It’s Thanksgiving day, 2022 and yes, I’m NOT working!!
Yes, I do have hobbies, tho she wouldn’t consider it as a hobby. It’s architectural design. And I fricken love looking through website images of this stuff.
Today while browsing through some files, I came across this job I did in Sedona, AZ: This equestrian estate, built by an heir of William Wrigley, known as El Rojo Grande Ranch—includes equestrian facilities, a guest casita, a caretaker’s cottage and a park with a bandstand.
El Rojo Grande Ranch, featured in the Wall Street Journal, is one of the most exquisite and private properties in Sedona. Originally owned by one of America’s most iconic families, this pristine property is just 1.5 miles of west of Sedona. The original Wrigley family owner intendedit as a state-of-the-art equestrian center.
This home is especially iconic to me, as I did most of the work installing cabinetry, shelving, and the kitchen walls all out of Eucalyptus hardwood durring the summer of 1995. Eucalyptus has a distinct looking grain that catches the eye and fits well with most any decor. This job holds sentimental value as well. And I’d love to experience what I had when working there: an orange 1952 Chevy pickup. Every monday for 3 months, I would use that truck to drive from Glendale AZ to Sedona.
James originally purchased Hampton Bay Elgin White cabinets from Home Depot and wasn’t satisfied!
I met James through one of my ever-so-popular Facebook Marketplace ad. His house is in Prescott Valley, Arizona, about 5 minutes from mine. What he had originally ordered are thermo-foil MDF doors. Our cabinet doors are 5-piece hard rock maple.
The first contact I had with James was on August 9, 2022
Nelson Kitchen & Bath white shaker cabinets ordered: September 8, 2022
Begin installation: October 28, 2022
Project totally finished November 5, 2022
For the best convenience, we purchased Hampton Bay Hampton Satin White Raised Panel Cabinets from Home Depot – again!
At the initial request, I had assumed the we would keep the same original configuration which consisted of only one eight foot wall. But after doing take-off measurements, I realized that we could add double the size, as the wall behind the appliances wasn’t being used. And this being a flip home, she wanted the absolute lowest cost cabinets, so I ordered Hampton Bay Shaker Satin White Stock Assembled Kitchen Cabinets from Home Depot. And the 10th one was free!
I met Leanne via James Michener, who I did a kitchen at Chino Valley back in January. Her and I had never met until I was half way through installing these cases. Although, we did have plenty of conversing through phone & email messages.
This house is in Dewey-Humboldt and I’ve included a pitcure of a historic building at 13100 Prescott St, Dewey, AZ
The first contact I had with Leann was on May 12, 2022
Hampton Bay white shaker cabinets ordered: May 17, 2022
Begin installation: June 3, 2022
Project totally finished June 15, 2022
I’ll have to admit, Michele’s kitchen was a challange 🥺. She has custom made cabinets that have different sized face frame styles and she wanted quarter inch spacing between all doors & drawer fronts. We ended up buying four different back-set hinge styles 🤦!! I figured there was over one thousand calculations to get this job done, and I made a ton of mistakes. Michele took it all gracefully as I had to reorder 18% of the fronts 💰.
She frequently referred to this house as one of those “money pits 🤑,” where you just have to replace this BC you repaired that. They knew when buying this that there would be a lot of changes, and it was her husband’s full-time job doing most of the remodeling 🚧 hisself. One of the more notable changes was to remove most the wall-to-wall 96 inch tall storage cabinets that were piece-built in two garages. I would estimate that this amounted to a whole bunk of 3/4″ particle board scraps.
Her cabinets turned out smashing 👏 and she loved it!!
- Cabinet Paint used: Benjamin Moore Advance Semi-Gloss Paint Interior, Super White
- Shaker Cabinet Doors made and painted by: Horizon Cabinet Door Co.
- Soft Close Euro Hinges furnished by: Woodworker Express
Now that the kitchen was finished, Michele had another project for me, a set of bypass doors.
He had already purchased Hampton Bay Hampton Satin White Raised Panel Cabinets from Home Depot.
Nick, owner of All Affairs Contracting, contacted me at the end of June, 2021, through my Facebook Marketplace ad. When I arrived to install the cabinets, I noticed a design flaw and told Nick about it. His designer at Home Depot had ordered two 24 inch base cabinets for the seating side of the bar. These come with drawers, which are useless beneth a countertop overhang. We were able to exchange these for two 24 inch upper cabinets, with no time loss (I had to build a toekick for these). I also informed Nick that his cabinet package included several items that we didn’t need. Hope he got his money back (I’m sure he did)!
