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Trash to Treasure: Reworking hardwood floor

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gen2026
Camden, AR

January 11, 2010
4:17 PM

Post #7451796

I did manage to find my pictures, so to keep from going further OT on the brownbagging thread, I will start a new thread here.

This hardwood floor was redone shortly before my parents passed away by someone who either didn't know what he was doing or didn't care. I know he originally told them the floor would have to dry a day or more between coats and the last 2 coats he put on in the same day... think he only put 3 coats on. Within a few months the floor had already started showing signs of deterioration. Now, the finish is peeling up and seems to be down to bare wood or fairly close at this point.

I was wondering if I could lightly sand the floors and apply more sealer, or if I am going to have to rent a big floor sander and strip all the way back to bare wood... I inherited my parents house, and I will be renting it back out. But the rent on the house barely covers the insurance and taxes annually, so I need to get by as inexpensively as possible . Due to all the rain we have had, and now COLD weather... it has already been empty about 3 mos and I need to get someone back in there. Just know no one descent will rent it with the floors in the shape they are in. In addition, we have to replace a large part of the kitchen subfloor because the dishwasher apparently leaked everywhere without us being told. I will be taking the dishwasher out and leaving it out!

See if you can tell anything about the floors in these pics. These were NOT taken to show the condition of the floor, they were taken for prosecution purposes because the girl had left so much JUNK and trash in the house even after having a FULL MONTH rent free to get her stuff out. ... she ended up coming back and getting MOST of the stuff out so we didn't bother with the prosecution. Anyway, so please ignore the piles of stuff that might be in some of the pics... this first pic is the only one I could find of just the floor...

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gen2026
Camden, AR

January 11, 2010
4:20 PM

Post #7451810

Here is a another pic - please disregard the trash in the photo, but to the left of the trash you can see where it appears that all the sealer is off the floor...

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gen2026
Camden, AR

January 11, 2010
4:23 PM

Post #7451819

One more... I would appreciate any input on how to proceed...

Thanks!
Genna

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Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

January 11, 2010
5:58 PM

Post #7452181

That's a mess all right.

Of the light sploches are actually the way it looks - I appears to be water damage, but might just be where all the finish is gone. The first picture also shows something eles that is disturbing to me - the very dark right side and far wall area. Lke the wood did not take the stain evenly.

We were very diligent in making our refinishing project match as close as we could - this meant re applying stain on some boards. ALSO - we were cautioned by a couple of professionals before we started - so we did use a pre-conditioner to reduce the bloching that is inherent in pine. Just as a test, we did not apply the pre-conditioner on one piece of new pine quarter round - bloched like crazy, so sanded it and did it right.

The refinisher that did yours was correct about allowing the finish to cure for a few days -if he was using an oil based finish. (we did that - used an exterior oil based poly - wanted the hardest surface we could get, since ours will be a rent house, too)

If a wayer based poly is used - it will look like the blochy areas when applied - all millky - but it will dry clear and stay clear, where ours will yellow over time. But just applying finish of=ver what you have may not look any better - it will just have a nice new hard finish on top of the discolleration.

I woul clean the floor, then try using mineral spitits on a "NEW" lamb's wool applicator to see what the true color is. It dries quickly, so that will let you know what steps to take. It is inexpensive, too. Be suer to clean the applicator as soon as you notice it become dirty - probably will do that several times per room..

Here is one shot of our stained floor.

Thumbnail by Bubba_MoCity
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gen2026
Camden, AR

January 11, 2010
8:24 PM

Post #7452625

Part of the "light" gray looking areas in the first pic is actually DIRT but the finish is missing in a lot of places as well. That particular pic was taken because of the dirt because as I said, these pics were taken to show the state she left the house in, not the floor.

What do I "clean" the lambs wool with... if I am using mineral spirits to clean the floor?? Will it cause the wood to dry out? Think I will have to sand all the way to bare wood since part of the floor has finish and part doesn't?

Are you familiar with the term "screening" that some hardwood finishers refer to? From what I understand it is a very light sanding instead of going all the way down to bare wood...

IF this was waterbase and I go back with oil with it adhere??

Thanks! I appreciate your attempts to help. Your floor looks beautiful by the way. My husband and I put down all the hardwood in our new home - but we paid someone else to sand and finish it because we were scared we would mess it up.


