Shelby's New Floor
Oh boy, this weekend was amazing. Matt and I installed the beautiful new floor! We put down 1" thick, 5 1/2" wide, antique hard wood floors. We have an awesome friend, that manufactures these floors from old beams from deconstructed factories. The trees were birthed in the 1600 and 1700s, cut down in the 1800s, and cut into giant beams for mills, factories, etc. When these factories, mills close, they are auctioned off, piece by piece, and my friend buys the beams.
Since this weekend, he was cutting about 40,000 board feet of flooring, he had plenty to lend to our little space that is roughly 10' x 7'. We used all the shorter pieces that are less desirable to his customers. But hey, we can't complain. They turned out so beautiful!
First step, Matt removed the metal trim from the door. The original floor in Shelby is one giant sheet of plywood sitting on the metal frame, covered with a hideous linoleum. It was scuffed and torn, and not pretty after 40 years. We simply used a nail gun and installed the floor on top of the plywood.
Some have asked me why we didn't replace the entire floor. When making decisions while renovating a camper as old as Shelby, you have to ask yourself is it worth it? Does it need to be completely replaced or can it be covered. Is it salvagable? Is it something we can fix or something we can cover and overlook, so to speak. It's not that we're cutting corners, but when working with such old, worn down materials, it's sometimes easier to just fix what you have, and cover it up, rather than replacing something completely. Parts of the plywood were a little soft and slightly rotten, but in corners that will have benches covering it when finished, so it didn't need to be replaced. The side walls were similar. We didn't rip them out because they have very minimal water damage, and we're covering them with wood veneer.
The first piece installed. We cut into it, where the door frame sits, and used a router to cut a smooth rounded edge. From there, we just installed the floor. Tongue and grooves were already cut into the wood, so they fit, piece by piece. We used a butane and battery powered nail gun; man was that thing fun! I love power tools.
It's funny, as I get older, I look forward to the purchase of more tools, nicer tools, and a nicer tool cabinet. I aspire to be like my dad someday, with a wall in my garage of Craftsman cabinets filled with clean, perfectly organized tools, all in their right place. I try to be as organized and clean as my dad, which is near impossible. He's the one that taught me to respect and clean all my tools at the end of the day, and to put them back from where they came. My late step dad taught me all this as well. I can hear Dad now, "Go to the third cabinet, second drawer down, left side, next to the blue pliers, and to the right of the red handled needle nose." Unfortunately, apartment living isn't conducive to being an owner of nice tools. Small tool boxes, shuffling them around, throwing everything in an empty milk crate, working from a card table next to Shelby... I can't wait to be a homeowner, someday in a future.
If you can tell from the above picture, we also removed the nasty old rotten front door this weekend. We've decided to go with a wooden door. Making that soon. And more later this week on all the other things we did to Shelby this past weekend. Many cosmetic fixes that really make a difference. Plus, the lights are installed and just need to be wired. Also, insulation and mounting of solar panels coming soon!
Sweeping the pretty new floor! We'll put down a water based polycrylic when all the walls and ceiling are up. Until then, we'll try to keep the floors as clean as possible. But this hard pine is indestructible and will last longer than Shelby, I'm sure! The more we work on Shelby, the more I can't wait to have her finished and unveil her to the world. We've decided we're going to have a grand opening cookout when she's finished. Fill her with my inventory, set up shop in the backyard, set up the smoker and grill, and have a big BBQ for all our friends and local supporters of this project.
Putting down the last piece! It took us just a few hours to put down the new floor. The tongue and groove cuts made into the wood make it fit so seamlessly. If any of you homeowners out there like what you see, let me know, and I can give you the contact info for Highland Millworks. These floors are the best! He ships anywhere and can make you anything from oak, walnut, pine, and more.
!!*(!@%!^#)%!@*&#^!( I can't get over how pretty these turned out. I just want to jump up and down and scream! Picture it now, the entire interior of Shelby will look like this. Wood. The next major step in Shelby's rebuild: walls!
More later this week, friends. Happy Monday!
More later this week, friends. Happy Monday!