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Because there are so many different species of wood to choose from, it is not too often that we get a call to install a walnut floor. So, we were excited when we met with our client in Neenah, and he brought up that he wanted walnut floors in his kitchen space. He had looked at pictures of walnut floors, and then fell in love with them when he saw them firsthand after attending the Parade of Homes in the Fox Valley. I was really excited to install a walnut floor as it is one of my favorite wood species to work with due to its magnificent rich brown tones. Every wood species has its own pros and cons, and we take the time to help educate our clients so that they can make an informed decision and then choose a floor that is going to perform, look, and feel the way they want. During our initial consultation, we talked with our client about what they were looking for in the finished product, and were then able to help them choose the finish that would best showcase their new walnut floor. After that, it was time to get to work.
Before we began the installation, we realized that the existing sub-floor needed to be strengthened to provide a solid base for our flooring. Per our request an additional 3/8″ thick plywood was added to the sub-floor to strengthen it. We then rolled on 1 coat of PU280 moisture barrier which provides a layer of protection between the sub-floor and the finished product. This prevents any potential moisture from getting into the bottom side of the walnut flooring, and allows us to glue assist the walnut flooring to the sub-floor.
Now that we finished prepping the sub-floor, and the wood acclimated to the temperature and humidity of the house, it was time to start the installation process. We chose to nail and glue assist the flooring. The glue assist makes the floor sound much more solid, due to the fact that the glue keeps the flooring in direct contact with the sub-floor.
When installing stairs there is more than meets the eye. First we removed the existing treads and measured the rise and run of the stringers. The rise had changed because of the additional sub-floor added up above and poor framing. Once we figured out what each step needed to be shimmed up to, we installed the treads with an adhesive that will flex with the wood as it expands and contracts.
SANDING & FINISHING
Now the floor has sat for a few weeks we are back to start the sanding process. We started with a rough cut for the sanding to flatten the floor. After that, we filled the knots and other milling imperfections in the flooring, and then sanded off the filler with a medium grit. We continued to sand the floor, moving up to a finer grit with each new cut. Sanding is very crucial to any wood floor, but even more so when using a Rubio Monocoat finish, which is what our clients chose. With Rubio Monocoat, the finish actually penetrates into the wood fibers and bonds to the moleculer structure of the wood, instead of forming a top layer on the wood like most traditional finished do. Because of this, you arent walking on any top coat of finish, so the floor needs to be sanded to remove even the smallest of imperfections. After we have sanded the floor to where we know it will perform well (different species of woods need to be sanded differently), we water-pop the floor to open the grain up so the Rubio Monocoat finish can penetrate into the wood. Once the wood has dried we applied one coat of Rubio Monocoat finish. Most of the time we only need to do one coat of Rubio Monocoat like the name states mono meaning one. However, with walnut flooring the grain is more open, so it requires two coats of Rubio, otherwise the floor looks “thirsty” and isn’t protected because the grain is still open. We then waited twelve hours after the first coat before we came back to apply the second and final coat of Rubio.
This job in Neenah is now completed and they just need to wait twenty-four hours before the carpenters can get back on the floor and finish up. This was an exciting project due to the species of wood, and the unique finish that showcased the finished product. Even more rewarding though, was the look of amazement on our clients face when they saw their finished product for the first time. For us, there is nothing more important than the customer experince, and we know that we can create a floor that takes your breath away. If you love the unique pattern in this walnut floor, we would love to hear from you. We would love to create a walnut floor for you, or help you to find the floor of your dreams.
This job took place in Neenah, Wisconsin and there are some pretty cool things we did here. The floor was originally stained a medium brown, which, at the time was good. But like most things, it was time to update the the space’s color. I’m always amazed by how much just changing the color of your hardwood floors can transform a space.
You can see how the floor has some cupping due to the space not being kept a consistent temperature and humidity. The floor was tested to make sure the moisture content was at a normal range so we didn’t cause any problems by sanding it flat. To learn more on where to keep your home’s climate click here
As you can see, all the old finish has been removed from the wood floors and they are down to bare wood. The floor is nice and flat, which now makes a good foundation for the Rubio Monocoat to be applied. We then water pop the floor, opening up the grain so the monocoat can penetrate into the wood fibers.
Generally when we use Rubio Monocoat we apply one coat, just like the name refers to “mono”. But certain species have a more open grain and require multiple coats of Rubio to ensure that the floor is fully protected. This is the first layer of color applied to achieve that custom look the client wanted.
Now that we have the second coat of Rubio on the wood floors, it’s time to work on transforming the mahogany herringbone border.
Another part of the project we had to tackle was the mahogany herringbone border around the formal dining room. We needed to get this as close to the final color of the finished walnut to blend the two different species of wood together. As you can see, mahogany is naturally a very red hue. This added another element to figure out, which is one of the enjoyable things we get to do.
Now that the floor is all completed and the furniture is back in, you can really see how color can change a space. No two floors and spaces are the same and neither should the color be that way. Custom colors can truly transform a space and make it your own.
“Aaron from Signature Custom Flooring did a breath taking job on putting Ash hardwood floors in our kitchen and dining room and 2 hallways. We would highly recommend Aaron for any project one would have concerning hardwood flooring. He is truly Professional! What an amazing man to work with. We are overwhelmingly pleased! Thanks Signature Custom Flooring for a job well done!”
– Anna Stratton, Hartford
“After seeing the bad shape my floors were in I was doubtful they would ever look “amazing”, but Signature Custom Flooring did a fantastic job!!! I would absolutely recommend hiring Aaron. I’ll for sure recommend him to anyone that needs their floors done.”
– Robert Orde, Green Bay
“Aaron did a beautiful job on our floors. After 15 years, they were in need of refinishing. Aaron restored the original beauty of the maple floors and suggested a water-based finish instead of the oil-based. No more gold floors!!! We also appreciate that there was virtually no dust to clean up. Great job Aaron. Thank you for making our floors beautiful again.”
– Lisa Paul, Oshkosh
“Aaron is an incredibly hard worker with incredible expertise on hardwood flooring. I had NO idea the amount of information out there on species of wood, finishes, etc. and Aaron was so helpful in explaining it all and making sure we got the floor we really had cooked up in our imagination. We could not be happier! The price was great, the service was fantastic and we got exactly what we wanted. I would recommend Aaron to anyone!”
– Nicole Waltemath, Oshkosh
Now, before we get going, I’m going to admit that I’m a pretty big dog lover, so my point of view may be a little biased. They say that your dog is just an extension of its owners personality, and I can definitely attest to that. However, your furry friend doesn’t mean that you can’t […]
Learn how to maintain and protect your hardwood floor, as well as how often it should be refinished.