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Old 10-20-2013, 07:22 PM   #1
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


For me, the way to nail down hardwood floor with a flooring nailer is to nail into the tongue
But I've seen a "how to video" where the guys where nailing into the groove.....Is it OK to do like that?

2 other questions:
1) Usually, the 1st row is face nailed since the flooring nailer has not enough clearance. But the few other rows before the nailer can be used are usually drilled with an angle into the tongue and nailed. But I've seen in the Lowes website they where face nailing all the first rows. Why?
2) Do I need a to leave an expansion gap all around the room? I would say no since it is nailed down, it cannot expand...But again, some website are recommending a gap.....?!
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Old 10-20-2013, 08:03 PM   #2
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


Quote:
Originally Posted by french_guy View Post
For me, the way to nail down hardwood floor with a flooring nailer is to nail into the tongue
But I've seen a "how to video" where the guys where nailing into the groove.....Is it OK to do like that?

2 other questions:
1) Usually, the 1st row is face nailed since the flooring nailer has not enough clearance. But the few other rows before the nailer can be used are usually drilled with an angle into the tongue and nailed. But I've seen in the Lowes website they where face nailing all the first rows. Why?
2) Do I need a to leave an expansion gap all around the room? I would say no since it is nailed down, it cannot expand...But again, some website are recommending a gap.....?!
Thanks
--------------------
Nailing into the groove will bust the wood. It is not made to be nailed that way. Where did you see that? You can face nail all the starter rows if you want. Most choose not to because that is more holes to fill.

You need to leave whatever expansion around the perimeter the manufacturer recommends - usually 1/4" to 1/2". Your floor will expand and contract with the seasons. A friend of mine here in TN didn't leave an expansion joint with his long length plank floors. It literally busted the brick veneer on the outside walls because it pushed them so far out.

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Old 10-20-2013, 08:16 PM   #3
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


OK for the very 1st row that has to be face nailed
But for the 2 or 3 next rows before the flooring nailer can be used, it's better to drill in the tongue an put a nail, right?
For the underlayment, I'm planning to use roof felt #15 - Is it Ok?
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Old 10-21-2013, 12:08 AM   #4
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


The first row you install is the 2nd row, not the row closest to the starting wall.

You screw starting boards where the first row goes making sure it's perfectly straight. You follow the chalkline you marked before. So, therefore, you need to drill small holes and face nail the the first row after you've finished some of the others.

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Old 10-21-2013, 05:21 AM   #5
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


Screw?
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Old 10-21-2013, 06:56 AM   #6
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


I'm not a hardwood floor installer ,however,I have laid a few over the years---

I face nail the first board, set to a chalk line---then hand nail the tongues in the next two boards---this should get you far enough out to use the floor nailer---

A finish gun can be used for the 'hand nailing' if you set the safety foot properly---
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Old 10-21-2013, 09:37 AM   #7
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


Quote:
Originally Posted by french_guy
Screw?
Yes screw! You snap a chalkline and attach pine 1x2 or 1x3 straight edge to the floor where the first row next to the wall will be with screws for easy removal later. Now you have a perfectly straight base for the second row of hardwood.

You could start by simply face nailing the row closest to the wall using the chalkline as a guide, but it's liable to move from the force of fastening the next row.

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Old 10-21-2013, 07:08 PM   #8
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


I have been installing hardwood for 30 years. First drop a chalk line on your starting wall. Make sure your boards are all going to be under the trim at the starting wall. Sometimes walls move in and out. You may have to move your line closer to the wall and cut some boards. You do have to leave a gap at the walls. Wood will expand and contract with humidity in the air. You can cut tight at exterior doors or a stair railing. Just leave an expansion on the opposite wall. The first board you can face nail as close to the wall as possible with a finish nailer or drill and nail it. Then you can nail into the tongue. Nail the next rows in the tongue until you can use the flooring nailer. On the last rows (where you can not use a finish nailer or drill and nail) use liquid nail or similar product. You can pull the boards tight by using a pry bar. You might need a couple of pieces of flooring standing up against the wall to pry off of. Face nail the last board as close to wall as possible. Fill all face nailed holes with a matching filler.
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Old 10-22-2013, 05:21 PM   #9
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


Actually, I am extending the hardwood floor from the dinning room into the living room
The only thing is I will have to revert the new one (with spline), since the existing floor was installed with the groove facing the new room
So I assume the existing row in the door frame (~8’ long) will be my “straight edge” to align my 1st row. The entire wall is ~17,5' (approx 2,5' on the left and 7' on the right)
I guess I have to cut the door jambs to have the planks going under? A tight fit against both sides of the door jamb is not recommended, right?
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Old 10-22-2013, 07:18 PM   #10
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


Well sure, those new details changes everything.

If the old first row is in perfect condition, spline it and go. You must undercut all vertical objects and also leave about 1/2" gap around the perimeter, as I'm sure you know.

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Old 10-26-2013, 08:32 AM   #11
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nail down hardwood floor...I'm confused !


I'm removing the 1/4 rounds in the room that already has the hardwood floor (quarter rounds are wood color and we want white)
Well, looks like the installers (Home Depot I think) didn't leave any gap all around....!!! And apparently, they didn't even undercut the door jambs
Such a shame !!!

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