, too, but more of them another time.
Yesterday’s IKEA assembly included a new one for me: a Tyssedal five-drawer chest for the customer’s bedroom. There was also a familiar Hemnes bedside cabinet (but for the office) and a Hemnes sideboard/cabinet for the kitchen, identical the ones I built a few weeks ago.
The small Hemnes unit was quickly done. Two drawers (plus a small internal drawer and a sturdy little cabinet makes it an ideal piece for the office. It’s the perfect size to stand a printer on, for instance.
The Tyssedal chest is both tall and surprisingly heavy, being made mainly of what seems like denser than normal MDF. The surface certainly looks durable and all the parts are very precisely moulded and machined so they fit together perfectly. Assembly (like most IKEA) is mainly by metal pegs and plastic cams, plus some allen (hexagon) bolts to make the base and legs very sturdy indeed. It took a little while to build but the end result was really quite classy.
Finally, to the kitchen, where a Hemnes sideboard also went together very well. It’s a fairly complicated one to build, but I have done a few now, and the finished item looked very smart in its new setting. It squeezed into the allocated space with about a centimetre to spare, too. The drawers on these fit perfectly and only one of the doors needed a tiny amount of adjustment. Again, it’s pretty heavy but I managed on my own.
When a potential customer contacted me a few weeks ago for an estimate to assemble their new IKEA furniture it looked like a big job. I’ve done big jobs before – big items and/or lots of them.
But this was the biggest yet. When we agreed I would do it the list looked like four or maybe five days’ worth, and I knew it would mean some heavy lifting too. IKEA are quite careful not to make any of their individual boxes too heavy – even though many of those boxes are best lifted and moved by two people and one piece of furniture might come in three such boxes… Continue reading Ninety-One IKEA Items Later→
The day after building the Rauch wardrobes and chests, I was back at a previous customer’s home for not the second but the third time. This was in a kitchen I’d helped to nearly complete some months ago.
This time there were just the kick boards to add and a cowel for the cooker hood that the customer was struggling to fix. The problem with the kick boards was Continue reading Back Again→
I don’t like to mention the word this early in the autumn – in fact I’m still clinging on to the last vestiges of summer and an occasional paddle – but with a 10-12 week lead time, the Christmas deadline for shutter orders has already passed. Continue reading The Pre-Christmas (sorry!) Rush→
Okay, it wasn’t quite that exciting, but I received a call on Monday afternoon asking if I could possibly help. A customer had bought an IKEA bed, via Book My Space, which was duly delivered, but was having difficulties with the assembly, depite them having built an identical one before. Continue reading Flatpack Jersey to the Rescue→
I’ve just completed a job that took two full days – spread over 3 working days and the weekend – that involved building, joining and installing thirteen separate IKEA Pax wardrobes and fitting out with drawers, shelves, rails, etc, all in a home that’s still being finished.
Being on a building site meant no mains power so I was very grateful for my cordless drill on the final half day. A battery screwdriver speeds things up, too, as long as you’re careful, but there’s no substitute for muscle and effort Continue reading Two Big Days – and all IKEA→