Sunday, January 12, 2020

Fireplace Remodel Day Ten

Day #10 was Friday, and I had most of the day off work - if only every week was like this....!  After a little bit of light sanding, the three walls at the dining room side were declared flat and dry, including the corners.

On to the floor! The leveling compound I installed yesterday was completely cured, so I started figuring out how to patch in the new hardwood flooring.

One of the ends of the original boards wasn't square, and I wanted to cut some of the other boards back a bit to disguise the repairs. I've developed my own method for doing this, so I thought I'd show it in full in my blog....but be warned: this doesn't work for tongue and groove flooring or for anything that has been installed with adhesive.

I start by prying the board up from the end and work my way along the board. It doesn't matter if you damage the end of the board, since it will be trimmed off, but you have to be very careful not to damage the adjacent boards and not to split the board you're trying to lift. My Grandfather, who would have been 113 this year, would have said "Patience is a virtue." I want to lift the board enough to cut through it, but not remove it completely.

The circular saw is set to 1/4 inch depth. I happen to have an almost new crosscutting blade on the saw which is perfect for this application.

I like to make my cut very close to a nail line; a piece of scrap wood is inserted below where I want to cut. This protects the adjacent boards and the subfloor from the saw blade.

I make a square cut by running the saw against my framing square. I like to make a couple of practice cuts before I go for the important one.

The trimmed board can be re-installed by placing a piece of scrap wood place over the nails and letting you hammer do it's worst. If you're careful about this you can put the board back without disrupting the nail hole filler or the finish. If you're going to be re-finishing the floor, less care is needed...

The result is a perfect match between old and new boards:

I did the same for the other two boards and then had a trial install. The new material was very slightly wider than the original boards, so I removed a few thou' with the block plane.  But....this was also where I discovered that the leveling compound was actually not very level....and was proud of the subfloor in places. I think this is because I was rushing to install the compound and I made it too viscous. I'm presently unsure how to proceed with this part of the project, so I moved on to the other side.

The leveling compound on the living room side was pretty level, fortunately, with a slight peak in the center.

I cut a piece of 3/4 inch plywood which extends several inches beyond the area the will be tiled. The plywood came out very close to level - I will need to make some shims before I anchor the plywood; something else to come back to later...

Time to skim some more drywall! This is how the wall between the fireplace and the shoe rack looked the last time around:

This area was mostly finished by the end of Friday afternoon; there is a small section adjacent to the shoe rack which isn't quit ready to be skimmed just yet...and I ran out of drywall mud :(

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