Jake and Karen's house...
...the progress

hardwood installation

We purchased some cherry stained oak hardwood flooring at an auction, We ended up paying about 1/2 retail price so we were very happy about that. We wanted to install it on the diagonal however we were really concerned about not having enough wood, not to mention just how much more difficult installing it on the diagonal would be. Diagonal installation means every single end that touches a wall has to be cut at an angle, producing waste and more opprotunity for error. It's also significantly more time consuming, all the ends had to be hand pre-drilled and nailed because the nailer couldn't fit. Plus we only had weekends and after work to do it. The installation took three weeks. We still need to get some type of cove/shoe molding to finish off the endges. We needed 562 sqft exactly, we wanted to buy 650 so we had lots of extra, but we only got 630 at the auction. We have 2 1/2 boxes left which means we only wasted about 20 sqft! Now on to the pics!

Carpet and underpad pulled up

Carpet and underpad pulled up

Rented a baseboard saw to under cut all the baseboards. We recently redid all of our baseboards and didn't want to remove them. We had a hard time finding the tool but when we finally did, it was well worth it.

This is the thin strip of baseboard cut off from the bottom of the baseboard. Now the hardwood has room for expansion under the baseboards. It does a fantastic clean cut, if we had realized the cut would have been so clean we would have planned on not using cove molding at the bottof of the baseboards. The inside edges need to be hand cut as the round saw can't get in the corners.

The first board is layed. This is the entrance to the kitchen. This is the angle we used to follow throughout the floor. It is almost a perfect 45 degrees. The green tape is there so that it wouldn't get scratched when Jake ran it through the table saw. He had to shave off a thin wedge along the entire back side to allow for a slope to make the piece a transition. The tile is lower than the hardwood and we didn't want to have bulky t-joints.

First package of boards. There are about 8 different sizes of boards, from 1 1/2 ' to 5'.

Here is the first full end-to-end piece. Jake had to make a double 'tongue' to allow him to run backwards to get into the corner. He used some thin plywood to create the tongue and basically flipped the boards to go in the other direction.

Here he is working with the nailer. We were lucky to be able to borrow it from a friend, a 3 week rental would've been very expensive!

Family room well under way.

Cats checking out what's going on.

Now the hallway part, between the living and dining rooms. All of our pictures and paintings are crooked because of all the banging.

A very complicated area. All the boards had to be shaved from the underside to make it flat to the wood of the stairs and the tile of the foyer. This allowed for a smooth transition and no need for bulky transition pieces. Plus the pieces had to be mitred to fit in perfectly.

Corner almost done.

The very last triangle gets glued in with construction adhesive.

Living room almost there.

Nice pile of triangles and wierd shapes in the garage by the mitre saw.

There, family room completed.

Close up of perfect cuts around the bottom of the fireplace. It looks like it is sitting on top of the wood when in actuality the wood perfectly butts up to the fireplace.

Close up of the wood and grain. There is a micro-bevel on the boards. The colour is a bit browner, it looks golden here but it is more of a pecan colour.

Close up of a vent cutout.

Family room with furniture back in.

Dining room complete.

Dining room furniture back in.

Living room complete.

Living room furniture back in. We need to find a coffee table of some sort for here soon.

View straight through from the kitchen to the foyer.