Ok, as promised in my last post, I am going to give you the secret on how to properly cut crown molding.
I will give you some instruction because the directions you see online can be kind of confusing. First, I want to give you a little piece of advice. When you begin to make your cuts, DO NOT THINK. That’s right…the minute you start thinking of how the cut is supposed to come out, you will screw it up. I have been using these directions for over a year. Every cut has come out perfectly. The first cut I made today I totally screwed up because I tried to get fancy and actually consider what the angle was supposed to look like when it was done. Don’t do it. Just follow these directions. For some reason, our brains just aren’t wired for this type of work.
Image courtesy of Home Depot
When making my cuts, I like to keep the blade vertical. This means that I have to lay the molding on an angle. So, let’s say you want to make a cut on the right side of your molding on an inside corner. Ok, easy enough. Here’s the tricky part. Hold your molding in your hand the way it will be placed against the wall…as if you were actually holding it in place in the corner. Now, take the molding and flip it over so now the left side is on the right and vice versa. Your molding is now upside down, with the good side still facing you. Place the molding on the saw this way, on an angle like above, with the good side facing you, like above. Make your cut. DON’T THINK…just make your cut. Now, flip the molding back over and hold it against the wall and notice that the cut has been made to perfection. It really is that easy. Keep trying different cuts and you will see that the less you think and the more you follow these directions, the better they come out. My advice to you is that you practice on a few pieces of scrap before you start cutting up the good stuff.
Hanging Crown Molding in the Bathroom
I tackled the crown moulding in the bathroom last night. Have I told you that I really hate hanging crown moulding?
The room is almost exactly 5’x9′. It’s not too big, so I couldn’t cheat with two pieces of moulding per wall. I had to cut one piece each. This was easier than I thought, so it wasn’t too bad. I cut the pieces a little longer than necessary and then just kept trimming them until they fit snugly. I did run into a little issue though…For each piece, I drilled the holes for the finishing nails. I hammered all the nails in all around the room and wham, the last one didn’t go in. I kept hitting it and it bent. I use caulk to fill the gaps and nail holes anyway, so I tried to hammer the bent nail so it would sink into the moulding. Well, that didn’t work out too well. The nail is slightly sticking out. I am going to cover it up with caulk, paint it and give it a name for character. It’s in a hidden part of the room anyway. Otherwise, everything came out pretty well.
I will take some photos when I get it all painted up and looking nice.
Hanging Some Window Molding
I had a few things to get done today. One of them was to go to the appliance store and buy a dishwasher. The other one was to fix the windowsill in the kitchen and to hang some window moulding.
I did buy the dishwasher. I went over to the store, walked in and told the guy I wanted a cheap (inexpensive) dishwasher. He led me to two inexpensive ones. They were about $279. I picked out the Frigidaire somethingorother. I put up a little fuss about the price and he gave it to me for $230. That’s not bad. Lowe’s sells the same thing for $228, but this place delivers for free. That’s the kicker. It should be here in about a week. They didn’t have a black one in stock so they have to find it. The whole visit took about ten minutes and the majority of it was waiting for him to come over and say hello. What the heck do I know about dishwashers, besides the fact that I don’t want to pay a lot for one?
I also fixed up the window in the kitchen. I had to trim the windowsill about an inch, because the counter top was a little high. I also hung the moulding around the window. Here, take a look at my handiwork…
This is the before. Eeeewww…how ugly.
This is the after. Wow!!! How beautiful. And I’m not just saying that.
My New DW703 DeWalt Miter Saw and Hanging Molding
Guess what I got today? I have been wanting this particular tool for years. Last Autumn, when I was hanging molding in one bedroom and building a new front porch, I borrowed my friend Craig’s miter saw. Recently, like a bum, he came back and grabbed it for something he was working on. Since Winter is coming up, I decided it might be a good idea to finish the molding in the rest of the house. With molding, it is a good idea to do room by room, so you don’t go broke. Well, this morning, I broke down and went to Lowe’s and picked up a DW703 DeWalt Miter Saw. I also picked up about a hundred feet of molding for around the windows and doors of the bedroom.
I made some cuts on the moulding to test out this saw. Wow…what a smooth operator. The thing I like about DeWalt is that they offer many attachments to go with their tools. There are so many cheap brands of tools out there, but after I had my experience with my Black & Decker rip saw (I had to return twice because I blew the bearings), I decided to buy only quality from now on.
As I mentioned above, I started hanging the moulding in the bedroom today. I want to give a few tips, one of which I learning this morning from my father. Here is a picture of the windows before anything is done to them:
The first thing I do, whenever I start a molding project is to grab a piece and make some marks on the walls where the molding is supposed to go. This helps later on when I need to make some marks on the molding itself before cutting it, as well as when I am ready to nail it to the wall. I line the marks up with the corners of the windows or doors, whichever I am working on at the moment.
I make these marks by using the molding itself as a straight-edge. After I make the marks on the wall, I mark up the molding. Notice on the photo above that I mark where I want to make the cut as well as the angle it is supposed to be cut. I do this on both sides. I am sure you can imagine how many people cut their angles the wrong way. This is just an error proof move.
Ok, I have cut all my pieces with my new miter saw and am ready to hang. I use the marks that I made earlier on the wall to line up the molding vertically and horizontally. Then I use a 5/64″ drill bit to drill 4 evenly spaced holes in the molding only…not the wall. This is what I learned from my father this morning. It stops the molding from splitting. Also, the material that this stuff is made out loves to make it difficult to get my 1 1/2 inch finishing nails started and who like bent nails after whacking them a few times…
After I placed the molding on the wall, one piece at a time and put the nails in the holes, I use a 1/32″ nail set to hammer the nails in the wall. This reduces the chances of those lovely hammer marks and dents in your new molding.
After a few minutes of work, I was pleased to see such a wonderful result.
Now, All I need to do is to caulk the corners and nail holes with white caulk and paint the molding white. Next…the crown molding and the base molding. I am going to do a post on how to install crown moulding, because I have the secret as well as a guide you can look at. Adios.