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Toughest hardwood floor finish??

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Forum topic by Spacehog posted 08-04-2017 03:20 PM 726 views 1 time favorited 25 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Spacehog

86 posts in 1363 days


08-04-2017 03:20 PM

Topic tags/keywords: hardwood hardwood floor floor finish tough finish

Ahoy friends! I am about to move into a new house, and one of our first projects is to remove old carpeting to reveal the hardwood floors beneath. The wood is red oak, and appears to be in good shape from what I can tell. I have done the floor sanding and finishing of hardwood floors before when I worked as a painter. But on those jobs, I was handed a can of “finish” and told how to apply it. I regret never asking what specific finish I was using, but I suppose I was only 18 at the time. Anyway, now that I’m going to finish my own floors, I really want to avoid using a product that will disappoint.

My main consideration is durability. I really do not care about V.O.C.’s since the house will be empty when I do the work, and I have breathing protection for myself. I have heard it said that gloss has higher durability than satin, but I’m not sure if that is also true for floor finishes. I’m assuming that I can do better than the standard finishes (Minwax & Varethane) at the big box stores nearby. But I don’t know that much about floor finishes, so if anyone has experience or insights I am all ears. So far, this is one product that a friend recommended. But if you have any other thoughts, please share the pros and cons you are aware of. Thanks in advance!

-- Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might...


25 replies so far

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

3657 posts in 2147 days


#1 posted 08-04-2017 03:39 PM

FWIW

No personal experience with that product but I have seen lots and lots of recommendations for that finish and never ran across any negatives on it.

Also I’d research Glitiza floor finish.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

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Firewood

164 posts in 1472 days


#2 posted 08-04-2017 03:49 PM

I have no eperienxe with that one either. I’ve heard lots about waterlox for floors. It goes on as a wipe on and will require more coats than other products though.

You didn’t mention too much about the new home, but make sure to pull back enough of the carpet to be sure the hardwood floor isn’t just bordering the room. They used to do that to save money. It allowed the appearance of a hardwood floor under a large area rug.

-- Mike - Waukesha, WI

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Hammerthumb

2796 posts in 1813 days


#3 posted 08-04-2017 04:33 PM

If you want a durable finish and low VOC, any of the catalyzed watebourn urethane finishes would be my choice. Bona Kemi Traffic, or Dura Seal Xterra are really good finishes. 90% cure within 72 hrs (oil modified will take a month). These waterbourn finishes have higher taber abrasion resistance than the oil modifieds with 1/2 the film thickness.

Contact you nearest hardwood flooring distributor for more information. I would not recommend furniture finishes, or box store finishes, even if they are specified for floor application.

-- Paul, Las Vegas

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Spacehog

86 posts in 1363 days


#4 posted 08-04-2017 05:13 PM

Well regarding the house, it for sure has hardwood floors throughout the house. The rooms I am doing have carpet on top of hardwood floors according to our house inspector. I will see if I can find some of the products mentioned here. Thanks!

-- Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might...

View RobS888's profile

RobS888

2316 posts in 1683 days


#5 posted 08-04-2017 05:23 PM

We used Varathane low voc for a finished attic. It dries really fast, we did 3 coats in about 12 hours. We have 2 100lb dogs and a few cats and it has held up well. My wife’s office is up there, so it sees a lot of traffic.

-- I always suspected many gun nuts were afraid of something, just never thought popcorn was on the list.

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Spacehog

86 posts in 1363 days


#6 posted 08-04-2017 05:28 PM

I’m sure that there are good low VOC products out there, and I’m sure Varathane is suitable in some cases. But I am curious to know which products are toughest, not which products have worked out alright. I am trying to avoid having to do the floors again for as long as possible, so if there is some sort of commercial grade finish, that is what interests me. I don’t really care if the VOC’s are pure toxic poison, I just want the finish to be tough when it dries.

-- Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might...

View Aj2's profile

Aj2

1177 posts in 1636 days


#7 posted 08-04-2017 05:33 PM

The same rules apply for floor finishes the higher the solids the harder.Thats conversion varnishes are the top of the heap for tables but they have to be sprayed.
The hardest most durable floor finish has to be a oxide finish the kind that comes on a prefinished factory flooring.
So maybe you can work your search down form there.
I have a good friend that been a floor guy fro many years and we’ve had this conversation several times.
He says the zero Voc finishes are very good easy to repair and don’t show scratches and scuffs.
Rubio monocoat is one but I do know there are others.
Good luck looking for your unicorn :)

-- Aj

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4762 posts in 2331 days


#8 posted 08-04-2017 05:58 PM

Hammerthumb mentioned it: you want a catalyzed finish. The Bona HD appears to be a waterborne catalyzed finish and may well suit your needs. Since it’s a waterborne it may have a different look (no or little amber caste to the color) and you might not like that. But it should be a very durable finish. A waterborne does present some other things to consider. You didn’t mention stain (if any) and there might be (not likely) some grain raising. Neither are something that cant be overcome, but do plan for these things just in case.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Spacehog's profile

Spacehog

86 posts in 1363 days


#9 posted 08-04-2017 06:11 PM

I appreciate that Fred. Fortunately, I’ve got some experience with the actual application of the finishes from when I used to work for a contractor that did floors. But when I worked there, I was always provided a finish to use, and I never bothered to learn what the finishes were, or why they were being used. I think I’ve got a good idea of what to go with though because of advice I received here, so thanks!

-- Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might...

View Hammerthumb's profile

Hammerthumb

2796 posts in 1813 days


#10 posted 08-04-2017 07:15 PM

Both finishes I mentioned above are commercial finishes. They are both used throughout casinos here in Las Vegas.

-- Paul, Las Vegas

View Gilley23's profile

Gilley23

389 posts in 220 days


#11 posted 08-04-2017 07:53 PM

Ok so my question is this: When absolute durability is required, why aren’t those finishes used on tabletops?

View Hammerthumb's profile

Hammerthumb

2796 posts in 1813 days


#12 posted 08-04-2017 08:04 PM

Consider the cost of Bona Traffic at about $130 gal. Would you pay that if you were just going to do a small table or box?

-- Paul, Las Vegas

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Gilley23

389 posts in 220 days


#13 posted 08-04-2017 08:11 PM

$130 for an incredibly durable finish on a beautiful table that you hand crafted taking more hours than you care to admit, is nothing IMO.

Cost aside, is there a reason not to use those finishes on the table?


Consider the cost of Bona Traffic at about $130 gal. Would you pay that if you were just going to do a small table or box?

- Hammerthumb


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Hammerthumb

2796 posts in 1813 days


#14 posted 08-04-2017 08:21 PM

I can and do use those finishes occasionally for furniture that needs durability. One thing to consider is that the finish comes with a catalyst. Once catalyzed, the finish is only good for about an hour to do the application. After that, it is not usable. Also, these types of finishes do not catalyze well in small quantities (ie. measuring out smaller amounts of finish and catalyst).

Back to the original topic. If you want a good floor finish, call a local hardwood flooring supplier and get some information from them. I do not recommend buying a floor finish from a hardware store.

-- Paul, Las Vegas

View jbay's profile

jbay

1857 posts in 737 days


#15 posted 08-04-2017 08:36 PM



Consider the cost of Bona Traffic at about $130 gal. Would you pay that if you were just going to do a small table or box?

- Hammerthumb

Do you go through Virginia Hardwoods for your Bona? Just curious

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

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