Need Expert Help on Doug Fir for floors and outdoor trim

Hi Group --
I am hoping there is someone out there with some experience with crazy ideas. I know that this is kind of a hard question and that's why I'm appealing to the group for help. I have an idea and I want to run it past y'all because I'm worried that it won't work (even though I can't think of a single reason why - except that it is too cheap to work). I was thinking of getting these great Doug Fir strips (1"x4") that are sold for indoor trim and nailing down to the plywood subfloor in my living room. I know that Doug Fir is soft and that is okay because I'm going for the rustic look. I was thinking of nailing them down, sanding, staining and varnishing them.
I was wondering if anyone also knew if it would be alright to use that trim outside as window and door trim.
I would so love it if someone with some experience with wood floors or with Doug Fir could give me their two cents worth! Thank you so much
--
MissyM


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MissyM wrote:

No reason that you can't. Personally, I'd skip the stain...too hard to repair when it becomes scratched or worn.
Douglas fir is relatively hard compared to other soft woods. The dark portions of it are quite hard, the light, pale areas pretty soft. If you can find edge grain fir, the entirety will be durable. "Edge grain" is wood that has been quartered...if you look at the end the alternating bands of light/darkwood are vertical (perpendicular or close to perpendicular to the wide side of the board). __________________

Sure. Douglas fir is one of the most commonly used woods for anything in the western US. Keep it painted and caulked and it will last for many years. If you want it to last even longer, use copper ring shank nails (or stainless steel) to attach as rusting nails will stain/rot the wood. If you can find hot dipped galvanized nails, those would be another (not as good) possibility. The commonly available galvanized nails are electroplated and are garbage.
--

dadiOH
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look at some tongue and groove flooring and you will see why what you want to do isn't the best. wood moves, and those 1x4 boards will try to warp around , leaving your floor lumpy or even making a tripping hazard.
you can still do it, and even have it work ok, but use lots of nails.

fir is OK as exterior trim. keep up the paint on it and it will last a long time.

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Cut down to 2" wide to minimize warping and avoid staining. Just a good poly seal or better yet Waterlox

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Two issues: the sharp edges of the boards will likely form splinters. It was always normal practice to plane the boards used for moulding, with a profile that was rounded at the edges that showed ('bead board' was a simple round edge making a kind of R cross-section, for instance). If you want it rustic, maybe just hand-planing that edge down will suffice. If you want it really rustic, trim with axe and drawknives.
And, it is usual to nail the board for the moulding to the wall, not the floor; a second piece of molding, the toe strip, hid the crack under the kick mould, and that toe strip was nailed to the floor. If you want it to look rustic, there won't be a toe strip. It might pay to scribe the lower surface of the moulding and trim it to make the crack at the floor small (a router can do the cutting, and a simple pencil compass is all it takes to do the scribing).
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NO! Gaps are inevitable (used to be chinked with rope as antique floorboards shrank) and any warping will cause a trip-line in the floor. Softwood floors are possible, but it's always tongue-and-groove, to keep it at least locally flat. Nails keep it from sliding sideways, but nails pull out easily (and you'll trip over the protruding nailheads, too). The tongue-and-groove boards can be nailed in the tongue area, so there isn't a nailhead showing.
Simple whitewood boards aren't always fully dry as-bought, either. And at the edges, after a gap opens up, you'll pull off splinters. Lots of splinters. DAMHIKT
One could conceivably use softwood boards with loose splines to keep 'em flat, with judicious use of glues to hold em down. It's possible to fill the cracks, too (I've seen some sand-down/apply goop finishes that make filler out of the dust from sanding). But if you really want to save money, use a conventional flooring instead. The labor cost and maintenance chores for those old pegged plank floors are going to ruin your enjoyment of the rustic look.
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Thank y'all so much for your help. I'm going to show my husband your ideas. It sounds like there is some extra work associated with trying to make it work. It might make more sense to spend a little extra up front to save a bunch of extra work later on down the road.
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