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Old 12-15-2009, 11:32 AM   #31
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refinishing maple hardwood


By the way, I certainly am no wood expert but I'm with you,,, I think that's maple. From the pics posted the floors look like they are in good shape overall. I'll bet they clean up nicely and will look fabulous when you're done.

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Old 12-15-2009, 12:11 PM   #32
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Speedster,
That being said I really want to encourage you to do it yourself (with an orbital sander). If I can do it, I think most anyone can do it with great results. Just take your time. Don't try any short cuts. After sanding be sure to vacuum really good, then tack off before doing the next poly coat.
Glad the rented equipment worked out but be honest. How much per day? How many days did you think you would need it and how many did you keep it?

You didn't mention how much sandpaper you fed to thing. What did you vacuum with? How many tack cloths did you use? Just to start?

I can finish floors of most any kind. The question I ask myself is why and should I? My floor refinishers own equipment, buy sandpaper and the latest materials for coating floors you can imagine at whosale, not retail. They come out so much cheaper than me trying to endrun them and doing a DIY.

Sometimes the best advice is not to DIY. Proud of you for taking on your own floors though. Grew some new muscles even with that orbital floor sander did you not? Turning it over how many times to switch on new sandpaper?

Last edited by user1007; 12-15-2009 at 12:14 PM.
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Old 12-15-2009, 01:39 PM   #33
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refinishing maple hardwood


Glad the rented equipment worked out but be honest. I have been completely honest about my experience and gave lots of information before, but you must've missed it.

How much per day? Lowe's charged $40 for 24 hours. It took me 5 hours to sand my floor, going over it several times. That 5 hours included the travel time to and from the store.

How many days did you think you would need it and how many did you keep it? I thought a day, I kept it 5 hours. The orbital floor sander is only used for the initial sanding required to get the wood floor ready for stain/poly.

You didn't mention how much sandpaper you fed to thing.
Actually, I did and even told how much money the sandpaper discs cost.

What did you vacuum with? Yep, gave that information as well. I used my big Sears/Craftsman shop vac.

How many tack cloths did you use? You got me. I didn't tell how many tack cloths I used, nor their cost. I bought good cloths from Lowe's - spent $5-10 for them. I can't remember how many cloths there was in the bag but I did explain how I used the tack cloths which worked wonderfully for me.

Just to start? There's more

I can finish floors of most any kind. The question I ask myself is why and should I? My floor refinishers own equipment, buy sandpaper and the latest materials for coating floors you can imagine at whosale, not retail. So, sounds like you aren't in the same boat as me, a homeowner wanting to refinish my own floors, no one else's. They come out so much cheaper than me trying to endrun them and doing a DIY.

Hmmm... I thought this was a DIY forum. My reason for refinishing my own floors had NOTHING to do with 'endrunning' any professional. It had everything to do with wanting the satisfaction of doing it myself with the money I wanted to spend on the project.

Sometimes the best advice is not to DIY. Proud of you for taking on your own floors though. Grew some new muscles even with that orbital floor sander did you not? Using the orbital floor sander was NOT a physical workout except for lifting it in/out of my van and into the house. Turning it over how many times to switch on new sandpaper?
Lowe's rental sander is nicely designed so you can simply tilt the handle down and the head of the machine lifts without effort so putting on the new sandpaper is a breeze.

I'm happy to see there are several out there who are encouraging and offer helpful information to us DIY folks.
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Old 12-16-2009, 11:42 AM   #34
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refinishing maple hardwood


