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Sunday, September 29, 2013

Chyrsnbon Hutch Kit- The Assembly

Last week I asked on the Facebook page if anyone would be interested in seeing a video on how to assemble the Chyrsnbon Hutch kit that I had purchased at the mini show. The response was fast and positive.

First let me take you on a quick journey with me. I have wanted to make this particular kit ever since I first saw one in a craft store many years ago. This is actually the 4th of these kits I have purchased and I am finally going to be building the hutch. The first 3 kits I got all had pieces missing so completing them as intended would have been impossible. I did learn that you can kit-bash this kit to make a nice desk (that's the desk in my Harrison) But what I really wanted was a mini hutch.

I don't remember the exact order of the trials of getting my hands on this kit but here have been my prior experiences.

Twice I purchased this same kit from craft stores that were closing out their mini departments. Both of those kits had been opened and were missing a lot of parts. You would have thought I would have gotten smart after the first time but no, I tried a second time. Those kits I ended up being able to put together one top part of the hutch from for a friend.

Another time I was on vacation and happened to find a mini store in a small town we were driving through. I didn't have the luxury of a lot of time to shop and look but did manage to do a very quick shopping stop. I was thrilled to have found the hutch kit in stock but when I opened it up after I got home I found that again I was missing major parts of the kit! This was the one I was able to kit-bash into a desk.

I think I have good reason to want the mini hutch, you see I have a real one in my own home and I really wanted to put a mini one into a scene at some point. The real one I have has been passed down to me through my mom's side of the family and is very dear to me. It was actually build by my great-grandfather for my great-grandmother as a wedding gift. After he passed away she moved herself and her two remaining children from Minneapolis Minnesota to Tacoma Washington. The hutch was one of the few large things she brought with her. We had never really thought about how she had went about getting the hutch that distance. That is until I decided about 25 years ago to refinish the hutch. During the years since great-grandpa had built it many (empathize the many) coats of paint had been applied to all visible surfaces. Lucky for me no one had bothered to paint where it was hard to see. As I was cleaning the piece in preparation to refinish it I noticed a small piece of paper glued to the inside of the top. I had to do some pretty interesting contortions to actually be able to see what it was. What I found was the mailing label that great-grandma had used to mail the hutch to herself from Minneapolis to Tacoma! For me that just made the piece that much more special. I was very careful to preserve that label for future generations too.

Anyway on to the kit construction:

First step is to make sure that all the needed pieces are in the kit and that you know and understand what each piece is and where it goes.

I later went back (off camera) and put all the pieces for each step into a separate plastic bag. This made the remainder of the kit much easier to do. I would recommend doing this as soon as you open your kit.

I started out following all of the steps in the instructions except for putting on the door handles and drawer pulls. In the middle of the night I realized I really shouldn't have put the “glass” into the doors since this would make the finishing step harder. On the bright side they popped out when I was putting the doors in place. We will glue them in better after the finish is done.

Have some masking tape or painter's tape on hand to help you hold pieces in place. Once I ran and got mine the task of assembly was much easier.

I think the real secret to these kits (like most things in mini) is to take your time and really understand what each step is and what comes next. Keeping that simple bit in mind really does make this easier.

I was really surprised that the instructions did not include putting the top of the base unit on. I did glue it on by running a bit of glue around the top edge of the base and lining up the top with the sides and back. Be sure to dry fit it before you get the glue out. (I could have sworn I had hit record on the camera before I did this step)

Next week I will show you how I am finishing this particular kit and talk to you about some other options.

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