Questions about solid wood floors





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  1. #1
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    Default Questions about solid wood floors

    I was wondering if someone could give me advice on whether this procedure below is an acceptable method of installing solid wooden floors:

    1. Lay down vapor barrier material on concrete floor
    2. Install 25mm tongue & groove planks directly onto the vapor barrier. Glue the planks with Alcolin wood glue in the T&G
    3. Done?

    The reason I am asking, I saw a contractor install Rhodesian teak in this manner at a very upmarket house. I was actually finishing up electrical work at said house and went outside to check out the owner's Ferrari when I walked into the contractor doing the floors. Being a hobby woodworker myself I asked the contractor why he does not use battens nailed into the concrete. He yelled at me to "sharrap and let the pros do their work".

    I actually want to install solid floors at my own place as well and if the above procedure is all good I might attempt to do it myself.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Questions about solid wood floors

    Eiah - you work among the larneys then! KZN talk.

    In the old days the floor planks were always laid on top of the floor beams to provide ventilation under the floor.
    This did mean a certain amount of creaking when walking over it but then that was part of the charm of an old style house (Think corrugated iron roofing as well).
    It was like an old wooden sailing ship at sea - the house was "living" - creaking and groaning as the temperature dropped at night or picked up in the day ....)
    Changing character as humidity changed etc.
    OK, so i'm showing my age.

    I guess (but not sure) that with the plastic waterproof layer it may well be good, but would have expected some problems without that in place.

    I know this does not answer your question - just chatting.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Questions about solid wood floors

    Hi ,
    IMHO, having recently laid a solid wooden floor on battens. They are not worth the cost and the problems.
    They can swell and pop, they can rot, They can get borer, and they scratch .
    But, they do look good ...........

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Questions about solid wood floors

    Some amateur comments:
    1. A real pro would be proud of his work and happy to share.
    2. Planks directly on the concrete surface (even with vapour barrier) would lose the elastic feel of real wooden floors. You basically end up with a parquet floor.
    3. You can place battens on the concrete floor with the planks on top. To reduce creaking (as per Peter1949) just space the battens closer.
    4. There should be a vapour barrier under the surface bed. I suspect the layer on top is to reduce friction, unless they do not trust the bottom layer.
    5. Glueing the boards together creates a continuous, solid board, so you probably have to allow for more expansion around the edges, under the skirting. I cant think of any benefits.
    6. Very hard woods probably expand/shrink less than softer species, so glueing together pine floors might not be a good idea.
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Questions about solid wood floors

    Quote Originally Posted by Bushdreamer View Post
    ...
    But, they do look good ...........
    They also feel good and provide an additional insulation layer.
    Tyrannosaurus R5 and a second hand British Tata
    Quote Originally Posted by 2beFree View Post
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