Plank Flooring (I'm showing off a little...)

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by frazzlehead, Aug 9, 2006.

  1. frazzlehead

    frazzlehead AppleJackCreek Supporter

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    There was a thread recently on plank flooring ... but I didn't see it during a quick cruise of titles so I figured I'd just start up another one.

    Anyone who is curious to see how the wide plank flooring (no tongue and groove finish, screwed to the floor) is installed is welcome to have a look at my blog, I put up step by step pictures and a description.

    http://applejackcreek.blogspot.com/2006/08/flooring-step-by-step.html

    I'd have gotten more of it done this weekend had my newly acquired LGD not gone on a tour of the county (he was found tonight, thankfully, and is passed out beside the straw bale in the sheep pen ... I have everyone locked in the pen this evening as I suspect after 3 days of wandering Bob is too tired to be much of a lookout!).
     
  2. prairiecomforts

    prairiecomforts Well-Known Member

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    Wow - I am impressed!! I guess it is true what they say -"a woman and her screw gun - it's a good thing!" You did a great job - it looks really nice!
     

  3. stirfamily

    stirfamily Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I love it! But my house is on a slab. Could I still do something like that?
    karen in Indiana
     
  4. scorpian5

    scorpian5 Well-Known Member

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    Why did you use screws?
     
  5. Aaron

    Aaron Active Member

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    Very nice looking! Nothing beats good old fashioned craftsmanship!
     
  6. Aintlifegrand

    Aintlifegrand Well-Known Member

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    It is a beautiful floor. I am really loving the way your house is coming together. I like to see your progress through your site. We are building as well and are using many of the same materials that you are, so I am always interested. A couple of questions. Is the drywall screws what the company suggested? What size? What is the thickness of the boards? I am thinking that if it is 1x, and my subfloor is 3/4 and I need to get into the joist atleast 1 to 1/2 inches that I would need a 3" drywall screw.
     
  7. AngieM2

    AngieM2 Big Front Porch advocate

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    I really like it. Wonder if pulling up carpet and doing something like that would work in this fairly new mobile home? Something to think about.

    Angie
     
  8. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

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    Your floor is beautiful! I love a plank wood floor. I was kinda wondering the same thing, tho….why screws? If you have the inclination, you might want to consider backing those screws out and replacing them with square head nails. I’m assuming that the hole made by the screws is narrow enough such that the nails will still grab and hold. Most square head nails are rather wide in one dimension, so I believe it will work just fine.

    If you decide to replace the screws with nails, I’d suggest getting them from this company: Tremont Nail Company We ordered 25-pounds of these nails when we put in our plank floors.
     
  9. suburbanite

    suburbanite Well-Known Member

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    Are these plank floors put in over an existing subfloor or are they both structural and decorative?

    Screws are less likely to back out of the wood than are nails as the wood expands and contracts over the years.

    If you have a concrete subfloor/foundation or want to put wood in a basement you can get the plank look but not the planks themselves, which will warp in that environment. In that case you need to get 'engineered flooring', which is high-tech plywood with a thin (for inexpensive) or thick (for expensive) top veneer. The concept is similar to pergo except the layer you stand on is genuine wood instead of printed melamine. The material is decorative, not structural, and must go over an existing subfloor, just as a carpet would. It has a pre-installed aluminum oxide finish with a 15 to 25 year warrantee depending on the manufacturer, and high end products can be refinished as many times as the corresponding solid wood product. You can install it via 'glue down' technique or 'floating technique'. The latter yields a softer floor as there's a thin underlayment under the wood (again, a bit like carpet), and it is easier to take up than glue down installation. The floating floor planks are glued to each other, forming a single-piece floor when completed, but are held in place by thier own weight on the underlayment and are not attached to the walls or floor. A variety of wood types are available, and some brands (notably the high end ones) offer a wide-plank finish reminiscent of true wide-planks.
     
  10. frazzlehead

    frazzlehead AppleJackCreek Supporter

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    Answer time!

    But my house is on a slab. Could I still do something like that?

    Possibly. There are extra precautions necessary when installing over concrete (vapor barrier and something to attach to), and it cannot be installed below grade.

    Why did you use screws?

    Because they hold the floor down better than nails - they are less likely to back out over time and develop squeaks.

    Is the drywall screws what the company suggested? What size? What is the thickness of the boards?

    The boards are 3/4 inch thick. The drywall screws are indeed what they recommended - the alternative is the Tremont flat headed nails (as suggested by Cabin Fever) but those would have required manual countersinking and although they would have looked absolutely stunning, I couldn't justify the additional cost or install time. I was sorely tempted though! The idea with the black screws is that they look very much like nails once they are in, and from 5' away (up where my eyes are :))

    The screws are 1 and 5/8 " long - you don't have to get down to the joists, just into the subfloor (which answers the other question about whether or not this is structural - no, it's laid over a regular subfloor).

    Wonder if pulling up carpet and doing something like that would work in this fairly new mobile home?

