I have 5/16" top nailed oak floors in the dining room.
I'm about the install a new floor in the adjacent kitchen. The kitchen
and the dining area are not separated by a wall. It's basically one space.
I will go with 3/4" floors in the kitchen. I would like to have a smooth
transition from the dining area (5/16) to the kitchen area (12/16) over
two or three (2") board widths. My question is this: how does one mill
pieces like that? (2" wide x let's say 6' long x slanted variable height).
Many thanks in advance,
Depends on what you have to work with. Normally one would use a sled in
Lacking that, I'd reconsider and instead modify the subfloor build up a
section of the thinner material to the correct height.
Milling a piece gives you the most flexibility. Do you have a bandsaw? You
can set up a tapered resaw cut on a bandsaw. Keep the original side up, let
the cut side be on the bottom to minimize having to plane or sand smooth.
But there are other methods I have used. First, most flooring systems have
transition pieces available. If your chosen floor does not, you can still
check the stock at Home Depot and see if something from a similar floor
could be used, although you would have to refinish it to match.
Or, you can install an additional piece(s) of the 5/16" flooring (if you
have any) and shim up the far side to match the 3/4" floor. Once you have
everything set up, set that piece of flooring in thin set to provide a solid
base. That's the way I did the transition into the marble foor in my master
bath, which was much thicker than the bamboo in the bedroom. I cut 5" wide
pieces of marble and matched the heights to each floor and shimmed and
grouted. Very nice smooth transition over 5".
Take a piece of each flooring to your local millworks company. They will
have the appropriate transition (about $1/ft) in an amazing variety of woods
(red oak, pine, bamboo, teak, walnut, etc.).
I found exactly what I needed at HD, but it only came in 6' lengths. I
needed nine feet. I then found a nearby millworks company and they fixed me
up in three minutes.
Dude, a millworks shop has HUNDREDS of styles, widths, material, and
everything. If you find a transition that will work from their samples and
they don't happen to have the length or material you need, wait about ten
minutes while they put another planing bit in their machine and ZIP, you're
good to go.
The millwork I went to had a warehouse. In this warehouse were container
sized pallets of wood, most it seemed were 12x12" by 40 feet planks. Each
labeled as to provenance: Teak, Walnut, Mahogany, Bamboo, Maple, White Oak,
Red Oak, on and on.
It don't cost nothing to ask...
Nobody else said it, so I will- are the floors going to be the same
color and board direction? If so, I predict that an 'invisible'
transition like that will be a stumble magnet. Not a problem when
changing flooring types, since they eye and the foot provide a cue to
step high. But with a same-color speed bump, imagine a guest with
less-than-great eyesight, carrying a loaded plate, hitting that ramp.
People living there will quickly get used to it, but somebody
encountering it for the first time may have problems.
I'm sure somebody (AIA, ADA, etc) has an engineering standard published
somewhere about it. Back in stone age, we sometimes used a contrasting
border so people would pay attention to the change. Maybe you could make
the transition one wide board, and inlay some decorative strips or
shapes into it or something? Or even rout some non-dirt-catching grooves
and patterns, and make it a thing that people have to pay attention to
how they are walking?
YMMV, of course.
Take the time to research wood floors in kitchens. You will find
pretty much universal negative opinion for them. However, if you are
building a trophy kitchen with stainless steel appliances, 8 burner
stove, multiple ovens, microwave over the stove, a center island and
granite tops everywhere, then by all means follow your dream.
If practicality enters into the decision, then consider things that
occur in normal use by families in kitchens, like grease spills,
coffee spills, traffic with kids, and pets. The list goes on. Some of
these can deface the flooring permanently, others will force
refinishing with attendant hassles. That makes urethane coated vinyl
sheet goods a better choice and it even comes with a nice wood
Should you decide to do the wood floor scheme, consider that a long
invisible ramp is a known way to trip people up. A very short
transition defined with a contrasting color would eliminate that
problem. These are common sense things that most architects would
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.