Sunday, May 27, 2007

Hardwood Floors

A friend and I worked fifteen hours to mill two trees into the lumber as shown in the above picture. The trees produced 6 logs, each at least 24" in diameter, and 12 feet long. One additional log the same size came from a tree on another site. The tree in the pictures below started this hardwood floor project for a new house which now is in the planning stage. Gusty winds uprooted a neighbor's tree which fell onto my friend's back lawn. The limbs struck his house as the tree fell. The enormous root ball in the pictures was over 12 feet in diameter.

A second red oak tree stood in the backyard and presented similar danger so it was removed when cleanup of the fallen tree was underway.

We sawed the huge logs using a method that yielded quartersawn and riftsawn boards. This method of sawing consumes more time but produces choice lumber due to the orientation and visibility of the tree's growth rings in the finished boards. The sawlogs' pithy cores were removed as was most of the sapwood during the sawing. The final lumber yield was around 1,650 board feet.

The plan is to allow the lumber to air-dry for four months, then kiln dry the boards to bring the moisture content down to 6%. Next a woodworking shop will finish the boards with tongue and groove in dimensions of 3/4 " thick and 3, 4, 5, and 6 inches wide.

The finished floor produced by this lumber should approach museum quality.

Have a good week!



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