Fitting a kitchen - help

Discussion in 'Other Trades Talk' started by Sean Hodges, Aug 4, 2004.

  1. jasonb

    jasonb New Member

    B.B.Bob & Screwfox

    Most of the companies I know for carcases only supply to the trade. Of the highstreet brands I would rate them as follows,Magnet, Wickes, Crown Imperial and B&Q At the bottom but only because they have hardboard backs.

    For Draws and wirework try http://www.woodfit.com and http://www.isaaclord.co.uk

    For online doors http://www.withknobson.com

    Jason
     
  2. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    Have to say the B&Q premium drawers are very nice.
    Their cabinets though are a little imprecise at times - think their factory machines must have a built in randomiser when it comes to making the holes.

    Tango
     
  3. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    As your worktop is long you will have to hold the router horizontally which is very difficult without nicking the worktop.

    That's why I made my suggestion.
    Two batons one front, one back. Spare piece of worktop placed on top and lined up so that one edge is flush with the edge you are trimming. Clamp in place. Bingo - you now have two surfaces to place your router on with the cutter going between. For the bottom of the worktop you may as well do it freehand as it doesn't matter if you scrape the bottom.

    Tango
     
  4. jasonb

    jasonb New Member

    If you do "scrape the bottom" make sure you seal it up, what looks like a layer of browm paper is a waterproof balancer, dont want any moisture getting in.

    Jason
     
  5. big_bad_bob

    big_bad_bob New Member

    Jason

    Thanks for the links - very useful.

    Cheers,

    Bob.
     
  6. Sean Hodges

    Sean Hodges New Member

    I tried to fit the base units and worktops over the weekend. The builder didn't finish painting and grouting until one hour before my wife and kids returned, so the pressure was on to get the kitchen finished.

    First problem was that my dad's jigsaw wouldn't cut the worktop properly. I bought the right downcutting blades, but every time we tried to cut a line, the blade was weaving all over the place, bending, twisting and making a real mess. We gave up on it and used circular saw and router for finishing.

    Managed to get the main length of worktop into place, and after lots of measuring and struggling, cut the holes for hob and sink. Routed out recesses for clips and other bits and they both dropped neatly into place.

    The final blow was when we cut the L-piece to length and tried to fit it. Despite all my measuring, the 90 degree mitre joint was the wrong angle for my wonky kitchen and really can't be used (it would require cutting about 2cm back into the wall for both the top and the base units).

    My first solution was to ask the worktop company to cut me a new male mitre joint on a long offcut. This morning I found out that their jig isn't adjustable.

    The only solution left to me (as far as I can see) is to remake the mitre the other way round - have the short L-piece continue into the corner, and cut the female mitre joint into the existing long length, cutting it back by 60cm.

    I appreciate the skills of kitchen fitters more than ever and regret getting myself into this mess!

    With hindsight I should have chosen to cut my own mitre, and made sure that it was the first thing I did, before doing the cutouts. Hindsight is wonderful.
     
  7. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    You adjust the joints on the male cut, not the female. From what you are saying I am inferring that your long piece with the cutouts in contains your female join. In which case it is not too bad. Hire a jig and cut a new male joint (it isn't that difficult).

    If I'm wrong here, and rereading your post, it's difficult to tell, then alternative suggestions:
    Scribe the back of the worktop that's misangled - That will leave a gap of 2cm at one end which you can cover with tiles - ok so 2cm is a lot to cover, but may be achievable.
    Do the corner in three pieces? Obviously cutting your own mitres to match.

    Had the same problem with jigsaws - I would only use them for cutting light boards now, or where the finish didn't matter - I did try to use one just to do the corners on my sink cut-out but it wandered and nearly ruined everything.

    Don't lose heart from your experience this weekend. It's a learning game. You have achieved a lot so don't be put off by a mistake however costly or troublesome it turns out. I still have a double oven to sell which I ordered thinking to fit under the worktop, discovering 3 months later, when I finally fitted my cupboards that it was quite a bit too tall! They wouldn't take it back - expensive mistake :(
    At the end of the day when it's all finished you will still have paid less than if somebody else had done it and more importantly, learned, so next time it's easy.

    Tango
     
  8. jasonb

    jasonb New Member

    You will only get a good joint if your hired jig is the same as the suppliers which I doubt.

    Jason
     
  9. Sean Hodges

    Sean Hodges New Member

    I was feeling pretty low yesterday, but last night I went home and attacked the problem (I was on Plan 'E' at least!)
    I routed a slice off the back of the short piece of worktop to make it fit the female joint on the long piece. That showed me that the main part of the problem was that the base units on the short leg of the 'L' were too close to the front of the worktop (no overhang).

    In the end, I realised I could sink the units into the wall by stripping off about 1.5 sq. metres of plaster down to the brick. That gave me about 1cm, which is just enough to give 5mm overhang, which is adequate.

    All I have to do now is shift some of the units on the long leg of the 'L' 1cm sideways to close the resulting gap, which opens up the space for the dishwasher slightly (I'll fill it with a couple of decoative end-panels).

    The nightmare seems to be over.

    Now I have another couple of questions;
    The sealing strip provided with the hob looks totally inadequate for the job - very thin adhesive foam strip, far smaller than the recess it needs to fill. It wasn't clear from the instructions how it was meant to be applied, but I guess its main task is to stop spills getting under the edge. The instructions were adamant that you mustn't use sealant, so what do people recommend to seal the edge of a ceramic hob where it joins the worktop?