Genna
Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

January 11, 2010
8:57 PM

Post #7452725

More mineral spirits will clean the applicator. The mineral spitits can be removed from it with some dishwashing liquid, once the day is done. One other tip - use nytrile gloves not latex - cheap latex gloves auto-destruct in solvents, and the blue nytrile survive. I know I'm spelling it wrong, but phonetically it's right.

It should not dry the wood, but it will find dust and dirt that even the best vacuuming missed.

Screening is light sanding. In fact if you rent one of the rectangilar floor finishers and use the fiber pad, it will do a great job of screening. No matter what power buffer you use - KEEP MOVING - they will go deeper quickly if left in one place, even for an instant. (We have a few dimples form the drum sander that we did not see until we put the finish down.)

Both Home Depot and Lowe's rent equipment here in the Houston, TX area. The expense of the rental is well offset by the time it would take with hand equipment.
gen2026
Camden, AR

January 12, 2010
2:44 AM

Post #7453814

Thanks. Do you think I should attempt to just mop the floor first? I haven't done anything to it - not even swept it at this point because I wasn't sure where to begin. I will have to locate one of those lambs wool applicator... probably my local sherwin williams will have it. We have a rental company that rents the retangular floor finishers ... at least that is what they rented YEARS ago - not sure if they have that or the drum type now. We have a HD about 40 miles away - nearest Lowe's is almost 100 miles... :(

NOW, if I could just the weather to cooperate some. All the kids will be out of town this weekend at a retreat with the church - would be nice if I could make a dent in it then!

Thanks for all your help! Hadn't read far enough on your town to realize you were in Texas and not Missouri! I am in South Arkansas...

Genna
sammut
western sydney nsw
Australia

January 12, 2010
7:27 AM

Post #7454400

Hi gen2026,
You poor dear finding you rental house floor so badly damaged have had the same thing happen after tenants left but in Australia we can take out insurance to cover tenant damage or loss of rent. I was lucky last week had a change of tenant and all the house needed was all rooms painted and new tiles in the bathroom and cost was below the excess we done the work our selves . but I am putting a new roller door on the garage wear over the years and cars running into it .
Its not easy being a landlord at times it can be heartbreaking hope the floor can be redone at a small cost and better luck with next tenants.-----------elaine.
Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

January 12, 2010
1:13 PM

Post #7454624

May sound strange, but I would start with a shop vac with a new filter, then mop. The semi-new swiffer mops with the microfiber pads do a great job. They get more up than any other map and don't leave any lint, fibers, or other debris behind. We have even used ont of those covers on the lamb's wool applicator to do a quick dry "once-over".

Yes, we have a lot of fun with our town name. I was working in Joplin, MO years ago and when I checke in to the motel, the young clerk asked where Missouri city was (not seeing the TX), so I could not resist; told her is wsa just a few miles form Iowa Colony. I got the "deer in the headlights look", so explained that these are real places just south of Houston.
gen2026
Camden, AR

January 12, 2010
3:17 PM

Post #7455045

Thanks Elaine. It is a little worse because this was my home while growing up... it was my parents house. After they passed away I left it empty for 2 yrs - just not wanting anyone else living in my "home" but it looked so pitiful sitting there empty and it was difficult at best to keep up the additional yard, etc. and it is 20 miles from me... so that makes it a little more difficult as far as hauling the mower, etc. So, I finally relented and FORCED myself to rent it out. Most have gone fairly well. The ones prior to this one kept the place immaculate! So I went from the very best to one of the worst, but she did come back (after some a small chat with the county Sheriff) and clean up most of the mess. Unfortunately, I don't think it is her fault that the floors are in the condition they are in - they were not in great shape when she moved in, and just the wear and tear of so many people in the house made them a lot worse. I just think when the guy redid them, he wasn't really sure what he was doing.

Where is Australia are you located? I have a niece and her husband who are moving to Australia early in February. Actually, he had been working there since Jan.4... her and the kids are moving Feb. 6 I believe. They are moving to Perth? Not sure if I spelled that correctly... it is a MAJOR change for them, and my sister (her Mom) is NOT happy!! :) She is used to seeing the grandkids several times a week... now it will just be a couple of times per year if she is lucky.

