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 Post subject: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:22 pm 
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Location: NE Oklahoma
Okay so I just talked to my flooring guy this afternoon. The wife and I FINALLY chose a wood and it was a 3-1/4" board. While we are talking to him he receives a call informing him that the manufacturer is going to be producing that exact floor in a 5" board. BTW I am talking about 3/4" thickness.

What are the pros/cons of the wider board? I've done many tile jobs and the larger format tiles are a royal pain because your subfloor MUST be extremely flat otherwise you spend a ton of time trying to build up your mortar. Is there anything like this to watch out for with the 5" board?

Thanks,

Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:28 pm 
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It all has to have a flat substrate regardless of board width.

A wider board is going to shrink and swell more per individual board, compared to a less wider board.

If the seasonal swings in humidity are extreme, a thin strip is best and then if it is ¼ sawn, even better.

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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 4:46 am 
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As Floorguy says, the substrate has to be flat regardless of board width.
But width of board is more of an aesthetic issue. Do you like wide boards? Do you care? Generally the wide plank look is best suited for a casual decor, while the narrow boards (say 2 1/4) present a more formal look.
Some designers will tell you that the width of the boards is dictated by the size of the space being installed.
Remember the word "malarkey"? Thats my opinion of that concept. It is mostly personal choice.

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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 5:39 pm 
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There is a difference between the 3 1/4 width to 5 inch wide boards when it comes to installation. I would recommend you ask your flooring guy if there is anything different when it comes to installing wider width boards. The NWFA has guidelines to installation when it comes to wider boards.


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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Fri Aug 07, 2009 4:36 am 
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Hmmmmm, I am wondering what those differences might be, other than I know some people suppliment the nailing schedule with glue.
We will sometimes use a tongue and groove glue in the end joints, but I cannot think of any other differences.

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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Fri Aug 07, 2009 9:06 am 
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The wider you go, the more susceptible the floor is to cupping. NWFA guidelines for 5" and wider flooring recommends a nailing schedule of 6-8" along with 1 of 3 options: Screw and the plug the ends, use reliefe cuts on the back of the boards, or use an approved wood flooring adhesive.

Dennis, just curious....what is your reason for glueing the t&g at the end joints?


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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Fri Aug 07, 2009 10:07 am 
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If proper acclimating is done, and proper site conditions are maintained, I don't care how wide the boards are, there should be be no cupping.
Can't imagine screwing and plugging a pre-finished floor, if thats what the poster is using, but even on site finished it is a very dated look. Did square miles of that back in the day, haven't done one in 15 years.
And regardless of NWFA recommendations, I do not allow any of my installers to exceed 8 inches on the nail schedule, regardless of width.

On wider boards, t&g glue can help prevent movement of the end joints. If you look at most products we get today, the end joints are very sloppy and this can cause minor squeaks on boards exceeding 5 inches in width. Just a preventative measure on our part, and you WILL find that process recommended by some flooring mills. I believe it is in the NWFA installers handbook for anything over 4 inches, but not sure if it is still there.

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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Fri Aug 07, 2009 10:39 pm 
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Well, this has turned up some good information.

Yes the 5" product I am looking at is pre-finished. Actually we went ahead and ordered it so I hope it isn't too much more difficult.

Dennis, can you expand on the T&G glue? How/where do you put the glue? Do you smear a little bit of glue on the ends of the boards or in the groove at a joint in the previous row of boards?

One question that someone may/may not be able to answer is if these boards are more susceptible to cupping, why wouldn't the manufacturer mill the relief cuts in the back side of the wood? That would seem to make the most sense.

Thanks for the information everyone.

Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Sat Aug 08, 2009 4:26 pm 
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You don't want to glue the T&G, unless your doing a floating floor, and you cannot float a solid wood floor.

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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:49 pm 
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Floorguy wrote:
You don't want to glue the T&G, unless your doing a floating floor, and you cannot float a solid wood floor.
Yes, I understand that. However I don't think Dennis was talking about gluing the entire floor. I think he is only talking about gluing near the ends of the boards to prevent the ends from moving and causing squeaks.
dennis wrote:
On wider boards, t&g glue can help prevent movement of the end joints.
I was curious about how he goes about doing so when he mentioned:
dennis wrote:
We will sometimes use a tongue and groove glue in the end joints, but I cannot think of any other differences.


Thanks,

Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 2:51 pm 
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jphavener wrote:

Dennis, can you expand on the T&G glue? How/where do you put the glue? Do you smear a little bit of glue on the ends of the boards or in the groove at a joint in the previous row of boards?




I was referring to your comment above.

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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 9:06 pm 
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Floorguy, I'm not trying to be a smart@$$. The last thing I want to do is come on here trying to get help with my project and P.O. a bunch of people. I was merely trying to clarify my query so you didn't think I was a complete moron.

I was not referring to gluing the entire floor. I understand it that Dennis will use T&G glue in strategically placed locations along with nailing. I would like Dennis to elaborate on how he applies the T&G glue to help prevent movement of the end joints.

Thanks,

Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 5:52 am 
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Well, missed a few posts over the weekend.
We put t&g glue IN the bottom of the end groove of each board. Putting it there will prevent squeeze through and subsequent clean-up.
This type of glue retains some resiliency and will not prevent normal movement of the floor, but will also prevent future squeaking of the end joints by not allowing them to move independently when walking on the floor.
I will say however, that most installers do not do this, but for the extra bit of work, we find it a good suppliment to a good install.

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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 3:04 pm 
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It should be noted that a well-milled T&G plank floor should NOT have T&G's that are loose fitting. IFthe end butt T&G is snug, there is nothing to be gained by applying an adhesive to those T&G's. Many installers today are using a combination of a quality urethane adhesive and proper nailing to install plank floors wider than 4". Also, many custom milled plank floors do not come end matched ( Carlisle for one ), prohibiting the use of a glue in the T&G, since there is none on the butts. Carlisle recommends a combination of gluing and nailing OR face nailing with decorative nails into the joist system for their plank floors. On a pre-finished 5" wide plank with end matching, following NOFMA's standard plank nailing schedule should suffice. Bruce Flooring has recommended the use of a urethane construction adhesive near the ends of their solid plank flooring. Personally, I do not see where this helps the floor much. If one is going to glue the end butts to the subfloor, just glue the entire plank every 8" with 1/4" beads of a good urethane adhesive.


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 Post subject: Re: wide vs. narrow boards
PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 3:09 pm 
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Hmmmm, I must be buying my material from the wrong sources, haven't seen a snug fitting end joint in years. Most pre-finished flooring manufacturers produce their floors with undersized end tongues, with this explanation: "having a tongue smaller that the groove it fits into allows for the joints to fit snuggly when traversing minor irregularities in the subfloor."

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