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  #1  
Old 03-22-2008, 01:33 AM
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Installing previously installed (reclaimed) wood floors

I formerly lived in Charlestown, MA in an old house which had pine plank floors of varying widths. My fiancee and I both really liked the look, and I thought that if the opportunity arose to install such a floor in our new house (which is currently carpeted- ugh- great plan- lake house with light tan carpet), I'd go for it.

So, I've found a suitable quantity of non T/G antique pine plank flooring which is cheap enough that I could go for it.

Anyone have any experience with such a project? I'm assuming that it will be all about puzzle piecing the boards into place (some boards as long as 12''). I guess it will have to be fixed nail down - no way to float it I guess.

Thoughts? I've got about a 300 sq. ft area to do on my first floor; will Tile the entry/bath/kitchen. Not sure what I want to do upstairs yet- it's carpeted too. Stupid carpet!

Oh, new dog has helped with the urgency of this improvement by ejecting his crate tray last week and pulling up a few runs of Berber. Solved the crate issue with a vari-kennel; not terribly upset about the carpet.

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Old 03-22-2008, 01:09 PM
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Not so knowledgeable about wood flooring, better with tile and stone.....That said, I would think that nailing would be the way to go as long as you are over a wood subfloor. The type of nail will be very important as will stocking the wood in the area it will be used for a couple of weeks to allow it to become more stable to the temp and humidity present in your home. You'll have to sand everything down and refinish afterward which will be a bigger job than sticking it down. Remember that baseboard is your friend...

Let me know when you're ready to do tile (have 25yrs commercial experience)and I can offer advice regarding appropriate installation materials and methods based on your application.
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  #3  
Old 03-22-2008, 02:05 PM
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Thanks!
I haven't seen this stuff yet; it might not be suitable for what I need anyway, but there are other options with similar features.

Funny- I went to Valle Verde Elem. in 1st & 2nd grade. So many great memories of Walnut Creek... scooping tadpoles out of the canals, lizards everywhere, redwood trees, cacti and huge yucca in the back yard, snails climbing the patio sliding doors, riding my bike on the canal paths, WALKING TO SCHOOL, urban legends about high school kids driving off cliffs on Mt. Diablo, etc. Then my parents decided it would be a good idea to move to Pittsburgh.

You en-route to Alaska in the future? My Coastie friend has been stationed in Kodiac twice (by his choice) and absolutely loves it.
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  #4  
Old 03-22-2008, 02:37 PM
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I installed some solid oak floors last fall. Home Depot had the wood for $2.?? per sq ft. Pretty reasonably priced. It doesn't have the same appeal as varying width floors but it's more durable than pine. Finished for less than $.30 per sq. ft.
With only 300 sq ft, Lumber Liquidiators often has bargain prices of batches of exotic woods. I got some 6" wide finger jointed solid oak pre-finished from them a few years ago at $3 a square ft.
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Old 03-22-2008, 04:04 PM
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Small world. I attended Walnut Acres, Foothill, Ygnacio HS and then graduated from Northgate HS.

My daughter is a 4th grader at VV Elem. I live on Rock Oak, sandwiched between the creek and canal trails/open space.

I own a lot in the NW part of the Kenai Peninsula, AK. Is 100 yds from the Cook Inlet. Plan to retire there and split time between Hondruas or Belize and AK.
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  #6  
Old 03-22-2008, 04:12 PM
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Yes, you'd have to nail it. 12" is a pretty short board, not sure it'll look all that good with no runs longer than that. It's not hard to install if you have a compressor. Nailer you can rent. As mentioned, you should have the boards sitting in the house a few weeks to acclimate before nailing down.

I've always liked the European tile floors throughout the house. Harder to put down, but nice looking.
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Old 03-22-2008, 04:45 PM
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I applaud the use of salvaged materials. Lot of it there, li'l bit more labor intensive but it's a good route to go, IMO.

Haven't done it myself but a friend as, his was T & G fir. Face nailing is not as preferable but it works. Not sure if stainless nails would be better, I mean after all, you're liable to sand and then fill the nail holes and sand again, or something like that, so any slight rust on the nails won't be a problem.
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Old 03-22-2008, 06:05 PM
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I am guessing the boards are 12 FEET not 12 inches long , correct? The NON T&G floor boards I have worked with were White Pine. They were placed with very thin boards under them at the seams face nailed with square nails (circa 1815). You might just want to re-face nail them to a sub floor. Heck use the old square nails. How Wide are the floor boards you are looking at ? 12 to 21 inches? it does make a beautiful floor with a tung oil finish but does take more mantainance than a pre finished floor. If you go with new there is some real nice unfinished Hard cherry 7 inches wide that is very nice. A Mill in Waltkins glen NY was selling. If I find the links or info I will pass it along. I would however look into the flooring you mentioned. If it is Old Growth White Pine it most likely has very few knots and wide boards that are 200 -300 years old make very nice mouldings, furnature , flooring ect.

