T&G floorboards

Discussion in 'Carpenters' Talk' started by Flora789, Jul 24, 2019.

  1. Flora789

    Flora789 New Member

    I've got to lift a t&g floor to sort out electrics, plumbing and insulation underneath. They're pinned down with the world's grippiest clasp nails and I've finally concluded that I need to cut off all the tongues in order to lift them without splitting too much. What's the most logical way to go about putting them back again...?

    1. New boards, at about £500 (it's a big room, about 4x4m)
    2. Take the lovely old boards from the room above, because these look nicer anyway, and upstairs could be replaced with cheapo chipboard or something which will be carpeted eventually.
    3. Reuse the t&g by putting hardboard (other sheet material?) across the back of 3 or 4 boards at a time, and screw them down, making convenient panels that can be lifted easily for future access to stuff underneath.

    Currently favouring option 3, but not sure if that's just plain silly...?!
  2. Bluntphilly

    Bluntphilly New Member

    Surely you only need to cut off the tongues on one row of boards, remove them and you'll then be able to get under the edge of the next row and so on.
    As for replacing them, if they're in good nick and worth keeping, I'd clean up the edge the tongue was cut from, route a groove and replace tongue with 3.6 or 5.5mm ply strips.
    I'd also leave a way to get back under the floor by screwing down a row instead of nailing.
    Flora789 likes this.
  3. furious_customer

    furious_customer Screwfix Select

  4. Bluntphilly

    Bluntphilly New Member

    Flora789 likes this.
  5. Flora789

    Flora789 New Member

    Brill, thanks both. Bluntphilly, I thought I could get away with only cutting tongues on one board, but when I try to lift the next one across it splits the one after that, and I can't get far enough underneath to lever up 2 or 3 at a time. I definitely want easy access to get back under there in future, so will be screwing some / most of it down I think.

    I'm looking up oscillating saws now, could definitely find more use for that too!

  6. Bluntphilly

    Bluntphilly New Member

    (I'm looking up oscillating saws now, could definitely find more use for that too!) Where's the quote button?

    I can recommend my Fein, top quality build, good quality long cable (I hate the hard cables many manufacturers use, must be cheaper), and the box is one of the best of all my tools. It wasn't outrageously expensive either if I remember (7 years ago).
    I hope their standards haven't dropped in that time.
    It's the tool I wish I'd had when I started, it's got me out of some tricky situations.

    Good luck with the job, maybe use furious customer's suggestion to lift them, it looks handy.
    Flora789 likes this.
  7. Flora789

    Flora789 New Member

    "Good luck with the job..."

    Thank you. I'll look up the Fein. Just considering whether to go cordless or not. And I think shorter quotes are better anyway!
  8. ajohn

    ajohn Screwfix Select

    It can also be done with a tenon saw. Just start the cut with the heel of the saw. The boards can be cut across above a joist the same way but difficult to avoid marking adjacent boards.

    If you use a an oscillating tools do watch how deep you go. I tried screwfix's cheapest at the time and 1/2 hour use broke it. Used to cut copper pipe that was too close to the wall to cut any other way. It did manage to cut an architrave around a door to get clearance for tiling. A tenon saw could have done that as well. Used the correct type of blade on the pipe and etc. ;) So in my case bought a Makita. It was cheaper on Amazon at the time complete with a case.

  9. Pollowick

    Pollowick Screwfix Select

    I have a Fein and it is around 11-12 years old still working fine. As mentioned the cord is lonnnnnnnnnng and good quality.

    An acquaintance who owned a tool hire business with a sales side recommended it. He had a house in France he was renovating and took one with him, and when a local craftsman was having problems cutting a hole, he showed him teh Fein and the local was amazed. Within a day word had spread around teh village about the amazing tool and next time he went out he took 10 of them - sold to locals with no markup. From then on, whenever he needed work or help with the renovations, there was always someone willing to assist. He would take various blades and attachments with him each time to give away/swap/sell.
  10. Mr Rusty

    Mr Rusty Screwfix Select

    In my experience, old boards fixed well with cut nails are almost impossible to remove without splitting the boards. Even when the boards are pulled off the nails that remain are tough to extract - I find with square cut nails it is easiest to wring them off with a wrecking bar or claw hammer or just cut them off with a grinder. They can be so tough to pull out.

    If you have to wreck your boards, £500 is too much for a 4m x 4m room (unless that includes the labour). From my merchant <£200 inc. https://www.cwberry.com/Building-Ma...ards/25x125mmRedwoodTGFloorboard_01071150.htm

    Unless the boards are something special, I'd plan to just replace them. Your idea for making panels sounds like a recipe for super squeaks - I wouldn't bother. Refix using either cut nails again, or possibly better for easier removal in the future, use flooring screws. These are not fully threaded so the boards are pulled down properly. You also need some clamps - either proper floorboard clams or improvised to pull the boards together before they are fixed.
  11. gas monkey

    gas monkey Well-Known Member

    circula saw set fot the depth of the board
    punch for the nails through the boards
    lift out with a bolster chisel
    putting back with screws
    the gaps filled with fram sealent

    probs may punch nails into cables but if cables where they should be not a worry

    if you damage a bord that can not be re used or the shape you cut out give probs just use a bit of p5 cut to fit
    he who dares
  12. Mr Rusty

    Mr Rusty Screwfix Select

    This sounds so simple in principle, but trying to punch cut nails through a board is brutal. If there is any spring in the floor its diabolical. Faced with a 4x4 room of trying to punch nails through or £200 for new boards, I know which way I would go.
  13. gas monkey

    gas monkey Well-Known Member

    agree mr r but they got the info so up to

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