It's January 7th, time to kick off our January Jumpstart Contest across the country and around the world. The premise is simple: everyone has at least one home related project that's been gathering dust and which they wish they could start and finish. This month is your moment. In each of our four city sites our editors are blogging resources, tips and THEIR OWN PROJECTS. Hey, we're doing ours, why don't you join us?.... It's not quite sunny yet here in Los Angeles, but the rain has definitely stopped after several days of cats and dogs precipitation, which means I can now finally get moving onto starting my own January Jumpstart project. The stereo cabinet unfortunately had to endure this dreadfully damp weather outside, but under an awning at a friend's house (this is one of those cases where I miss having my own garage), but the cabinet had already exhibited a little surface water damage when it was salvaged from the curb, so it's not a big loss. Or so I tell myself. The first thing on the agenda today is to borrow a friend's truck and haul the sizable stereo cabinet here to my own apartment, definitely a two-man job (I have no idea how we initially got this huge piece of furniture into the back of my fastback car). I'm also planning to borrow a neighbor's hand sander to start with a smooth and clean surface tomorrow once I have the unit outside at my place. I still haven't decided whether to just refinish it in a traditional manner or to give it a whole brand new modern sheen to it with a higher gloss enamel finish (I need to contact some automotive painting shops and get some price quotes to even consider this option). But currently due to cost and decor compatibility, I'm leaning toward just refinishing with a traditional deep gloss wood finish. I'm already scouting out some resources for acoustical fabrics to replace the torn speaker grille covers. But this is also still up for debate, because although I initially wanted to revive the unit into a modern day stereo cabinet, I don't really need it. I already have a fabulous Bang & Olufsen rosewood stereo cabinet and BeoSound system (which I purchased from a retiring Playboy magazine executive years ago). And to be frank, I don't have the dinero to fund much in the way of an electronics makeover. I've been even mulling over the possibility of converting this into some sort of storage unit that could house our drink and party wares. For now, I'm going to just try to gut and refinish the unit, and then decide what role I'd like the stereo cabinet to play in our small apartment, whether it be as some sort of entertainment unit or just for storage...it's still an ongoing discussion between me and my better half.