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post #1 of 22 Old 01-03-2019, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
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Hardwood Flooring Question

I have been trying to think this through over the past week but had to make a thread for some guidance.

I am putting hardwood flooring (regular t&g) in my upstairs hallway running length wise, it's about 30 feet long and 4 feet wide. There are two opposing doorways, one on each end of the hallway. For you New Englanders picture a bedroom on one end and a bonus room over the garage on the other end of your typical colonial.

Each door way needs to have a piece of floor that is installed parallel to the closed door. So the direction of the two door thresholds is 90 degrees to the flooring running down the hallway.

How would you start and finish this install? The flooring will be random lengths so is there any other way to install other than creating your own tongue and groove on the last piece cut before the threshold?

Hope that question makes sense.

And P.S. I am actually not installing hardwood I am fixing one of the thresholds because when the person installed it, they didn't use a tongue and grove so there is a lip popping up where the two directions meet on one end of the hallway. I am prepared to rip of some of the flooring because there are some other areas I need to fix.
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post #2 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 07:29 AM
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I wouldn't be concerned with it. There is always flooring which the grain runs perpendicular to a doorway. Assuming you have carpet in the rooms at the ends just run the flooring and threshold far enough under the door you don't see the carpet with the door closed.
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post #3 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 12:51 PM Thread Starter
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I am not so concerned about the direction it is going but more so HOW to install the hardwood flooring with two thresholds along the length

here is an example of what I'm talking about. These door face each other 30 feet away
How will I be able to install the hardwood to use the tounge and groove everywhere

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post #4 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 12:54 PM Thread Starter
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That picture is not my house^^

The installer didn't use the tongue and groove on one of the thresholds, only butted the 10 or so cut pieces of hardwood into the threshold so there are gaps and causing a lip.
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post #5 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 03:48 PM
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I think you probably nailed it in your question. Install the threshold with a groove and cut each end for the tongue.
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post #6 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 05:08 PM
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I've never seen anyone fit a threshold to the tongue and groove. The flooring just makes a butt joint to the threshold and nailed to the subfloor. Flooring is random lengths. Unless you set up and machine a tongue and groove on at least one end of the hallway and both thresholds it wouldn't be possible.
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post #7 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 05:30 PM
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In the picture there's a threshold that's thicker then the flooring, I've done that a few places in my house. I rabbett the threshold so that it sits over the flooring and fasten it down well. No gaps seen.

If everything is the same thickness, then you might need T&G , but I find biscuits to be faster and to work well. Even if you have to shave down the sides of a biscuit, they still do a good job of registering the ends of flooring.
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post #8 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 05:47 PM
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I thought the OP was talking about a flush termination of the long running boards. If he means a threshold, my advice does not apply. Sorry for the confusion, Dan
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post #9 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 06:08 PM Thread Starter
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My hardwood flooring is flush, not a raised threashold, I just calling it a threshold because it is under the door between two rooms. Actually using the same floor for everything. Looks like I will need to cut the last pieces exact and cut a tongue and groove in them.
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post #10 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 10:49 PM
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Would it be easier to groove the end of the floor boards and just put a spline into the to adjoining grooves, or use biscuits as suggested earlier?
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post #11 of 22 Old 01-04-2019, 11:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
...I've never seen anyone fit a threshold to the tongue and groove. The flooring just makes a butt joint to the threshold and nailed to the subfloor....
Hi Aaron,

As you can tell from Steve's post, this is a paradox within "modern woodworking," vs the way it "was done."

Many of the traditional systems (and dare I say logic?) of woodworking got thrown out with consumerism, big box stores and the expedient (can't see it from my house) mentality of many G.C. and the modern building culture today...

Alas, this is the way of it for most. It not all that way, to be certain, but the most common. Many take great pride in there work, yet still only go as far as what is "common practice" today, and not beyond that point. Nevertheless, things like you are finding are just a "side effect" of it all. Most often its not malice, laziness or any other nefarious intent...It's simply all that is known...and now done...

Often, folks like you ask questions that "to you" see rather logical..."why is this done this way?"

Well it wasn't...

To me, as a traditional woodworker and historic restoration trades person...my response is the complete opposite from Steve's. I would have to say that for more than half of what I've seen in such situation...in historical homes...at minimum the threshold is secured in some fashion very well not only to the framing and/or sub floor (if there is one) but also to the adjoining planking. In better work it is indeed jointed with a spline, toggle tenon, tongue and grove or some other joint modality...if...it is a jointed floor, otherwise it is just surface spiked, trunneled, or floated...

To be clear, this is not a overt criticism of the G.C. that build the home. They are just following "common practice" as it exists today...

I don't know your skills, so tell me what you would like to do...or have done?
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post #12 of 22 Old 01-05-2019, 01:43 AM
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This approach .....

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Originally Posted by samandothers View Post
Would it be easier to groove the end of the floor boards and just put a spline into the to adjoining grooves, or use biscuits as suggested earlier?
I can see several issues with this approach, but it seems like the best one.
First all the ends must be cut even across and have the groove pre-cut since you can't do that when they are installed. It may be difficult to get them perfectly flush across... I donno?

