Care for shellac wood floors

Hello all
We have just removed carpets that have been installed over a cherry wood floors since the house was built in 1964. After various reading testing, etc I believe the finish is Shellac and I do not think that they have ever been waxed. In a test spot a q-tip with alcohol picks up the finish color and water beads and does not create white spots after 10-15 minutes. Also the floors have a nice reddish tint, which I understand would be consistent with shellac, which is available in different tints.
Other than being sort of dull and showing in a few places carpet pad patterns (if you get the right light/angle) the floors are in good shape, very pretty, and we would like keep them this way. According to the lady and original owner that we bought the house from they had the floors carpeted when the house was new.
But I find info on shining/maintaining these types of floors to be somewhat sparse and confusing. Also I get conflicting information on whether you should use any type of water based cleaning on these floors. As I understand it you would wax the floors and then buff to the desired shine but I am still not sure how you do regular cleaning.
There were other floors that were not carpeted that I refinished because they had worn and had gray dingy areas. I did these with oil-based poly, which looked nice but did not have the nice reddish tint that they had originally.
If anyone has experience, thoughts or knows of books or web info on what the best course of action for maintaining and shining these floors would be I would greatly appreciate hearing about it. (Or what kind of maintenance nightmare I am in for.) What is the proper way to keep them clean and if they are waxed what would be the best wax to use. Also for the waxing, it sounds like you would use a paste wax and then floor polisher to buff them, is this correct.
Thanks in advance for any thoughts or info.
Vince
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One important fact about shellac is that additional coats will redissolve and bond completely with existing coats. This does not happen with poly...which is one reason that a floor traditionally needs to be completely stripped (usually with a sander) before re-finishing.
In other words, shellac is easily repairable. If you want to clean up some areas, you might test putting on a fresh topcoat in a small area (after very thorough cleaning, of course) to see how it comes out.
Can't help with the cleaning...I've never heard of shellac used on floors...but maybe it was common before my time?
Vince wrote:

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Chris Merrill
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On Sun, 14 Sep 2003 01:19:08 GMT, Chris Merrill

Zinnser mentions floors on their shellac cans.
Barry
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Very common years ago. I recall my grandparent's having their floor finished back in the late 50's and can still recall the smell of the shellac that was being used. Ed
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I just popped in here to see what every one was up to, and found a answer to a problem I got.. House built in '64.. I just pulled up the carpet, and was wondering what in the world I should do with the wood floors.....Thanks for all the good information.. judy
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Widely used prior to varnish/poly.
On Sun, 14 Sep 2003 01:19:08 GMT, Chris Merrill

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