Hardwood flooring with tile insert questions


I would like to put in a new floor into my house that is a combination of hardwood and with tile inserts. Each tile is framed by 3-4 inch strips of flooring. I saw this in a couple of show homes and really liked.
Unfortunately, I can't find any information on doing this. I've laid hardwood and tile separately but never done anything like this.
Can anyone give me some advice on how to start? I'm not sure if I need to use regular flooring (i.e. tounge and groove) or go with straight planks? When should the finish to the wood be applied?
If anyone has any suggestions, I would really appreciate it.
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This seems like one of those processes better suited to showing off than to everyday living. Maintenance seems like it would be a problem.
Expansion rates differ. Rigidity differs. Surface tolerance for abrasion differs. Adhesives _may_ differ.
I suggest that, if you are serious about the project, that you find whoever did the show homes, and ask for a reference from someone for whom they did a similar project 2 to 3 years ago, and go talk to that person, and see how the project stood up.
A lot of show homes just aren't practical, IMO.
Patriarch
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And a layer of high density foam sandwiched between two sheets of plywood would be more practical for an exterior door than one made out of quarter sawn fir with leaded glass inserts.
I think you're missing the point of my post and probably this newsgroup in general. I speak for myself but this probably applies to others in the group as well: we take on these types of challenging projects because they are interesting and they show craftsmanship. Whether for ourselves or for others, they are satisfying. There are a lot of things we do to our homes that are not neccessarily "practical" but are satisfying.
All the problems you pointed out are things I'm already aware of. That's why I posted. I'm looking for solutions, not a restatement of problems I already know.
Never-the-less, thanks for your reply.
Cheers, Dave.

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<snip>

Since you are aware of the potential gotchas, then knock yourself out. I didn't accurately sense your level of craftsmanship in your original post.
We get a lot of newbies through here. Some of them are in over their head.
If you're not getting the responses you need here, you might want to ask in alt.home.repair
Good luck with your project.
Patriarch
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Thanks, I'll give it a try.

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I have absolutely no experience with this, but that never stopped me from having an opinion. So with that caveat I think I would use whatever is most convenient to form the frame (probably cut down tounge and groove, but maybe some other trim) then install the tile after finishing the floor.
My reasoning is that you will want some sort of flexible calk in place of grout surrounding the tile, thus allowing for wood movement around the tile, and you can clean the calk/grout off poly easier than off raw wood. Tile would be glued to the subfloor with more or less standard tile cement. Maybe get a tube of cement meant for tile repair becuase you probably won't need more than that. The flexible calk will be the tricky part, finding something that is both hard enough for a floor yet has enough flex to prevent the wood from cracking the tile in high humidity. I would spend a lot of time reading up on calk and grout properties.
Good luck.
Bill Ranck Blacksburg, Va.
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i've done it with t&g. you'd have to take off the tongue if they abut the tile. prefinish the wood. if you're using saltillo tile, prefinish the tile before laying it. if possible use an epoxy or silicone grout line abutting the wood, as the wood will pull the water out of the grout and it will be very weak there, or use a wood transition strip.
it's a pain keeping the wetmop from slopping on the wood when cleaning the tile.
regards, charlie cave creek, az
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