Thursday, September 03, 2009

What Excuse...

for not getting all the things done I want to...not keeping up with correspondence, reading, blogging, reading blogs, writing (yeah the article still isn't finished - not even the rough draft)? The problem is the things I need to do take over the things I want to do. So, mom's flooring is finished including getting all the baseboards, and such, back in. On to the next item on the list, the flashing repair thingy. Yesterday, I got the BIG step ladder up from the cellar and carried it 3/4 of the way around the house to find out that it is one step too short for me to hoist myself up from it on to the roof to do the repair. Carried it back down to the cellar and moved that item to the 'hire someone someday' list. I've thrown it together with getting a person to clean out the second story gutters and while up there hammering in two protruding nails. So, in all fairness and with consideration of severe budget constraints, I moved one of the 'hire someone' jobs over to MY list. That item was to repair/replace my leaking kitchen sink drain basket. Being the drain, it was not urgent, but I was tired of having a bucket underneath to catch the drips. How hard can it be to remove and replace the metal basket, the part of the sink that is the 'hole' and connects to the actual drain? Well, let me tell you, it was a pain.

But before that, since the flashing job didn't materialize, my mom didn't want a beautiful day to go to waste and strongly suggested that I tackle the window glazing on the shed window. Now, I hate glazing windows. I hate it even more when the window is a sort of permanent part of the shed. No removing it to a workshop bench. Glazing has a sag factor and is annoying to try to make work (read adhere) while working a vertical surface. Nevertheless, it got done. All sixteen panes are now reglazed. I think my mom can take care of the painting of the window once the glazing has set.

This afternoon it was time. Start painting 'A's room (yes, after six years she finally decided upon a color!) and fix the kitchen sink. About ten minutes or so before 'A' was due to leave for work, I disconnected the slip nut connecting the drain to the drain basket. I rigged a large screwdriver with a 'cheater' handle to insert in a slot in the drain basket from above to keep in from spinning while I tried to loosen the lock ring underneath. This was the cause of the leak, the lock ring was not tightened up (it wouldn't go any tighter?) and the entire drain basket could slip and spin around in the hole of the sink. Why this happened after six years is beyond my understanding, and a first in over 30 years of home ownership. I thought maybe something had gone wrong with the gasket or the plumbing putty, or both. So, simple, take it apart and replace it.

Wrong. 'A' held on with all her might from above and I tried to turn the lock ring from below. It wouldn't budge. We gave up and I took her to work. On my way home I stopped at Ace Hardware. I bought a new drain basket (in case of corrosion or whatever on the old one, I wanted no excuses for a second leak) and plumber's putty and I asked HOW to loosen that darn lock ring. Whacking one of the nubs on the ring with a screwdriver and hammer to free it wasn't an option, the whole works spun beyond anybody's ability to hold against the impact. I was presented with THE tool at a cost of $12.49. Still loads cheaper than a plumber! Went home and before I attacked the sink, I got a coat of primer on one wall of 'A's room so that it would be drying while I did the sink. 'A's got so much stuff and furniture that we can't actually empty the room to paint. There's no place else to put the stuff. A couple small pieces are in the hallway, but the rest just has to shift from side to side, end to end, while painting one wall at a time. While the primer was drying I got the new tool out and started in, again, on the sink... to find that the tool didn't work. It was too small. I grabbed the packaging and taped it all back together, pocketed the receipt, and headed back to the store to return the tool. After getting my money back, I asked this different salesperson about an appropriate tool and he found it. $9.99 later...the tool fit...but I couldn't manage both ends of the job. I couldn't hold the screwdriver with cheater while twisting the tool under the sink! I went back to painting while waiting for my mom to get home from a mall trip.

One wall, one coat of primer followed by one coat of paint later, and my mom arrived. It took more effort than imagined to loosen that lock ring, but we got it apart! And, as expected, a simple job to put in the new sink basket. Fingers crossed that it doesn't leak. Seems fine so far.
Now I've got THE tool if anyone needs to borrow it!

Oh yeah, now my mom wants me to fix her leaky kitchen faucet. Drat.

No comments: