Jobs Blog

Drywall Ceiling Match

I’ve had a lot of drywall jobs and quotes recently for some reason. Here is a ceiling match I did this week. Note that it is not perfect, and I explained beforehand to my customer that I couldn’t guarantee a perfect match. However it is much better than before and not very noticeable.

Laminate Flooring Replacement

Laminate flooring repairs can be tricky. Last December it was Christmas Eve and I was working on a floor in an apartment, getting frustrated. It had a ‘bounce’ and I couldn’t get rid of it. I finally gave up, put it back together, and told the customer I couldn’t do it. Then a few weeks ago I was asked to replace a few boards that had water damage. I agreed to do it and budgeted a few more hours this time. It still took a lot longer than I thought!

When you think you just have to take out a few boards in the hall…like this:

…And then you realize that to access all of the boards, you have to take apart half of another hallway, like this:

…then you are happy when everything goes back together like it’s supposed to!

Pressure Treated Picnic Tables

I made a couple of picnic tables recently.

The first is a rounded top for my neighbour, to fit a standard table which had the top glass missing. It is made of pressure treated 5/4 boards.

The second one was requested by my in-laws. They sent me a Youtube video with instructions for an octagon table. (It was nice using someone else’s design for a change!) If you are interested, here is the link to the first video (there are four):

If you are in the area and would like one, I can make another one out of pressure treated lumber and deliver it for $700 including tax. You need a flat/level square of ground, 6.5 feet x 6.5 feet minimum.

Custom cabinet oak match

Here is a cabinet I built recently for Ron and Aimee. They had a space in their kitchen that they wanted to use more efficiently:
So it was proposed to make the cabinet a bit bigger. However, there was a light in the way…so the top cabinet had to stay.
hoekstra cabinet
Also they didn’t want to spend a fortune (understandably!). Instead of ordering new doors, I bought some used ones and re-sized them a little:
I took out the old upper cabinet so that I could copy it. (There was a bit of a hole in their kitchen for a few weeks) This was very helpful for matching the oak stain.
Then I built the new cabinet exactly like the old one, but with a few modifications to flow into the rest of the kitchen design.

Lastly I installed the new unit. And it turned out pretty good!

Swing frame

One of my customers bought a swing but needed a swingset to hang it from. I built it out of 4×4 pressure treated posts and 7 inch lagbolts. It is large, heavy, and seems to be okay without being fixed to the ground.

Floating Fireplace Mantle

Ron and Aimee had a beautiful piece of pine that they wanted to attach above their fireplace. I offered to stick it on top of a couple of angle brackets, but they wanted a cleaner look, so they ordered some brackets on Amazon and hired me to attach them.

I screwed into the brick and drilled holes in the back of the mantle. After I slid it all the way on, I couldn’t get it back off…luckily it was in the right place!

Furnace Room drywall with 22 cutouts

About a month ago, Tim asked me to quote on a drywall ceiling. Normally I don’t do them but this was a strange one. To make a second suite legal, the city requires drywall to separate the two suites. This was the last step in the process for his house. The furnace room was the only room that did not have this (basically a firestop of sorts). However it was a little messy with hot water heating pipes all over the place.


The ceiling was not huge, less than 2 sheets of drywall, but it had to be dropped a little bit to accommodate some pipes that were running along the joists. The lights had to be dropped as well. The pieces went in like a jigsaw puzzle, I was VERY careful with screw placement, I had to crawl sideways under some pipes to access one corner…it was a day’s work to board and tape around 22 cutouts, and then a couple hours the next day to do a second coat of mud.


My customer was OK with me leaving it rough and I was quite happy to skip the sanding step as it would have been a huge mess. Hoping he passes inspection.

Door casings and brick wall

V and J just bought a condo and hired me to replace the baseboards. I estimated 2 days plus materials, sight unseen. However, once they got possession they decided to keep the ones they had (fancy type!) and change the door casings instead. They went with a pillar style casing and an ornamental top rail (I really don’t know what it’s called, all I know is the product code is 5000UL at Blackwood). 🙂 We also added casings to the closets and one window. 13 units and 2 tubes of caulking later, I was ready for the next project.

They had also purchased 3 sheets of brick facing, and asked me to help them put it up as a feature wall. I have worked with this stuff before, and know a few of its idiosyncrasies, but had not installed it in a house before. Because the sheets can expand/contract with weather changes (and therefore buckle), there are particular installation instructions; however they are not really practical either, so the challenge is to find a medium that looks good and hopefully won’t bulge next summer. We screwed them to the wall to avoid future removal damage and butted them tight to each other. I left a small gap at the top and bottom for expansion and caulked it later. I cut out holes for plugs etc. Despite levelling pretty carefully, there was a larger gap near the ceiling as we moved to the left…which I was able to fill, but it wasn’t great. I did the best I could and don’t think anyone could do much better…and learned it’s tough to perfectly place 96 square feet of bricks on a wall!