There are a few handy man jobs Sena lets me do around the house. They tend to be chores like Knock Down Furniture assembly. The most recent job was a small sofa table. You know, usually the companies send you a cheap tool to put things like this together. This time they didn’t enclose a hex head wrench—because they didn’t use hex head screws. The sofa table came with Phillips head screws—but no Phillips head screwdriver. No problem; I have one of those.
In the video I made, I mention the chin technique to use when you’re putting stuff like this together by yourself. You just hold on to the parts with your chin pressing against your shoulder. I don’t have a patent on it yet.
There are many names for ready-to-assemble furniture, including flat pack furniture, or knock down furniture. We’ve never bought IKEA furniture, but it’s the same kind of thing and there are a ton of memes about it.
I kind of like the name “knock down furniture” because it best explains how we feel sometimes after we’ve tackled a tough project—like the chair we got recently. It looked like a simple chair, but it came with a tiny Allen wrench and there were way too many bolts, two different kinds of washers, those fussy little barrel nuts that drive you nuts, dowels, screws and you needed extra tools besides the Allen wrench (well, just a Phillips head and a flat head screwdriver). I guess I got spoiled after getting a mini-rachet driver Allen wrench in addition to the manual one which came with the platform bed kit we recently got.
It took us all day to figure out how to get the seat back to fit between the legs so the bolt holes would line up. We came really close to deciding we’d have to return it. I installed the apron (the part which fits between the two legs in front and requires dowels for which you need a mallet) upside down. I’m not blaming it completely on the instructions—OK, I am blaming it completely on the instructions. Sometimes a thousand words would be better than a lousy picture.
By the way, I think Allen Wrench Arthritis (AWA) is a thing.
Contrast that with the love seat which was much larger, did not require any tools at all and barely took 30 minutes to assemble. We didn’t break a sweat. The only reason I look forlorn in the picture of me holding up the seat back is because I’m still suffering from PTSD after the little chair assembly.
I think the best knock down furniture piece would require no tools, have only 4 or five pieces to sort of snap together and take no more than 20 minutes to assemble.