Making wood flooring

Would it be difficult to make solid hardwood red oak tongue and groove type flooring at home? I don't mind putting in the work but buying prefinished is very expensive. I wondered if a person could make their own pre finished wood flooring? I don't have the best equipment, but I do have a small rout er table, 50's erea craftsman jointer, newer model craftsman planer, and a small delta table saw. The hard part I guess would be getting the flooring exactly the same thickness.
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On 11/17/2014 8:29 AM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

With the tools you have, you certainly COULD make your own hardwood flooring, but the greater question is why would you want to?
Using the tools you have, it will take an awfully long time to make it. The thickness is what your Craftsman planer is for.
How about your raw material? What will it cost you for kiln dried red oak?
Prefinished? I don't think so. One little run of finish onto the tongue or into the groove could come back to bite you. Then remember you have to also ease the back/bottom of each strip of flooring to help ensure it lies flat on the subfloor.
You CAN do it, but you don't really WANT to do it.
Shop the sales!
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On 11/17/2014 8:29 AM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Not sure how you would make "prefinished" at home unless you mean finishing it before laying it, too. Unless it was a very small fill-in area, I'd suggest laying it as unfinished and use traditional floor sander instead.
Have you compared discount unfinished compared to what you can buy the raw material for? In the past I've purchased seconds of prefinished solid at salvage freight outlets and the like and then just refinished it as if it were unfinished at very inexpensive prices.
But, those alternatives aside, no, it's not terribly hard although you'll definitely need a router w/ half-inch collet; a 1/4" just isn't going to be stout enough.
The biggest disadvantage most have w/o a shaper or moulder/planer is raising the relief profile on the back so it's not so sensitive to every tiny little undulation in the subfloor when laying it.
W/o a planer you're somewhat at the mercy of finding S2S stock that is somewhat more expensive than roughsawn but you can deal with the thickness if it's minor by the finishing if you work entirely from the bottom face as a reference so all the variation is on the top side.
How much (in linear feet) do you think you're needing?
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On 11/17/2014 8:50 AM, dpb wrote: ...

...oops, I see you did say you do have a planer--that's good...
Also, if it is a small jointer, do the bulk stock removal w/ the tablesaw--set up to cut the groove w/ dado and the tongue by either two blades w/ spacer or make two passes (again, always using the bottom side as reference). Then, all the router needs must do is to clean up the profile a little instead of hogging out the full cut.
And, with enough passes it's possible to do the back relief on the tablesaw, too.
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On 11/17/2014 07:29 AM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

You can get prefinished engineered hardwood flooring at the big box stores for as little as $2/sq ft. Not really expensive compared to the raw material, labor and finishing of DIY.
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On 11/17/2014 9:29 AM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Not cost effective unless you have a stack of free oak. If you do have free oak, build a piece of furniture, sell it, and buy flooring.
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Commercial solid wood flooring is more than tongue and groove.
1. The boards are milled so that the part of the board under the tongue does not touch the adjacent board. The part above the tongue is sloped a bit to but less so. All this is so that one can get the tops of the boards touching at their edges and to minimize problems from seasonal expansion and contraction.
2. The tongue is not square. It is rounded a bit on the outboard edges so that it is easier to get it into the groove. That's a big help if the flor is slightly uneven ot if boards are warped a bit (they will be).
3. The bottom of the boards are not flat. Generally, lengthwise bands maybe 1/4" - 3/8" wide are milled out a bit. Again, this helps get he bords down on slightly imperfect floors.
The long and the short of it is that - with the tools you have - I wouldn't even think of making my own. That is true even with a spectacular set of tools.
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On 11/17/2014 10:58 AM, dadiOH wrote: ...

...
That's no real problem...
<http://www.rockler.com/flooring-router-bit-nail-slot?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=&utm_content=pla&utm_campaign=PL&sid=V9146&gclid=CKeE8uuUgsICFQuGaQodHEgAQQ
It's another operation or so but can fixup the shape from a conventional tongue and groove cut as well with another couple of passes.
Again, it's up to how much time/effort one wants to put in, but it's certainly do-able. May still not be cost-effective even don't count much for the time but that wasn't the question posed.... :)
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On Monday, November 17, 2014 10:58:52 AM UTC-6, dadiOH wrote:



