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June 2008
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Plumb, Square, and Level

The other day I was over at Dogs and Jen’s Blog and saw this posting on the really bad experience she was having getting her cabinets installed. Cabinet Guy needs to find a new career like , “would you like fries with that?” Seriously.

House Bloggers are wonderful folks in terms of not being afraid to get their hands dirty, and wanting to do things themselves.  However a lot of things that go into remodeling do not get explained very well.
Remodeling is where you take something existing and change it to suit yourself. From a coat of paint to complete gut jobs, what you can do is limited only by your grit and knowledge.

The 3 cornerstones of construction and remodeling  are Plumb Square and Level.

Every wall in your house needs plumb. Plumb keeps your house from tipping over and falling down.


Square is important so that the materials that you use and the cabinets you may install fit and work correctly.

Level means not having things rolling around your house or falling off your counters.

Two things to remember:

1. Your house is not square
Get over it. If you are real lucky it was well built and is close. From the foundation to the roof, gravity and the original construction is dictating what has happened over time.

2. Building Materials mostly are.

From bricks to lumber to plywood and drywall, most building materials are square and consistent in dimension. This is done at the manufacturing stage as it is more efficient and therefore cheaper. Manufactured products like plywood, particleboard, drywall are dimensionally stable, and for the purposes of this discussion can be considered so.
Wood framing materials like 2×4”,2×6, and natural lumber are notorious in twisting moving, shrinking and settling.
The biggest problem with any material is the installer. That would be you. Yes this is your house and at the end of the day, you are the where the buck stops. The more you learn the easier the jobs become.
Over the next few postings I will discuss tools. Things you need so that Plumb Square and Level becomes a lifestyle.