I got a gnarly set of tools
October 24, 2006 7:13 PM   Subscribe

I was prepared to sneer at you... Then I saw this.
posted by boo_radley at 7:26 PM on October 24, 2006

I'd like to meet the guy who thought that this was a good idea. Or this. Or this one (personal favorite).

In Canada we have this show called "Holmes on Homes" where Mike Holmes (a famous contractor) keeps finding those kinds of thing in people's homes, and fixes them.
posted by clevershark at 7:32 PM on October 24, 2006

The one with the light switch inside the shower rules.
posted by mathowie at 7:33 PM on October 24, 2006

The one with the light switch inside the shower rules.

Ditto. It looked like something I would have done, proud of my incredibly creative efficiency.
posted by docpops at 7:38 PM on October 24, 2006

I grew up iin a house that had a bare lightbulb in the shower stall .... with a pull chain.

Mom said never touch it, and we didn't, but it was like that until I sold the house decades later.
posted by sageleaf at 7:39 PM on October 24, 2006

I thought this one was actually quite resourceful!
posted by mr_roboto at 7:39 PM on October 24, 2006

I'm a particular fan of the horizontal water heater. Hehe... (as long as it isn't my house)
posted by sbutler at 7:39 PM on October 24, 2006

This one reminded me of our new place. There had been a hasty renovation, and several jobs were left partially finished. In one shower, the pipes had been merely dry-fitted, never soldered, and in another, the cold-water supply hadn't been turned on.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:45 PM on October 24, 2006

While this is funny, it cuts a little to close to home for me. My father is a typical 'born in the backwoods' southerner who can fix his car, house or wife with duct tape and epoxy. He did all his own plumbing, roofing and electrical work. Pipes leaking? Liberally use duct tape. Gasket rotted out in the car engine? Construct one out of duct tape using the old gasket as a pattern. Muffler get a hole in it? Use a coffee can to patch. Happily he has lived in the same house (trailer) for a long time and there has never been in any danger of a home inspection.
posted by UseyurBrain at 7:55 PM on October 24, 2006

I see we have two contestants for President Bush's Clean Air prize:

The runner-up

The winner, who edges past the competition by being dangerous *and* wasteful.
posted by clevershark at 8:06 PM on October 24, 2006

My coworker built his cabin and the 'burp' pipe from the septic system opened up just below his fancy deck. Nothing says family barbeque like the stench of raw sewage.

Holmes on Homes is an awesome show, especially for someone, like me, who plans on building a home.
posted by Kickstart70 at 8:17 PM on October 24, 2006

Outstanding! Why am I not so clever?
posted by Holy foxy moxie batman! at 8:41 PM on October 24, 2006

Nice to know that my house isn't the only one that's been put together by people who have absolutely no business putting houses together. Scary stuff.

Make sure you get a good house inspection before buying!
posted by fenriq at 8:41 PM on October 24, 2006

Outstanding! Why am I not so clever?

Wouldn't the radiator actually dissipate the heat from the hot water? A bit like the flue-next-to-the-AC photo.
posted by clevershark at 8:56 PM on October 24, 2006

That jerry-rigged 220V plug terrifies me. I gasped when I saw it and now I'm worried about my own dryer killing me.
posted by boo_radley at 8:58 PM on October 24, 2006

I'm laughing, even though my house contains a number of things that are not quite this amusing, but in the same league. I figure it is confidence building. There is no repair I can do that is worse than what has already been done around here.
posted by QIbHom at 9:18 PM on October 24, 2006

The Mike Holmes fan forum is worth registering for for this thread on electrical screwups alone.
posted by davey_darling at 9:18 PM on October 24, 2006

Wouldn't the radiator actually dissipate the heat from the hot water?

I do believe that was exactly the point. Hydronic heating, Ozark Style.
posted by vaportrail at 10:29 PM on October 24, 2006

I'm absolutely addicted to Holmes on Homes, but the sappy John Hughes-era muzak, which comes on when he finally brings the homeowner back to see what he's done, is a total buzzkill.

