Are you any good at DIY?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by hicks, Dec 11, 2008.

  1. hicks

    hicks Member

    I was looking to buy a table tennis set, and was amazed to see that tables cost from around £200 for a decent one. I'm half tempted to see if I can construct one myself using a bit of MDF.

    What's the most ambitious DIY project you ever attempted and did you complete it?
  2. scotchgirl

    scotchgirl Active Member

    I had a really old manky chest of drawers, you know the kind with about and inch of varnish on it.....which I completely stripped back to bare wood, primed, painted pale yellow, added Winnie the Pooh handles (bought off the web), and hey presto! A beautiful piece of children's bedroom furniture for the cost of some primer and paint.
  3. rikster

    rikster New Member

    This is definitely one to relate. "My best mate" decided to give in to his good lady wifes request for a new kitchen, but being the thrifty man he is decided to do the job himself including the plumbing. After ripping out the wall units and worktops, he dismantled the sink leaving the taps fixed to the walls by string and 4" nails, he did put a bucket under the taps though.
    2 years later his wife is still washing up in the downstairs bath and has plastic storage crates where wall units should be, Now he is stressed because his wife wants to get the builders in,
    I think his missus is being fairly reasonable don't you?
  4. BbBill

    BbBill Supporting Member

    Im 20-odd months into renovating our 3 bedroom farm cottage and am doing all the the work myself at nights and weekends after the work on the farm is done for the day.

    Armed with my trusty DIY manual and tools I have totally gutted it all inside, removing all the lath and plaster from the walls and ceilings, re-framing them, insulating, fitting new gyproc and plastering them.
    Also new kitchen and bathroom suite fitted, new bathroom floor and joists, loft insulation and boarding, new front door and bathroom window, new plumbing throughout, new tileling, all painted and decorated, new internal doors, skirting and facings and a wood-burning stove fitted in too. Theres numerous other hidden jobs that I wont mention that take up alot of time too, but basically the whole cottage was getting worked on.
    Only jobs other folk did for me were the plumbers fitting combi boiler central heating system and electrians rewiring the electrics. Had a couple of mates helping lend a hand with a few wee bits and pieces but other than that done the all work myself.

    Most of the work Ive tackled for the 1st time, and was alittle dubious how things would turn out, but youve just to try these jobs and see how you get on. Despite not having any experience in renovating, Im happy with the way its turning out and glad I tackled this, and can also look back when Im finished and know I did it all. Am nearing the end of the work and me and my girlfriend hope to be moved in for February, the cottage is only 200yds along the road for the farm, so great commuting and far enough away I cant hear mum shouting at me!

    All these 18hour days should hopefully pay off and I can have a well earned rest (and maybe get back to band practices!!), until I think of the next project to tackle!! I'll maybe post a link soon for some before and after pictures!
  5. Leyfy

    Leyfy Active Member

    The extent of my 'DIY' was phoning the letting agent to ask them to replace one of the broken locks on my door!
  6. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

  7. DocFox

    DocFox Retired

    In parts of the USA (Colorado, for example) basements are standard. The upstairs is finished and the basement is not. I finished the basement with a jetted tub, shower, room sized vanity, french doors to a large bedroom with a walk in closet, new walls, paint, etc. It took nine months. But when finished the house was worth £45K more!

    The key to ANY job are tools. In the US, you can rent most tools you need once -- and buy the ones you will use over and over. If you do not have the right tools or can borrow/rent them, best leave it to a pro or fork out £200!
  8. BigHorn

    BigHorn Active Member

    I do nearly all my own house projects / maintenance. I prefer it as 99% of the time time you will do a better job than a professional. The tradesman is always working to time constraints and will cut the quality of the job to the time he is given or what the customer will be prepared to pay for. I know if I do it I have done a proper job.
  9. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    Absolutely useless, bought a BBQ last summer, and we couldn't put it together.We gave up, cooked it inside and waited for a man to fix!!
  10. lynchie

    lynchie Active Member

    I'm brilliant, £50 a day to you. I've also got some of this here left over tarmac, if you'd like me to do your drive mister.
  11. Vegasbound

    Vegasbound Active Member

  12. hicks

    hicks Member

    Couldn't agree more. Last year my shower started leaking. I completely ripped it out, including mouldy plasterboard. I got some 'professionals' in to quote for a replacement shower and got some ridiculous figures (we're talking £1000's here). I decided to do most of it myself, including plasterboarding, tiling, and shower cubicle fitting. But I did employ a plumber to connect the shower and install a towel radiator.
    A few months later, the poorly fitted towel radiator is nearly falling off the wall.
    Nice one professional plumber!
  13. andyp

    andyp Active Member

    2 kitchens, one bathroom, a full set of wardrobes and a porch so far. Plus plenty cuts, scrapes, barked knuckles, etc.

    As has been said, there's no substitute for good tools. Cheap ones end up costing you more than you think you saved by not buying the more expensive ones.

    Scariest moment, checking the fit of the 8ft wide 18" deep window glass above the porch, then stepping carefully down the ladder (still holding the glass) to the floor. Which wasn't there. Miscounted the number of steps on the ladder, wobbled, found the floor, put down the glass very carefully and went for a very strong cup of tea!

    I'll attempt any DIY that doesn't involve either excessive heights or gas, which is definitely best left to professionals.
  14. themusicalrentboy

    themusicalrentboy Active Member

    I'm no good at it but mon pere has redone....

    the Living room (brickwork, shelving, carpets, wallpaper - everything)
    the kitchen (again everything apart from building an oven, microwave and washing machine)
    the dining room (glass and wood shelves, a computer workspace with all sorts of cubby-holes)
    my bedroom, the spare bedroom, parent's bedroom, bathroom and the loft.

    oh, and an ex-conservatory off of a static caravan that is now a lovely little building up the top of our garden.
  15. bbg

    bbg Member

    I'm fantastic at DIY..............."delegate it yourself"!!!

    As for Do it Yourself - utterly and completely hopeless, for years my dad and father-in-law helped us out with wallpapering etc (although now my wife wields a mean emulsion roller!), no wthat they are getting on a bit in years we have a fairly handy son, whilst my wife's brother is a DIY champion. He built his own house extension virtually single-handedly, and replaced our main bathroom and ensuite a couple of years back, better and far more economically than our local "experts".
  16. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    Redecorated the whole house including light fittings, switches, plug sockets, etc., over the course of the last few years. Did my kitchen but left the old cupboard carcasses in, just replaced worktops, sinks, doors, cooker hood, etc.

    I only do plumbing under extreme duress and anything gas-related means me dipping my hand in my pocket for a corgi fitter, though....
  17. Hells Bones

    Hells Bones Active Member

    Yes, being single for such a long period of time means I am very good at DIY... :biggrin:

    Sorry Mods