A shop vac or my rainbow is where I had planned to start... have a LOT of work ahead of me!

Do you think I need to sand to bare wood? Or just lightly sand and recoat??

Thanks!
Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

January 12, 2010
5:44 PM

Post #7455496

So glad to know you have a Rainbow - (was once a salesperson for them and still have the demo machine nearly 40 years old now).

You may have to go to bare floor, but get it clean first.

Here is a old picture of where we started - obviously we had to sand all the floors.

Had this old partial wall "fix" that had to be replaced, lots of termite and water damage (also poorly repaired by prior tenents) to replace before we could start the sanding process. Not to mention the old "filler" and paint that was more than calling card thick in places.

Thumbnail by Bubba_MoCity
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gen2026
Camden, AR

January 12, 2010
5:59 PM

Post #7455551

We repaired part of floor in one of our rent houses similar to that, except they just put plywood where the wall had been... so we had to find some hardwood the right size (no easy task since it was old) then rework that area... turned out nice, but we actually used some old boards from a different house and didn't have to sand and refinish. We will need to refinish - just haven't gotten that done yet...

Genna
Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

January 12, 2010
7:33 PM

Post #7455833

How 'bout some termite damage?

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Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

January 12, 2010
7:35 PM

Post #7455836

Repaired with some old T&G boards from another house

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gen2026
Camden, AR

January 12, 2010
8:45 PM

Post #7456027

Yuck! Not good ... :) In our old home, we had 5 floor joists that had moisture damage - no termite damage surprisingly, but they had heated the house with a furnace system at one point, and it appeared that there may have been a large leak at one time under this one room. We really are not sure what caused the damage, but it was all under one bedroom. We had never taken on such a project, and we had already moved out of the house and into our new home so it made dealing with it MUCH easier, but we pulled up the hardwood in about 3/4 of the room... then replaced the floor joists that had been damaged. Then took all the nails out of the old hardwood and put the hardwood flooring back down. Of course, we lost a few pieces, but thankfully we were able to salvage most of it. Then we paid a guy to redo the floors thru out the house so we could put it up for sale. I HATED the job he did and IF I had been going to live in the house I would have thrown a BIG fit!! But, we were already in the middle of selling when he was hired to do the work and the woman who was buying the house loved the floors so I kept my mouth shut!

I failed to get pictures while we were in the middle of that big project - should have though. It was MAJOR undertaking for us... but it turned out great and the floor was probably more sound when we got thru than it was when it was first built.

sammut
western sydney nsw
Australia

January 12, 2010
10:05 PM

Post #7456294

Good Evening Genna { morning over here ]
I think all the floor will need to be sanded back to bare wood .
If you do your self you MUST wear a mask because of the fine dust .
I know how hard it is going and working on a house one of mine is 1 hr. drive away before you start doing any thing the others are in the same area I live .
Good luck to your niece and family on their big move --she is leaving winter and coming to our HOT summer .
I live in Sydney--- state N.S.W . Perth state W.A. is the other side of the country .
Does your sister have web cam a good way to talk and see the grand children . elaine



gen2026
Camden, AR

January 13, 2010
3:57 AM

Post #7457290

No, she doesn't have a web cam yet, and is currently on dial up - but she is remedying that SOON! ^_^ She is in the process of getting high speed internet. She has actually been trying to get high speed for several months - but NOW it is mandatory and the price really will not be important! LOL... she doesn't know how to use a webcam or Skype but I am sure she will learn because those babies are leaving in just a few weeks. They are twins - 9 yrs old - one boy, one girl. It will be a big adventure for them... just hate they will be so very far from home. My sister has had some health issues in the past, and I think that really concerns her with them going so far away. But, she knows that I am just across town and I will be there if she has a problem. In fact, the last time she was hospitalized, it was me who stayed with her, not her daughter...

Our summers are hot and humid... so they should be used to that. They love the beach and swimming so I think they will be fine with missing winter... I know I would be!! :)

Yeah, I know about wearing the mask, but thanks for making sure I was aware of that! I am not looking forward to the job, but I am sure ready to have it behind me!!

