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jpfulton248 02-13-2013 08:14 AM

Kitchen Cabinet Soffits
We had a builder doing a kitchen renovation for us. He suddenly quit for no apparent reason except laziness (we were paying hourly - mistake). Before quitting he framed and built soffits in certain places to match where there were existing soffits. He skinned them with masonite/hardboard.
Where one kitchen wall meets another at 90 degrees, we have an upper corner cabinet (One of those 45 degree angle corner cabs), so he built that part of the soffit with a 45 degree). There are two corners like this. In addition to those 45 degree seams, there are a few other "straight" seams where masonite meets that existing, plaster soffits.

Any ideas on the best way to deal with seams? Wood filler? Mud? Caulk?

I'm guessing it doesn't matter too much but I'm looking for the best/easiest method.

joecaption 02-13-2013 08:30 AM

Got a picture?

jpfulton248 02-13-2013 08:36 AM

Ahh... i figured that would be the first question. Not at the moment but I should take a few in the next couple hours and post. Feel free to hold comment until then. Thanks!

jpfulton248 02-13-2013 01:25 PM

Argh. Totally forgot to take a picture when I was at the house. I will post one asap.

Larryh86GT 02-13-2013 02:17 PM

When I remodeled my kitchen I built my kitchen soffits with a corner cabinet that also had 45 degree angles but mine were drywalled so I mudded and taped the seams.

jpfulton248 02-18-2013 08:24 AM

3 Attachment(s)
Here are some pictures of the soffits in question. Thanks guys.Attachment 65905

Attachment 65906

Attachment 65907

12penny 02-18-2013 08:50 AM

I'd take down the hardboard first and see what's under it.
Why would anyone put that up there?

jpfulton248 02-18-2013 08:56 AM

That hardboard was put up a month ago or something by the guy who was building our new kitchen. He framed out the new soffits with 1x2's or something and skinned them with hardboard. Basically we reconfigured some stuff and took out the old soffits which revealed older soffits behind (the soffits which you see painted in blue). New soffits needed to be built out in certain places to tie into the existing. The builder we were using was skilled with many things but also did some things a certain way which I would have preferred done differently. THIS would be a good example. So wood putty, caulk, mud? What do you guys think?

Incidentally our builder also peaced out abruptly about 3 weeks ago. We didn't owe him and he didn't owe us but he definitely left us with a slightly unfinished kitchen. :censored:

12penny 02-18-2013 09:02 AM

I wouldn't use the hardboard at all.

Take it down and skin with drywall,
tape and spackle.

No way to make that look good IMHPO.

jpfulton248 02-18-2013 09:05 AM

Argh... you're probably right. So unbelievably frustrating.

12penny 02-18-2013 09:09 AM

Don't you or a friend/neighbor
have someone that could come
in and finish it up for you. Shouldn't
be all that expensive.

jpfulton248 02-18-2013 09:13 AM

Yeah kind of. Not worth all the details but basically I know a guy who should probably be relatively cheap. Taking down that crown first would probably be the way to go so the taping/mudding can be done properly. That would also give us an opportunity to paint the underside of the soffits. If this were the only issue that had to be re-done/fixed-up after this guy quit abruptly it:


Shouldn't be all that expensive.
but unfortunately this is just one bullet point on a list.

12penny 02-18-2013 09:16 AM

I'm sorry for you. Next time don't pay
all the money.

My final payments are in the area of 5%.
Not enough to hurt but enough to make
sure the job gets finished.

jpfulton248 02-18-2013 10:18 AM

Right. We have definitely learned through this process. He did work for my parents: new kitchen with cabinets he built, he moved a wall a few feet and installed built in huge built in shelving, 2 new bathrooms all custom cabinets. My dad recommended him. We agreed to pay him hourly to start out. That happened for a while. My hope was to stop hourly and come to an agreement on a project price. I wanted to pay him some up front, a progress payment, and a job completion payment. Pretty much as soon as i tightened the screws on him he quit. I told him he needed to clear it with me anytime he was going to bring another guy (we paid $15 more hourly per guy if he brought other guys). I started checking him on hours, telling him exactly what I wanted done, in what order, I asked him what he expected to have done and then I called him at the end of the day to ask him what he got done and when he was coming back. He was famous for no-call-no-shows and short days. He had a 45 min drive or something (we had to pay him a drive fee of $60 per day) but then would show up for a 4 hour day sometimes. We are not currently living in the house so without calling him regularly it was hard to really keep tabs on him and his progress.

The more I vent the more I sound like a moron, but I'm young and have many years ahead of me to apply this unfortunate education in how not to get screwed by contractors.

12penny 02-18-2013 10:41 AM

[QUOTE=jpfulton248;this unfortunate education in how not to get screwed by contractors.[/QUOTE]

I hate that phrase.

Next time do your homework.
License, insurance, contract.

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