Bookcase-Cam - Day Ten

After a hiatus of three weeks and two weekends, work re-commences with the remaining wiring, for which I have decided to forgo such features as switched receptacles and wiring above for uplights or downlights. I figure if I really want them someday, I can just disassemble parts of the bookcase to add them -- it's just screwed together, after all.

I spend Saturday morning on the receptacle boxes for the lower cabinet interior and toe-kick area. The afternoon finds me cutting the hole for the double switch box in the north cabinet's end piece, an operation I've been worrying about since I last worked on the project:

It's a big, un-patchable hole in a highly visible piece that has been carefully scribed already, and thus would be a lot of work to replace (particularly since I don't have any more plywood). I must also use the router to make a recess in the adjacent piece, since there isn't enough of a gap to accomodate a switch box otherwise. Too shallow and the box won't fit; too deep and I create a weak spot in the inner cabinet. This second piece has been dadoed four different ways; having to reproduce and refit it would be a disaster.

In addition, I am locating the hole lower than the standard four-foot height for switch boxes; I believe they are that high to keep little kids from playing with them, but I've always felt that they make their adjacent walls and doorways seem shorter, less elegantly proportioned. I particularly don't want this switch box to bisect the upper cabinet vertically, as viewed when entering the room. I also like being able to flip the switch from my elbow level. So while I feel I have good reasons for departing from convention, the arbitrariness of the distance I will lower the box causes me further anxiety for the hole-making.

Thus there is the potential of ruining two important and hard-to-replace pieces in this sub-project. I could easily spend hours test-cutting and rehearsing these crucial steps. Once I have measured carefully for the hole, however, my nervousness vanishes -- I don't even realize this until later -- and I complete the cuts in a short amount of time & without incident.

Late into the night, I am still working this box into its hole:

Now it is the Casablanca Fan Co. that tasks me; the switch for the ceiling fan is very bulky and hard to fit into the shallow boxes I must use here, and it has thick, wide mounting flanges that ride upon, rather than nestling between, the mounting screws of the box itself, such that the cover plate won't lie flat on the woodwork. I could cut the aluminum flanges, but that would make a lot of noise and require me to disassemble the box. I decide to call it a night.

Initial week of daily activity: | Day 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7,8 | 9 |
Long-term weekend progress: | 10 | 11 | 12,13 | 14,15 | 16-18 | 19 |
Intermittent bursts of effort: | 20-22 | 23-31 | 32-35 |
Bookcase-Cam Home

Comments? e-mail me. ©1998-1999 Lars Jensen. All rights reserved.