My living room moves around the house a lot. It all depends on how the mood strikes me. Right now the living room is back rightfully in the... living room.
So how will the living room function now? A very long room with a fireplace in the center... what to do. Solution, cut it into two spaces Living Room / Office. On the living room side I moved the entertainment center and couch. However it didn't fill the room very well. Putting it off no longer I added two bookcases to consolidate all the books spread throughout the house. I put some plans together to design/build my own. After a trip to Lowe's I realized it may cost me in the upwards of $90 each. Not exactly what I was hoping for but I would be assured it would be built of actual wood. Brainstorming in the board aisle I was inspired. Investigate the cost of a Sauder bookcase but modify it to look... good.
This was the flat black bookcase I picked it up for $45 at Sauder. Nothing fancy by any means.
So I started by building a wood "cap" for it to add a little mass to it. a 1x3 worked great! It actually sits upon the bookcase like a cap so I can lift it up and remove it at any time.
Here is the painted cap. Notice the finish matched almost perfectly. It was between three paints. One had a bookcase on it so I took it as a sign. Jackpot!
Here is a "base" I made to raise the bookcase 6" off the ground and give the bottom a little interest. I made good use of my brand spankin new 10" Dewalt compound miter saw, Porter Cable nail gun, Rigid shop vac, Black & Decker Jigsaw and Irwin quickgrips. It was a blast!
Notice the base not only elevates the bookcase but adds some various depths to its face.
I also thought I'd try my luck at some window tint. I put some on the two side windows of the entertainment center. Compare to the first picture to see how a little smoke film can drastically change and cleanup a DVD collection.
As for my tools, this is my take on them.
Porter Cable Nailer
The Porter Cable combo kit had everything I needed to get me started at a very reasonable price. Home Depot usually stocks a lot of variations to this kit. For someone starting out it was nice not to have to find all the parts to get started. The whole concept of air driven tools kinda freaked me out at first as the tank filled to 150psi, but after a few minutes of installing 20' of trim I was feeling pretty comfortable with it. The safety on the nailer also gave me tons of confidence.
10" Dewalt Compound Miter Saw
I've had some large projects that used larger pieces of "rough" lumber but figured most of my future projects will be smaller so I went with the 10" Dewalt Compound Miter Saw. If I had to do it again and had $100 extra bucks I would have upgraded to a 10" slider to allow for larger boards. But seriously when am I going to cut a 45 into a 2x6 or super jumbo crown moulding? The saw is a great value and even comes with a nice blade to get started right away.
For normally being a Lowe's kinda guy, Home Depot has seen a lot of me lately. They stock a very inexpensive shop vac that packs a punch and an amazing warranty. Though to be honest I've heard when it comes time to replace the filters it may be a little costly. This shop vac sits comfortably under my miter saw and the hose hooks up to the back of the saw! Really helps keep the sawdust level down.
Black and Decker 4.5amp jigsaw
My old B and D jigsaw from 7 years ago finally putzed out so I went back for another. I contemplated going to a brand that is more heavy duty but to my surprise they have taken the Black and Decker line and beefed them up. Much better blade control when cutting due to blade guide and visual access to blade as you cut, more durable body and a very affordable price.
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