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Bamboo snag...

March 2nd, 2006, 12:41 AM
Remember how I was gonna put bamboo flooring in my livingroom? Well, we ordered it and after so much hassle (the boxes came all broken and the wood was all damaged... :rolleyes: ), we got started.

So we ripped up the parkay floor in the living room, trying hard not to damage the plywood underneath. My brother came over to give us some tools, and he said, "You can't lay down flooring without knowing exactly what you're laying it on." He had a little crowbar-type thing, and walked over to one side where there are vents for an old furnace that has been gone forever. "Oh, you're going to have to close those," he said as he knelt down... Then in one swift movement, he jammed the crowbar under the plywood and yanked. The plywood shredded apart. My jaw dropped. "My man is gonna KILL ME when he sees this!"

Well, turns out, under the 1/4 inch plywood, there's crazy amazing solid pine flooring. It's in really good shape. We have to sand it a bit and varnish it and that's it. Pretty nuts. I love pine. That is what I wanted, but could never afford. We're going to have to varnish it a ton though to TRY to counteract those doggy nails... It's big planks too. Not huge but a bit over 3 inches. It's really nice wood. Why these people covered up all that beautiful wood with icky, nasty parkay is beyond me.

So the bamboo is going in the bedroom, after the livingroom is done.

You just never know with these old houses. Never know.:o

I'll post some before and after picks in about a week, hopefully, when the man is all done...

March 2nd, 2006, 07:05 AM
:thumbs up thats great really wied to put plywood over it!!!

If you have too much of the bamboo you can send it this way ;)

March 2nd, 2006, 08:14 AM
My folks had an old Victorian home in NY that was the same way. They ripped up 4 layers of flooring (old owners just recovered - never removed) to find oak hardwood floors underneath that were in pristine condition. Old homes are full of suprises, glad this one was a good one for you :)

March 2nd, 2006, 08:19 AM
Well, turns out, under the 1/4 inch plywood, there's crazy amazing solid pine flooring. It's in really good shape. We have to sand it a bit and varnish it and that's it. Pretty nuts. I love pine. That is what I wanted, but could never afford. We're going to have to varnish it a ton though to TRY to counteract those doggy nails... ..

Gotta like that!!! :D

March 2nd, 2006, 08:35 AM
We have pine in our bedroom and it's beautiful! The floor has worn pretty well, and the dents we've put in it over the past year just add to the character. The cool thing about pine is it feels warmer on your feet than hardwood!

Can you get a lower sheen finish for the floors? That way when the doggy nails scratch it maybe you won't notice it as much as the shine wouldn't change?

I'm not sure if you can get floor varnich in a Satin finish or not, but maybe something to consider?

Good luck! It's a lot of work refinishing the floors, but oh so satisfying to sit back and look at them when they are done and know that you did that.

March 2nd, 2006, 08:47 AM
what a wonderful suprise!

we put down wide-pine in our house too - and suprisingly, it was the cheapest of the woods. We did our livingroom & hallway for LESS than $500. (that's pulling planks from the bargain bin at a local lumber yard, and doing all the work ourselves - cutting, laying, nailing, and coating)

we did 2 coats of poly - and although you can see the scratches from Tucker's nails, it gives it that "country" look which I prefer.

March 2nd, 2006, 10:37 AM
Yeah, it was a nice surprise... The parkay was water damaged in places, but I'm glad the rot stopped in the parkay.

I think they do make mat and semi-gloss varnishes... We'll see. We'll be putting way too many coats on it too, so hopefully it will last longer.

March 3rd, 2006, 07:00 AM
Thats really cool maybe there will be pine already in the bedroom too!:D

March 3rd, 2006, 11:39 AM
There is for sure, but we're putting the bamboo anyway. We love the bamboo, so we want it somewhere, and it'll be softer on our little feets in the morning.:D

March 3rd, 2006, 07:16 PM
I have a 100+ yr old house.....when I moved in, I was also very surprised to find similar flooring.....woohoo! (Those good surprises make up for the 'OMG - look what some owner has done.....')

