Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Word for the day: cull (as in Home Depot)

Merriam-Webster's online dictionary gives discard as a synonym for the word cull and that's what I'm focusing on today.

You see, Home Depot has a selection of cull in their lumber department, and, each individual piece is only . . . wait for it . . . $0.51. That's right. 51 cents. Barely over half a dollar. BARGAIN! The cull section is usually at the back end of the store near their cutting station and all the pieces have been sprayed with green paint on one end to mark it as cull for the cashiers.

This is their stash of unsalable wood products (like Trex, MDF [Medium-density fibreboard], shelving, etc.) that, once you find out where it is, you will visit again and again and again (trust me).

I found a piece of MDF a couple of months ago that was big enough to put a door on our crawl space (not really a standard door size, you know). The gentleman working in lumber was even nice enough to cut this huge piece to my dimensions for NO EXTRA COST! The hardware to set this baby up cost $12, but the actual door only cost me 51 cents. Oh yeah, I am the champion!

Why, just today, I sauntered through one of my two local Home Depots and visited the cull pile. I spied another piece of MDF and the light bulb going on would have BLINDED you (not kidding). I am working on my basement (as you well know) and finally got the kitty litter boxes swapped to the other side and my sewing table set up under one of two windows down there. But, as with all good ideas, there is an *issue*.

Ahem. We have those interlocking mats as our basement floor to protect our little footsies from the rough particle board serving as our floating floor. This is not going to ever be a finished basement while we're here; it's just not practical. Now, the back end of the sewing table isn't on the mat while the front end is. I'm not a very balanced person myself, but I require that I usually work on a level surface. Helps keep stitches straight, you know. Enter the rescue MDF piece! I will pull out two mats and put down the MDF and voila! Level sewing table! I'm also going to paint it white so I can see those pesky pins and needles I seem to drop occasionally.

See how this works? Many times, you don't need tons of lumber (or 7 feet of whatever piece) for a particular project. Knowing about this cull pile will save you a pile (of money)!

Any handy hints about bargain stashes you've found at your favorite haunts? Share them here!

Take care,


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