Genna
JeanK
Deland, FL & Hot Spr, AR

January 13, 2010
3:25 PM

Post #7458084

Genna. Sorry about the floor in your house. DH always says when you have someone fix a problem for you, they usually create another! Obvioiusly the person who did your parents' floor didn't know what he was doing. I am very lucky that DH can fix most of our problems himself without calling an "expert"! We also took down a wall in our old house, and were planning to carpet the whole area, however, DH didn't use the quick fix (plywood or boards of the same size) because he said that if anyone ever took the carpeting up and wanted to refinish the floor, they wouldn't have to repair it first. We knew it would be the new owners of the house as we were planning to retire and move in several years.
gen2026
Camden, AR

January 14, 2010
2:39 AM

Post #7459975

Well, boy he HAS to be an exception - especially knowing that he didnt plan to stay in the house. Most people take the shortcut method. We are guilty of going to extremes sometimes in our rent houses - we have to be careful we don't try to overbuild or overdo because most people will not take care of it. But a few years ago we had some renters completely trash a rent house, and while they were there they subrented one end of the house (a former duplex) to someone else who actually caught the house on fire and was severely burned. Of course, our contract states that there was not to be any one else living there, but they didn't care. When they finally moved out, we had fire damage on one end, and MAJOR trash and destruction thru the rest of the house. We almost completely gutted the house, turned in to a ONE front entrance and eliminated the gas and kitchen in the far end so that we didn't have the same problem in the future. While we were at it, we made a major remodel, eliminated LOTS of windows, insulated almost all of the exterior walls and redoing most of the sheetrock, and raised a ground floor exterior entrance laundry room to a same level, interior entrance laundry. It was a major undertaking, but when we were finished, (including putting siding on the exterior) the house appraised for about 3 times what we originally paid for it, so I think it turned out pretty well. We probably invested about 50 - 60% of the original purchase price in the remodel and improvement. Plus, we raised the rent substantially. If the existing tenants (they moved in as soon as the remodel was finished) ever move out, then we will refinish the hardwood floors, probably update the kitchen, and raise the rent again.

Unfortunately, trying to work full time, and my husband works out of town so loses 2 hrs a day to commuting,... it sure makes any project move at a SNAIL's pace. I sure hope we are able to make a dent in ripping out the kitchen floor at my Mom's this weekend and getting the new subfloor in place... then I can proceed on to the hardwood floors that are in most of the rest of the house.

How is the weather in Florida? I trust ya'll had a safe journey down... It has been bitterly cold here and I have threatened to move to Florida myself... I have said several times I put up with the tremendous heat and humidity in the summers so that I don't HAVE to deal with single digit winters!! ^_^

Genna
JeanK
Deland, FL & Hot Spr, AR

January 14, 2010
2:45 PM

Post #7461096

Hi Genna: DH is a gem. That's why I have held onto him for 53 years! We tried to teach our 5 children the old saying, "If something is worth doing, it's worth doing right." Fortunately, they seem to have gotten the message. We had what we call an uneventful trip down -- meaning good -- no problems. I know about the SNAIL's pace while trying to work on a project and working full time. Been there, done that.

I know it must make you sad to see the home where you grew up trashed. After DH and I were married and my mom moved to Virginia, the house where I grew up burned. It was years before I could go by the place where it was when I visited back home. Our granddaughter said something interesting after the birth of her daughter. She told our daughter that she wished that we hadn't sold our home in Illinois as she wished her daughter could go there -- she had so many good memories about it. (Didn't know she was taking it all in and racking up good memories at the time!!!!!)

Stay warm. It has finally warmed up here. We had 10 days of below freezing here and most of our large plants here are looking pretty sad. Most will come back, but it is to early to tell what got killed and what didn't.
gen2026
Camden, AR

January 26, 2010
3:47 PM

Post #7498577

Jean - did you happen to see the post that was on this forum yesterday?? Now it is gone... some company trying to convince me to use them instead of doing it myself. I thought it was so odd because they had only "joined" DG yesterday. I came back to this thread today to see if they had posted anywhere else, and now the post is gone...

