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View Ripper70's profile

Need advice on installing baseboard molding...

by Ripper70
posted 10-14-2017 05:26 PM


24 replies so far

View Loren's profile (online now)

Loren

9934 posts in 3550 days


#1 posted 10-14-2017 05:38 PM

Yeah. That’s tricky. You might want to use a
rotary laser and jig saw/plane the moldings to
hit the same line all around the room. How
you transition from room to room is something
you’ll have to think through carefully. In theory
the most straightforward way to install is to
the same “flood line” all through the house.
You could end up with 3” tall moldings in some
areas and 5.5” ones in others though. It depends
on how screwy the house is.

Another approach is to snap chalk lines all around
the room at a consistent distance from the floor
low spots and miter the corners (in addition to
beveling) to follow the slopes. You would still be
cutting the molding to follow the high spots.

View Madmark2's profile

Madmark2

379 posts in 490 days


#2 posted 10-14-2017 05:51 PM

The gaps between the top of you trim and the wall will pull in when nailed. Quarter round nailed to the floor will cover the gaps there.

Cut a wedge to fill that large gap, or miter the ends so it fits flat.

Coping the end of your trim will make it fit no matter if the corners are 90° or not.

M

View jerryminer's profile

jerryminer

886 posts in 1344 days


#3 posted 10-14-2017 06:18 PM

Ripper—

I spent decades as a finish carpenter—installing base, casing, etc.

The variations you’re seeing in floors and walls is very common. Rather than relying on shoe mold alone, I would scribe the base to the floor.

As a general rule, I think you’re better off following the general slope of the floor, rather than putting the base on level (having 3” trim on one side of the room and 5” on the other would look bad, IMHO—- better to run the trim “parallel” to the floor).

For “wavy” walls, the trim will tend to “suck in” as you nail it. Remaining gaps can be filled with a good quality caulking.

Inside corners are coped, outside corners are mitered—not always at 45 deg.

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

View Rick_M's profile

Rick_M

11083 posts in 2282 days


#4 posted 10-14-2017 06:19 PM

My house is not that bad but did have some issues. On the inside corners it’s probably easier to cope the joints although I did miter mine. I hate quarter round and made my own shoe molding that was .25×1.25 inches. Looks like part of the baseboard instead of something tacked on to fix a mistake. Pro-tip if you make your own shoe molding, use pre-primed trim board and save a lot of time.

Not my house but very similar to what I did, see how much better shoe molding looks.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View Loren's profile (online now)

Loren

9934 posts in 3550 days


#5 posted 10-14-2017 06:33 PM

The advantage of quarter round is it follows the
curves without scribing. You can put returns
where it meets the door frames to make it look
better.

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

773 posts in 811 days


#6 posted 10-14-2017 09:53 PM

Okay. I think I understand the idea behind scribing the moldings to better fit the floor variances. Scribe the contours of the floors onto the base molding and use a jig saw with a slight back cut bevel and then shave with a block plane or sand/file the edges to get a more accurate fit. Correct?

@Loren—It seems as if the chalk line would be the way to go. Allot of the floor variances are not so much a straight line slope from end to end but rather dips and crowns between long runs. I just invested in a DeWalt DWS780 so the cost of a rotary level isn’t in the budget. It’s always nice to have an excuse for buying a new tool, though! :-)

@ Jerry—Jerry, your advice, I think might be better suited for just a general slope, like you mention. I’m assuming I’ll need to cut the molding extra long to accommodate the trim “sucking in” when nailed tight against the walls. I there a way to calculate for this before cutting for length? Also, is there a method for adjusting the miter on an outside corner for such flexing near the end of a run? In other words, if the molding gets forced inward to mate with the wall and the end of an outside corner cut gets pushed outward, won’t the angle at the corner change by getting wider and therefore have to be accounted for?

@Rick—Like you, I like the looks of that flat strip shoe better than the quarter round (which the wife is not in favor of either). Would that also need to be scribed or can a 1/4” thick strip like that flex enough so that it doesn’t need the extra trimming?

I did try to compare a few different trim pieces to substitute for quarter round as pictured below. Would I be making a mistake using something like this or breaking any rules of general carpentry and craftsmanship by doing so? The idea was to use something that could hide wider gaps as easily as smaller gaps.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View Hermit's profile

Hermit

174 posts in 1227 days


#7 posted 10-14-2017 10:04 PM

Totally agree with Jerry. That’s the way I’ve always done it as well.

-- I'm like the farmer's duck. If it don't rain, I'll walk.

View Loren's profile (online now)

Loren

9934 posts in 3550 days


#8 posted 10-14-2017 10:17 PM

A 1” wide shoe trim molding is unlikely to be
coaxed to follow the variances of the floor.

If you use a similar plastic molding, I think
it might follow the curves better. It’s pretty
flexible.

