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Monday, November 22, 2010

Mother's Day Screen Door

Normally, a screen door project takes me two maybe three days to complete—start to finish but this door took me six days straight! The reasons it took me so much longer are somewhat simple to understand but very diffiucult to imagine. I began the door by chalking out the design. The design is much more complicated than my normal designs but it’s for my Mom so I planned on taking my time and doing it perfectly (yeah, right!). All went fine with the chalking and the jigsawing. I spent days dremeling all the detail into the pine tree, adding texture to the rock cliffs, enhancing the deer, and finally tucking an owl into the other tree. And then came time to router the oval “frame” into the door. This is where things began to go terribly wrong. My router managed to squeeze up under my oval template and carved a chunk out of the frame. With the help of all the Lumberjocks I figured out how to do my first patch job. It took me three hours of increasing valuable time but I was satisfied for my first attempt. But that wasn’t the only router mishap and the next was even worse!

So I flipped the door over to router a channel for the screen and screen spline to sit into. I’ve done it many times before. However, this time my router wiggled a nut loose and it PLUNGED through the door right into the “V” of the oval frame (luckily not near the patch job). This would be understandable if I had a plunge router but I did NOT! I nearly cried. How could my router hate me so much? After a second of self pity I took a deep breath and repaired the plunge with my second patch job (and this one was impossible to see—I must learn quickly—LOL). Hubby came home, listened to the story and suggested that even though I normally round over all the edges in my designs with the router…maybe I shoud skip that step. I agreed. So I stained the door with the base coat color (Minwax Gel Stain Antique Maple). After which I added the pine cone and branch dremel-ed detail. And then the rest of the stain colors overtop and then coat after coat of poly.

Now all that’s left is to attach the screen and add the wooden frame for the back of the door. Simple, Right? WRONG! My spline and screen refused to stay put. I tried glue and then resorted to staples something I’ve never had to do before…Darn that router! Once the screen was on and tightly stretched we attached the back frame. Using the same screws that we used on the last door. Four screws came through the front of the door slightly! Can you believe it? I couldn’t. Neither could my husband. A small (not even noticable mistake) that nearly sent me over the edge of sanity! So, not having smaller screws available at 9:00 p.m. on the Eve of Mother’s Day we decided to set the screws in at an angle…and pray. We were lucky and had no more issues. And the Door was Done! Finally!!!

We went to breakfast with Mom and just after my kids and hubby went out to the truck I said, “Oh, I forgot to give you your gift!” I reached into my purse and produced a small box. She could not understand why I had given her two packages of hinges…until she got to her truck!

Needless to say…She was very happy and refuses to see ANY mistakes. And what did I get for Mother’s Day...Hubby bought me a brand new Craftsman Plunge Router!  What a great hubby!