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Old 03-28-2011, 09:10 AM   #1
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


Second floor is framed with 2"x8" that are spanning about 14'. Getting ready to do 3/4" solid T&G hardwood floors so I'm trying to get the subfloor perfect (had some squeaks, humps and bouncy spots. Have all of the subflooring pulled up. Have glued and nailed 3/4" OSB on either side of all the joists and will be putting solid blocking between them.

Question is, is there a trick to plane or sand them level? I have managed to level all of the joists perpendicular to one wall across the room, so I have a good starting point for each one. My plan now is to start at that end for each, scribe a level line on the side of each along the entire length and then plane and sand each one. Was just curious if anyone had a better way or a trick.

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Old 03-28-2011, 09:36 AM   #2
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


Hi! BMS98

Pictures would help!

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Old 03-28-2011, 09:39 AM   #3
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


Quote:
Originally Posted by rossfingal View Post
Pictures would help!
Agreed.

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Old 03-28-2011, 09:53 AM   #4
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


I am not sure I understand your post. You say that you glued and nailed OSB on either side of the joists. Now you want to level the OSB? Normally you level the joists, then put the OSB on. That way the OSB is level, and you avoid the difficult, time consuming task of sanding OSB. Levelling joists is a matter of shimming if they are a little low, planing or sanding if they are a little high, or jacking one into position if it is very low (like more than 1/2 inch out of level). But maybe I totally misunderstood what you said, please clarify.
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Old 03-28-2011, 10:11 AM   #5
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


I do realize in hindsight that I should have ripped the OSB on a table saw to get a perfectly straight edge and then used that as my guide (or like you said, leveled the joists first and then installed flush with the leveled joist). Instead, I ripped them into 7" strips with a circular saw along a snapped chalk line, so they aren't perfect. But I usually realize things like that after I am done, this time is no different. Fortunately, this is one room of 3 I have to do.

What I did was rip the OSB to 7" and glued, nailed them to the 2"x8" so that I'd have a 1/4" gap proud of the OSB to plane / sand. So basically, it is flush with the bottom of the joist. In my mind, I was just using it to stiffen up the joist, not to play any part in the leveling.

Will have to post pics later. Don't have any with me at the office.
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Old 03-28-2011, 10:26 AM   #6
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


I think what I may end up doing is ripping a 2x4 straight, screwing it to the side of the joist level and using the rabbeting attachment that came with my power plane (Bosch 1594) to follow it. The attachment has a vertical leg that should be able to ride on the 2x4 if I get it measured correctly from my low point on the joist. Then use the sander for against the walls and for touch up areas.
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Old 03-30-2011, 07:43 AM   #7
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


BTW, in case anyone is interested, I had been struggling with exactly where to start in the room and how to determine my high and low points so I knew where to shim, where to plane. I bought a $60 Ryobi rotating laser level ELL0006 and put it on a tripod. Shot the horizontal beam across the room and took a metal rod, stuck adhesive backed measuring tape on the rod and set the rod on each joist every 2 feet. Marking where the laser line fell on the tape let me see how much each joist was high or low. I now have a starting point for my most common height to work to. My 14'x13' room has variances up to 7/8" . Fortunately I have a lot of places that fall right in the middle of my highest and lowest spot so I'll either be shimming 3/8" or planing off 3/8".
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Old 03-30-2011, 03:54 PM   #8
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


Shim up the joist, don’t take 7/8” off a 2x8.
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Old 03-30-2011, 06:41 PM   #9
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how do you level the top of a joist with a sander/plane?


nope. shimming up most of them. planing no more than 3/8" off spots of a couple. Most of them only need 1/8" to 3/16" adjustment, but the way it lays out, starting from a joist with my most common height you'll have 2 in a row each 3/16" lower than the one next to it and then one 1/8" higher and end up with a total difference of 1/2" over 3 joists, if that makes any sense. I have laminated 2 pieces of 3/4" OSB on either side of every joist (nailed and glued) so I'm not worried about the 3/8" weakening it too much.

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