Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Wherein smartphones save my basement

I've lived in a different town from my parents for the past ten years. In that decade, I've taken up residence in four different places in Des Moines and it seems like every time they visit, we take on some tiny project that invariably requires a trip to Ace Hardware. From fixing a broken futon sophomore year to getting nails to hand pictures in our first house, family time is also fixin' time.

(Fun Fact: I'd totally forgotten that Hubs clued my dad into his plans to ask me to marry him at our neighborhood Ace. If our life was a movie, that scene would have had some definite foreshadowing music.)

This time, we were hellbent on hanging our TV on the swivel mount we bought back in February, when a finished basement was but a distant dream. The mount itself weighs about 80 pounds since we wanted the fully swivle-able kind, so we had to do some serious drilling.

The sight of all these half inch holes in the drywall I had so lovingly hung, mudded and sanded broke my poor little heart.

It was here that we first ran into problems. Having wired the basement on our own, we kind of knew where wires were. We had placed them behind thick metal stoppers under studs so we wouldn't do something stupid like drill a half inch hole into a wire and have to re-electrify the entire basement and heavily self-medicate for the next six months.

So when that middle hole was blocked by metal, we got nervous. We knew the metal plates where much larger than the area where there was actual wire (or in this case, cable), so we needed to figure out if the wire was truly behind where the hole needed to be or if we were good to just bust through the metal since that particular half inch wasn't protecting anything.

Problem was, it was really hard to see through the tiny cable box opening to see down inside the wall. 

Luckily, Dad saved the day with his idea to angle his phone in the cable opening and snap a few photos.

Just so you know, we tried all four of our phones, hoping for better angles and it seems my Mom's Motorola was the skinniest and therefore best suited to getting the perfect shot. Just in case you ever find yourself in this exact same situation, which I'm sure you will.

Here is the inside of our basement wall in all its glory.

We were safe! The hole missed the cable by about an inch and a half, so we kept on keepin' on.
Good job, guys!

Once we got that figured out, it was a group effort to get the bracket mounted and then place the TV, but now we have a bar-worthy TV set up.
The entertainment stand is now looking pretty naked without that honkin' TV sitting on it, so I'm on the prowl for something cute to jazz it up. I'm thinking seasonal crafty-things would be good, but I haven't seen anything that slays me just yet. 

Agree or disagree: hanging TVs is a terrifying experience?


  1. I have never hung a tv on the wall, but it sounds terrifying!

  2. AGREE. I've hung 2 of them and it was a non-fun experience. It took FOREVER.

    But your TV looks great. So it was worth the work right?? :)

  3. I like it, looks really good and yes hanging Tvs can be a pain LOL


  4. Well, isn't that just a multi-tasking device at it's best!

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