Preview - Distribute Hardwood Flooring before Nailing - Fine Homebuilding Video
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Distribute Hardwood Flooring before Nailing

Rack the boards and make installation a smoother operation

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A cardinal sin in floor installations is laying the butt joints of adjoining rows close together; it weakens the floor and it doesn’t look good. The easiest way to avoid this is to arrange the boards before you nail them, a process called racking. 

A two-person operation is the most efficient: one distributes the boards while the other nails, but if you’re working by yourself, it still saves time in the long run. As you’ll see in this video, there are several combinations of joints to avoid when composing an attractive and distinctive floor.

For more on this technique, see Charles Peterson's article Installing Strip Flooring.


From Fine Homebuilding 144, pp. 46-51
January 1, 2002


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