Home DIY

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  • Thanks @Bobbo and @Airhead regarding the fireproof foam and putty. I think ill go for the putty in case the mice have an appetite for foam

  • That looks brilliant, my garden is enclosed with no access so I can't shift loads of soil, trying to work where I can get away with slimming the structure down that'll have the least impact on rigidity.

  • What do you reckon is the best way into the trade?
    I’m 30, have been self employed for the last 7/8 years as a museum technician, with the odd bit of building work thrown in. I’m reasonably capable (joinery, fabrication, dry walling, jack of a few trades, master of none) - I’ve got my own tools (mainly for woodworking).
    I kind of see myself as not totally useless (compared to no experience, straight from school candidate for example).

    Would any of this be usable in my favour to get a job with someone and train under them? Is that even an option? If you were to start from this position (no real electric experience beyond basic wiring), where would you look?

  • Looking at your design, I would at least try and get your bearers and joists to both be on posts, that alone would help the rigidity. I do think the cross bearers add a lot of rigidity, so even if you could get thinner profile wood under there it would help to minimise the bounce.

  • @Sam_w Current design doesn't even have bearers, those are noggings. I have seen some photos of it done this way, whether they are any good I don't know, but it does seem like a hell of a long stretch for the joists that aren't attached to a post.

    With 6" bearer and joists I'm looking at a total deck height of at least 12.5 inches right? Or am I missing something there.

    Edit, this could work. I'd use joist hangars to keep them flush with the bearers. Posts on galvanized shoes bolted in to concrete footings . The thing I don't get is how you support the boards where they run over the bearers. Mini noggings!?

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  • I don't want to stop Mr Sworld from answering because everyone has different experience to offer but I can let you know that the training to become a qualified electrician is available and can be completed for around £2k. You could then practice as an electrician without being registered with one of the trade bodies (Elecsa, NICEC etc.) It would help you to meet people in the trade while you are on the course. You need a few thousand pounds more to get kitted out with tools to practice on your own. You would also need to be extremely quick witted to learn the trade on your own in domestic situations! Working for less money and less efficiently while you learn to fix peoples problems in the real world is a challenge for anyone.

    If you take a course like that you can go from relative beginner to qualified in a couple of months. It's not a recommended route, you would be considered a five week wonder by most fully qualified/registered sparks!

    If you can find firms hiring apprentices you can train while you carry out the apprenticeship. Being an apprentice is about much more than simply learning the electrical code. You can discover a bit more about the kind of work you like within the trade, electrical engineering is a huge and fascinating field. Unless like me you practice as an electrician alongside another trade, you will probably need to find an apprenticeship. That's likely to be badly paid and hard work but it's pretty much the price of entry to the building trades. I'm sure there are firms who take on apprentices for work in large urban sites, I've not done much of that kind of work but there is a lot of building work like that going on in London.

    The purely domestic game is really more of an artisan field!

  • You really want to get the City and Guilds 2365 course.


    If you are really lucky you might find an employer who is willing to send you on it. However you'll probably have to fund it yourself and then look for work.

    Edit: Airhead said it better...

  • Although, on reflection, my route in was a bit odd.

    I was a sound engineer for bands and venues and knew enough about LX to do the job. I got a job at Brighton Conference Centre in my 30's and they wanted me to be a sparks as well so sent me on the 3 year C&G course at full wages.

    So it can happen.

    My advice though is go for commercial and Industrial. House bashing is a huge pain in the arse.

  • House bashing is a huge pain in the arse.

    This. avoid commercial house building at all costs. Its a race to the bottom with shark like pms / site agents that think nothing of sending small companies to the wall by not paying them so that they can recover a shortfall in their budget.

  • Yep Bobbo is right.

    And @Airhead @Mr_Sworld are right about house stuff as you end up trying to fix other peoples fuck ups.

  • Such as that time I Idiotically but accidentally drilled into a lighting cable one Good Friday. The sparky that came round had to dig the pierced cable out from behind a wire mesh embedded in the plaster, strip the wires and fit a fistful of WAGOs, then left me to make good, which involved a lot of non-slump filler and the rest of the Easter weekend. Happy memories.

  • My old man was an electrician.
    He fucked about putting extra sockets in for domestic customers
    on Saturday afternoons, (this was the early '60s),
    to help pay the mortgage.
    But crawling around under floorboards was no fun for a 6'2'' guy.

    Never saw him happier than on a building site.
    He got me a job as a labourer, in the Summer of '81, on the same site at Heathrow,
    where he was the Foreman of +/-20 sparks, still 'on the Tools',
    corralling everyone on the site to help move a huge scaffold tower
    to let him and his righthand man affix the conduit and light fittings
    to the underside of the roof supports, 3 storeys up.

  • at the risk of triggering some PTSD, i have a kitchen recommendation to ask... i guess homebase will not make the cut! we've recently moved into a victorian end of terrace which had the same (now elderly) lady owner for 41 years. i'd be lying if i said i didn't feel a little overwhelmed but i'm going to take it one room at a time and keep the same style throughout. first up is the kitchen.

    it's a bit of a crap space, sort of a galley but doors not in the centre of each end, slightly off to one side, so annoyingly difficult to have units which go right up to the wall. i don't know any tradespeople, i would like it to be inexpensive but i guess i have a budget of about 4-5k including fitting, i need floor to ceiling units rather than boxy standalone OTP ones, to make the most of the space. who would you recommend? i am aware there are sales on at Wickes etc until early Jan which has piqued my interest and i would be keen to take advantage of same

    on a related note, @tbc i'm also just about to do this with my floors! very interested to see how yours turn out. are you having to seal any gaps and if so did you use wood slivers or the M shaped silicone filler?

  • We had to go with narrower than standard for one end of our counters and just got some super heavy duty industrial shelving and put commercial maple butcher block on top. So you could have standard depth stuff in the middle areas (sink, fridge, oven) and go narrower on the ends?
    This is what we did for our reno on the extreme cheap end of the scale:

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  • Thanks, low budget focused things a bit, though we didn't have the time constaints that you do.

  • In the living room there aren't really any gaps big enough to make it worth my time filling them, but I'll probably use pine slivers elsewhere when I get round to the other rooms.

  • This stuff is better than pine slivers, easy to fit and not too expensive either.

  • That's pretty cool.

  • That looks really good. Thanks for the heads up.

    Insulation was a bit of a concern but that looks a much better solution than ripping all the floorboards up.

  • I've used it once or twice.

    Its great stuff I always over order as it's hard to guage how much you will use as you have to stretch it to get it into the gaps. Last time I used it I ordered the exact amount of the length of gaps to be filled and used about half. It wasn't a problem though because the customer service of the company that supplies it is excellent and they refunded me for all the unopened boxes within a day or two of receiving them.

  • Really like your kitchen, does not look cheap, looks well thought out and almost like a commercial kitchen.
    Which is a style I like.

    Especially like the worktops.

  • Lucky or otherwise, it's proven to be a good workspace, almost accomodating 2 people at the same time. If it was people other than my wife and I, would easily accomodate 2. Or 3.

  • Finally got the right parts together for setting up this little cabinet as a drill press/bench grinder station. Could be a little higher but pretty comfortable. Hard to see but the base is one of those units that can shift from 2 wheels plus 2 feet to 4 wheels for a change of position in the shop.

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  • Nice! Also great kitchen. Since not having so much space in the basement I also do have such solution, it is movable around, saw is same height as seconde table, etc. Will add also a grinder at some point:

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Home DIY

Posted by Avatar for hippy @hippy