In fact, we got some pretty good walls, if I do say so myself. Mudded, taped, and primed. My dad built houses when I was a kid, and luckily I picked up some drywall skills through osmosis-- I sure didn't get any by paying attention. The job's not perfect and we still only have the primer coat on, but I don't think we're going to need to do any texturing (touch wood). We also got the lower cabinets moved into place. (Apologies for the blurry pics-- I forgot to put new batteries into the camera, so I had to use the phone.)
I have to give credit where it's due-- I'm a big fan of the metal reinforced inside corner tape. We bought it by accident at the hardware store, but it turned out to be the perfect material for one particularly wonky corner. Some previous owners, many years ago, tacked a modular broom closet onto the end of the pantry. I wasn't a perfect fit, so once the plaster was gone, there was about an inch wide gap between the wood broom closet and the corner stud, with nails spanning the distance at an angle...we had to bevel the drywall and then I did some fancy footwork with the tape and...voila! a corner with only a ghost of a seam. We also ended up with an outside corner that was essentially too big for normal metal corner beading. I used the paper-backed metal instead since there was nothing to screw into...So far so good. I couldn't find any installation instructions, so I just slathered on a ton of joint compound, pressed it into place and got rid of the excess with a trowel-- I basically treated it like any other taped seam. We'll see how well it stands up to the refrigerator door.
Then, after mopping up the drywall dust, we got to see the floors for the first time-- we'd never mopped up the water-soluble mastic, so it was quite a nice surprise. We did a little bit of spot sanding under the lip of the cabinets-- the water damage is pretty obvious, but I think a darkish stain will hide a lot of problems. Then we sanded part of the cabinets-- the facing is indeed solid wood, and a careful pass with a belt sander does wonders.
Still not sure what to do about our living room walls-- we took the chair rail off to open the room up a little (it didn't seem like original molding) and apparently there had been a lot of painting around the rail over the years. There's now a lip of built up paint. We sanded it down some, but the walls have been textured at some point. I guess we'll try to match the texture. Time to start sampling!
Still a lot to do, but we're making progress.
Victory Lap: Year Six
20 hours ago