What I'm Seeing Now


Jay's Floor 6 - How Dry I Am


This is typical of one of those problems that crop up during floor installations.  It it at the edge of the entry where the original hall flooring and our new flooring meet the bottom of the stair case. 

It could have been harder.  I might have had to notch out a spot for that trim piece.

This one is straightforward, with a little wrinkle.  You can see that the tongue on the new piece still needs to go into the groove of the original flooring, but also accommodate a small 1/8" bump out of the stair piece, and then an easy notch for the molding piece. 

How to do that and still maintain straight lines?

I have a tool.











Surprisingly, this is called a "Japanese Pull Saw."  It has its own case to protect it while in the tool box with the other bourgeoisie tools.  It likes to be set apart!

What a wonderful tool.  It is not like a traditional saw where you pull and push.  This saw is just pulled. 

It makes very fine, very exact cuts.  You simply pull gently and let the saw do the work. 

Working with hardwood flooring isn't exactly like working with furniture.  But close!







This is what it looked like when finished.

The floor molding still needs to be nailed into place.  But I wanted you to see how it looks at the end of the process.

It fits pretty well!

This right view is the opposite side left by the builder - two large gaps visible.

That was installed by the flooring "professional" ten years ago.

So, how do you get the floor down so as to mix grains, and textures and colors?  How do you make it not only look pretty but also with very little waste?

I am using Armstrong flooring that comes in various lengths inside boxes that are about 7' long.  Each box has 84 board feet.  For each box, I am getting less than 12" of waste.  That is pretty good. 

Here is one technique below to be able to mix and match, with little waste...

This is a dry fit technique.  You simply lay out the boards ahead of time, placing together colors and grains that are different.  You also want to put them down so that edges do not come together in the same place.  There is one spot in the upper center which looks like the two seams are together, but that is an illusion.  The longer piece is on top of the one below and there will be about 3" cut off. 

Onward and upward!

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560


Comment balloon 6 commentsJay Markanich • July 02 2009 04:42AM


Jay, I laid a hard wood (maple) floor in my master bedroom a few years back. Only one funky cut in the whole job. I did the job in two days.

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) about 11 years ago

Jay, I just love those pull saws----so good at doing exactly what you used it for.

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) about 11 years ago

James - I have had a couple of hours here and there.  It is a very good floor, only one small finishing glitch on one small piece.  Made In America...

Charlie (Shadow) - it is a great tool, 'tis.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 11 years ago

You must be very good at jigsaw puzzles! I love th color on your choice of wood

Posted by Susan Gonzalez Faux painting murals atlanta (Marietta Mural & Decorative Design) about 11 years ago

I installed hardwood floors for a while and don't miss sanding the corners. Talk about a knuckle workout.

Posted by Vince Santos, Southeast Michigan Home Inspector (StepByStep Home Services LC) about 11 years ago

Susan - it is very nice wood.  Armstrong flooring, natural finish, white oak.

Vince - this is fun to do for myself.  I wouldn't want to do it for a living!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 11 years ago

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