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pancakes, brunch, choosing lots of floorboards - Rounding up the Usual Suspects
Steve's Livejournal
pancakes, brunch, choosing lots of floorboards
This morning "J" retrieved some blueberry pancakes from the freezer. They were still very good.

I went to brunch today as usual, but the group was somewhat different due to absences. The usual "J" (a different "J") was out of town, "N" had another obligation, but "W" (an occasional participant) was there.

The rest of this is details about floor work; skip if you're tired of the mostly-for-me details.

Today's flooring task was selecting nine more rows of floorboards so they'll look harmonious with adjacent boards in the current room (the office or north bedroom). Some of the floorboards have defects that are small enough that they don't ruin the boards, so I like to try to use those as part of laying out the boards.

This room is about 11 feet 2 inches (3.4 meters) wide, which is three whole boards (three feet or 91.44 cm) plus 26 inches of partial boards, or just over 32/3 boards. The way I patterned the boards (moving the joint 13½ inches right from one row to the next), I can cut a single board into a #4 (or sometimes #3) end piece for one row, and a #0 end piece for the row after the next row, with only about one inch (2½ cm) of scrap. That leaves me one inch of space for the defects to disappear as scraps, another inch for defects to disappear under the baseboard trim, and a bit more space where they'll be inconspicuous along the walls.

So, the first step in selecting lots of floorboards – the way I did it this time, which is an improvement on how I've done it in most previous rounds of selection – was to sort the boards with defects according to where the defects are on the length of the board. That way, I can match up defects with cuts so that the defects don't end up in the middle of the room, without just rejecting the boards completely. (In some cases, the defects are from damage I've done to the boards myself, while moving them around, stacking them, re-stacking them, tripping over them, etc. I don't feel bad about returning boards that came with defects, but it's unethical to return ones I damaged myself, as well as wasteful to return boards I can still use.)

After sorting the boards with defects, I laid out lots of clear boards so that they didn't change darkness or texture too dramatically from one row to the next, across a large space in the fireplace room. I arranged and rearranged, and tried fitting the boards with defects into the pattern too – though I was less picky about the boards near walls than boards that will be out in the middle of the room.

I had picked out Row 59 in a previous selection round, but I didn't nail its boards down before, in case they refused to match up nicely with whatever I would choose for Row 60. But I don't think I ended up changing any of my previous selections.

When the job was done, I had selected boards for nine rows: Row 59 through Row 68, except for Row 68 #2 (which will be adjacent to the floorboards around the heat vent frame) and Row 68 #4, which is a short end piece.

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