Carpet Laying

Lots of people say that you can DIY a lot of things, but you should always get a professional in for plastering and carpet laying. Well, thanks to advice from this group I tried plastering, got the knack and have saved myself a fortune. Now I expect you can see where this is going! Anone care to do a step-by-step guide to fitting carpets with tips on how to do a really good job? Failing a complete guide (which I can find on the web), any other tips would be gratefully received.
--
Selah

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Stephen Gower wrote:

Yip I did my own plastering too, and went as far as laying the underlay and grippers, however as the cost was only £60-80 to lay carpet in 2 rooms and on the stairs (which went round corner) n landing - I was happy to leave it to the professionals
Jon
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On 02 Mar 2005, Stephen Gower wrote

I'll follow the responses to this one with interest....
(FWIW, I've tried it a couple of times over the years but have given up: it's always turned out to be a bad idea for me, as I can't seem to get the edge-trimming correct. Your mileage, as they say, may vary....)
--
Cheers,
Harvey
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It is reasonably easy, but you should get a kicker and an edge tool, watching a pro is the best. decent carpet is usually fitted free.
mrcheerful
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mrcheerful .

If only we could afford decent carpet! I like the idea of laying the underlay and gripper rods myself and then getting the pro to do the last bit. I'll phone around those listed in the Yellow Pages and see if they are up for this!
--
Selah

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I've laid carpets myself, when the fitting didn't come FOC with the carpet. I found it quite tiring but not particularly difficult.
First fitted the gripper strip as per the instructions on the pack and a carpet joining strip for under the door.
Then laid the underlay, tacked down with a staple gun.
For the actual carpet, first fitted the two adjoining simple walls i.e. no doorways, alcoves etc., then fitted the fiddly walls with doorway alcoves, then stretched it by jumping and pushing my feet forward as I landed (not having a kicker) the result looked absolutely fine, no waves and fitted perfectly to the wall. To cut away the excess carpet I used a stanley knife pressing into the corner at 45 degrees to the floor, then pushed it under the gripper strip with a bolster chisel.
To fit the corners I cut into the carpet at 45 degrees to the point where the floor/corner would meet, so that the carpet would lie flat then trimmed the excess. Doing the fiddly shapes round architrave etc. is made easier if the gripper strip is a reasonable shape match to the doorway, I just cut away the carpet by iteration.
Make sure you have lots of sharp blades and change them at the first hint that the edge is dulling, this makes a /big/ difference.
If I do one again and I'm not as broke as I was when I laid the others I'd probably invest in a kicker.
--
bof at bof dot me dot uk

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Stephen Gower wrote:

That is what I just did... (although I did what Harvey suggested above and watched closely what the fitter did!).
(Gripper and underlay from http://www.discounted-carpet-underlay.co.uk /)
The trick on trimming seemed to be to cut it slightly long and tuck it into the gap behind the gripper with the edge tool, rather than trying to get the cut size spot on.
--
Cheers,

John.

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My local carpet place uses self employed fitters. And these may well (are in my experience) be open to a cash deal - especially if you've done the underlay, etc. The trouble is that a mistake can ruin the carpet. Messing up plastering, etc, only really costs your time.
--
*Is there another word for synonym?

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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Stephen Gower snipped-for-privacy@earth.li typed:

My least favourite job, if your having a whole house done, it can be cheaper to examine the price including fitting. For advice on doing one room try http://www.discounted-carpet-underlay.co.uk/fitting1.html use a good Stanley knife for cutting and a pack of new blades, changed regularly or re-sharpened.
-- Mark§
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One important difference is that with plastering 90% of the cost is labour and 10% materials, while carpeting the cost is 90% materials and 10% on labour.
Toby
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It was somewhere outside Barstow when "Toby Sleigh"

That's a very good point.
I'd lay carpets in a large empty room again - but I'm never doing any more vinyl in a small kitchen !
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wrote:

It is. It's something we should think about more.

That's why we're using paint!
Mary

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Yeah - unfortunately it's easier to 'adjust' plastering :-)
I did try laying carpet and my attempts were documented here. Some good advice on tools and technique to use but from now on I'll get the pros to do it.
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On Wed, 2 Mar 2005 19:35:49 -0000, Mike wrote:

I've had a go as well. My first attempt was (is) crap but I learnt. Second go is much better, not as good as pro but not bad. I learn't again from that so the third should be even better. The hardest part I found was the trimming, it has to be straight and accurate (+/- a mm at the most). I hired a proper knee kicker.
However I'll only consider fitting carpet again if it's cheap as in free. We tend to buy decent carpet at over £20/sq yd, I'm not prepared to fup up several hundred quid when you can get "free" fitting with the carpet. I may have to negociate over that though as I have more than enough gripper strip and now know how much you can get underlay for without to much hassle...
--
Cheers snipped-for-privacy@howhill.com
Dave. pam is missing e-mail
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I have taken onboard the issues of getting it wrong with a few hundred quids worth of carpet, rather than a few quids worth of plaster - and will be getting a pro in! Just for info, the only online carpet seller I could find was http://www.ukcarpetsdirect.com/ but they have been very helpful (and send free samples, so I do know what I'm getting!)
--
Selah

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Stephen Gower wrote:

I think you have made the right decision. Carpet laying is one job I wouldn't tackle after seeing a real pro do it. I've used the same carpet fitter for 20+ years, he also supplys my carpets after I've decided what I want by looking in the usual suspects. Just had lounge - through arch to dining room all done by him in one carpet piece. He used carpet stretching tool that extended the full required 30 feet. Where would an amateur get such a tool or know how to use it? Without tool to make it tight it looks rubbish.
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Last time I looked, my local hire shop had them. Ask for a carpet kicker.
But I made one out of wood and nails. Mainly to re-lay carpets after lifting for wiring, etc. But I'd still use a pro for a new carpet.
--
*If all the world is a stage, where is the audience sitting?

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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It was somewhere outside Barstow when "Dave Plowman (News)"

I'd never do this (again). If you compare it to a "real" carpet knee-kicker, the genuine thing has far more, and thinner gripping points. A pice of ply with nails in is very hard on the carpet, doesn't grip well and will cause significant damage to cheap foam backed carpets. It's worth hiring the real thing.
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Depends what nails you use and how many. Panel pins will do no more 'damage' than the real thing. Of course the real thing allows you to adjust the length of the pins.
--
*If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.*

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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