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Thread: Hardwood Floor - two questions on transitions

  1. #1
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    Hardwood Floor - two questions on transitions

    Hey Folks,

    Just looking for some ideas from folks out there on their hardwood floor experiences. I have two specific questions.

    I'm planning a small hardwood flooring job in the house, filling in the hallway with 3/4" prefinished hardwood (not laminate or engineered, real 3/4" oak) flooring. A few years ago I installed the same floor in the LR and DR, so I am experienced in laying floor.

    Here is a rough diagram of the area in question.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    First question - where the hardwood meets the wood transition strip at the tile. The hardwood is running lengthwise down the left-hand hallway, and will be cut on the angle where it meets the vinyl tile, and a wood transition strip will be installed there.

    Now, since the floor is cut on the angle, there will obviously not be a tongue or groove on the end where it meets the transition. Is that Okay? I suppose that I could first install the floor, then route a groove in the ends of the flooring and then put in a spline before installing the transition strip. But I wonder if that is just going overboard. If the floor is all stapled down firmly right to the ends, is there any need to do that? I suppose if I don't there will be a tiny gap between the floor and the transition strip, unless I'm excruciatingly careful**

    Second Question - transitions in doorways. Down the right-hand hallway, the hardwood floor will end at two doorways, one to the mudroom, and one to the powder room.

    I could end the hardwood flush with the doorway, or should I extend the hardwood into the doorway, such that the transition strip is flush with the inside (linoleum side) of these doorways? Is it just preference, or is there a recommended way to do that?

    Here's an expanded sketch to go with that second question:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    ...art
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
    www.wordsnwood.com ........ facebook.com/wordsnwood

  2. #2
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    Hi Art,

    I would not do the miter transition going into the stairs. I'd forgo the tile(?) all together. If the tile must remain, then I'd let the wood floor go straight to the wall.

    These are the kind of style decisions that can affect the re-saleability of your house. If you have a Realtor friend you might ask. Now, I am well aware that you did not mention selling your house, but stuff happens and life goes on. Floors are expensive items to change and take time. To have to do it when you do not plan to is more than a major inconvenience, and that is why I brought up the saleability factor.

    And frankly, my suggestion is also my preference.

    As to the transition piece; pretend a door were there and place the transition so that it would be directly under the door. Pretend the flooring on the other side of the door could not be be seen when the door is closed.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carol Reed View Post
    Hi Art,

    I would not do the miter transition going into the stairs. I'd forgo the tile(?) all together. If the tile must remain, then I'd let the wood floor go straight to the wall.
    Carol, you're speaking with an Arizona bias, I think...

    This is Ontario, and wood floor in the entryway around here is, IMHO, a poor choice. You need a tile or vinyl (or some other water-resistant flooring) entry by doors.
    Wood will not last.

    We already see that in the family room, where we enter/exit the back yard through a sliding door. The wood is taking a beating there, and probably needs refinishing.
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
    www.wordsnwood.com ........ facebook.com/wordsnwood

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art Mulder View Post
    Carol, you're speaking with an Arizona bias, I think...
    Art,
    I think Carol gets more snow at her place then you do in Ontario. She lives in the mountains. Where she lives they measure the snow in feet.
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Baer View Post
    Art,
    I think Carol gets more snow at her place then you do in Ontario. She lives in the mountains. Where she lives they measure the snow in feet.
    Oh! Well then I 'm mystified why people would want wood floors right up to the door in such a locale!
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
    www.wordsnwood.com ........ facebook.com/wordsnwood

  6. #6
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    You have a point about the tile at the exterior door. My bad. Did not take the exterior door issue into consideration. But I still wouldn't do the miter. My bias - not necessarily Arizonan, but most definitely female!

    Don, I hate to measure snow in feet. Inches are bad enough. And the norm. We had more than the usual amount of snow this winter, but it came in 6" amounts. Of course one week those 6" increments added up to 2 feet!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carol Reed View Post
    I still wouldn't do the miter. My bias - not necessarily Arizonan, but most definitely female!
    The sketch is just that -- even though sketchup makes it look good. It is NOT measured or to scale. The angled piece will, I think, look smaller and less imposing in real life than in this diagram. The angled piece will be about 48" long, and will not bisect the corridor intersection.

    The general consensus on another forum is that "splines are nice but not necessary" and, like Carol said, have the transitions "right under the door". (ie: so when the door is closed the other flooring is hopefully not visible from either side.)
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
    www.wordsnwood.com ........ facebook.com/wordsnwood

  8. #8
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    Art,
    If it were me I'd just continue the wood all the way to the wall and have the just entrance tile. Just follow the line of the stairs parrallel to the stairs.
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  9. #9
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    im not from arizona and i am not a lady, but i dont like the angled transition either art.. to me it looks like a mistake and a cover up..i know the snow and wet area if this is in frt of your frt door then you need to have your vinly there and square it off somewhere else.
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  10. #10
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    I too, have tile just inside my front door. And just to have the tile the width of door puts dirty feet on the carpet right quick. Next year I hope to get new carpet and the tile area will need to expand.

    When two or more people come in Art's door, they will step to the side, not up the stairs, until they are all in the door. Even one person steps to the side to avoid opening the door a full 90 degrees, especially if it is cold outside.

    To keep the dirty feet on the tile, run it to the wall perpendicular to the door.
    Last edited by Carol Reed; 03-17-2010 at 02:16 PM.

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