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Daemian Raj 09-24-2012 10:13 PM

Need advice refinishing old flooring and blending with new unfinished flooring
Hi fellow DIYers,

Need some advice on my unique(maybe not so) situation.

Most of areas of my new old home(1957) has 5/16" thick, "top-nailed" (NOT tongue and groove)red-oak flooring which is still good condition
I decided add new 'unfinished flooring" on areas that had tile before, which i am almost done installing.

However, now comes the area in which i am a little confused after reading everything online.

My plan was to remove 'finish' on existing hardwood flooring with drum & edge sander. Then apply stain & polyurethane on ALL hardwood floors.

Questions(sorry my post is all over the place, so is my brain at this point)

1) my new unfinished wood is just a 1/16" or 1/8" higher. I was planning to just use a belt sander on areas where new and old wood meet to make transition smooth since it is only 1/16"
2) Do i need to drum sand the NEW UNFINISHED wood area? If so, what grit should i start with? Just finishing grit of 120?
3)For the existing(old) flooring, to strip the stain and polyurethane, do i need to start with 36 grit? A little worried if it may take too much since it's only 5/16" thick.
4) So, i should use apply wood filler all across the floor after 2 sanding run & before 3rd and final sanding with 120 Grit? to fill the space between each wood plank?
5)Any suggestion on staining, do i buff between stains?
6) 3 coats of polyurethane water based?

Apologize for the long post, just been reading so many conflicting info online, hopefully DIY can help sort out my confusion.:eek:

Thanks in advance for your advice.

Awoodfloorguy 09-25-2012 09:07 PM

I will try two help with most of your questions. I would suggest using a transition strip between the new and old flooring, this will look a lot better. Next, the unfinished flooring does need to be sanded. I would 36 drum, 36 edge, fill with wood filler, 50 drum, 50 edge, 80 drum and 80 edge.

Since the existing flooring is so thin I would use 50 grit drum sander, 50 grit edge sander, then 80 drum and 100 edge. I would suggest using a 60 grit on a palm sander around the edges to be sure you get any machine marks, this will help minimize these.

When staining the sanding job has to be perfect. After all drum sanding and edge sanding use a 100 grit paper on a buffer, then a 120 sanding screen. After staining you do not not need to buff. Apply the first finish coat and then buff between coats. I use Norton Sand dollars to buff between coats with water based as sanding screen can leave swirls. I prefer the yellow.

I would also suggest water popping before staining. This will help the stain take well. To do this, just get a deck staining pad and a bucket of water. Apply water over every inch of the floor, let dry and stain. Hope this helps.

Daemian Raj 09-26-2012 08:46 PM

Thank you for the response, have a few follow-up Qs
Thanks for the reply "Awoodfloorguy", your input/advice is very much appreciated.
I have a few follow-up clarifications if you don't mind

1) you mentioned after all drum & edge sanding for both old & new floors. then for both floors,use a buffer sander with 100 grit, then sanding screen at 120grit
Qs: Firstly, did i understand that sequence correctly. Secondly, pardon my ignorance, can i use a sanding screen on a buffer sander?

2) Do i need woodfiller again for the old flooring after drum sanding with 50 grit?

3) Only 1 coat of stain(will check manufacturers info).

4) Your advice is after 1st coat and between coats of Polyurethane, use buffer sander with "Norton SandDollar"-yellow? Do i buff after 3rd and last coat?

5) Great tip on water popping, just googled it

6) My new flooring is squeaking everywhere, i followed original top nailing every ~6", old floor does not squeak at all. Does the wood-filler help relief squeaking? When i nail every 3", it minimizes squeaking quite a bit but it still exists. Any ideas on that?

Again, thank you so much for taking the time to respond and advice. Really helps me, navigate through flooring world


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