Monday, May 22, 2006

I put in a new sink...

My new sink... 'Twas gonna be like buttah, too. Really. I did everything the right way; I emptied the stuff from under the sink, drained the reverse osmosis filter, killed the water, drained the plumbing, unhooked the old sink, pulled it all out... I assembled the new faucet according to the instructions (Yes, real men read the instructions and follow them to the letter so it comes out right the first time...), and prepped the new sink according to the manual, too. It was all assembled and ready to go.

Now the fun part. AFTER I caulked the granite counters and aligned the clips on the sink bottom and attempted to drop the new sink in; well, that's when I found out that the new sink's retaining channels were set differently (read: wider) than the old sink; and also the granite boys had cut the opening to exremely close tolerances on the old sink; meaning I was just over 1/16" too shallow on the front to back dimension, and was so close on the side-to-side dimension that the sink would not drop in at all. Caulk everywhere, EXACTLY what I was trying to avoid. [There are two home improvement skills that I both loathe and suck at; paint and caulk - I am far too messy with them both.]

So, out comes the sink, and I had to improvise to make it work; in the form of physically bending the retaining channels just a bit, enough to allow the sink to slide (with some forceful prodding) into the opening. However, it would NOT fit with the retaining clips, nor would they install from the bottom, as I'd compressed them together and the clips would no longer go into the channels. The good news there is that the sink is now essentially wedged in; so between that, the plumber's putty, and the layer of caulk that will go in from the bottom, it won't go anywhere, and the sink/counter seal will still be watertight. But, I did mar the finish a little by getting caulk everywhere, and there is slight evidence of my metal shaping ministrations on the rear deck.

Where did I go wrong? Well, I was right by the book except for one critical misstep; I did not dry-fit the sink before applying caulk. That was pretty stupid. But, you figure the old sink and new sink are the same size, so if the old one fits, the new one will too. See what I get for figuring and not checking?

Anyway, the conversion from a double-bowl to a single large bowl is striking. It required a complete re-plumb of the drainage system, which was no problem, I actually had the stuff I needed in stock to do that job. The side benefits of this are multiple; There's more room under the sink, the garbage disposal is now no longer encumbered by a very restrictive T-joint (it is a full 1HP unit and it used to clog up on any carrot or potato peels; they'd jam at the T-joint.), and the new, more efficiently laid out plumbing run will flow better and allow less drain smell to waft backwards into the kitchen.

Plus, you can practically wash a Great Dane in the thing now. Abby could do laps in it. And it makes that side of the kitchen look a lot bigger, for some reason.

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