All-in-all, I think it looks very nice, very clean.
I have noticed that this type layout using 36 inch uppers, that leave a six inch space abouve the crown molding, is being featured more often these days.
Before I left the job, Nick mentioned that he has another project coming up for me to do. I hope I can continue working with All Affairs Contracting.
It’s not elaborate at all, we’re changing the stained wood into white shaker, but not touching the island. And we’re not done yet.
Bob’s project started on September 01, 2020. He’s been through 2 painter companies for his doors, and taking them to a shop in Phoenix for the third go-around. Today, September 10, 2021, I drilled the doors for hinges.
And I really feel good because when I went to layout the doors and drawer fronts, I only got 1 wrong, and Bob can probably use it as a frame for an artwork crafted by our local merchants.
I had finished the wall-to-ceiling crown molding on Thursday, September 02, 2021.
This is something I hadn’t done for over 20 years. And as sure as God made little green apples, I had zero experience at pricing this project. But I wanted to do it and gain this knowlege.
He wanted 6 inch crown molding, and that monkey is not available in our small town, so I had to order it. I ended up getting 14: 3/4 x 6-1/8 x 84 Primed MDF Crown Moulding pieces. More pieces equals more joints. Great start for underpricing this job. Next, we need to paint it and since it’s already primed, I get to skip that step – WRONG!! The primer was obviously laid on with a machine – very, very wavy. So now the trim has a texture that needs sanded (see pics) AND an extra coat of paint because 50 percent of the primer got sanded off! More time for underpricing!! Then I start the project with a return-to-wall trim piece – WRONG!! I should have started where the paint color changes (see pics). So this misstep burned a few more hours.
The job took about 30% more time than I had bid. Naturally, the joining of the crown took the most time. And about 75% of the way through this project, I realized that using a biscuit cutter would save time and even the joints out better.
I had introduced to Bob that we could use rubber molding for the curved bay window area, but it was a lot more expensive. I’m glad we didn’t use it, because you’ve only got one shot with this. Miss by over 1/16th of an inch, and I buy a new one. There was also no guarantee on how it would match up to the straight trim. I ended up making it with 6 pieces, about 17 inches long each to span the almost eight foot compass window.
I had unknowingly under bid myself on his wall-to-ceiling crown molding, but it’s no big deal,as I wanted to add it to my portfolio. I was solving someone’s problem, while I was prospering on my main goal.
Tony and his wife were intent on replacing their maple cabinets with white slab doors until I showed them the price difference, along with the quality, of Nelson Cabinets.
- The first contact I had with Tony was on June 9, 2021
- Nelson white shaker cabinets ordered: June 14, 2021
- Begin installation (demo): July 19, 2021
- Glass ordered on July 26, 2021
- Cabinets done except for glass doors: July 31, 2021
- Project finished August 28, 2021
The project was finally finished on August 28, 2021 … we had to wait over one month for the glass.
Being July in Arizona, and my backlog needing food, I accepted this job up north where it’s always cooler, even cooler than where I live, in Prescott Valley.
Harold got his cabinets and plans from a friend, and I’m guessing at a discount from Elmwood Cabinets, because I know what these would cost. A few of the components had me puzzled, as they were labled with abbreviated names of which I have never worked with. It’s like this: “Show me where the sink cabinet is. Oh, that’s it, the DSME638-B27MSB-EE3.” Come on, it’s aa SB27! The biggest surprise was the microwave cabinet which was wider than the oven beneath, as well as the microwave that is going there.
What really makes these cabinets distinctive is the double crown molding (on top of the uppers) and light rail (beneath the uppers).
But prior to taking these photos, I removed it fron two of the cabinets; I’ll get an updated picture of this soon.
Nelson cabinets are so easy to sell. I believe what attracts customers first, is the price, but then I tell them about the quality and it’s a closed deal.
This order had damaged and missing parts. Dino from Nelson Cabinets was quick to resolve the issue.
This covered her entire wall – 15 foot long by 9 foot tall.
We got the lower cabinets from Nelson Cabinets, and I fabricated the shelves and countertop from 3/4″ melamine.
The shelving is something I haven’t done before, to connect the components with some sort of KD fastner. I searched and found furniture cam lock fasteners, got the parts & the jig, and effortlessly pre-fabbed the project. I supplied a couple of photos to show how it’s done.
