house – day 121 – greater cock-up

Another shopping errand on the way to the house today. We called in at Wickes  to get an 86p pipe fitting so I could complete the concealed toilet unit. Unfortunately, we ended coming out feeling truly pissed off. Whilst I was waiting at the checkout, Fiona went over to the  kitchen section to have a look at something, she didn’t say what it was at the time. She came back looking very unhappy and tole me to follow her. Over in the showroom part of the store there was kitchen built using the same type of units as ours. (For info, Benchmarx makes the kitchens sold by Wickes, they’re both part of  Travis Perkins.) But there was a difference, something that had been nagging us about our kitchen for a while. In the demo kitchen, the decor panels exactly match the doors in finish and thickness, but in our kitchen the finishes of the two are different – one shiny and one isn’t and the panels are 15mm not 18mm. We did wonder if we’d missed something with our kitchen, but Chris installed what was delivered and, as we hadn’t seen a demo kitchen for a long while, we naively assumed what was delivered, was correct. We knew our budget would only run to a relatively low-cost  kitchen and, as we knew we weren’t buying German kitchen perfection,  we thought that’s how it was. A  difference in finish between components might be a consequence of a lower budget.

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how it looks…

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… how we think it should look

So, in a somewhat dispirited mood we arrived at the house and went straight to the kitchen to check it out. The nagging doubt we had about the kitchen, is no longer a doubt, it’s a fact and now it just looks wrong to us. The question is, what do we do about it? I think first, we need to talk to Chris and review all the paperwork we have, before we say anything. The fact is, we didn’t get the kitchen we thought we were buying and we’re not sure how this has happened. We can’t do anything about the kitchen today, so we’ll get on with other stuff.

In the bathroom, I used the connector we got from Wickes to reconnect the basin waste pipe. With that finished, I checked the alignment of the pipes to the toilet pan and cut down the Hardieboard backing to fit level with the top of the cistern housing. The new floor tiles have raised everything by about 12mm – I knew it needed a trim. With all the apertures measured and cut to size Including the enormous flush plate), I installed the board ready for tiling. No turning back now. It’s ready to be tiled.

I fitted the trapdoor I cut yesterday, it’s tight on one side and, despite my careful measurements  the door still isn’t unsquare enough. I need to trim up to 5mm off of one corner. I put it up anyway, we need to keep the dirt out. I’ll fix it properly tomorrow.

One of the remaining original kitchen windows has a sawn-off window ledge, the other one is how it should be. My guess is, it was cut back to allow a shelving unit to butt up against the wall when the space was a pantry. The point is, now the ledges can be viewed side-by-side, they should match. So I had to restore the vandalised one. I’d bought a new router cutter (all the ones I already have are still in storage), in order to cut a piece of timber to match the other ledge, I just had to cut some timber and fit it. After about an hour and large amount of plastic filler I had a piece of wood in place. Now I need to sand it down to match the other window, but that will have to wait until the filler has set.

Fiona cleaned the house up some more.

I sanded and filled a little damaged wood on the bathroom door. A split had appeared in one of the stiles.

Finally, I left a long note for the tiler on Monday, explaining a change of plan for part of shower room. Instead of tiling upstands in floor tile around the bottom of the shower walls, we’re going to extend the wall tiles around the toilet. Fiona had opposed this idea initially, but now favours it (on hygiene grounds, I think).

Hay fever is bad again today, it was a snuffly, miserable drive home.