Friday, December 18, 2009

Thank Heaven for the Right Angle Drill

We are still installing round HVAC duct under the family room/library. We had hoped to staple all the vapor barrier backing on the insulation we installed under the kitchen, finish attaching the adjustable elbows to the floor register duct, and attach the long runs to the elbows but we only accomplished the first two.

Stapling the vapor barrier went without a hitch. We didn't even run out of staples. Attaching the final elbow turned out to be a pain. First of all because of the way the floor joists run we needed a straight extension/coupler of about 6 inches to drop down the duct before we could attach the elbow....so we were off to Home Depot.

Once we got to Home Depot we realized they did not have such an item so we bought another adjustable elbow and just adjusted it so it was straight or almost straight was the final configuration. We had a heck of a time trying to get it to slide onto the floor duct. The floor duct was bent and because of the lack of space, R was working to his side and I was upstairs trying to line up the duct. Eventually we were able to barely get it attached. R came upstairs to add a couple of self piercing sheet metal screws. There was no way he could apply any pressure to the screws to get them to even start piercing the sheet metal, so it was out to the barn to dig out his pneumatic right angle drill so he could drill a pilot hole for the screw.
As you can see from the photo, the head of the drill is small and works great for tight areas. He drilled several pilot holes and hand started the screws. Normally we use a 5/16th nut driver to drive the sheet metal screws home but again we realized that there was no room for the nut driver.A 1/4" drive ratchet with a 5/16th socket and universal joint would have worked perfect but R's tool are generally of the large size and my tools and toolboxes are still at the Torrey Road house. We haven't moved my tools yet because both toolboxes are heavy and awkward to move. So we had to come up with another idea. So R whipped out his key ring. He has attached to his key chain a small Crescent wrench. He was able to use it to grip the head of the screws and slowly tighten. By this time, we were tired and I think R was in no hurry to crawl back under the house. The plan is to attach both long runs to the elbows tomorrow. While R is under the house, I will try and use my small jewelry hammer (has a very flat head and is small) to hammer out the dents and try to straighten the floor duct so that the register will fit in the hole.