A broken floorboard at the bottom of the stairs.

posted Feb 7, 2011, 12:22 PM by Jim Sear   [ updated Feb 16, 2011, 9:56 AM ]
Tuesday 2 January 2007
The hardest part of today was getting going.
The first job of the day was in Stone Cross, and was the work of a few moments. Changing abathroom pull switch was a nice way to get the year going! Its one of those five minute jobs that can go horribly wrong.
This one went as smooth as silk.
Back home to make a bucket load of telephone calls - still outstanding from the Christmas holidays. 
After two and a half hours I finally managed to get back to work.
Working in Eastbourne means that many of my clients are elderly. The number of times I have been called to a house to change a fuse in a plug, or fit a new light bulb must run into the hundreds. The next stop was in Sidley Road to do just that. Changing a fuse is no big deal, but if you can't bend down to get it in the first place, it becomes a nightmare. How I am not looking forward to growing old.

And so on to the next job over in Hampden Park. Carpentry is my first love, no matter how simple. A broken floorboard at the bottom of the stairs. The lady had already twisted her ankle, and so this was considered something of an emergency, especially as her invalid husband and her very elderly mother needed to use the stair lift to get to the loo which was at the top of the stairs.

And that's where the problem lay - under the stair lift! In order to lift the carpet out of the way, to get to the floorboard, the stair lift would need to be be moved.

Did I say earlier that the job of a handyman is simple? Perhaps I over-simplified.

After a lot of heavy breathing, I got to the root of the problem. Some moron (possibly the stair lift fitter?) had cut the original wooden floorboard out and replaced it with a piece of 18mm chipboard. Don't get me wrong there is nothing wrong with using the right type of chipboard, but in this case it wasn't flooring grade chipboard. The "flooring" had simply disintegrated under constant use. (Flooring grade chipboard is marked 'flooring' and no other should be used. It is normally available in 2440 x 1200 and 610mm sheets and in 18 and 22mm thicknesses with tongued and grooved edges for easy laying and fixing.)

So it was straight down to Alsford Timber for some real floorboards.
Within minutes of getting back to the job I'd finished! Cutting in floorboards is simple, it's the getting to them that can be the problem.

The last job of the day was in Rotunda Road to put up a wooden curtain pole over a doorway.
Her son had wanted to put it up over the Christmas period but didn't have the right tools, had given up trying, and left some large holes in the wrong places! An SDS drill made all the difference. After twenty minutes I was on the way back home for a well deserved rest having done probably 3 hours "work" all day. Four contented customers - that means recommendations in the not too distant future. Its a great life being a handyman. I'm off now for a cup of tea, I'll add more soon