Wednesday, January 30, 2013

No Power Tools, Please

We've had a lovely front room arrangement for the past several years, highlighted by our $50 garage sale couch and chair for which we paid too much and used for four years. They were a little rough, destined to become an excellent free basement set to the first taker. So ready were we to part with them that I included free delivery.

Mandy and I debated over how to replace the furniture. I was leaning more towards a "real" couch and chair that we'd keep for a long time. Mandy countered that we still have kids and we're still cheap. Hence, as replacements, a chair and couch were ordered online. They came in the big boxes that kids love to make forts. Fancy, I know.

They also required assembly. There's two things I don't like about assembling things:

  1. Instructions - It seems that all assembled furniture comes with instructions that look and read like they were produced by the King Julien lemur from Madagascar on a bad day.
  2. Cheap fasteners - For some reason, all the screws and nuts that come with to-be-assembled items are made of the cheapest, softest steel that will strip at the first instance. [insert your own suggestive joke here]

Both bit me on this project.


The couch required you to install six bolts with allen heads. The package even provided an allen wrench to use. That seemed like a lot of work to me. I also smelled another opportunity to prove to Mandy that the right tool is needed for the right job (so as to facilitate my next random tool purchase). With these things in mind, I grabbed my trusty drill and a 3/16 allen bit. I crawled under the couch, finangled feningled fenengled fanengled finagled the bolts in place by hand (no easy feat) and then cinched them down with my driver.

That is, I cinched all but one of them down. The last bolt cinched all the way down and then kept turning. My mechanical genius mind immediately immediately said, "that's not supposed to do that." So I unassembled the whole thing and found that the turning bolt had ripped the imbedded nut from it's resting place.

That's when Mandy pointed out the instructions.

"Do not use power tools to assemble."

Curse you, Julien.

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  1. Bahaha :) the new furniture looks nice!

  2. You should have contracted with the monkeys from Madagascar 2.

  3. Just tell her an idiot wrote the instructions and they put in such cheap hardware that you are going to need to go to the hardware store to replace the hardware (hardware that can withstand use of power tools).

  4. Thanks for the giggle. Ever wonder if the directions, which no doubt were in several languages, were any better in one of the other languages?

  5. You must hide the instructions if you are going to do a job without them. Then you can always be right!

  6. When I see the letters RTA, it's a good day to get the kids minded so they don't hear what curse words their parents know! I love that chair!

  7. Well, once you got it all together it looks great!

  8. That's great! You are not alone; I've done the same thing, using an impact driver to assemble an IKEA bunk bed.

  9. I love the "after" picture. your front room is beautiful!

  10. I have the best visual picture of a room full of lemurs writing furniture assembly instructions with diagrams ... It explains why sometimed you have to insert part A into piece 3.14

  11. Awesome blog and the couch looks great! Thanks for the laugh!


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