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Custom oak

Started: 2010-01-10 09:17:52

Submitted: 2010-01-10 09:50:51

Visibility: World-readable

When Kiesa and I ordered a custom entertainment cabinet at the beginning of November, the salesguy told us it would probably take twelve to sixteen weeks for our cabinet to be delivered. I wondered whether the Great Recession would affect the timetable, since furniture is one of the biggest casualties because Americans are moving less and needing less furniture. My suspicions were confirmed a week before Christmas when the salesguy called me to let me know our cabinet was in and to set up a delivery. I didn't have my calendar in front of me, so I told him I'd call back to set up an appointment.

I didn't actually manage to call back until I was back at work last week. (Since we were out of town for Christmas and New Year's, we wouldn't have been able to accept delivery until last week anyway.) They had a Saturday delivery slot, which I accepted. Friday night I set out to clean out my old cabinet, consisting of a cabinet and a printer stand both picked up off the side of the road and a cheap Walmart bookshelf for storing DVDs.

The old entertainment cabinet
The old entertainment cabinet

The new cabinet arrived Saturday morning just as I was sitting down for breakfast. One delivery guy noted how perfectly the cabinet fit in the space allocated for it, and the other delivery guy noted the straight shot into the house from the front door. I paid the balance on their hand-held point-of-sale terminal and wondered whether it was using a cellular network to verify my credit card.

(We configured the cabinet to match our existing living room furniture as much as possible, but once it was delivered I saw that the "wheat" stain was at least two shades lighter than the oak coffee table. In practice this shouldn't matter; the style is identical and it's close enough that it's hard to care.)

The newly-delivered entertainment cabinet
The newly-delivered entertainment cabinet

I set out to configure the cabinet, starting with the cable access ports. The salesguy told me the delivery guys would be able to cut my access ports, but I decided I'd rather do it myself once I had the opportunity to study the cabinet and how my A/V stack would fit in it. I visited my local hardware store to pick up a three-inch hole saw and returned home to modify my new cabinet. I cut one hole at the bottom of each cabinet and one additional hole in the middle of the left cabinet. I set up the printer in the right cabinet and the A/V stack (consisting only of my Mac Mini, a receiver, and a DVD player) in the left cabinet.

The new entertainment cabinet
The new entertainment cabinet

I'm not totally satisfied with the placement of my speakers on the top of the cabinet (especially the subwoofer), but I'm not sure what my other options are. I was worried about the standing lamp, but it looks like there's enough clearance under the cabinet for the base of the lamp, and the cabinet may even keep Calvin from knocking the lamp over. I still need to tie the television onto the cabinet to keep it from falling over, though it's much harder for Calvin to reach in its current position.

I'm happy with the new cabinet. It raises the level of decorum in my living room and should serve us well for decades.