It's Only A Little Bit Off....

Undo shenanigans. That's what we're dealing with here. UNDO shenanigans.

Let's back up a few months into last summer, I believe it was. Mike and I purchased what we thought was a 1/2" sheet of plywood from the DeepHo, brought it home, measured and cut it to our needs, plopped it in place, and discovered that it was not 1/2" plywood.

It was, in fact, we discovered after making some measurements and checking the markings on the plywood sheet itself - 15/32."

Now, you may think that 15/32 is not so far off from 1/2, (which would be 15/30) but when you're working on an underlayment for a floor and you have even the most minuscule difference, it makes a BIG difference.

So we got pissed and couldn't use the piece. But, we figured that it was just a flook. We picked plywood from the wrong DeepHo bin - or somehow it had been mislabeled, or that piece had been put back incorrectly, something like that.

Fast forward to last night. I had a coupon for the DeepHo, so we figured we'd head down and purchase the rest of the plywood for the mudroom floor. And low and behold the plywood was labeled as such: "15/32 or 1/2"

Or. What is the word "or" doing in that sentence? It should not be "or" and moreover, it should not be "15/32" It should be 1/2. But apart from that, "or" in there begs the question: WHICH IS IT?

In an industry where fractions of an inch can make your life and the life of your future flooring a living hell - why the crap would they do that? Even a big box store like Home Depot should know that they're just going to piss people off with undo shenanigans like that.

And so we're standing there staring at it.

We have in the mudroom already one sheet of 1/2" plywood. And now we're second guessing that piece. Is it really 1/2" or is it 15/32? Because if you had all of one or the other, life would be grand. But you can't have both.

And then we're thinking, well, is this Home Depot bin full of 15/32 AND 1/2? Are we playing plywood Russian roulette?! What are they doing to us?

So of course, with all these doubts in our minds, we left without buying anything - much to our aggravation. Upon returning home and measuring our already installed piece of plywood - it measured 0.4" and 15/32 works out to 0.46875."

And now we're even more confused on what to do. Another strike against big box stores. But what am I supposed to do? I shop there because I can use my Home Depot card. I suppose I should just get a regular credit card and shop elseware... but then there's the fact that Home Depot is open later hours (because everyone in the known world works 9-5) and all that. Plus the coupon!

Watch your local DeepHo stores! "OR" is on the loose! Along with a buncha fractions that have no place in standard construction.


Gene said...

That's actually common, and not just at the big box stores. It's 1/2" 'nominal' plywood, meaning 15/32" (instead of 16/32" = 1/2") is fair game. But it certainly is annoying if you get a mixture, or if you're expecting exactly 1/2".

Why the sheet you measured was only 0.40" instead of 0.47", I dunno, though. Probably more cost-cutting like 2x4s being 1.5x3.5.

kitrainia said...

Really?! Unbelievable. But the untrueness of 2x4's is a good example. I never thought about it like that.

Well, we're going to go back tonight (have to use that coupon) with our handy dandy electronic measuring device. We'll get to the bottom of this and report back soon.

gemteck60 said...

I;m having so much fun reading your blog, it puts me in the mind set of several clients we have saved from brink of disaster on DIY projects!

Hint: Don't purchase any wood products from big box stores, find the local lumber store and you'll find top quality products. A good quality 8' 2 x 4 costs $2.90 vs the $1.77 at bigbox but they are straight and true and are the foundation to a finished smooth wall.

Out here, code for a sub floor is 3/4" and we frequently use 1 1/8" tongue & groove plywood for larger rooms in old houses. We can deal with the height difference by removed just enough from the 2 x 12 floor joists.

I know you're close to tearing your hair out, just keep the faith!