Buying/Removing/ReInstalling (Reclaimed) Flooring

navi_jenJuly 31, 2014

So, I'm browsing the internet last night to see what kind of sticker shock I'm going to be in for when I put down new HWF downstairs and patch the upstairs (stupid PO & their cats). Good lordy..$9 bucks a square foot for heart pine. Ouchie. I'd been debating tearing up the HWF upstairs as there is still a bit of cat smell at the Smelly house...guess not!

So I switch my search for pretty garage doors. They ain't cheap either. Double party foul.

Jen quickly turns her search to ebay and CL to see if folks sell used garage doors. Nada. However, I find a potential lead on a potential teardown. Could this be the 1 in a million and I can snatch the wood before it's torn down? So I send an email, thinking what the heck, no harm no foul, right?

Well, I get an email back today. It IS a teardown, but the floor is already gone. Bummer. However, they have another house in a seriously big money town nearby with 3k feet of red oak...and he's happy to show it to me if I would like it.

Holy crap! Have I hit the jackpot? So my question for the GW team is:

First off...what kind of wood is in my house? (in case I need to match/patch)

Secondly, for the Red Oak House:

1. How do I determine how much 'life' a HWF has it in? (I'm assuming it's the remaining height of the individual wood pieces?)
2. What's a reasonable price (per sq ft) to purchase a red oak 'tear up'? (and remember, I'm in Boston, where everything is super duper expensive)?
3. How much extra should I buy?
4. I think I would kill myself trying to do this solo. Any ideas on getting helpers (no way my friends will do this...too backbreaking & they already think I'm nuts)
5. What is involved with having a HWF guy install and refinish a HWF that I salvage? Are they going to be ticked that they aren't getting the material cost markup???

Thanks SO much!

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navi_jen

Another picture of my existing floor. This is the only part of the HWF I really want to keep...the stairwell and landing.

Thanks in advance for the help!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 5:30PM
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lazy_gardens

What you have is red oak ... fairly easy to find. I've successfully patched new boards into old and really old floors. (1890s through 1930s floors).

1. How do I determine how much 'life' a HWF has it in? (I'm assuming it's the remaining height of the individual wood pieces?)

Look at the thickness ABOVE the tongue ... compare it with a new piece.

2. What's a reasonable price (per sq ft) to purchase a red oak 'tear up'? (and remember, I'm in Boston, where everything is super duper expensive)?

dunno ...

3. How much extra should I buy?

Lots!!!! Expect 50% loss and you won't be surprised. You will have short chunks along the edges that can't be used, as well as split tongues, missing grooves and split boards adding to the loss.

Out of that 3,000 SF you would be doing extremely well to get 2,000 usable, and more probably you would get less.

4. I think I would kill myself trying to do this solo. Any ideas on getting helpers (no way my friends will do this...too backbreaking & they already think I'm nuts)

It's backbreaking ... you would have to pay several people at least minimum wage AND you would be liable for any injuries ... flooring contractors can do tear-outs because they already have the workman's comp.

There will be a ton of old staples and nails to remove.

5. What is involved with having a HWF guy install and refinish a HWF that I salvage? Are they going to be ticked that they aren't getting the material cost markup???

They will want to look at the material before, to make sure it's usable. They they will charge extra because coping with the old boards is a PITA.

==================

Far less work ... buy and install new flooring.

Here is a link that might be useful: floor I did

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 2:24PM
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sombreuil_mongrel

1st pic looks like white oak, second pic like ash.
Oaks are harder to distinguish from each other unless you can put a known sample side by side with the unknown. Ash is very easy to tell from oak if you can see the end-grain.
Casey

    Bookmark   August 2, 2014 at 9:50AM
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