Arched bookcases and Fireplace surround w mantle.

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It's DONE !!!! 9 pm on Friday night and I am exhausted ! I think I'm going to sleep late tomorrow.

Just finished full size drawings of 2- 4' wide x 10' tall bookcases to go on either side of a 7' wide Fireplace wall. Arches will be flanked with triangles with a recessed flat panel and cr

After several distractions I got back on the arches.  Had to make templates for the top and bottom curves. Getting the blanks glued up was a bit tricky but the came out with tight joints and dead flat

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I don't care about style & fashion when I'm going to work. Function and comfort matter. When I go out with my girlfriend then pants , shoes & socks have to coordinate with my Hawaiian shirt. Signed & dated in several locations like underneath or back edges.

10 1/2" deep mantle shelf. Somewhere I read a guideline based on how far above the firebox opening could a flammable shelf protrude. It might have been 1" up for every 1/2" out, but that's just off the top of my head. It's a natural gas fueled fake logs fireplace. Local building codes may vary.  The 5" of stone surrounding the firebox was also a consideration.

 I'm not a fan of TV's mounted over the fireplace but the seating is pretty far back. My TV is around eye level. Kitchen TV is at standing eye level. Builder installed a 1 1/2" flex conduit from behind the TV down to the side of the left base cabinet . Ceiling speakers , cable & internet come in from the back wall.  I cut out an opening about 1" bigger on all sides for each box in the wall. Used to try to match each box . I cut a single opening to encompass 3 boxes in the back wall . Leaves more room for the tangled mess of wires behind all the equipment.

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Glad to share ! Be very careful to consider the hours involved in creating a quality finish BEFORE you quote a price and delivery date ! This job tried to eat me alive. Client eventually realized this and rewarded me with a bonus that helped even though my expenses far exceeded my estimate.

Clients that hand you $50 on a Friday night after working late and say " go get a goood dinner, you earned it ! " are few and far between.

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Steve, I imagine trying to calculate the man hours must be daunting. On complicated and or larger projects I have asked for time and materials with a no guarantee estimate. With the money pressure gone I think it brings out better work. Not all people will accept time and material though. The fact is on a bid it can never be perfect on the number of hours. The customer or the woodworker will be short changed. On a firm bid we end up with an extra windfall or working for too low a rate. And custom work leads us down a path we have never been. It may be easy work but different so it makes it harder to calculate the time.  Time and material ends up the fairest with no overpay or under pay...If you can get it...

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I usually do modifications, repairs and retrofitting drawers on time and material basis. Cutting the panel out of a door to allow glass to replace it is a frequent request. Those I quote a range hi/ low.  Retrofitting drawers can be a nightmare, narrow cabinets and out of square openings & case sides are common causes.  All of this type work is only as it fits my schedule, some wait weeks or months. 

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