Cutting the melamine was a big part of the job when you realize that it took 15 minutes to rip an eight foot cut on my tablesaw! Yeah, we’re talking twenty hours or so just to cut it out.
To my amazement, it all went together very well, until I went to place the last end panel. I had machined the countertop wrong and had to make timly corrections. I fixed it as you can see here.
They choose FORMICA Laminate in Mineral Jet with Premiumfx Radiance Finish. This particular finish highlights the beautiful veining of stone and granite looks with 3D holographic facets that refract and reflect light.
Z and Andy run a custom bike & vintage auto restoration & repair shop in Prescott Valley, AZ
Z found me on Craigslist on June 1st of last year. He introduced me to Andy, who has coordinated the build. They needed somebody to restore the cabinets & panels for a 78 VW Vanagon. This will be a project for me that will likely take about 4 weeks of off-and-on work set between other works (mainly cabinets).
Tim had just bought this new home in Granville, Prescott Valley, and wanted to save some money on garage cabinets.
We ordered the conventional cabinets from Nelson Cabinetry, and I made the monster at the end of the garage.
The “monster cabinet” at the end of the garage was made out of 3/4 inch MDF & painted a matching gray color. The doors utilize sliding door hardware. Although the doors have pulls, I thought it would be a good idea to add chains to open the doors from the ground.
I run a few Craigslist ads to get work and that’s where Gina found me.
She had quite the list for what she wanted doing and had to narrow it all down to what was most important. But my 1st job was for her sister who needed an exterior blind hung, some curtains hung, and a large painting.
My 1st job for Gina was a fireplace surround using white shiplap (see in pics), which I did in September 2020. But her foremost project was to replace the countertops, and she would be painting her laminate cabinets. Gina was taken aback with the prices she got from Lowes and Home Depot: they wanted upwards of $3000 for Formica countertops. I supplied them for $500 (see in pics) plus laminate cost.
I also did her subway-style tile backsplash, hung a few lights, replaced a fan, some drywall repair, and framed a mirror wal
Custom Cabinetry with Floating Shelves with a Four Wall Scribe
This was a job for Ramido Alvarez’s residence. He is the owner of Home Tech Foundations Systems, Inc. I did a kitchen install for him about 10 months prior for a house that he flipped (one of my 1st jobs & didn’t get pics).
This is a job I got from Bobby Dixon, owner of Tri-City Home Improvement Pros. As you might notice, these cabinet doors are very different – and it’s a first for me, just seeing them. But of course, there’s no one who deals knotty alder up here in Prescott, AZ, so I had to go see one of my old suppliers in Phoenix, Spellman Hardwoods. They had it all: lumber & various 4×8 sheet goods I needed. They even planed the lumber to 3/4 (for a fee), while I waited.
I had to make 2 cabinets, 2 doors, a few pieces of trim, and I replaced 2 door panels with glass.
Farmhouse Paneling for Island Kitchen
This is for a ranchette in Dewey AZ. She has horses, chickens, and three prized papillon pooches.
Staircase for Karen with 45 Degree Slope
This is a bit more slope than usual, or what could be permitted. But we didn’t have any inspectors look at it.
Rustic Reclaimed Wood Outdoor Flower Boxes, and Picture Frames
I got lucky and found some FREE weathered fence boards. So I made some stuff – a planter box and some picture frames. I also made a rustic reclaimed wood sliding door TV cabinet with some of this. And I have more to use for my living room tables (coming soon).
I planned out the kitchen, and Thomas ordered the cabinets from Nelson Cabinetry.
You might have seen their ads on Craigslist. Their website is nelsonkb.com.
White Shaker Style Cabinets, RTA (ready to assemble).
- All Wood Construction
- Plywood box
- Maple Frame and Drawers
- Maple Wood Doors
- Soft Close Doors and Drawers
- High Quality Hardware Made by DTC
- Premium Full Extension Drawers
- Dovetail Drawer Construction
- Stained/Finished Sides
- Base and Wall Cabinets come with Shelves
We used quarter-sawn red oak, finished with Varathane Traditional Cherry gel stain and 4 coats of lacquer, to achieve an “antique look.”
When I retired from 50 years of carpentry (mostly doing cabinets), Glenda (wife of 15 years) and I decided that I needed a project. And conversely, our kitchen was in need of a total makeover. We started the remodel in mid April of 2018, and finished just before Christmas.