Just wondering if anyone else saw it or if I am totally losing it! :)

Genna
JuneyBug
Dover AFB, DE
(Zone 7a)

January 26, 2010
9:43 PM

Post #7499764

It is gone because I clicked the "contact us" on the bottom right of the screen and told our admin that we had advertising going on here. Melody fixed it quick ^_^ ! Thing is, I am probably related to whoever that was that put that ad on here since they are working out of Alexander, Ark, sheesh... Did you see the first couple of lines where they said that most people RUIN their floors by trying to sand & refinish them on their own? I have seen folks have to redo them because they forgot a step of the process or they hated the color, but I have not even heard of somebody ruining a floor.
gen2026
Camden, AR

January 27, 2010
12:22 AM

Post #7500302

Thanks. I was about to doubt my sanity! LOL... I did think their comments were pretty extreme, and I started to reply, but I decided it best to just let it go. I just thought it so strange that they just joined and found this tread on the same day... too weird... and I did go to their website but it didn't really contain much info.

Thanks for verifying I hadn't totally lost it!!

Genna
JuneyBug
Dover AFB, DE
(Zone 7a)

January 27, 2010
1:05 AM

Post #7500435

Their search engine probably just picked up on "hardwood floor + Arkansas" and that is how they found this thread.
gen2026
Camden, AR

January 27, 2010
3:19 AM

Post #7500823

Juney are you originally from arkansas? How long you been in Korea?

JuneyBug
Dover AFB, DE
(Zone 7a)

January 27, 2010
3:42 AM

Post #7500879

Yep, I'm from the prettiest state in all of the US! DH joined the Army shortly after we got married and we have been on the move since then ('76). He retired from the Army and now works for the Civil Service doing the same kind of jobs that he did when he was on active duty. He came over to Korea a year ago and is working in the same building that he worked in when he was here 20+ years ago! I hung out at our house by Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri trying to sell it and just sorta' gave up and came over here in September. It is real pretty over here, but there is no place like home!
ButterflyChaser
Northeast, AR
(Zone 7a)

January 27, 2010
10:30 AM

Post #7501307

My brother bought an older house with nasty carpet. We pulled up the carpet to reveal old hardwood floors. The tenants who had lived in the house before he bought it apparently had a dog that tinkled all over the carpet. The carpet stayed wet and the stain seeped into the hardwood. We rented a floor sander and sanded to bare wood. Then we stained and sealed. After a few more tenants lived in it, the floors had to be lightly sanded again, touched up with stain here and there and then resealed. But the 2nd time wasn't nearly as difficult or time consuming as the first.

You might not have to severely sand all the floor if you can match the stain. Usually as you stain, you can even out the tone by going lightly on the already stained areas (just to cover the scratches) and adding a bit more stain to the barest areas. You might give it a try before you go thru the trouble of completely sanding all the floors.

I will mention that if you have dark areas from pet stains, chances are you can't sand deep enough to get the stains out. You'll either have to live with it or replace the affected boards. We chose to live with it since it's just rental property. But since the stain itself is dark, the darker spots aren't too obvious.

The best advice I can give is use a good sealer and seal it several times. Let it dry for several days or even a week before letting anyone move in.
gen2026
Camden, AR

January 27, 2010
3:38 PM

Post #7501953

Thanks! My preference would probably be just to clear seal if I end up having to completely sand. I prefer the look of the lighter floor and the house has several rooms of wood paneling so lighter is better... right now, I am trying to fix an area in the kitchen that has water damage to the subfloor. My health and weather conditions have not been condusive to making much progress since we can really only work on the weekends. My daughter has a school pageant this weekend so IF I make any progress, it won't be much! :) Too many irons in the fire!! If I was where I could, I would just hire someone to fix the subfloor for me to save a lot of time, but I am going to have so much expense in redoing all the floors that I need to save all the money I can.

Thanks for the suggestions... I hope to get to utilizing them soon~

Genna
gen2026
Camden, AR

May 28, 2010
11:50 AM

Post #7836650

Well, it has taken me FOREVER , but we finally got the subfloor repaired in the kitchen area...had to take a several week hiatus on working on floors and spent multiple weekend hauling off truckloads of "stuff" the renters left ! I think we ended up hauling off something like 6 or 7 truckloads of junk, and we still aren't finished! But, we were TRYING to get all the yard area cleaned up so that when the grass started growing we wouldn't destroy our mower!