this is maple... just sanded, the finish is still wet.... from your pics, your floors are also maple...i don't see the area Bob was talking about with a different species of wood. it just looks like there's a line accross the floor. there was a rug or something over there, that's why on one side the floors look "better" than on the other. i see you have quite a few gaps. if the wood is moving(like two boards next to each other) don't bother trying to fill the gaps, as the filler will crack and fal through when you start walking on the floors. As far as you using a drum sander.... it takes a lot, A LOT of practice before you can do a decent job using it... it's not rocket science, but still... the pace, the raising lowering of the drum... the way the machine handles is different from sander to sander.... if you have never used one before, or anything similar, it will be a painful experience, especially that once you make even a small mistake with it, it's gonna leave a mark. The worst part of all this is that you have to learn on your own floors... can't tell you not to do it, can't tell you to go ahead and do it.
a pro charges for: owning the equipment, providing the materials, having the knowledge and practice....
all the tools and equipment and materials that you end up buying at BB stores are gonna add up.. if you are thinking about doing this just cause you want to spend less, try to weigh that against the risk of having a not so good looking floor... it's your call... ppl here can only express an oppinion... the decision is yours... have you tried to get a couple of estimate from floor pros? they do free estimates and at least you will find out a ballpark cost. you can compare that to what you think you'll spend at HD/Lowe's...
i'm a flooring pro, i do it for a living. for me, sanding IS : drumsander+edger+scraper+buffer+vacuum(floor vac)+stain+2 or more coats of finish.
Using an orbital sander could be a very lengthy process and i don't know what to tell you about the result, bcause each person has their own standards.... give it a try on a 3'x3' area. sand it and finish it... let it dry and take and objective look at it.... if you like that, then you've got yourself a DIY project to start.... if you don't.... then you'll know for sure that it is over your head....
hope it helps....
good luck and pls keep us posted....
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Old 12-16-2009, 07:20 PM   #35
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this is maple... just sanded, the finish is still wet.... from your pics, your floors are also maple...i don't see the area Bob was talking about with a different species of wood. it just looks like there's a line accross the floor. there was a rug or something over there, that's why on one side the floors look "better" than on the other. i see you have quite a few gaps. if the wood is moving(like two boards next to each other) don't bother trying to fill the gaps, as the filler will crack and fal through when you start walking on the floors. As far as you using a drum sander.... it takes a lot, A LOT of practice before you can do a decent job using it... it's not rocket science, but still... the pace, the raising lowering of the drum... the way the machine handles is different from sander to sander.... if you have never used one before, or anything similar, it will be a painful experience, especially that once you make even a small mistake with it, it's gonna leave a mark. The worst part of all this is that you have to learn on your own floors... can't tell you not to do it, can't tell you to go ahead and do it.
a pro charges for: owning the equipment, providing the materials, having the knowledge and practice....
all the tools and equipment and materials that you end up buying at BB stores are gonna add up.. if you are thinking about doing this just cause you want to spend less, try to weigh that against the risk of having a not so good looking floor... it's your call... ppl here can only express an oppinion... the decision is yours... have you tried to get a couple of estimate from floor pros? they do free estimates and at least you will find out a ballpark cost. you can compare that to what you think you'll spend at HD/Lowe's...
i'm a flooring pro, i do it for a living. for me, sanding IS : drumsander+edger+scraper+buffer+vacuum(floor vac)+stain+2 or more coats of finish.
Using an orbital sander could be a very lengthy process and i don't know what to tell you about the result, bcause each person has their own standards.... give it a try on a 3'x3' area. sand it and finish it... let it dry and take and objective look at it.... if you like that, then you've got yourself a DIY project to start.... if you don't.... then you'll know for sure that it is over your head....
hope it helps....
good luck and pls keep us posted....

After seeing those floors I am 100% sure my floors are maple. Now question about it. Your's looks great. I could only hope mine turn out that nice. However I'm still on the shelf about it. I'll have to research the flooring specialist in my area and see what it would cost for them to do it. I'd hate to mess them up. If I could get someone to do it I could use that time to do other things.

Thanks again for the pics.
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Old 12-16-2009, 11:27 PM   #36
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refinishing maple hardwood


where are you located?
your profile doesn't say it....
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:18 AM   #37
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where are you located?
your profile doesn't say it....
Sorry, I'm in northern WV.

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