Last edited by daveuz; 03-22-2008 at 07:21 PM.
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  #9  
Old 03-22-2008, 09:53 PM
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I would be very very reluctant to insatll flooring made of wood that is not t and g.

When the temp and humidity changes it will open large cracks and the edges will raise and create tripping hazards.

If it is old growth pine perhaps you can get t and g cut into the edges.

Tom W
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Old 03-22-2008, 11:05 PM
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FWIW - With the exception of the kitchen and baths, my home is wall to wall 2" oak that is 3/8" thick. It is not T&G. Its face nailed with a 5/8" spacing in an 8" perpendicular grid. It was filled, sanded and finished in place. There is no measurable lippage with change in seasons. Its been down 40 yrs; it was refinished 18 yrs ago. Looks great, is kid friendly and is very durable. Not as warm in the winter as carpet or as quiet.

I expect warping/lippage would very based upon species and widths used.
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Old 03-22-2008, 11:57 PM
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Does the weather where you live change a lot with the seasons? If you have a stable temp and stable humidity it would be a whole different kettle of fish than here in four seasons country.

Also if it is a parquet that is a whold different matter than long boards. Short boards installed in a parquet pattern are probably never tongue and groove.

Tom W
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Old 03-23-2008, 12:37 AM
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You really can not compare "new" lumber with Lumber produced in early America. Roy Hill , Master Housewright Colonial Williamsburg gives a great explantation of the importance and use of White Pine in an Intro for the book series "Architectural treasures of early America". He explains white Pine Grew to 400 years old as tall as a 20 story building and could be as much as six feet in diameter. The King of England in 1761 laid claim to all White Pines larger than 2 feet in diameter. These were to be used as ship Masts for the royal navy. He tells of the Great Lakes Mills that produced over 3 billion pine shingles per year for 24 years. By 1786 there were already complaints of poorer quality lumber. As an example Underhill mentions the "Mitchell" home in Nantucket. The Front door is made out of 2 white Pine boards one of which is 27 inches wide. "Still dead flat after 150 years" He goes on to say that the problem now isn't so much of species but the quality of timber. "Old slow growth makes good wood".

Last edited by daveuz; 03-23-2008 at 02:54 AM.
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  #13  
Old 03-23-2008, 12:44 AM
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By the way the book series "Architectural treasures of early America" is Excellent. It contains material orig was published as "The White Pine Series of Architectural Monographs" which can be viewed here : http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&id=8LIAAAAAYAAJ&dq=the+white+pine+series+of+architectural+monographs&printsec=frontcover&source=web&ots=ntGcqDsFw_&sig=mAUtT2pn4oaXRnYehD2b54__ogQ#PRA1-PR1-IA8,M1

Last edited by daveuz; 03-23-2008 at 01:08 AM.
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  #14  
Old 03-23-2008, 02:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
Does the weather where you live change a lot with the seasons? If you have a stable temp and stable humidity it would be a whole different kettle of fish than here in four seasons country.

Also if it is a parquet that is a whold different matter than long boards. Short boards installed in a parquet pattern are probably never tongue and groove.

Tom W
Tom - My oak floor is 2" x 8' x 3/8" plank/strip flooring installed with a random ~6" stagger. Was a very common material when my home was built. We really have 3 seasons in NorCal. Cold and wet, fantastic, and hot and dry. Temps can be 15f to 118f yearly although more commonly 30f to 110f, and humidity varies from 35% to 90ish yearly.

Do installers on the East Coast not allow room for expansion to occur at room peremiters?
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  #15  
Old 03-23-2008, 08:17 AM
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I have never seen such an application. Is it all face nailed or is it installed with stickyback? I would think face nailing would be out since it would split the wood in pieces that small. Must be glued down or installed with some form of sticky back.

Tongue and groove flooring always needs room to expand and contract around the edges, yes.

The tongue and groove allows nails to be installed and be hidden by the next piece of wood.

Your situation is completely different from the OP. He is considering trying to install wood salvaged from another application as flooring. IMHO that is a formula for a very unhappy result.

Tom W

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