All posts by Sean Moenkhoff

SBW#19 – Quick Toilet Flapper Replacement

Every hear that slight little trickle of water running from your toilet tank to the bowl? That sound of the toilet refilling when you did not flush? Well, if you did, you are not alone.

One day I noticed my toilet in my bathroom just started randomly refilling. Since I had this same problem with a toilet in a different bathroom I had a good idea the toilet flapper was worn out.

At first I thought I’d just clean the bottom of the flapper and the rim where the flapper sits to make a seal. Maybe this was solve my problem and for a few days it seemed to slow down the problem but it still persisted. Time to replace the flapper.

Replacing the flapper is really a simple process and you don’t need any special tools (or plumber) to do it. Simple purchase a new one, remove the old one and put the new one back in the tank.

This is not for the faint of heart. You’re going to get your hands wet and you’re going to see the mechanical parts in the toilet tank. After all, what could be worse with dealing with a toilet – the clean side or the used side?!

The particular toilet flapper I use is a Korky Universal Flapper – namely the 2004BP model. It has a 5 year warranty, an adjustable float and is relatively easy to install.

Now the scare part once you have your new flapper. Remove the tank lid off the back of your toilet and reach in, remove the old one and install the new one.

Not so scary after all. Watch the video below to see how quick and easy this process can be.

Amazon Link:
Korky Universal Flapper – 2004BP

SBW#18 – Straight Edge Sled

How often do you go to use a piece of wood you purchased from a home center or even a hardware dealer and neither edge is straight? You certainly don’t want to try to cut a curve on your table saw and trying to guestimate a straight cut can be difficult and dangerous at best case.

So, with this handy inexpensive jig for your table saw you can create a nice clean straight edge on that piece of lumber that you once deemed not very good to use.

What you will need for this project is some toggle clamps and a piece of manufactured sheet good. I used simple 500lb vertical toggle clamps that I picked up from a home center and piece of MDF I had laying around. The length of the MDF in this case determines the maximum length of the piece of would you can cleanly cut. While the vertical toggle clamp links are not exactly the ones I used, I have provide amazon links to ones equivalent.

I simply mounted the vertical toggle clamps to a riser board and the MDF so I could clamp down material that I typically use.

The video below shows the process in which I used to create this and straighten a piece of material that was severely crowned.

Amazon Link
Vertical Toggle Clamp

New Portfolio Section

I have added a Portfolio Section under Woodworking to show off some of the projects I have done in the past. I am still working on getting all the projects and photos if I can still find / take them so it is incomplete. I hope to have this section done soon as time permits but wanted to get an update as to what I have been up to.

In addition with turn of the new year, I have made some enhancements to format of the articles I will posting to include additional images to say the least. The videos also have a new theme and format. I hope everyone likes the changes.

SBW#17 – Quickly fix LED Christmas Decorations

We’ve all had it happen before if you use LED Christmas light decorations or for that matter, non-LED ones. You plug in the set and some or all of them are not lighting up.

This quick video below shows how I quickly troubleshot and fixed a LED Christmas decoration. This time I got lucky in that one of my first steps of tapping or twisting each nonfunctional light appeared indicate the LED having the issue. This is not always the case. Many times I need to use the LED Keeper or Light Keeper Pro (for incandescent lights) to determine which bulb is causing the issue.

Unfortunately, this video does not cover using any of those tools since the tap/twist method worked first. Even though I did not use those tools I have went ahead and linked them below. They are pretty straight forward to use if you follow the directions. If I get a set that requires their use or people request it, I will make a video with them.

Below is a quick video on how I fixed this light up LED Christmas decoration.

Amazon Links:
LED Keeper
Light Keeper Pro

SBW#16 – How to Make a Table Saw Auxiliary Rip Fence

Have you ever needed an longer, perhaps a sacrificial rip fence on your table saw? Then you should read ahead.

This is exactly what I needed to perform some tasks that required a longer rip fence than my table saw provided. While the current fence I have is pretty versatile for a stock contractor rip fence it lacks both in length past the table top and the ability to really clap good sacrificial or tall fence additions on.

So, this where I decided to create a quick basic fence that allows me to easily clamp on additional height past my working area – since my working area not only is for the saw on the table saw but also for the router that is mounted on a table saw extension.

I made mine out of some scrap 3/4 MDF and some scrap Popular boards I had laying around after a previous project. The fence is 4 foot long and a few inches taller than my table saw’s stock fence.

In this video I show the process I went about making the rip fence in which I later use in my massive kitchen cabinet building project. I hope you find this video helpful.

Amazon Links:
Bessey 3″ Spring Clamp
Bessey Spring Clamp Set

Kitchen Complete

So we finally finished our kitchen renovation and move in. It has been a long process but it is with great joy that today, the final drawer front went on. This drawer front needed to be remade due to a calculation error with the bottom two drawers on the drawer stack – which they were supposed to be the same size but I neglected to account for overlay differences. Needless to say, they are done, items are back in their new homes and I’m ready to move on to the next project which is going to be a message center with a work space for a laptop.

