tongue & groove problems

Old 03-26-10, 09:24 AM
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tongue & groove problems

I'm soon to order the wood for 700 sq. ft. for our downstairs (on-grade). A friend tells me it is very important to get your wood from a manufacturer with a good reputation -- I agree. But he says so many high-volume factories are not as accurate in milling the tongue/groove part of the planks creating havoc on installation.

How prevalent is this? He went to Carlisle, who is a top-drawer manufacturer with prices to match. But my other option is Mullican. I've seen them many places. How bad can they be? For my friend, out of 3000 sq. ft. of wide-plank flooring, not a single board had a milling problem. I wonder what's the average waste (from manufacturer defects) in a load of planks from a more middle-of-the-road manufacturer such as Mullican, Hartco, Columbia, Bruce, etc.?

Any thoughts would be appreciated!

John Sphar
Old 03-29-10, 05:20 AM
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Ellijay, Georgia
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It depends on the grade. The manufacturers you mention do have specs on what grade is used within each product line but you'll have to get a salesperson to look it up for you...or you can call them.

In my years installing those mentioned it rarely exceeds 5% but will depend on what you want out of it. For instance, the most common milling flaw are end joints not cut square. If it's only one end (likely) it can be cut off and used in another area; waste factor is reduced.

Another tip. Avoid square edge solid hardwoods (prefinished). Those tend to have boards that don't sit vertically flush with one another. It creates a lidging effect, can become sock catchers, and if bad enough splintering especially is the subfloor isn't flat enough.

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