shop floor

Discussion in 'Woodturning Discussion Forum' started by Robert Feingold, Sep 19, 2017.

  1. JeffSmith

    JeffSmith

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    Robo - I've seem pine floors that have been in place - both commercial and residential spaces - that have been in constant use for 100+ years without suffering from too much damage. Mine is a shop floor - anything (and probably everything) is going to be dropped on it. It's called character...and history.
    Besides - I stopped wearing stillettos while turning several months ago. Had to lower my spindle height by nearly 6 inches...
     
  2. Tom Albrecht

    Tom Albrecht

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    When you say that you have seen pine floors that have been in place for hundreds of years, that may be true to some extent, but most likely you have seen vertical, aka quarter sawn fir and pine. T&G fir flooring was very commonly used in bed rooms and hallways in older homes. Sometimes in main living areas as well. Hard maple was also used frequently in kitchens. I have seen some homes with a maple floor in the kitchen, and an oak floor in the adjacent dining room and they have combo door door jambs at the transition, Maple/Oak.
     
  3. Owen Lowe

    Owen Lowe

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    Stilettos* aside, I would really like to put in a pine block floor where it’s laid so the end grain is the wear surface — very durable. Many 100+ year old industrial buildings used such a floor and it holds up incredibly well.

    A flat or quarter sawn fir floor has a big drawback in that it tends to be splintery. My c.1920 home has fir floors and every now and then a sock will catch where two boards abut and pull up a splinter. :(

    *The city hall, in Flagstaff, AZ, installed a ponderosa pine floor in about 1980 when the new facility was built. It made for a great looking floor, but the women’s high heels would catch in the uneven portions. They had to sand it a couple of times to even it out and refinish it. I don’t know if the floor's still there; I moved away in ’95.

    lq1j6hf.jpg Wood_Paver_Alley_Block_Placement.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2017
  4. RichColvin

    RichColvin

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    Owen,

    I saw a floor like that in a very old GM plant (I was trying to sell them some computers, not working there). It was old, and greasy, and beautiful with great character.

    Rich
     
  5. JeffSmith

    JeffSmith

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    Tom - Here on the west coast, it's not uncommon to find turn-of-the-century buildings - particularly commercial buildings with pine and fir flooring. I appreciate the fact that splinters can raise hell on sock-clad feet, I seldom turn in my socks - they collect shavings.
    It seems to me that shop flooring doesn't need to conform to the same standards we use for our homes and public spaces. I can put down a pine floor for $1.79 sqft. (lumber liquidators) A couple of coats of polyurethane varnish will add a few pennies. The result is going to look better than the 1-1/4" plywood that's there now. Once you pay for the adhesive, decent vinyl is going to be pretty close.
    Besides, whatever goes down, it's going to have a baptism from turning wet madrone and big leaf maple - I doubt anything is going to come out unscathed.

    (...actually, I just checked and vinyl flooring would cost 4 times more without the adhesive - I've been living in a dreamworld)
     
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  6. John Tisdale

    John Tisdale

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    Shop around at the salvage houses.
    I was able to purchase clean (no nails) "select" qtr-sawn red oak for $1.00 per square foot. Because it came out of an old home, the pieces were straight and much longer that you get today.
    I wanted red oak but could have bought maple from a basketball court for around $0.85/sq ft.
    The trick of used flooring is the ends - those that abutted the walls never got sanded and are thick. I just cut them off with a chop-saw and then used a biscuit joiner to insert a FF biscuit - easy and efficient.
    Of course there's no ducking the sanding, staining and finishing if it's in you home - maybe not a problem in the shop.
    I put used in my master bedroom and in the shop - it cost less than cheap tile
     
  7. John Torchick

    John Torchick

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    I represented a company in Cleveland, OH, that had a floor of six inch pieces of wood set on end. No telling how old it was- oil and grease soaked with lots of character.
     
  8. mfoster

    mfoster

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    Springfield, VT
    I built my dream shop on the ground floor of our old barn about 12 years ago. This has a full basement under it. I had to level the floor pretty drastically due to movement of the barn and not getting it dead on level after putting a new foundation under it. I used a regular sub flooring with shims under the whole floor to get to level and 2" of closed pore foam insulation. Once that was done I debated on the finish floor but went with a hardwood floor. Just used the cheap flooring available from Lumber Liquidators, which turned out to be ash. I used a coulple coats of poly as a finish. I totally expected to ding the floor and get spills etc.. and all that is true. It is a shop after all. The floor is a bit easier on the body for standing on, but it can get slippery with a pile shavings. It is fine without the shavings, but the combination of the smooth hardwood and shavings can be a hazard. I am pretty aware of this and am careful. Try to keep it swept, but that often doesn't happen. I also still use a foam mat in front of the lathe to make standing easier on the feet and legs.
     
  9. Perry Hilbert

    Perry Hilbert

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    Windsor, Pennsylvania
    An acquaintance's shop has a concrete floor. Somewhere he got some old wide rubber belting from a quarry business. He put it down worn side up, over the entire floor. Works great.
     

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