17 April, 2011

In our continuing efforts to make our house salable, Dennis and I undertook the “Great Closet Makeover” this weekend. We ordered the kit from a company called EasyClosets. They have a website where you can enter the dimensions of the closet and choose the components you want to use, then they ship it all to you. Our closet kit arrived less than a week after we ordered it. It came in 13 boxes with a total weight of over 400 lbs. We took out the old shelves and rods on Thursday, patched the holes, and put up one coat of paint. Saturday morning we started with the kit. The kit has vertical pieces that hang off a horizontal rail. Dennis was excited because he got to use his new laser level for the first time.

You can just barely see the red laser line on the wall and Dennis' hand.

It is a little easier to see the laser when it is stationary.
The level worked like a charm and we soon had the marks on the walls to get the rails mounted at the right height. Once we figured out how the parts worked together it went quickly – until we got to the longest wall. I had measured that wall 3 times before we ordered the kit, and each time got 101.5 inches. It may be 101.5 inches at that spot, but the walls aren’t perfectly plumb and we had about a quarter of an inch too much shelving to fit along that wall. It should be a simple matter to just cut some off, but this is a pretty complicated system with cam screws that tighten adjacent pieces together. But we were able to substitute one of the 3 sections along the long wall with a section that was an inch or so shorter and it worked well.
Tightening the cam screws.
Adjusting the troublesome shelves on the long wall.
Dennis had to use a hacksaw to cut 2 hanger rods a bit shorter. 

Notice the lovely wheelie bin worktable.
I seemed to spend a fair amount of time on the floor getting the cams on the bottom shelves tightened up.
Then we were able to use the longer section with a few adjustments. I think Dennis was secretly pleased that we had to make the adjustments because that gave him an excuse to use his fancy new Forstner drill bits to create new holes for the cams I mentioned earlier.
The Forstner bit ...

Drilling out the hole for the cams.  A factory-made cam hole was drilled out to use as a template.  The black line on the shaft marks the desired depth.

On the floor again ...
Dennis also had to shorten the cam screws used on the top shelves that link the corners of the room.  This was due to poor planning on our part, but we got it to work in the end.
Dennis wore out one hacksaw blade on this project.
With some creativity and adaptability we got the closet installed and it looks great. I love the shoe shelves. We even got some of our things back in the closet. 

We put a little piece of carpet on a shelf for Max.
Dennis has the righthand third and I have the lefthand two-thirds.

Not a bad weekend's work at all.


  1. Hi this is Dennis. A couple of annotations. This was a lot of fun. It strikes me that this was a preparatory step for Belize in that we will be 18 miles by boat away from the nearest hardware store (MnM in Independence) and so we will have to make a number of adjustments on site. The laser level is used and we purchased it on eBay for less thsn $45.00 and it made setting up the level really SWEET. This is good for interior work, but I also purchased on eBay a prof laser Dewalt laser level for outdoor use (as for leveling a pool and deck). The tripod the laser level is mounted on is a Bogen HD tripod that is capable of supporting a 4X5 film camera and was used in a previous lifetime (FTM Photography, Athens GA ca. 1985).

  2. Dennis - it will be a lot more fun to use the tripod in Belize than it was in Athens! Good deal on the laser levels.


    ps - is it totally strange to be posting comments to each other on my blog when we are sitting only 4 feet apart, or is it just me? ;-)

  3. Hey Wilma, Umm! If this closet kit is so good and makes the place look better, the question has to be asked, why didn't you do it whilst you were living there.? {:)

  4. I read your post with amusing interest. I've never done a job with out some unforeseen snag occurring. Dennis must have good DIY skills, your photographic coverage of the project was excellent.

  5. Hi Wilma,
    It looks like we are doing the same concerning post and discussion. Sometime we discuss by Skype with my second half while she is in the living room and me in the kitchen... Gosh you worked both of you terribly well this week end!!

  6. Roy - isn't it always like that - you fix the place up just before you leave? ;-)

    David - yes, Dennis is pretty handy. We view this as training for Belize where we will be doing a lot of work ourselves. I reckoned quite a few readers would have a feeling of deja vu.

    Chris - we were happy to start and FINISH it the same weekend. We are much better at the starting than the finishing ...


  7. A job well done Wilma :-) team work thats what I like to see! Good luck with the sale.

  8. DIY ... now that brings back memories. Excellent job well done.

  9. Warren - teamwork indeed; even Max the cat was "helping". ;-)

    Frank - somehow DIY is always better in memory!


  10. Excellent teamwork Wilma.

    Max looks very pleased with the result too ;)

  11. Hi Wilma and Dennis. I was just thinking that it would be good training for Belize!! LOL!! the end result looks great - well done you two.


Blog Readers -- your comments are invited. I would love to hear from you.