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Oak Flooring

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I was thinking of milling some 5.5m lengths of oak for floating floor boards. They'll be long enough that I'll not need to tongue and grove the ends, just the sides. I was thinking 8" wide boards would look nice. It should be nice Pippy Brown Oak as well. Ive never made Flooring before so its all a bit new to me.

 

So if I go for the 8" does anyone have any recommendations on how thick to mill them for a floating floor? I was thinking 35mm and planning them down after drying to 28-30mm. 

 

At 35mm how long should I leave them to air dry?

 

Whats the best route to go down for adding the tongue and grove? I really like the look of Logosols new 4 sided planner and they've designed it with the Miller in mind, but at £7k plus vat I cant see me getting one. So with that kinda outta the question at least in the short to medium term whats the other options? I have a Scheppach HF-33 Spindle Moulder with a power feed that Ive never used, would this be suitable for the dimensions of oak I plan on moulding? Or would I be best seeing if a Joinery outfit would do the job for me?

 

I expect the Oak to look like the other trees I've milled from the same Estate. 

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2 hours ago, trigger_andy said:

I was thinking of milling some 5.5m lengths of oak for floating floor boards. They'll be long enough that I'll not need to tongue and grove the ends, just the sides. I was thinking 8" wide boards would look nice. It should be nice Pippy Brown Oak as well. Ive never made Flooring before so its all a bit new to me.

 

So if I go for the 8" does anyone have any recommendations on how thick to mill them for a floating floor? I was thinking 35mm and planning them down after drying to 28-30mm. 

 

At 35mm how long should I leave them to air dry?

 

Whats the best route to go down for adding the tongue and grove? I really like the look of Logosols new 4 sided planner and they've designed it with the Miller in mind, but at £7k plus vat I cant see me getting one. So with that kinda outta the question at least in the short to medium term whats the other options? I have a Scheppach HF-33 Spindle Moulder with a power feed that Ive never used, would this be suitable for the dimensions of oak I plan on moulding? Or would I be best seeing if a Joinery outfit would do the job for me?

 

I expect the Oak to look like the other trees I've milled from the same Estate. 

Don't forget Andy, before you worry about tongue and groove you need to get the fully dried boards planed dead straight.  Any thicknesser will plane the two faces, but you need to put one dead straight edge on the board and then make the other side match.  That will be difficult at eight foot lengths.  Not impossible, but you need to plan how you will do this, and only then can you consider tongue and groove.  Also make the boards at least 25mm wider than you want to allow for straightening.

 

Once the boards are dead straight and dry you could either buy a decent spindle moulder with a power feed (not worth it unless you have a lot of other use for it) or you could simply pay a joinery shop to do it for you.   As an alternative you could use a router and clamp the board still whilst machining - it depends how much you just want to get the job done and how much you will enjoy faffing about with a router.

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Farm that I live on had some Oak slabbed after the storm of 1987 and felled some others, had it sent to local big timber merchants Thorogoods timber how machined it and they grooved every board on back face to stop curling, it wasn't tongue and grooved. 

Think they had it cut at 40mm to finish at 32mm.

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5.5m long and 8" wide.

Not 8' long!

 

I wanted to floor the dining room with this type of board(but plain sawn and to be secured with facemounted brass screws) some 25 years ago and was told it was "impossible" , the timber was not available and even if it was it would be impossible to stop it cupping and moving, which was why such timber was not available..

Still kinda regret I did not presevere, specially since I blagged a 10 or 12' long solid Oak table for this room.

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When looking for floating flooring materials earlier this year our local supplier/fitter had solid T+G maple planks which from memory were about 20mm thick and between 125 to 150mm wide. But their advice was to screw plywood to the concrete sub floor and bond the planks to it, rather that use solid planks for a floating floor. Very nice but too expensive and so we went for a prime oak engineered board click system.

 

Andrew

Edited by ucoulddoit
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I laid an oak floor in my office this year. I laid it directly ontop of the existing floor with just a layer of vapor barrier to stop the boards from moving.

