The project for this weekend is to start installing 1 x 6 tongue & groove
pine plank flooring in our summer lake cottage. I am trying to decide
using a nailer that shoots cleat nails or or one that shoots staples. One
I spoke to thought that staples held better. The cottage is unheated during
months -- the location is in southwestern Michigan near Kalamazoo. Because
variation in temperature there might be a bit more than the normal movement
of the wood throughout the course of the year. Any recommendations?
Also, the first row of planks to be installed is parallel to an 8 foot patio
could use some ideas on how to fill the gap I need to leave between the
plank and the aluminum track at the bottom of the door.
I would rent a pneumatic flooring stapler. i believe the tool that
shoots cleats uses the force of hitting it with a hammer to sink the
cleat. that adds up to a ton of work. staple every six inches or so.
i wouldn't worry about the lack of heat in the winter. there will
actually be less wood movement in this situation. if you heat it, in
the winter, the moisture content of the wood will get much lower than
if you didn't heat it. contrasted with the humidity in the summer,
large gaps in the flooring are inevitable. .i know of a camp with a
maple gym floor that has been unheated in the winter and it looks like
new 70 years later.
as for the gap between the door and the wood, you have a few options.
you could make a little piece of trim to cover it, or maybe buy a piece
of screen molding or something like that. the traditional way is to
use a cork strip which i believe you can get from hardwood flooring
suppliers. you could use a caulk similar to what is used to caulk
concrete expansion joints--sikaflex or something like that.
I really can't imagine a staple holding better than a cleat (they are
barbed). You can rent either manual or pneumatic nailers.
If you choose cleats and rent a manual one do *NOT* get a Bosch...get the
Porta Nailer. With the Bosch, the cleat must be driven with one
blow...close to impossible with hardwood for an amateur; might work with
your pine but why chance it? The Porta Nailer holds the ram down until the
cleat is completely set which allows multiple blows which means your 10 year
old could use it.
I would think either would work fine but I've not installed a nail down
floor before so let the experts chime in here. I will say however that
wood moves very little with temperature changes. It's the humidity that
affects wood's movement. Typically however, the warmer temps bring higher
humidities and wood expands with increased humidity. Most people associate
the wood's change in size to the temperature because of this yet that is
just not true.
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