Durango Renovation - Day Nineteen

While it is a bit quieter with the painters back in Dallas, there are still plenty of new things happening in Durango.

Today the cabinet makers arrived with the first round of cabinetry.  These were a rush so that the template makers for the new quartz counter tops could get to work.  But before we get to that, a request was made for a view of the bank of windows in the Master Bedroom.  We aim to please. 

Today Joel Schiavone and his associate Matt arrived to begin the modification of the island and some other cabinetry in the Kitchen.  They brought the large base cabinet that replaces the little desk (in the kitchen) as well as the microwave cabinet and the trash drawer cabinet.  They install their cabinets by placing and leveling the base which goes under the cabinet (you probably know this as the area behind the toe kick) and then placing the actual cabinet on the top.  This way, once they have all these bases leveled, their cabinet boxes are automatically level.   Since the old desk had an outlet above it, the electricians were out earlier to relocate it as a junction box behind the new base cabinet.  At no point is a safe or legal to have spliced wires in an inaccessible location.  You can see Matt above cutting out the 3/4" thick back to allow access to the junction box.

Below you see the base cabinet in place.  There are many differences in terminology in the construction and design trades around the country.  When you see the base cabinet below, you see that the cabinet is not complete.  I would say that the drawer heads have not yet been installed.  However, here they are called drawer fronts.  The drawer slides are really wonderful on these new cabinets.  They close automatically and softly.  The drawer fronts/heads will be installed with the balance of the cabinetry next week.   They match the adjacent cabinets.

The old counter tops were tile with a half round oak bull nosing.  They had a very deep overhang.  I could never quite figure this out.  But today, it all was made clear.  To the left and right of the corner base cabinet which holds the primary kitchen sink, there are two fluted pilasters.  These are totally incongruous in a mountain house with the sort of aesthetic that was used when the house was built.  There are almost no moldings and the surfaces are rough hewn and casual.  Then smack in the middle are these fluted pilasters with bases and capitals.  Well of course they had to go.  We will install new pieces that will be simple and flat.  See the before/during below. 

Because these pilasters had been added the counter tops overhung the base cabinets about 2 1/2" inches.  Which is not at all normal.  But in order to cover the tops of the pilasters, the overhang had to be that deep.  So why were these pieces which have no place in the style or function of the Kitchen added?  To cover a crack in the face frame of the adjacent cabinet.  Rather than repair it, they chose to cover it up.  This cause the counter tops to be strangely made and the last few inches of even full extension drawers to be inaccessible.  Boy oh boy. 

While we are on the subject of strange counter tops, there were a number of odd offsets that were created when the island was built.  They are no more.  In the place of a little open corner cabinet (which had a tiny opening in the front and big storage space behind, we have installed a roll out trash container and an additional drawer.  We are picking up a few inches of floor space in the corner as well with the addition of a finished panel end.  In the image below you can see the trash can and drawer (note that none of the doors or drawer heads have been installed yet) and the mock up for the location of the angled panel.  But wait....what about that gap on the floor.  We have original tiles for the house that will be used to replace the ones which are too short.  Thanks to the original builder for saving them and shame on your for not putting the tile UNDER the cabinets.   

The roll out trash door even has a tidy little place to store the bags. 

At the other end of the island is the cabinet which will hold the new Sharp drawer microwave.  If you haven't seen one, check them out.  Very, very cool.  There also a nice deep drawer below the new microwave.  This cabinet will also have a special finished end panel rather than the plan piece of plywood material that was there before. 

They also delivered the bases for the pantry cabinets (but there isn't much of anything to see there) and brought the stain samples for my approval for the maple doors and drawers.  These are unusual cabinets that have Red Oak boxes and Maple doors and drawers.  The pulls for the cabinets are also impossible to match.  But so that we can have the correct number to outfit the large drawers in the old desk area, I have removed the dummy heads (false fronts) on the areas directly in front of the two sinks in the kitchen.  They ought not have hardware on them anyway.  It is not at all comfortable to be leaning agains them which working in the sink.  New heads are being made to replace the old ones. We also measured for the custom pieces which are being installed to support the new overhanging counter top.

More excitement Friday.  Have a great evening and let know if you have any comments or questions. 


ps: I mentioned yesterday that the Beaver pond at the entrance to the neighborhood had frozen.  Here you go.   I also saw 27 ducks swimming in Purgatory Lake which folks tell me will soon be frozen solid and buried under a thick blanket of snow.