If you decided to refinish, I would recommend sealing the space in between each board if it has started to seperate (sounds like true 1" tongue & groove flooring??) - otherwise all the dust & pet fur gets into the cracks - and everytime you walk across it, it will come out - no matter how much you try to keep it was only a small gap, but it was enough for me to give in & cover w/ laminate (I know, the shame of covering it back up....) I would also recommend tons of the hardest varnish you can lab & the cats did a number on the soft pine in the 2 yrs before I put the laminate down...

Ohhh...and if you re-sand - COVER YOUR VENTS (all of them, even if their not on the same floor) - maybe that's obvious to everyone but me.....but my goodness, did I pay for that mistake several months later when the furnace came on......:eek:


March 3rd, 2006, 08:37 PM
Heh heh- we don't have a furnace, so we're clear for that...

The planks are 3" wide and some of the spaces are getting to be about 1/8" wide... What do you put in the spaces? We were just going to try to fill them with varnish...:o

March 3rd, 2006, 08:46 PM
Whoo hoo! What a great find. So much better than the usual old house surprise-like knob and tube wiring:mad: . Our house is about 130 years old (the front) and 70 years old (the back) and it's got to the point that we are afraid to look under or behind anything. We joke about the "unhandy handyman" who lived here previously.

Is the bamboo easy to install? We have some carpet that HAS to go, and I know there is only plywood underneath (although I'm tempted to check under the plywood, after your fantastic find:D ).

March 3rd, 2006, 08:54 PM
LOL The bamboo looks fairly easy to install. It comes in planks like the hardwood. I have to say though, I think you all know where I got the bamboo, right? Their customer service is SOOoooooo crap. We bought 8 boxes total. They delivered 7. Three of the seven were so damaged, the wood inside was damaged. I called, waited on hold for over 1/2 an hour, only to have their CSR tell me "Well, when you order online, you can't expect it to arrive in good condition." Huh? I've ordered a few things online and never once did they come in such poor shape. She said they would send somebody to pick them up in 2 weeks, then they'd refund them 3 weeks after they received them. I kept repeating, "Are you serious?" She refused to take responsibility for any of the shipping issues. Hello? Your company chooses the shipping company, so yes, it is your responsibility.

We ended up calling the manufacturer directly and asking if we could exchange the boxes directly with them (they're in Montreal). That went well... I mean, the bamboo is great and pretty cheap ($3.78/sqft), but what a pain to get it.

Anyway, it's been over a week and the last box hasn't arrived. If I don't get it within 10 days, they'll refund my money in 3-4 weeks.:eek: :rolleyes:

So ya, moral of the story: the manufacturer is super great, but the middle man is horrible.

Skryker, it's the same here. The electricity was a raging fire hazard, some of the outside walls have no beams in them, etc, etc.... It's a homemade house.

March 3rd, 2006, 09:19 PM
:) My mantra-"You wanted a old house that had lots of charm!"

Who knew "charm" was a euphamism for "Yikes! Rip that out in a hurry!"? and "I know that shelf looks crooked, but honestly, it's not the shelf, it's the wall".

March 3rd, 2006, 09:27 PM
LOL My friend hung a long horizontal painting in her apartment and it was completely level, but was crooked in one direction with the ceiling and crooked the other direction with the floor... Makes for wacky sensations...:D

March 4th, 2006, 04:05 PM
lol-the shelf in question is beside a door frame that slants quite badly-there is about an inch difference between the top and the bottom. So it really looks like anything on that shelf should roll out the window...And it does make you a bit queasy to look at.

I wouldn't want to look at your friend's painting after a night of drinking:evil: :sick: !

March 5th, 2006, 02:26 PM
yup...sounds very similar to mine....1"thick, 3" across...if it's like mine, there's nothing underneath it (if I tried to see what's underneath it, I'd end up in my basement :p ) basically the original (& only) flooring for the house....

Use wood filler to fill in the cracks....u can get it at your local hardware store....kinda like putty, very easy to do...sands nicely & is stainable...

I totally relate to the crooked *everything*......I believe we've mastered the art of building/hanging everything not to true level - but to what "visually" looks level....:rolleyes:

Always glad to share my home reno horror stories - I've certainly had my share... :D