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Old 04-09-2008, 07:40 AM   #1
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contouring hardwood around old moulding


I have an old house (120 yrs) with intricate base mouldings, I want to put hardwood down but I am having trouble figuring out how to contour the hardwood around the mouldings so the gaps are consistence. The mouldings are about 12” high and old so I don’t want to remove them, or cut out the bottom to slide the hardwood underneath, just seems like a shame to cut up that old wood. I bought a band saw to make the cuts but I just can’t figure out how to transpose the pattern onto the hardwood to make the cuts…any help would be much appreciated.

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Old 04-09-2008, 11:44 AM   #2
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contouring hardwood around old moulding


Are you installing 1/4 round after the floor is down?

Are you under cutting door jambs?

Are you planning on just leaving exposed gaps everywhere?

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Old 04-09-2008, 11:51 AM   #3
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contouring hardwood around old moulding


The trim is to detailed to put corner round (and my wife doesn't want it)...guess that would be my next question...how do I cover up the gaps? find matching caulking, some sort of wood filler...etc. If it is engineered hardwood, with the softwood base and hardwood top...do I need as much of a gap? additionally, I don't plan to cut any of the trim...not because I'm lazy, but because I don't want to ruin it...it's irreplaceable...
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Old 04-09-2008, 12:39 PM   #4
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contouring hardwood around old moulding


Purchase or rent a jamb saw and undercut everything. If you don't, you will wish you had.
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Old 04-09-2008, 01:32 PM   #5
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contouring hardwood around old moulding


You want to leave whatever gap the manufacturer recomends, usually 1/8" to 1/4" depending on the size of the area. I cannot see this looking the least bit professional if you are not going to hide the gaps. If 1/4 round is not an option, then you really should remove the existing base, under-cut your door jambs, then reinstall the base after the floor is down. If the base cannot be removed, then under-cut it all. If you insist on leaving the gaps, (which quite frankly, will look horrible) find caulk that will match before you start. "Test caulk" a piece or two against your base and let it dry over night, to make sure you get the desired look, hopefully you will realize how bad it looks. Buy some extra caulk, because you will have to re-caulk ocassionally. As the floor expands and contracts with the seasons, it will eventually pull away. If you go the caulk route, (and I really hope you don't) you can use pattern felt and scribe to keep a consistent gap. Again, this caulk route will look very, very, very bad, and will certainly take away from the beauty of your trim.

Again, this caulk route will look very, very, very bad, and will certainly take away from the beauty of your trim.

Again, this caulk route will look very, very, very bad, and will certainly take away from the beauty of your trim.


Would really like to see pictures of this trim.
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Old 04-09-2008, 03:41 PM   #6
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contouring hardwood around old moulding


Thanks for all of your assistance, I'm coming to the realization that I need to cut out the bottom of the base boards... In the long run it'll look nicer and save me a bunch of time...anyone want to buy a jam (undercut saw)? I have to buy one to do this job and I'm sure I will never use it again!!!

Thanks again!

One more note, should I use an underlay between engineered hardwood and subfloor? if so what should I use?

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