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Thread: Hardwood Floors in Log Cabin

  1. #1
    LHBA Member John17three's Avatar
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    Hardwood Floors in Log Cabin

    So, I stopped by a friends house (stick frame) and they had a gorgeous hardwood flooring. This is like a 275K home, so pretty nice for our neck of the woods. It looked like it was 'scraped' by a machine or something, but very nice. This got my mind reeling about flooring for a log home. For nice hardwoods, most of the companies are around $5-7 sqft for just the board--NO installation. I've got plenty of hardwood trees on our 80 acres: persimmon, hickory, oaks, and a some walnut, too. I'm considering cutting my own hardwood flooring if I didn't think I'd jack up making the T&G part. Here are my questions:

    1) Does hardwood flooring require tongue and groove cutting to work?
    2) Is it better practically/financially just to buy the stuff from hardwood flooring company than DIY?
    3) how long should one air dry milled/lumbered before installation?

  2. #2
    LHBA Member blane's Avatar
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    It would typically be t&g for hardwood. It would take a good bit of time to mill, so from that perspective you would have to weigh time vs $$$. most of us don't have much of either. But I don't think making the t&g in your boards would be that hard only time consuming and until you got the hang of it you will have a little waste.

    You can find hardwood flooring at salvage supply yards in my area pretty cheap.

  3. #3
    LHBA Member WNYcabinplannin's Avatar
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    You can do it yourself, with help.
    I had some big oaks cut into 1x6 boards with a portable woodmizer. Then had them kiln dried and turned into flooring (T&G). My net cost was $1.37 a sqft !! cheaper than Pergo!




  4. #4
    LHBA Member John17three's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WNYcabinplannin View Post
    You can do it yourself, with help.
    I had some big oaks cut into 1x6 boards with a portable woodmizer. Then had them kiln dried and turned into flooring (T&G). My net cost was $1.37 a sqft !! cheaper than Pergo!



    You said, "...and turned into flooring (T&G)." Does that mean you outsourced the drying, and the grooving you did yourself, or did you outsource T&G grooving, too?

  5. #5
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    Lots of oak around here at about $2.40 s/f and pine at $1.95...T&G and ready to nail. Same place has Brazilian stuff at $44.20 s/f
    Pays to look around on flooring. It is everywhere - the building choke down left many distributors will loads of inventory on hand

  6. #6
    LHBA Member WNYcabinplannin's Avatar
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    Loglover- true, there is a lot of inventory around. Good deals to be had if you look hard.
    John173- I had my roughsawn 1x6 (actual dimension) cut by the logger/sawyer then brought it to a guy with a kiln and some 1/2 M$ machines that cut ribs on the bottoms, and the tongues and grooves. His cost was $1 a sqft to dry and finish them. The logger charged me $40 an hour to fell the 4 oaks, cut them to length, and drag to my side lot. then a few days later, came with the Woodmizer. $175 setup fee, (included first hour cutting) $40 an hour afterwards. He was retired and just likes to cut wood all day. The big mizer was all laser and hydraulic. Other than rolling a log onto the lifting arms with a peavey, he didn't have to lift a finger. My part was to pull each finished board off the mill and onto my trailer.
    I did it vs buying, b/c the logs were old growth, tight growth rings, and most importantly, had smashed tops from our big ice storm in '03. they were coming down in a few years anyways, so I saved them for a better fate than firewood. that last pic is of a board that was quartersawn. about 30% of the boards come that way by how he was cutting, and we also did the largest log all QS, but it wastes some wood and time to do it that way. My floor guy said you don't get oak this good unless its reclaimed anymore....
    Can't wait to see it in my cabin after we finish the interior of the cabin this fall.
    Have fun with it and do the best floor you can afford, it makes a big difference in the final look of a home, and if you sell it'll be worth it.

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    LHBA Member logsurfer's Avatar
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    Good Lord that's SICK!! Shaking my head...will there ever come a day when I can have such fun! Props to you WNY!
    There are many things in life that will catch your eye...but only a few will capture your heart....Pursue those

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    WNY - bet that a blast!

    I looked at some youtube vids on the mizer and that auto unit is the cat's meow. Bet it was a joy to use the old growth off the land.
    The guys with them around here charge a bit more than you paid but I still think, even it cost runs slightly higher, that to be the way to go. You'll be walking on lands history for years to come.
    If I can locate a used one, maybe just the #1 even priced right, I think I will snap it up. I been looking for several years now and they don't come to the market often around here. Maybe I need to expand my reach? dunno. I'd but that high ender if I thought I could break even in time on it. NOT cheap new.

  9. #9
    LHBA Member edkemper's Avatar
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    You know . . . . One of the reasons we build this way is because it's so darn cheap. The other is because we can do it ourselves. Seems to me that even if it costs just a little more, it'd be worth it to be able to say you built it all from scratch.
    edkemper

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  10. #10
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    I had a similar thoughts as John17three, but instead of t&g, I was curious if a simple 'V' groove would work. Thought that would be easier to cut by hand, and with some wax or other sealer, it would fill any gaps that may occur. I also want to keep them tapered (as the tree grows) so they will lay out in a radial pattern from the center of the house... that's where my fire pit will be.

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