    Don't see why not. :)

    I am very happy with it. I know I could have gotten regular prefinished wood flooring for just over half the cost, but I felt it was worth it - the floor is not something you want to have to redo in a few years because you didn't do what you really wanted. It's one of my 'splurges'.

    I have found that the installation is *much* easier than I expected, which is a real bonus!
     
  11. Jan Doling

    Jan Doling Well-Known Member

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    Great job on the floor...I'm glad your dog is back. We named our beagle, Bob,too....but we spell it backwards :)
     
  12. Aintlifegrand

    Aintlifegrand Well-Known Member

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    Lol..
     
  13. BamaSuzy

    BamaSuzy Well-Known Member

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    THAT is the floor I want in my den and kitchen and haven't been able to talk my husband into it!!! I will show him this and we'll see what happens next!!! THANKS SO MUCH FOR SHARING THIS!!!
     
  14. texican

    texican Well-Known Member

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    I did something real similar with my wide plank pine floors, but instead of visible screws, I used a forstner bit to cut a smooth walled hole. Then put in a screw. Then used a plug cutter to cut the plugs the same size as the hole, tapped em in, sanded the plug down smooth with floor...

    My first project was bandsawed boards, and the cracks are too wide now that it's been down almost ten years... Next time, I'll season the boards, and make all the boards the exact same width, with a jointer... still will have cracks, but not big enough to matter...

    Your floor looks good... it's always nicer when it's done by the owner...
     
  15. Country

    Country Well-Known Member

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    Nice. I really like the wide boards. Will you be staining it or leaving it natural?
     
  16. ponyboy123

    ponyboy123 Well-Known Member

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    one prob with using drywall screws, they are not known for holding power and if they get wet, they rust and the heads pop off them and could cause problems in the future. If I could make a suggestion, I would go with a exterior grade decking screw that could handle the moisture that a floor sometimes gets. But hey it looks great, nice job!!!!
     
  17. heather

    heather Well-Known Member

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    Okay, am I the only one wondering??

    What IS the cost?

    I went to their web site and (of course) there are no prices listed.
     
  18. myheaven

    myheaven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    YOU ARE SOOOO RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!

    We went with parque and are now redoing the floors after only 3 years :grump: :grump: :grump: :flame: :flame: :flame: I REALY like this ill have to show hubby. I think he will drool as much as I am.
     
  19. frazzlehead

    frazzlehead AppleJackCreek Supporter

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    More answers!

    Cost: The stuff I have was approximately $6K CDN to do a house with 1100 square feet, delivery from BC to Alberta included. So, around $6/square foot - wood only. Stain and sander rental and sealant will be on top of that. I have seen prefinished maple hardwood (you know, the regular stuff) on sale here in the past month for about $3.50 a square foot, which is why I say that mine's about double what I could've gotten prefinished for (assuming I was willing to take prefinished stuff on sale). I approached Whiskey Flats with my budget and floor plans, and said "please figure out what I can get for this much money." They adjusted how many wide vs skinny planks I got (wide ones are more expensive than narrow, so you adjust the mix until you can afford it), and they arranged the layout so that the widest planks are where they'll be seen (i.e. not under my bed!) and will have the most impact. I am sitting at the kitchen table looking at the living room, where the center of the room has two 18" wide planks and a couple of 14" ones, interspersed with 5" wide boards. The bedroom and loft have a greater number of narrow boards, but some nice wide ones too.

    Colour Finish: I plan to stain it with Watco Dark Walnut (yes, oil based, yes it smells, no it doesn't really bother me :D). I did a couple of scraps with two coats of stain and like how it turned out, very rich looking and warm. The walls are done in Watco Light Walnut (which, on pine, just amounts to a slightly darkened pine look - almost like if you dumped tea on a plain pine board and let it soak in!), and I need some contrast for my floors. I know that marks show up more on a dark floor, but I am willing to live with that - I need something to make the place feel "grounded" and keep the floor from blurring into the walls visually. Besides, I can always touch up any gouges with stain, like scratch cover. And, I like the lived in look. Lots! I don't want a perfect floor, I'll just be dinging it up anyway over time, I might as well start off not looking quite perfect! :)

    Water & sealing: The surface gets 2 coats of a water based industrial grade sealant, provided by the nice folks at Whiskey Flats. This will actually soak into the gaps between the boards and into the dips where the screws are and provide a reasonably flat surface - most smaller spaces will be filled in by the time the sealant cures, so the surface will feel quite level. This should protect the screws and the wood from any water that is likely to be dumped on the floor (it happens!).

    I'm so glad to hear you all like it, it's a lot of work and sometimes I think I'm nuts but it's better to do it right the first time!
     
  20. Alex

    Alex Well-Known Member

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    frazzlehead,

    Your super wide planks are the best! I bet you are having the time of your life. Enjoy each second, and on top of the amazing fun you are having you will have a beautiful floor and house which you will thrill to for the next 100 years (well life expectancies are going up all the time.)

    Way to go.

    Enjoy,

    Alex