View Rick_M's profile

Rick_M

11083 posts in 2282 days


#9 posted 10-15-2017 12:13 AM

1.25”. My house is sixty years old and I didn’t have any problem with shoe molding following the contours but I don’t know about anyone else. You could always make or buy a test strip.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View JCamp's profile

JCamp

518 posts in 453 days


#10 posted 10-15-2017 12:16 AM

I don’t think I’ve ever had the option to work on a house that was actually in square. That being said calk is ur friend and can hide a world of mistakes and gaps. Take comfort in the fact that once it’s down and ur funiture and tables and stands and all the other stuff we all hav is moved around no one will see it and after a while u won’t see it either unless u look at it real close

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

View jerryminer's profile

jerryminer

886 posts in 1344 days


#11 posted 10-15-2017 01:27 AM



@ Jerry—Jerry, your advice, I think might be better suited for just a general slope, like you mention. I m assuming I ll need to cut the molding extra long to accommodate the trim “sucking in” when nailed tight against the walls. I there a way to calculate for this before cutting for length? Also, is there a method for adjusting the miter on an outside corner for such flexing near the end of a run? In other words, if the molding gets forced inward to mate with the wall and the end of an outside corner cut gets pushed outward, won t the angle at the corner change by getting wider and therefore have to be accounted for?

- Ripper70

Following the contours of the wall won’t change the length requirement of the trim by much—but you could cut your long pieces 1/16” or so longer than the measurement, to be safe.

It can be handy to have a few scrap pieces +/- a foot long, with variations on 45 deg miter cuts to test fit outside corners. There are tools and devices for measuring miters, but sample cuts are pretty simple.

For painted work, it’s better, IMHO, to cut the miter a little extra steep (over 45) so the outside edges meet. A tiny gap at the inside of the miter can be filled.

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

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Ripper70

773 posts in 811 days


#12 posted 10-15-2017 02:55 AM


For painted work, it s better, IMHO, to cut the miter a little extra steep (over 45) so the outside edges meet. A tiny gap at the inside of the miter can be filled.

- jerryminer

That’s a gem right there! Thank you everyone for all your valuable advice. It’s much appreciated. I’m going to start making some dust and hope to make some progress on this endeavor soon.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

8843 posts in 1388 days


#13 posted 10-15-2017 02:58 AM

Screw a level. Cope it. Use alder always.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1324 posts in 1851 days


#14 posted 10-15-2017 03:07 AM

I agree take the level and put it away. you are in an old house. sometimes you have to cheat things and be a little askew. also coping is the best way to make it work in an old house. Sometimes in an old house you have to do your best and caulk the rest.

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

773 posts in 811 days


#15 posted 10-15-2017 04:09 AM



Screw a level. Cope it. Use alder always.

- TheFridge


In my circumstance, no doubt, coping is the way to go. And Alder, I believe, is the obvious choice. Alder is the only wood I’ll have in my shop. Does anyone even bother to use pine baseboards anymore?

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View jbay's profile

jbay

2027 posts in 801 days


#16 posted 10-15-2017 04:20 AM


Screw a level. Cope it. Use alder always.

- TheFridge

In my circumstance, no doubt, coping is the way to go. And Alder, I believe, is the obvious choice. Alder is the only wood I ll have in my shop. Does anyone even bother to use pine baseboards anymore?

- Ripper70

I guess I’m the odd duck.
Ebony wood and paint it…the only way.

-- If anyone would like to see my Portfolio, PM me and I would be glad to send you the link.

View ColonelTravis's profile

ColonelTravis

1744 posts in 1796 days


#17 posted 10-15-2017 04:21 AM

Earlier this year I put crown in all the rooms and halls in the house that didn’t have it. Used pine. What’s the advantage of alder?

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

8843 posts in 1388 days


#18 posted 10-15-2017 04:32 AM

Alder is just better at everything. It’s hard yet still soft. Rigid yet flexible. It practically installs itself because it’s quantum gravity.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

8843 posts in 1388 days


#19 posted 10-15-2017 04:33 AM

Ebony? Let’s get real please.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Rick_M's profile

Rick_M

11083 posts in 2282 days


#20 posted 10-15-2017 04:44 AM

I like to do marquetry on baseboards then paint them. It’s a little surprise for a future remodeler, or more likely the dump.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

773 posts in 811 days


#21 posted 10-15-2017 04:58 AM

I only use ebony to make cross-cut sleds.

I’d like to see some of your painted marquetry, Rick. Sounds interesting. Maybe start a “how to” thread or a vlog.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

773 posts in 811 days


#22 posted 10-15-2017 05:08 AM



Earlier this year I put crown in all the rooms and halls in the house that didn t have it. Used pine. What s the advantage of alder?

- ColonelTravis

TheFridge has over 7,900 posts. More than 7,800 of them espouse the virtues of Alder. There is no more knowledgeable woodworker when it come to Alder. When TheFridge was only three weeks old he made his own crudely fashioned bassinet from Alder scraps he found on a loading dock behind the local supermarket. He’s been an Alder devotee ever since.

He later went on to score a touchdown in Super Bowl XX. You should ask to see his ring sometime. It’s really quite impressive.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

8843 posts in 1388 days


#23 posted 10-15-2017 02:00 PM

It’s made of hardened and polished alder.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View HerbC's profile

HerbC

1721 posts in 2762 days


#24 posted 10-15-2017 05:28 PM



It s made of hardened and polished alder.

- TheFridge

Watch the talk of hardened and polished, remember this is a family friendly site… < BIG GRIN >

Herb

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!" http://lumberjocks.com/HerbC/blog/17090

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