When our friends at Curbed and Design Milk both posted this amazing video of a retractable kitchen island we watched it twice: Once to bask in the coolness of the project and then again to try and figure out how the brilliant Tim Thaler made it happen. Behold: The centerpiece of the kitchen of the future.
We took to Thaler's YouTube page where he's been dutifully posting answers to the many questions coming in. Here's a peek at the discussion:
Q: Show us the inner workings! What was the pricing and installation like? How long did it take? A: I'll post a video of the inner workings next week! Sadly, I spend endless nights planning the logistics of it and how to do it. When I started all I knew was I wanted an island to come out of my floor, and retract back without anyone knowing it's really there... I had to figure out everything myself, as there really isn't any "how to" documents for something like this. I did the entire installation myself, bought used parts, and managed to make it for under $1000.00.
Q: Why was it so quiet going down but noisy coming up? A: it's hydraulics. A motor runs to pump oil in when going up, when going down, it's just releasing the oil that is built up.
Q: How to you maintain the hydraulics and clean the pit of inevitable grit, grime, and dropped food scraps? A: The hydraulics just take regular Mobil 1 5W-30 motor oil... And I clean the same way anyone would, a sweep and a dustpan. Plus, I rarely prepare food on the island, that's what the countertops are for with an undermount sink and garbage disposal...