May 30 2008


detolfI have never purchased from Ikea before, but after several mentions on collectibles sites, I decided to give their Detolf display cases a go. I’ve been needing something to display my collectible statues in, and these really seemed to be exactly what I was looking for. $60 for a four-sided glass display? How could I not try them?

Well, everything I’ve heard about Ikea products was pretty much true. They almost hit the nail on the head, but seem to miss by just a hairs width. The instructions boast you only need a phillips head screwdriver and an an enclosed hex screwdriver.

By the time we were done, we had used:

The ban saw may seem like overkill, but the grooves in the top and bottom pieces weren’t deep enough for the glass, so we had to run the ban saw through them to deepen them, and then used the chisel to smooth out chunks. The hammer came into play on the door parts you were supposed to be able to sink with your thumbs… I do not want to meet the person with thumbs that strong.

The topper was the 4 little foot pads. There were no pilot holes for the screws, so you had no clue where to put them. Since I was building three of these, out the window went the pads, and they are sitting flat on the floor. I also skipped the ribbon you are supposed to screw into your wall to keep it from tipping over. No thanks, I’ll just be careful.

Oh, and see the light in the top? Those are sold separately. Darn it.

I do have to say that once you assemble them, they are indeed handsome looking pieces of furniture, but I can’t believe how off the setup work was. I have no clue how an average person would assemble one of these without access to the tools I mentioned. Luckily my father was heavy into woodworking years ago, and he still has all of his tools, so I was lucky.

To top everything off, by unit #3, my father and I had figured out several steps we could do “out of order” that made far more sense. The original instructions had you placing the magnets for the door closure as almost the last thing, when they are in harder to reach areas due to the glass sides being in. On the third unit, we put the magnets in before working with the glass, and it was about ten times easier. Did Ikea just think people are not smart enough to do it this way? It seemed totally senseless to do it it their way.

Once I’m all done setting them up, I may post pictures, because they do look nice, but I sure don’t see me rushing out for anything else from Ikea any time soon.

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