o

dadiOH strikes again! Quoted the whole post because the entire missive was spot on. #3 in his post was something that shouldn't be forgotten as it al so serves as stress relief for the boards when they tempted to move around in changes of humidity and temperature.
Lots of other good information here, too. There simply isn't any sense to m aking flooring yourself. By the time you buy bits, burn up your homeowner grade tools, resharpen bits, resharpen planer blades, buy the oak and perfo rm all the milling operations it doesn't make any sense at all.
This however, makes great sense:
http://goo.gl/NWFh5M
Buy that stuff for a buck a square foot (!!!!!) and don't look back. And t hey have plenty of it. You can purchase that milled flooring for less than the cost of the oak itself, and start to work immediately. READ THE REVIE WS!. I like the guy that said "buy 50% more than you need and use the rest for firewood". If you are up for a project, the reviews are mixed, but ov erall pretty good. If you have a LL in your town, you might be able to go to their store and eyeball their "bundles" of that material. Heck, even if you bought DOUBLE what you needed you would still come out way ahead and h ave oak left over for other projects.
If you don't want that kind of woodworking/installation challenge, then you can simply Google "unfinished oak flooring" and you will find Home Depot, Lowe's, Lumber Liquidators and several others that carry unfinished grade # 1 red oak for about $3.50 a square foot.
Robert
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If the kiln dried lumber is free and you already own ALL of the tooling, you can pay yourself about $1 an hour and have your "unfinished" hardwood flooring at close to market price. The "pre-finished" part you really cannot duplicate. The stain/finish is applied in multiple thin coats with "flo pads" and ultraviolet cured between coats. The UV cure urethane base has aluminum oxide in it to make it harder than nails. I don't think you can buy the stuff - and you definitely don't have the equipment to efficiently apply it or cure it.
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On Monday, November 17, 2014 8:29:57 AM UTC-6, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

pe flooring at home? I don't mind putting in the work but buying prefinishe d is very expensive. I wondered if a person could make their own pre finish ed wood flooring? I don't have the best equipment, but I do have a small ro uter table, 50's erea craftsman jointer, newer model craftsman planer, and a small delta table saw. The hard part I guess would be getting the floorin g exactly the same thickness.
Ok. Maybe not explaining the whole story...
I have cb 1521 3/4 x 3 1/4 inch red oak in my dinning room and kitchen. Bee n there about 5 years. Attached to my dining room is my living room and hal lway. I pulled the carpet up and because I got a good deal, installed 2/1/4 inch butterscotch red oak about two years ago.I want to pull up the butter scotch and try to match the 3 1/4 inch. Ihave found forsale a few boxes f t he cb 1521 but it is very expensive, lik 8 bucks a square foot. I wastrying to figure out a way put unfinished wood the same size and get someone to m atc a stain for me so I could stain the new wood befre I lay it down.
The reason for doing it separate is I can not pull up the entirefloor at on ce. Iwanted to do several piecesat a time as my time is limited and that wa y would cause the least household problems and an upset wife...
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On 11/17/2014 11:56 AM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Is the other solid 3/4" as well? If so, I'd just get it refinished to match the other.
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On Monday, November 17, 2014 12:29:14 PM UTC-6, dpb wrote:

type flooring at home? I don't mind putting in the work but buying prefini shed is very expensive. I wondered if a person could make their own pre fin ished wood flooring? I don't have the best equipment, but I do have a small router table, 50's erea craftsman jointer, newer model craftsman planer, a nd a small delta table saw. The hard part I guess would be getting the floo ring exactly the same thickness.

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at once. ...

It is 3/4 inch also but one is 3 1/4 wide and one is 2 1/4 inch wide
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On 11/17/2014 1:19 PM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

...

You've still not said how much...or how long you're willing to take. :)
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On Monday, November 17, 2014 1:34:37 PM UTC-6, dpb wrote:

About 500 squaqre feet and most of the winter as I have time between Christmas, Thanksgivng, birtdays, anniversaries, etc.
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On 11/17/2014 3:39 PM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

That's almost 2000 linear feet (I calculated 1850 w/o overage).
One difficulty is that you'll have to have either 4" or 8" wide stock to get the finish 3-1/4 and since hardwood isn't sized by width you'll likely have to pay some premium for the material. Otherwise, though, you'll have a lot of wastage from 5- to 7" wide material that can only get a single piece from.
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On Mon, 17 Nov 2014 11:19:26 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

When I did my living room and dining room I used both, alternately. Worked out real nice.
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... the alternate-width does look really nice ! I much prefer that effect. .. but abutting it with the 3 3/4 existing .. .. would require a transition zone - not impossible - - but needs to be thought-out carefully. John T.
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On Mon, 17 Nov 2014 20:00:39 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@ccanoemail.com wrote:

I had to do a 90 degree transition -north-south in the dining room, and east-west in the living room - with no transition strips.
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On 11/17/2014 8:29 AM, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

It would be a lot of work but not difficult. I made my cupboards and well over 500 sq ft of tongue and grove wainscoting out of rough cut sawmill lumber.
You can get a set of tongue and grove flooring router bits. I believe the bottoms of the boards are also routed so that they only sit on their edges. There's no knowing if your router will be able to do the work.
Don't think of adding the cost of a new router to the flooring cost. The new router is worth having even without doing the flooring. :) I still have and occasionally use my old inexpensive power tools but there is no comparing them to the new higher quality power tools I now have.
You would not pre finish the flooring but lay it down first, sand with a proper floor refinishing drum sander then finish with stain if wanted and several coats of urethane.
Lot of work but think of what the bragging rights are worth.
LdB
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