I hope to sand down the floors this weekend. Had someone give me a price to redo them since obviously I needed it done months ago - but I just can't afford to invest that much back into the house. The house is old and located out in the country - the taxes and insurance take most of the rent I get so it doesn't leave much for major repairs.
So, this "holiday" weekend will likely be spent refinishing floors!

Genna
gen2026
Camden, AR

May 28, 2010
11:55 AM

Post #7836663

By the way... does anyone happen to know the difference between a refinish sander and a drum sander??? the guy at the rental place is not sure which one I need to use! I SURE don't know !!

^_^

Genna
Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

May 28, 2010
1:16 PM

Post #7836916

Oh Boy! Now the fun begins!

A drum sander is a very agressive beast. That's what we used. DO N O T stop moving once you lower the drum, and KEEP MOVING as you raise it or you will have a great looking dimple (drum wide). Worse, you may not see it until you start applying finish. (not that we did any of that - LOL).

You will also need an edge sander because the drum will not get closer than a couple of inches from the walls. This is another "horse of a machine", and it will leave some swirl scratches that need to be sanded with the grain to remove. We used several smaller sanders to accomplish that.

Original estimates for the three rooms and hallway were $1100 - 1800. We spent about $700 including 3 rentals of the drum and edge sanders and all of the sanding disks, belts, drum-sleaves - but we also did the upstairs rooms - probably 1/2 as much surface as downstairs. Almost half of what we spent was the sanding materials, not the rentals.


The smaller sanders included
2 3x21 belt sanders - a small B&D and a large Ridgid - (love the Ridgid) -
a B&D Mega-Mouse -
and another ancient Ward's orbital pad sander.

Used grits from 24 - 120 on all.

There are rectangular floor sanders that might be called refinish sanders. We will rent one of these to lightly roughup the surface before we apply the final coats of poly.

Got that tip form a friend who is a professional woodworker. Told us to rent the wax cleaning pad - looks like plastic "Chore-Girl" on steroids. It is not as agressive as sandpaper, but will give us enough "tooth" to the old finish to take more coats.



This message was edited May 28, 2010 2:17 PM

This message was edited May 28, 2010 2:18 PM
ButterflyChaser
Northeast, AR
(Zone 7a)

May 28, 2010
2:27 PM

Post #7837135

I've used a drum sander and it was a major pain. Big and heavy, and the sanding belts were difficult to change. You definitely have to hang onto the thing when it's going.

We ended up renting a sander at Lowes that had three spinning sanding discs on the bottom. It was easy to slip off a sanding pad because they just kind of velcroed to the disc. And it was much easier to use.

And the great thing is, those sandpads, once not good enough for the floor, could be cut down and used with my palm sander to do fine sanding on woodworking projects. I still have a bunch of them.
gen2026
Camden, AR

May 29, 2010
8:05 PM

Post #7841255

Well, I didn't manage to have a chance to get back on line but we ended up attempting it with the refinishing sander and it did not work! So, the guy had closed early and was out of town, but he was willing to come to the store to swap machines with us late this afternoon, but we lost one full day of the weekend!! So much for taking advantage of the "free" day!! But, hopefully tomorrow afternoon will go better. We have used a drum sander in the past - I wasn't sure what it was called, but I recognized it once he picked it up. I can tell you the refinish sander is MUCH easier to use ...but unfortunately it just wouldn't cut deep enough to do what we needed to do. Actually, it MIGHT have worked with a LOT of persistence but the guy only had 3 sheets of 20 grit, and we would have had to have a LOT more than that! So since he didn't have any more of the 20 grit we opted to change to the drum sander - which will be a lot more work, but hopefully worth it. So far, the sander rental is around 95 dollars, but the paper will add to that substantially. Then the sealer is going to run me around 250 - 300, but the cheapest bid to have them professionally done was 1800... the other quote was 2400. So SURELY I will end up saving some money! I will probably have to rent the edger - we opted to wait on that since we had already lost a day of work!

Hopefully, tomorrow will be better and we can make some progress! Thanks for all of your helpful advice... I am NOT looking forward to trying to control that drum sander, but I think the result will be better...