Here are a few pictures for before the renovation… I had already removed the old cabinet doors so I could salvage the hardware.

Here are a few pictures of the after the renovation…

It is going to take me a while to process about 764 image and video files totaling nearly 400G in raw content. I plan on processing this down to smaller videos and subsequently a few other projects that spawned from these because of the need for jigs, how I did certain components, etc. I should start having videos as time permits but it is certainly going to take me some time to get of the project process. I’ll release videos as I create them not hold them until all the editing is complete.

Project Update

So it’s been almost a month since I’ve posted anything. There’s a great reason for that. I’ve been spending crazy amounts of time getting a new kitchen cabinet set complete prior to my kitchen renovation. After all, why buy inferior cabinets or over priced high quality ones when you can make them yourself right?

That said so far I’ve ended up with nearly 200 raw videos of making this entire set, which to meet the deadlines I have, leaves very little time for editing all those videos into my Kitchen Cabinet Series.

Once I get everything complete I should have more time to edit the videos and get some video content posted.

In the meantime however here are some progress pictures.

First there was one cabinet, then two, then three … you get the picture.

SBW#15 – Dresser Drawer Repair

Do you have a dresser drawer that has a bottom that has sagged down? I had this happen to me with both my daughter and son’s dressers. As it turns out the fix for both of them is really simple, it just required a little time for some glue up.

So, first things first – you need to unload the contents of the dresser drawer and pull the drawer out. In my case to remove the drawer was as easy as fully extending it and giving it a slight lift up at the drawer front while pulling out. This allowed the slides to separate and the drawer to be removed.

Once I had the drawer removed I just had to separate the back of the drawer box from the rest. This allowed the drawer bottom to slide out. My solution was to put a small strip of wood underneath the front of the drawer bottom panel. In order to glue it up I needed to remove any finish and stain that was on the backside of the drawer front. If you skip this part chances are the glue to hold the strip of wood on will not adhere. I used Titebond Wood Glue to glue the small strip I cut, clamping to keep some pressure on it.

Once the strip was glued in, I added glue to the groove the drawer bottom slid into and slid the drawer bottom back in. I then screwed the drawer box back panel back on. I continued by wiping up any glue squeeze out and let the glue set up over night.

Then it was just putting the drawer back in the dresser and putting the contents back in.

In this video I show what I did to fix the drawer. I hope you find this video helpful.

Amazon Link:
Titebond Original

Pause in Updates

First let me say it has been a while since I have made an update. This is partly in fact because I have several on-going projects that I am working on along with busy spring / summer activities. Several are complete but I have not had time to edit the raw videos into a nice presentation and the others are ongoing still.

So – what is done but not edited yet?

I painted the walls and refinished the floors in our spare bedroom. This is where we planned on moving our daughter into from her smaller child room. Here is just one of the pictures of the floor. After she was moved into this room I got a chance to do the same (paint and refinish) to her old room.

My son’s dresser drawer bottoms were falling out on 2 of his drawers so I need to fix them. Who hasn’t purchased clothes furniture that has 1/8″ thick drawer bottoms and not had issues like this?

I built a longer sacrificial fence for my table saw. This will be used for a project that I’m currently working on – Complete Kitchen Cabinet Replacement. You can even notice some of the rough Maple lumber to the upper left for that project.

So what is in progress?

Here are 5 of the 14 face frames I need to make for our new kitchen cabinets. The frames will be maple painted white with Maple veneered plywood for the cabinet boxes with a clear finish – at least that’s the plan.

SBW#14 – Graber Vertical Blind Repair

My vertical blinds started getting some slats that were no longer turning. My first thought was to replace the entire blinds so they matched the others in the house but after getting a price estimate I decided that was no longer an option. After all, fixing something many times is much more cost effective than replacing something outright. So I decided I would try to repair them instead

In this video I’m repair my Graber Vertical Blinds which have been in my house since I purchased it many years ago. I don’t remember exactly when but one of the center slats was not turning anymore. I pretty much just wrote it off as okay, I will ignore it or eventually getting around to fixing it.

As time progressed this one slat plus the how close my couch was to them started causing others near not to turn. Still rather than correct the problems we decided to ignore them and only correct the effects rather than the symptoms. Well as more time progressed the blinds became increasingly annoying to open or close because the slats were interfering with each other. Now was the time to address the issue.

Initially as I stated we thought about updating them to match the other blinds in our house – only to be shell shocked by the price estimate. We knew what the other ones cost but the estimate came in for this one – nearly $800 for just this one and not the same brand but a less expensive one. Yeah – no thanks and the decision became can I repair them. I fixed the stems but didn’t realize there was a missing scissor track gear when I ordered my parts.

This video illustrates how I went about replacing the failed components which took less than 60 minutes to complete.

Parts Used

VB-STEM – Vertical Blind Carrier Clip from Fix My Blinds.