Saturday, May 16, 2015

Nobody's Perfect

We got a call from a repeat customer on Eagle mountain asking us to hang this very expensive commercial grade 54" vinyl wall covering in their main bathroom. The piece you see in the above photo is one drop, going around the corner, very wide indeed.

This is a close-up of the textured pattern. When this type of product comes with a random match, like this one, the procedure is to overlap the seam and 'double-cut' through both sheets. Taking the cut off the top and then the bottom, one is left with a perfectly matched seem. The problem is, if the ribs do not line up perfectly, the seam is quite obvious as it catches diagonal light. We found this out after the first double cut seam. It was too late by then and we asked the customer to take a look and see what they thought. They were OK with it, but I was not. We discussed hanging art near the seam to block the light from crossing the seam. They assured us that they were good with it. I was not and felt uncomfortable leaving the job with a look that was less than perfect. 
We adjusted our methods on subsequent sheets and the result was much better. We were paid and as we left, I was feeling bad, but they were not.

This was the end result. You cannot appreciate the beauty of this product in a photo, but it was classy and looked very expensive, which it was. Fast forward to the next morning. I got a call at 7 am asking if I could come and see if somehow I could improve on the seam. I had been lying awake at night coming up with various solutions and I was relieved when he called because I knew somehow, I could do better.

We arrived a few hours later and here is me stripping the piece that involved the first 'double-cut' seam we made. Using our alternate method of seaming, we replace and re-cut the seam. Fortunately there was enough material to allow us to do it. The end result was a 90% improvement. They were out so have not seen it yet, or at least have not called about it. They said if they had to pay more, it would be OK, but this repair was on me because it was my bad.

Here I am, smoothing out the replacement piece, and very relieved that I was able and willing to repair an ugly situation. After 40 years of experience, I am still learning.

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