If you can’t be handsome, be handy

Without a access to a boat upon which to lavish my mad maintenance skills, I have been  knocking out the repair projects at home with alacrity. In the last two weeks I have replaced two of the original doors that had been molested by our dogs over the years and were looking pretty shabby.

Ladies and Gentlemen, The Doors.

Ladies and Gentlemen, The Doors.

This triumph comes close on the heels of my tiny bathroom toilet and molding update, wherein I replaced a 1964 25 gallon per flush American Standard pink toilet with an Earth loving 1.6 gallon dual flush unit.

As a recovering Southern Baptist, I believe that idle hands truly are the Devil’s workshop. Without a boat to potter about on, I could easily resort to loitering on some street corner with a pack of Lucky Strikes rolled into my T-Shirt sleeve, hassling passers-by. For this reason I am grateful that we live in a house that seems to be falling down around our ears. There is never a day that we can’t pitch our eyes in any direction and find a construction, gardening, livestock or automobile project upon which we may toil.

 

Melissa herding a wayfaring duck.Why he waddled into our yard, we do not know. We do not need, nor do we want another animal to care for.

Melissa herding a wayfaring duck.Why he waddled into our yard, we do not know. We do not need, nor do we want another animal to care for.

Imagine my joy then, when Melissa opened the door to the microwave oven and the handle came off in her hand. Five years earlier, I had repaired the handle with West Systems epoxy after a similar event. I continue to be impressed by how useful epoxy can be. At the time I was building our rowing pram Puddler and, as the saying goes, when all you have is a hammer, every problem is a nail.

This time, the handle seemed to be beyond repair. Besides, I had fixed it with epoxy once. What’s the fun in fixing stuff the same way over and over again? I briefly considered buying a new handle but was quickly dissuaded from this plan when I saw the price. $78 dollars for a handle to a 15  year old microwave? That, gentle reader, is not how I roll.

After the obligatory visit to Lowes where I stared dumbly at various doodads for an hour, I flashed on a solution. Melissa had salvaged some old teak (or maybe mahogany) from the marina gate about a year ago and we had some pewter cabinet handles kicking around the garage. I could post date the sleek, black microwave with wood and pewter and save a few bucks at the same time

Above, a bit of salvaged mahogany and two drawer pulls we had kicking around.  The old handle is below. the broken piece had been mended with West Systems Epoxy for five years before failing. A replacement handle was $80 dollars!

Above, a bit of salvaged mahogany and two drawer pulls we had kicking around.
The old handle is below. the broken piece had been mended with West Systems Epoxy for five years before failing. A replacement handle was $80 dollars!

So, long story slightly less long, I give you our new, kicky microwave door handles.

Not found in any store

Not found in any store

I sure hope Moonrise sells soon. I don’t know how much longer I can keep up this level of handy-manliness.

11 thoughts on “If you can’t be handsome, be handy

  1. Never fear Michael!! Come to Texas and we have a boat upon which you can lavish your mad maintenance skills. Also, we have a house that needs a bit of care and attention to prep it for the market. Your problems are solved!

    Loving the shot of Melissa as Laura Ingalls Wilder/Duck Wrangler.

    • That is so thoughtful of you. The weather in Coastal Texas must be lovely this time of year.

      Funny story about the duck. Melissa opened the gate one morning to leave for the office and this large, domesticated duck wandered into the yard. We theorized that he saw the chickens and figured “eh, close enough.” That evening a man and his young son were looking over our fence at the chickens. When I greeted them, the man asked if we had seen a duck walking around. Duck and owner were re-united much to our relief.

  2. He’s not just anyone’s handsome handyman, he’s mine. I think the microwave qualifies for some sort of steampunk award.

  3. That – my friend – is a creative work-around of Einsteinian proportions! I have microwave handle-envy. Especially as a lover of bees and dragonflies, and all things artsy. After seeing solid evidence of your rock-star maintenance skills on your teak cable conduits and drop down table on Moonrise, I needed no convincing, but this trick deserves an embroidered felt boy scout badge. And Melissa the St Pauli Girl chasing geese made me smile. 🙂

  4. I seen moonrise at the marina here is Olympia and she was looking nice, only she looked crowded. The broker has her all sandwiched in with about 8 other boats like cattle. I hope she won’t be banged up like that. If you like I can take a few photos for you. I’m not sure if that’s considered normal but I’ve never seen boats tied up like that.

    Michael
    S/V Harbinger

    • Yeah, she’s kind of crowded in. That’s why it’s hard to take her out for a sail right now. Still, it’s easy for potential buyers to see her and go aboard there. We haven’t seen her this week, but we’ll be retrieving her soon anyway. I appreciate the offer of photos but that’s ok. I will email the broker and make sure there are fenders between her and the other boats. Thanks alot for the comment.

  5. As a fellow Handy-Guy, not necessarily Handsome, you did a great job on those doors! and the handle is a great Idea, thinking waaaay outside the box on that one!

    and if you REALLY want to do some boat work, I have to remove my holding tank because it is leaking somewhere, and I need to troubleshoot and get my water system to work, and …. shall I go on? Just come on down to D dock! LOL…

    • Thanks John. I want to help you with your holding tank; I really do. But if I help you, you will miss the full holding tank experience. Stiff hoses, smelly fluids, impossible to reach screws. I just can’t deprive you of the special joy that comes from becoming one with your sewage system.

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