Thanks!
Genna
gen2026
Camden, AR

May 31, 2010
9:03 AM

Post #7845525

Ok, so we spent all day using the drum sander but we have a LOT of finish that is not coming off ... seems to be leaving streaks where it isn't sanding the surface. Seems like it is going deep enough to get the polyurethane off but not the stain, but some places are sanded clean ??? Suggestions?? My husband thinks the boards are slightly cupped but I don't think so - to me it seems the drum sander is not consistent - doesn't seem to operate like the one we used 10 - 11 yrs ago and is only stripping a SMALL strip clean about 3 inches where the belt in 8" or so wide...

How do I clean these places?? I wanted to just put a clear sealer back down to lighten the rooms some because of all the paneling throughout the house... but it won't be possible with all these streaks! Wish I had taken a picture... maybe I will remember today.

Thanks for any input...

Genna
ButterflyChaser
Northeast, AR
(Zone 7a)

May 31, 2010
9:13 AM

Post #7845547

We did a majority of the work on our floors with a big floor sander and then went around on hands and knees with palm sanders to get the "cupped" areas and the areas against the trim. Wood does cup and sag over time and you may not can see it, but if you pour water on it, you can see the areas. That may be what you're running into. If the floors ever had moisture on them or on the ground under them, it can cause some bowing too.
gen2026
Camden, AR

May 31, 2010
2:08 PM

Post #7846401

I forgot to take pictures today too - but I did use a straight edge to see that some places are slightly cupped... guess I will be using that palm sander a lot too!! :) My bad knee and back is going to love this project...
ButterflyChaser
Northeast, AR
(Zone 7a)

May 31, 2010
4:31 PM

Post #7846742

Well, we won't tell hubby that he was right. That'll be our little secret. :-)
gen2026
Camden, AR

May 31, 2010
5:50 PM

Post #7847052

I TOTALLY agree!! ^_^ But then I KNOW who will be the one sanding all those spots... (and it won't be him!)

Genna
Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

June 1, 2010
8:32 AM

Post #7848393

We actually used the edger to "fix" some of those high / low cuping problems. That meant more drum sanding work to remove those swirls, but worth the effort.
We also ran the drum across the grain in a few places that were really bad then back with the grain to remove those scratches.

I forgot to mention - if there is a LOT of paint, poly, other covering, the drum belts fill up fast, but the belt cleaners work pretty good if you have not welded the finish to the sandpaper.

Belt cleaners look like a huge rubber eraser - 1.5 square by about 8 inches long. You press the cleaner into the sandpaper while it's running. With the drum sanders this is a two-person job and requires great care to avoid injury to body, floor, and machine -but it can save a bunch of $$$$ in new belts.
gen2026
Camden, AR

June 1, 2010
2:17 PM

Post #7849434

Yeah, I turned my machine back in today - owed about 50 bucks in paper and I didn't really think we had used that much! Just 8 sheets I think!

Will have to go back to the refinish sander because the drum sander was leaving stripes or waves on the 100grit paper... we figured out it was coming from the pattern on the drum, and attempted to double the paper since it didn't occur on the thicker, heavier grit paper, but we couldn't get it to work... finally gave up. I will probably wait until I get the edges, etc sanded and then rent the re-finish sander to try to finish everything up... had HOPED to be ready to apply sealer this coming weekend. Instead, I won't even be ready to start!

What did you use to sand in between your coats of sealer??
ButterflyChaser
Northeast, AR
(Zone 7a)

June 1, 2010
2:33 PM

Post #7849478

Seems like to me, we used one of those long-handled sheet rock sanders. It looks like a broom handle with an 8 or 10 inch long sanding pad on the bottom. You just want to barely scuff it up so your next layer will stick to it. So you don't really have to work too hard at it, just a light sanding. It looks like this:

http://www.walltools.com/store/drywall-tools/sanding/advance-universal-sander-with-4-wooden-handle.html
Bubba_MoCity
Missouri City, TX

June 1, 2010
4:24 PM

Post #7849758

ButterflyChaser has one answer, and that should work.

We used our lamb's wool applicator and attached a 120 grit sheet to break the surface and give the poly a "little tooth".

Here is a picture of some of our cuping that required extra work.

Thumbnail by Bubba_MoCity
Click the image for an enlarged view.

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