Second, the "threshold" another piece of floor laid a 90 degrees to hallway run. could also have a groove and a spline inserted to secure it.

Third, the flooring in the room behind the door will need to be installed after the threshold with a corresponding groove or you can't get the threshold to seat unless you make a rabbet on that edge rather than a groove. If the flooring in the room has the same run as the hallway, you still need to groove the ends before nailing them down.

Then, if you're going to have a rabbet on one edge why not have a rabbet on both edges of the threshold to make replacement easier?
Since the threshold will get nailed down, that should secure it from raising, hopefully?

The sequence of steps becomes critical, but not that difficult to do.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #13 of 22 Old 01-05-2019, 07:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay C. White Cloud View Post
Hi Aaron,

As you can tell from Steve's post, this is a paradox within "modern woodworking," vs the way it "was done."

Many of the traditional systems (and dare I say logic?) of woodworking got thrown out with consumerism, big box stores and the expedient (can't see it from my house) mentality of many G.C. and the modern building culture today...

Alas, this is the way of it for most. It not all that way, to be certain, but the most common. Many take great pride in there work, yet still only go as far as what is "common practice" today, and not beyond that point. Nevertheless, things like you are finding are just a "side effect" of it all. Most often its not malice, laziness or any other nefarious intent...It's simply all that is known...and now done...

Often, folks like you ask questions that "to you" see rather logical..."why is this done this way?"

Well it wasn't...

To me, as a traditional woodworker and historic restoration trades person...my response is the complete opposite from Steve's. I would have to say that for more than half of what I've seen in such situation...in historical homes...at minimum the threshold is secured in some fashion very well not only to the framing and/or sub floor (if there is one) but also to the adjoining planking. In better work it is indeed jointed with a spline, toggle tenon, tongue and grove or some other joint modality...if...it is a jointed floor, otherwise it is just surface spiked, trunneled, or floated...

To be clear, this is not a overt criticism of the G.C. that build the home. They are just following "common practice" as it exists today...

I don't know your skills, so tell me what you would like to do...or have done?
That might be true in your area but in Dallas homes are not that old. The fact of the matter is no flooring installer in the Dallas area is going to tongue and groove a threshold to the flooring. It's a lot of work and not worth the effort when you can nail the threshold to the floor with a little construction adhesive. Something the 18th century folks didn't have access to.
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post #14 of 22 Old 01-05-2019, 08:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronhl View Post
My hardwood flooring is flush, not a raised threashold, I just calling it a threshold because it is under the door between two rooms. Actually using the same floor for everything. Looks like I will need to cut the last pieces exact and cut a tongue and groove in them.
Aaron, I've seen the floor guys take a flooring plank and cut the tongue off. This gives you the termination board for the doorway, groove towards the hall. Cut hall flooring to length, plus tongue. Then use a trim router to cut the top and bottom of the flooring ends creating a tongue. (Or use any other method to cut the tongues, trim router is what I've seen flooring guys use).

Some may advocate using a plank with the tongue towards the hall as the termination board, saving a step cutting the tongue off noted above, but that would leave an unfilled groove on the room side, leaving a weak spot in the board.

Notice I didn't use the word threshold. We seem to have two discussions going on here and I don't want to add to the confusion.

Dan
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post #15 of 22 Old 01-05-2019, 09:22 AM
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When I did my floors years ago, for places like threshold, I cut grooves in both pieces and used a slip tongue (basically a spline) to create a tongue on one of the boards. In places where a course would butt into a threshold at both ends, Iíd fit the ends first, then cut a piece to size to fit somewhere in the middle and tap it into place.

Hereís the bit that cuts the grooves. Because the bearing is on the top, it can cut the groove even if the board is nailed in place.

https://www.amazon.com/Yonico-14911q.../dp/B078HRRKMS
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post #16 of 22 Old 01-05-2019, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronhl View Post
I have been trying to think this through over the past week but had to make a thread for some guidance.

I am putting hardwood flooring (regular t&g) in my upstairs hallway running length wise, it's about 30 feet long and 4 feet wide. There are two opposing doorways, one on each end of the hallway. For you New Englanders picture a bedroom on one end and a bonus room over the garage on the other end of your typical colonial.

Each door way needs to have a piece of floor that is installed parallel to the closed door. So the direction of the two door thresholds is 90 degrees to the flooring running down the hallway.

How would you start and finish this install? The flooring will be random lengths so is there any other way to install other than creating your own tongue and groove on the last piece cut before the threshold?

Hope that question makes sense.

