Particle Board Makes for Shoddy Bathroom Cabinets…



Bathroom Cabinet

The kids are in school after three months of striving to drive my wife completely insane. After three months she finally has a chance to sit down stare at the wall, watch a movie, go back to sleep, basically whatever she wants to do. Does she take the easy road? Hell no. In three weeks she messed her back up painting the living room, one wall is nearly twenty feet high. She has played errand runner and repainted the downstairs bathroom. Me, I would be catching up on some movies…

By the way, this rant isn’t about my wife.

No. This rant is about a bathroom cabinet that Angela purchased from Walmart™.

No. This rant isn’t about Walmart™ either.

This rant is about the cheap particle board crap that you can buy just about anywhere. The stuff with piss-poor instructions, shoddy materials, missing pieces, and hardware without labels.

Now, on to the rant…

Angela purchased some bathroom cabinets from Walmart™ and wanted me to put them together and install them. Well, actually she suggested she put them together, but I told her to save me some time and just let me do it. Anyway, first off particle board and bathrooms don’t really mix. If you’ve ever gotten particle board wet you know that water breaks the glue down, the particle board swells up and becomes useless. So, first lesson is: particle board and bathrooms don’t mix, especially in the kid’s bathroom where bath time can look more like the Splash Town amusement park.

So, right away I knew this wasn’t right, but I continued on.

After making sure that Angela wanted to use particle board in the bathroom I opened the box up, pulled out all the parts and opened up the five page brochure that they call instructions. Nothing was labeled, but there were pictures. Like any five year old with a book, I like instructions with pictures.

Everything started out great. The shelves went in properly and I thought I was doing good, until I had screws that weren’t matching. I went back over the instructions carefully and realized I had used the hinge screws for the locking magnet. Back up. Pull screws. Put the correct ones where they go.

Okay, a minor set back, a mild aggravation, but nothing I can’t handle. I continue on.

Finally, the cabinets are together and all I lack is installing the door knobs. Now, the knobs are only about an inch tall. The screws I had for the knobs were about an inch and a half. Adding the thickness of the doors I figure it might just work. The screws might not pop through the top of the knob. They didn’t, but they didn’t screw down all the way either. Instead I hit a point where the screw wouldn’t go in any further and the knob flopped against the door with a quarter of an inch of screw threads showing. Damn cheap particle board cabinets. Angela looked in her hardware stash and found some screws that worked though, so life was again good. Not as good as it should have been, but good none-the-less.

Now comes the part that I had been looking forward too all morning. Mounting the bastard on the wall. The cabinet came with two wall anchors. You know, the plastic inserts that you drill a hole for then push the inserts into the wall and put a screw in to hold shelving and such. The only problem is that the screws were too big. So, when I finally got the cabinet up, pushed the screws through the back of the cabinet and got the inserts lined up with the screw I started turning. I didn’t make five rounds before the insert began to turn. Once they turn they are useless and will just pull out of the wall. This would have been funny if it had been happening to someone else, but unfortunately it was happening to me so I found no humor in it.

Again to Angela’s hardware stash where we found some toggle bolts. You know, the ones where you drill a god awful hole then pinch the folding wings of the nut and push them through the sheet rock. When they get to the other side of the sheet rock they open up and form an anchor on the inside of the wall. Yeah, those. The first one went in like a champ. Solid. Strong. As my luck would have it the second one sat right next to a stud or something that wouldn’t allow the wings to unfold on the other side. Cursing particle board, Walmart™, sheet rock, studs, Angela, myself, the kids, the dog, and all the little voices I could hear laughing at me I hammered that screw in then cursed some more.

Knowing that the second toggle bolt was more for show that actually doing anything I made sure that the first one was in there tight then I ran a sheet rock screw through the other side of the shelf so it would stay level. The cabinet is in place and looks good, but I would still like to take it out in the backyard and burn it just for spite.


I didn’t accomplish a great deal of writing today, though I did do some. Hopefully tomorrow will have better results.

Shaylee: Druid’s Staff
Word Count: 21,300
Genre: Fantasy
The second novella in the Shaylee series.

Word Count: 53,400
Genre: Dark Fantasy/Horror
Sword and sorcery dark fantasy novel about a city under siege by zombies. Completed but in final edits.

Finished The Dark Tower: Battle for Jericho Hill graphic novel last night. Awesome!


~ by bretjordan on September 19, 2010.

2 Responses to “Particle Board Makes for Shoddy Bathroom Cabinets…”

  1. Kudos for perseverance, Bret. I would have taken a hammer to the darn thing after the mismatched screw incident. 🙂

  2. Thanks, Myrrym!

    Had my wife not been involved I am sure the cabinet would now be a pile of ash in the back yard.

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