 

I milled the planks at 30mm. Dried them over 3 years,planed them and sat them in the office bound up with ratchet straps for 3 months untill the moisture content matched the surrounding structure.

 

I didn't T&G the edges, the planks are 8-10" wide. I screwed them down but now after a year i will unscrew them and nail them down.

 

One thing I did do was cut the ends of the joining planks at 45 deg.I sanded the floor with a little orbital sander prior to oiling. It looks quite nice.

 

I left a 5mm gap all the way around and covered that with a thick list.

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10 hours ago, Squaredy said:

Don't forget Andy, before you worry about tongue and groove you need to get the fully dried boards planed dead straight.  Any thicknesser will plane the two faces, but you need to put one dead straight edge on the board and then make the other side match.  That will be difficult at eight foot lengths.  Not impossible, but you need to plan how you will do this, and only then can you consider tongue and groove.  Also make the boards at least 25mm wider than you want to allow for straightening.

 

Once the boards are dead straight and dry you could either buy a decent spindle moulder with a power feed (not worth it unless you have a lot of other use for it) or you could simply pay a joinery shop to do it for you.   As an alternative you could use a router and clamp the board still whilst machining - it depends how much you just want to get the job done and how much you will enjoy faffing about with a router.

Regarding drying I was thinking a year in the barn then a few months in the house before machining. 

 

Not sure how Id put one dead straight edge on a board other than passing it over the planner then through the thicknesser. 

 

Not 8 foot lengths, I was planning on 18-19 foot lengths. :D I could go the other way on the flooring and bring it down to 14 foot I guess? But if this is going to be next to impossible then I'll have to re-think everything. 

 

Do you not rate the Scheppach HF-33 Spindle Moulder I have then? It has a power feed. Not keen on the router option. :D 

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1 hour ago, difflock said:

5.5m long and 8" wide.

Not 8' long!

 

I wanted to floor the dining room with this type of board(but plain sawn and to be secured with facemounted brass screws) some 25 years ago and was told it was "impossible" , the timber was not available and even if it was it would be impossible to stop it cupping and moving, which was why such timber was not available..

Still kinda regret I did not presevere, specially since I blagged a 10 or 12' long solid Oak table for this room.

These guys mill their own Oak and make their flooring from solid oak boards and have boards up to 230mm wide. So it must be possible. 

 

WWW.UK-TIMBER.CO.UK

Prime Grade Unfinished European Solid Oak Flooring is stocked by UK Timber, one of the leading suppliers of...

 

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30 minutes ago, ucoulddoit said:

When looking for floating flooring materials earlier this year our local supplier/fitter had solid T+G maple planks which from memory were about 20mm thick and between 125 to 150mm wide. But their advice was to screw plywood to the concrete sub floor and bond the planks to it, rather that use solid planks for a floating floor. Very nice but too expensive and so we went for a prime oak engineered board click system.

 

Andrew

I installed 28mm white wood T&G flooring earlier this year. So the Oak will be going on top of that. I could bond the oak to the 28mm I guess? Id need to clean the wax off though. 

 

I think Id be about £3000 per room for the solid oak flooring. At that kinda prices buying a 4 sided planer is not that bad of a deal. Id get the skirtings down as well.

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21 minutes ago, Mike Hill said:

I laid an oak floor in my office this year. I laid it directly ontop of the existing floor with just a layer of vapor barrier to stop the boards from moving.

 

I milled the planks at 30mm. Dried them over 3 years,planed them and sat them in the office bound up with ratchet straps for 3 months untill the moisture content matched the surrounding structure.

 

I didn't T&G the edges, the planks are 8-10" wide. I screwed them down but now after a year i will unscrew them and nail them down.

 

One thing I did do was cut the ends of the joining planks at 45 deg.I sanded the floor with a little orbital sander prior to oiling. It looks quite nice.

 

I left a 5mm gap all the way around and covered that with a thick list.

That might be another option Mike. I was hoping to have them air dried within a year. Hmmm. A mate has a make-shift kiln built in an insulated shipping container with heaters and dehumidifiers running. Might get them in there if it speeds up the drying process. 

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