|Project by Tony Strupulis||posted 06-05-2010 12:19 AM||4497 views||1 time favorited||16 comments|
This should probably go on the HomeRefurbers side, but I think of it as more of a woodworking project. I needed about 800 square feet of 2x decking to span the log joists on 48” centers in my log house. Not being happy with the quality or appearance of the 2×6 T&G at the home center, I decided to mill my own out of 2×10s.
I cherrypicked the straighest boards and the ones with the most character. This was a lengthy process. I figured about 1 out of every 4 boards in the bunk met my criteria. And the guy running the fork lift wasn’t going to get down another bundle until someone else bought the rest.
I began by ripping the rounded edges off the 2×10s on the table saw. That left me with crisp edges for a tight joint on the top (floor) side.
Next, I milled a 1/2”x1/2” groove on both sides of the board with a router and a stack of slot cutting bits. I shimmed the slot cutters just like you would a dado blade to get a tight joint with the splines. I ran a 45° chamfer bit on the edges of what was to be the ceiling side of the boards.
I ripped sheets of 1/2” CDX plywood into 1” strips for the splines. Each board had one glued in a slot to form a tongue. I went through a couple gallons of Titebond I.
The boards were installed by sledge hammering them in place, then counterboring and pre-drilling for 3” or 3-1/2” (can’t remember) deck screws. Two screws in each joist I crossed. I plugged the screw holes with plugs I made from scraps. I made sure the plug matched adjacent wood – hem fir, spruce, red sapstain, blue sapstain, etc.
I sanded the boards using a DeWalt belt sander with a sanding frame. This turned it into a planer of sorts. I couldn’t have been happier with the performance of this machine with the sanding frame. The first pass was at 50 grit, perpendicular to the grain. This worked like a scrub plane to flatten it.
Next, I filled the gaps between the boards with a putty I made from the dust from the sanding operation mixed with water based Varethane. Then I sanded the entire floor with 80 grit, going with the grain to get a perfectly flat finish.
The final step was to sand out the scratches with my 6” random orbit sander using 120 grit paper.
The finish was four coats of water based Varethane.
I’m very happy with the result and even happier the job is done!
-- Tony - http://ravensedgetoolworks.com