The lightswitch in the shower is totally awesome, I agree.
posted by jimmythefish at 12:25 AM on October 25, 2006

Give it 100 years and these will all be "original features exuding period charm."
posted by rhymer at 1:26 AM on October 25, 2006

The one with the light switch inside the shower rules.

Our house had that when we bought it. Getting it removed was the very first thing we did. (The previous owner was an old guy who was obviously the fix-it type; there were tool shelves and hooks everywhere. And pencil sharpeners. Dude was seriously into sharp pencils; I think there's even one in the tool shed out back.)
posted by languagehat at 6:00 AM on October 25, 2006

This comes too close to home for me too. We only just recently were able to sell a property that was full of stuff like this (which we did our best to fix!). It has to be said that Home Depot and it's ilk have a lot to answer for by encouraging people with slogans like "You can do it!"

No, some of them really can't, and shouldn't!!
posted by Zinger at 7:32 AM on October 25, 2006

davey_darling - thanks for the link! found this gem, which pretty much beats all the examples in the OP
posted by jeffmik at 9:03 AM on October 25, 2006

The lightswitch in the shower is totally awesome, I agree.

Then you'll probably like this shower, which I actually used.
posted by The corpse in the library at 9:53 AM on October 25, 2006

Did you guys see this though? Also on This Old House

posted by got2SEEEEthis at 10:09 AM on October 25, 2006 [1 favorite]

Holmes on Homes scares the absolute crap out of me. I am a decent handyman, generally do things sensible, and Holmes has made me *more* of a do-it-yourself (with some good information of course) then less of one when you see what a bad contractor can do.
posted by Bovine Love at 11:05 AM on October 25, 2006

My last house had been built by one of these geriatric Tim Taylors. Despite having it inspected, 3 weeks after we moved in, a goodly part of the second floor fell into the downstairs living room. Apparently, there had been some duct tape plumbing going on. And the bastard who sold us the house died before we could sue.

That's why I had this house built, and was on site almost every day. You'd be astounded at the things I had to have ripped out and done again because the builder's just don't care if it falls down once you sign the contract. They know you have almost no ability to get your money back. But in my case, I sent my contracts over to Thompson Knight before I signed them, and they took out all the arbitration clauses and all kinds of other clauses that pretty much said the builder could pile crap onna stick and tell you the house was done, and you were screwed. So, the builders would get mouthy and I'd say, "Ok, give me my 100k deposit back, and you can sell this pile of bricks to someone else...or...you can do it right, and we can move forward." I was probably the builder's worst nightmare; a woman who could hang drywall and spoke enough Spanish to be able to talk to the crew.
posted by dejah420 at 12:02 PM on October 25, 2006

We own rental property, and it's astonishing how much professional work can look like this, at least in renovation. (I don't know from new construction, but I wouldn't be surprised anymore.) It will take us years to undo it all (we'll probably sell 'em first ... assuming we can).
posted by dhartung at 3:33 PM on October 25, 2006

I'd just prefer that he not mix up the legitimate resourceful fixes with the idiot non-fixes and disasters-waiting-to-happen, speaking of both types with equal contempt. Some of those DIY jobs appear fully up to the task, yet are derided seemingly for mere non-conformity with a traditional or no-expense-spared solution.
posted by -harlequin- at 7:02 PM on October 25, 2006

The fried rat in the electrical panel is pretty common, rodents love electricity. I used to average about 1 mouse a month out of either a dryer or a range.

Though unorthodox I don't really see much problem in the rad hose drain pipe. They sell similiar (though shorter) things for joining cast pipe to other materials. And really, what is the difference between a 10"x10" and a tree trunk.

I've collected quite a few of these dangerous "improvements", both in person and off the net. My net favourite is this floating extension cord. Apparently the guy was using it in his pool. Oh and this amazing display of electrical prowess.
posted by Mitheral at 7:58 PM on October 26, 2006

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