DIY the JB way

Now that Samantha has moved out, her bedroom has been requisitioned as an artist’s retreat by Sue. The wardrobe therefore needed to be converted into a materials cupboard. The truncated metal broom handle that Samantha’s clothes were hung from was removed but the little shelves to the side were left in place. This meant a large squarish gap to put shelves in. Should be a piece of cake – square shelves secured to wooden battens.

“John, do you have a number of sheets of wood in the loft that could be conveniently cut into square shelves?”
Oh, yes, several.
“And lots of pieces of wood to use as battens?”
Must be dozens.
“Will this occur to you or will you drive to Wickes for supplies?”
Couldn’t you have asked before I got in the car?

Whilst in the loft looking for tools, and admiring the several sheets of wood that have been there for a number of years, I spot some adjustable metal shelf brackets that had been donated to us by Helen some time in the distant past. I no longer need the batten wood…

“John, will using the metal brackets make the job harder as you will now have to cut notches into the back of the shelves so they reach the wall, and also drill holes for bolts?”
Yes, but look – adjustable!

Hmmm. The bolts will need to quite long at the back to reach through the wood and out the hole in the bottom of the bracket. Longer than any I have in my “random DIY bits and bobs” box. I’ll buy some from Wickes. Joy – the thread is too wide to fit through the holes. I’ll now buy some long M5 bolts, washers and nuts from people on the Internet as even Screwfix couldn’t help.

“John, will you go for a simple square cut shelf or instead try a curved front to fully use the difference in depth between the left and right sides?”
A curved front will optimise the surface area and let me play with the electric jigsaw cutter thingie in the loft.

Which I can’t find so I’ll use a ropey hand jigsaw instead. And when I do find the electric jigsaw, I’ll realise that the Black & Decker workmate with its clamps will be essential. Of course, the workmate is in the loft as that’s where I used to do DIY – bags of space, no problems with mess and the rafters are boarded over. Perfect for woodwork. Also perfect for storing years of accumulated stuff so now insufficient space to even erect the workmate. Pretty sure it can’t fit down past the loft ladder either. My, hand jigsaws are fun and so easy to keep straight. Luckily I have some rasps to smooth out the bumps and dips.

“John, will the cardboard template you have used have any allowance for slight imperfections in the walls?”
But I like planing things down to size. And trying to orientate them around shelf supports into tight fits. And back out again to remove a few more microns of wood. Why are sawdust and wood shavings so tricky to get out of carpet?

After a little searching, I have found the charger for the bright LED torch. Aha! I can now see where I put the bloody rasps! Note to self – sawdust is much easier to clear up from kitchen lino.

Job done – only took a month or two…


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