Monday, November 12 2012
This morning I drove into Uptown mostly just to get a box of 6D finishing nails, though I also got a small tin of plastic wood suitable for use with White Oak flooring (to fix a few small flooring defects) as well as some groceries at the ongoing Hannaford freakshow (though there was nothing too freaky to report today).
There was a power outage shortly after I returned home, though that couldn't interrupt my flooring project since mostly all I needed was a hammer and a battery-powered drill. By this point the end was so tantalizingly close that it was as if the floor was installing itself. For the last three or four courses, I ran out of room to work and had to face-nail the boards. By this point I'd developed a system comprised of two-by-twos that allowed me to easily force the boards together prior to nailing. With every course, I'd use the chop saw to remove a board's width from the main pressure-applying two-by-two, allowing me to always get precisely the throw and leverage I needed. And then it was done. The floor was installed. By this point the power had been back on for several hours. I'd taken a recreational 120 mg dose of pseudoephedrine, but I wouldn't say it contributed or detracted from my talents or industriousness as a flooring installer.
I'd used ordinary finishing nails to attach the floor to a subfloor of 7/8 inches of OSB (in two 14/32 inch layers). Experts are divided about whether or not OSB should even be used as a subfloor beneath hardwood flooring, and, though I could find nothing better in Home Depot, I was doubtful about having used finishing nails to nail down the flooring. The installation looked good and felt solid, though there were occasional squeaks when I walked across it (evidently those 6D nails were sliding up and down in their holes through the subfloor). But that doesn't really bother me so long as the floor boards stay where I nailed them; a certain amount of squeakiness adds to the scale-model charm of the little room.
By the way, today ended up being even warmer than yesterday, though this wasn't destined to last. Part of the motivation for finishing the floor was that rains had been predicted, and it's bad install a floor in excessively-humid conditions.
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