So I had all these grand plans about how we were going to take out the old cabinets in the kitchen ourselves. After all, they make it look so easy on HGTV (ha) and since we certainly weren’t going to try to salvage a darn thing from the old kitchen, if we had to smash them up a bit, so what.
Uh. Yeah. Not. My dad came over yesterday morning and the three of us started taking apart the smallest little cabinet next to the stove, just to get an idea of how they were put together. That’s when we discovered that even though the facing on the cabinets is perfectly hideous and poorly done, the actual cabinets themselves are very, very sturdy. Unlike stock cabinets, which are built off-site and then screwed or hung into place, these suckers were built in place, layer by layer (the construction of the cabinets, and the good quality of the wood their maker used also suggests that they are even older than we’d originally guessed – they’re not original to the house, but they’ve most likely been there for at least 50 or 60 years). There is no simple way to remove them, short of literally tearing them apart, piece by piece, with crowbars and sledgehammers. Oh, and that oh-so-lovely countertop with the hideous brown speckled tile and the gritty black grout? It’s installed over a nice fat steel frame, filled with cement. Whoever built those things had even worse design sense than I do (and that’s saying something) but he was bound and determined that once they were in, those cabinets were *staying*.
We managed to get that one cabinet out and disconnect the stove and drag that off to one side, but that was enough to make us realize that there was no way we were going to be able to demo the rest of it ourselves, especially considering the weight of those counters. So…we are going to leave the demolition of the kitchen to people who actually know what they are doing. Ah well.