And P.S. I am actually not installing hardwood I am fixing one of the thresholds because when the person installed it, they didn't use a tongue and grove so there is a lip popping up where the two directions meet on one end of the hallway. I am prepared to rip of some of the flooring because there are some other areas I need to fix.
To have the hallway boards lock into the doorway flush thresholds you want to do what is referred to as a net fit. Install the doorway thresholds first and get them square in the doorways. Depending on the floor covering in the end rooms you may want to use more than one board across the doorway. As each hall flooring board will have a tongue on one end and a groove on the other end one doorway board will have a groove facing onto the hall and the other will have a tongue facing into the hall. Hopefully the doorways at the ends of the hall are parallel to each other. Lay hall flooring from both thresholds working toward the center of the hallway. The 'last' board in each row will be installed somewhere near the center of the row and will have to be cut to exact length and need either a groove or tongue cut on its end. If you need a tongue I find it easier to cut a groove and glue in a spline/slip tongue. This 'net fitting' will take a little longer as you have to sneak up on the cut to get a tight fit. This method has the headers locked into the hall boards. Not hard to do just a little time consuming. If the headers aren't locked in via tongues and grooves this will be a potential for squeak points as the doorways are high traffic areas.
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Last edited by JIMMIEM; 01-05-2019 at 04:28 PM. Reason: add info
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post #17 of 22 Old 01-05-2019, 05:09 PM
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Here's what I did in my house to transition across a wide doorway (~ 72" wide) that steps down into an adjoining room. The door sill is a wide oak plank, no stain. The flooring is maple with Armstrong's Pewter stain. The plank had a bullnose edge. I didn't want to install a pre-made raised transition piece because of the step--potential tripping hazard.



I used my router to cut a 3/4" grove down the middle of the gap between the ends of the floor boards and the edge of the oak plank. At the sides of the doorway I had to use a chisel where the router couldn't reach. The ends of the flooring are close enough to the edge of the perpendicular plank and 3/4" was wide enough to bridge the gap and trim off the plank's bullnose edge.



Then I took a piece of scrap maple, cut and planed for a tight fit, stained it to match the Pewter, and pushed it into the groove. It's a tight friction fit, but I added a couple finish nails.
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post #18 of 22 Old 01-05-2019, 10:37 PM Thread Starter
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Excellent discussion guys thanks for all the advice !!
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post #19 of 22 Old 01-06-2019, 04:56 PM
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Its a spectrum...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
That might be true in your area but in Dallas homes are not that old. The fact of the matter is no flooring installer in the Dallas area is going to tongue and groove a threshold to the flooring. It's a lot of work and not worth the effort when you can nail the threshold to the floor with a little construction adhesive. Something the 18th century folks didn't have access to.
Hello Steve,

I do not disagree now, nor in my last statement that Aaron's floor is "wrong" per se, yet rather on a spectrum. You have just made my point for me regarding this. Because of that spectrum, what I stated, is very much true in all areas, regardless of who is installing the floor.

The..."fact of the matter"...is that just because modern floor contractors are laying floors a certain way, is thus, not indicative that what they are doing is necessarily best practice within the spectrum of the craft. All it reflects is, very simply, what they have chosen to do within there area. This leaves the archtiecture (and clients) with...such as in the case with the OP Aaron...a question in how to proceed with a change or repair...

You (personally) can state that something is "not worth the effort," and I would be foolish to debate that. Its your prerogative to feel thus. However, it does not reflect the historic record, and means, method and materials comparatively have absolutely nothing to do with it. We lay floors as quick (often quicker) with tradtional modalities than modern floor contractors do with nail guns and sheet goods. Its a choice...not a practice issue.

As such, the modern flooring contractors are not very often following "best practice" and on jobs I'm part of, such details would be consider a lower grade installation (perhaps in good effort) to meet budgetary constraints on a project, yet on many it would be considered unacceptable practice by the project facilitator.

Again, its a spectrum...
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post #20 of 22 Old 01-06-2019, 10:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay C. White Cloud View Post
Hello Steve,



The..."fact of the matter"...is that just because modern floor contractors are laying floors a certain way, is thus, not indicative that what they are doing is necessarily best practice within the spectrum of the craft. All it reflects is, very simply, what they have chosen to do within there area. This leaves the archtiecture (and clients) with...such as in the case with the OP Aaron...a question in how to proceed with a change or repair...

You (personally) can state that something is "not worth the effort," and I would be foolish to debate that. Its your prerogative to feel thus. However, it does not reflect the historic record, and means, method and materials comparatively have absolutely nothing to do with it. We lay floors as quick (often quicker) with tradtional modalities than modern floor contractors do with nail guns and sheet goods. Its a choice...not a practice issue.

As such, the modern flooring contractors are not very often following "best practice" and on jobs I'm part of, such details would be consider a lower grade installation (perhaps in good effort) to meet budgetary constraints on a project, yet on many it would be considered unacceptable practice by the project facilitator.

Again, its a spectrum...
LOL Jay...it's got to be 3 issues in my area 1)....lack of knowledge as per trades NOT KNOWING correct standards of their trade,....2) "I can't see it from my house" attitudes 3)....unreal under budgets where customers don't compare apples to apples and they buy rotten mash in the end and they call it "standard trade practices".

Sad Sad Sad!!!

OP....YES a quality craftsman ( my floor guy does in TN BUT he also trained under me at higher standards than "just what everyone else does" attitude) would spline the "flush" threshhold on both sides as JIMIEM mentioned in original build out and most rebuilds. There are places a taller/overlay threshhold is used BUT usually that's in later repairs to create transitions between floor changes/hieghts.
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