    Finally, as a result of the way I did things, I now have a gap along the back edge of the worktop, varying from 1mm to about 6mm. Obviously I could fill this with sealant, but is there a better way?
    I thought about using a plastic moulding, say a concave corner section, but where would I get such a thing?
    One option would be that stuff they use to give neat edges when tiling - plastic strips with a convex bead along the edge the thickness of one tile - but I'd rather have a concave profile than a convex one.

    Help me finish this bodge and I'll stand you all a virtual round of drinks.
     
  10. dewaltdisney

    dewaltdisney New Member

    Well done Sean,

    I am glad that you have got it sorted and this has been a very informative and entertaining thread. It just shows what can be achieved with a bit of innovation and as long as the finish is acceptable to you then it is okay.

    There are loads of trim pieces that you can use and B&Q have a few to choose from. Try to choose something that picks out a major colour in the kitchen so it complements the finish. I used pure white trim intended for double glazing reveals on a mates kitchen. I stuck it on with silicon and it has not moved and looks good.

    If you cannot live with the worktops then leave it for a couple of months and then buy some new worktops and get a chippy in to do it. I am sure by then you will not bother.

    Well done anyway for persevering.

    DWD
     
  11. devil's advocate

    devil's advocate New Member

    Hi Sean,

    I cried myself to sleep last night after reading your worktop troubles - or was that laughed...

    ...only kidding!

    Chust a thought: why not <u>double up</u> the thickness of wall tiles on that stretch of wall to cover the new 6mm gap (snigger...), (or are the top edges of the tiles exposed which might make a double layer look silly?)
     
  12. Legal Sparrow

    Legal Sparrow New Member

    Finally, as a result of the way I did things, I now have a gap along the back edge of the worktop, varying from 1mm to about 6mm. Obviously I could fill this with sealant, but is there a better way?
    I thought about using a plastic moulding, say a concave corner section, but where would I get such a thing?
    One option would be that stuff they use to give neat edges when tiling - plastic strips with a convex bead along the edge the thickness of one tile - but I'd rather have a concave profile than a convex one.


    I found that the quadrant normally used for laminate flooring is pretty good at covering these gaps. B+Q have a load of different colours (wood, slate....etc a laminate floors come in so many styles now), there may be one that matches your worktop. The stuff I used was convex, but I would have though a concave profile is available somewhere.
     
  13. leechy

    leechy New Member

    Forgive me if I've come in late here and have the wrong end on the stick but wont your tiles cover the gap you are talking about.

    Adhesive + tiles + sealant bead = approx 7-10mm
     
  14. Sean Hodges

    Sean Hodges New Member

    Yep, wrong end of the stick, I'm afraid.
    I had to run the tiles behind the worktop to push it out to give me a small overhang.
    Now I need to fill the variable gap.

    I'm favouring coloured sealant at the moment, assuming I can find some in cream/ivory.
     
  15. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    I would pack it first before using filler.
    And why not install something over the worst part, like a spice rack, screwed to the wall it would totally cover the dodgy bit.

    Tnago
     
  16. Sean Hodges

    Sean Hodges New Member

    By packing it, do you mean fill it with something cheaper than sealant?
    Should I poke some slices of wood down the gap, or use some generic Polyfilla-stuff?

    I was planning to fill initially with the cheapest (clear?) sealant, then use the expensive decorative coloured stuff for the final, visible bit.

    If I make a corner profile out of a bit of plastic spatula I hope I can get a uniform finish along the wall.

    I've heard that dipping the profile in water stops it dragging on the sealant. What do other people suggest to get a good finish on sealnt in a corner?
     
  17. Dewy

    Dewy New Member


    Finally, as a result of the way I did things, I now
    have a gap along the back edge of the worktop,
    varying from 1mm to about 6mm. Obviously I could fill
    this with sealant, but is there a better way?
    I thought about using a plastic moulding, say a
    concave corner section, but where would I get such a
    thing?
    One option would be that stuff they use to give neat
    edges when tiling - plastic strips with a convex bead
    along the edge the thickness of one tile - but I'd
    rather have a concave profile than a convex one.

    Help me finish this bodge and I'll stand you all a
    virtual round of drinks.

    This is what scribing is for.
    Take a piece of wood the same size as the largest gap then use this to guide a pencil along the worktop.
    Cut to this line with a jigsaw with a good sharp blade and you will have a good fit along the wall.
     
  18. jasonb

    jasonb New Member

    He couldn't scribe the top otherwise it wouldn't have overhung the doors, it's a long story.

    Jason
     
  19. Dewy

    Dewy New Member

    The last time I did this when my father wanted new worktops to match some new units he bought I got a strip from Homebase that screws to the wall and has a rubber strip along the bottom to seal the gap then a clip on plastic cover to hide the screws.
    They come in various colours to match or accent the strip to the worktop.
     
  20. leechy

    leechy New Member

    With regards the sealant - Yes water helps but if you use soapy water - a little fairy it deffinately wont.

    As for making your own tool - there are various tools for getting a uniformed finish on a sealant bead. Some better than others.

    Plasti Plug do a set that cost pence and work quite well. The usual sheds stock them, and if you do use them push dont pull!
     

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