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Bamboo Installation Tips



                                                         

Nailing tips

Tongue fracture and surface dimpling during the installation of strands and other harder bamboo styles is not a manufacturer's defect. It is common and can be minimized by installing the flooring in proper lighting, using the correct nail thickness or gage, using the recommended shoe adaptor, or changing the angle of nail entry. If however, surface dimpling still occurs when using the recommended nailers bamboo can be installed by pre-drilling and hand nailing using a 3/32 drill bit and 6d finish nails (pic 1) or can be directly glued to the subfloor using our recommended bamboo adhesive.

1    To further reduce the occurrence of surface dimpling and tongue fracture the use of thinner 18 gage cleat nails is recommended especially for strand bamboo, but is no guarantee to prevent all surface dimples. In addition, many installers will sometimes adjust the nailer angle temporarily by applying layers of duct tape to the bottom nailer foot plate. The use of an over-size base or foot plate to distribute the nailing force is encouraged.

2    Use caution when using staples on bamboo. Staples may increase the risk for tongue fracture and surface dimples. Do not mix fasteners when nailing. Staples and cleats hold differently so it's best to use the same fastener type throughout the installation. When face or top nailing, pre-drilling is recommended. Pre-drill in areas of the grain or pattern that best match the wood filler.     

3    Do not use significantly bowed, crooked or twisted boards. Use a wood spline or slip tongue whenever a change in board direction is needed. Splines should be glued with PVA wood glue and nailed into place. Forcing or pounding floor boards together with a rubber mallet during assembly can bruise or damage board edges. Wood splines are not needed whne gluing down the flooring.     

(pic 1).

When using air compressors

Adjust the regulator to ensure proper air pressure and setting of fasteners. Set air compressor to 70-80 PSI, adjust as needed, do not exceed the nailer or air hose limitations. Make sure that the fastening machine is recommended for the floor, is in good working condition, is fully adjustable, is at the appropriate angle, and that it seats fasteners properly against the tongue of the board to prevent top edge and surface dimple damage. See nailing Tips


Correct Air Pressure


FASTENER AND NAILER SELECTION

 Horizontal Bamboo

FLOOR THICKNESS

RECOMMENDED NAILER

FASTENER TYPE

FASTENER

LENGTH

5/8"

Norge 2n1 nailer

15.5 gauge staples or 16 gauge cleats

1-1/2"to 2"

Norge 18 gauge floor nailer

18 gauge cleat

1-1/2" to 1-3/4"

7/16" up to 9/16"

Norge 2n1 nailer

15.gauge staples or 16 gauge cleats

1 -1/2"to 2"

Norge 18 gauge floor nailer

18 gauge cleats

1-1/2"to 1-3/4"

3/8"

Norge 18 gauge floor nailer

18 gauge cleats

1-1/4" to 1-1/2"

5/16"

Norge 4 n 1 floor stapler

18 gauge staples 1 /4" crown

1-1/4"

Powernail M200 floor nailer

20 gauge cleats


Strand and Horizontal Bamboo

FLOOR THICKNESS

RECOMMENDED NAILER

FASTENER TYPE

FASTENER

LENGTH

5/8"

Norge 18 gauge floor nailer

18 gauge cleats

1-1/2"to 1-3/4"

7/16" up to 9/16"

Norge 18 gauge floor nailer

18 gauge cleats

1-1/2" to 1-3/4"

3/8"

Norge 18 gauge floor nailer

18 gauge cleats

1-1/4" to 1-1/2"


Staples


Cleat nails


FASTENER SPACING

Space fasteners every 8" to 10" intervals and within 3" of board ends with at least two fasteners in every board.

     

GLUE DOWN OVERVIEW

[CAUTION] Most installation failures result from jobsite moisture.

Do not unpack or deliver flooring to the jobsite until moisture problems are corrected.

Note that flooring adhesives may have special requirements and limitations of use. Follow closely the adhesive labeling instructions and adhesive Technical Data Sheet pertaining to moisture testing procedures, moisture barriers, and trowel size recommendations. Depending on the selection and application of a particular adhesive, you may be required to use moisture barriers. Adhesive Technical Data Sheets can be found on the adhesive manufacture's website. When in doubt about an adhesive application or requirement call the adhesive manufacturer. Not following the adhesive manufacturer's recommendations can lead to installation failure and void your warranty.

[TIPS]:

  • Place saw equipment outside in an area where they can be reached without having to walk across the flooring
  • Do not apply over radiant heated floor systems      
  • Install the flooring parallel to the longest wall or foundation wall in the room. Keep the flooring straight using a chalk line
  • Install flooring with the tongue side facing the starting wall.     
  • Select flooring from several cartons to mix color, grain and shade.
  • Discard twisted or warped boards.
  • For the best results, do not mix adhesive products or glue over sealers
  • Follow the glue manufacturer's labeling instructions regarding adhesive set time, correct trowel size, removal of surface sealers or contaminates and use of moisture barriers
  • Glue manufacture may require rolling the floor throughout installation to ensure glue transfer, refer to adhesive labeling instructions
  • Use the trowel size recommended by the adhesive company to get required spread rate and ridging height. Typically, trowel size is determined by board type, size and surface texture. Check adhesive bucket for trowel size recommendations.
  • During constant use trowel teeth will wear down, for best glue coverage use a new trowel with each new container of adhesive.
  • Blue painter tape #2080 can be used to keep rows or sections of floor boards together until the adhesive has cured.
  • (Incorrect or aggressive tape can harm the finish, do not leave on overnight) Tape 4 or 5 board rows together during installation.
  • Many installers choose to use straps or clamps in an effort to force board rows tighter together during installation. Be advised that over-strapping can adversely affect the floor and may result in glue-bond failure, seam peaking, twisted boards or out-of-square floor board alignment.

CONCRETE SUBFLOOR PREPARATION

Concrete substrates

Because concrete generally takes 15 days to dry for every 1 inch (25 mm) of thickness, the concrete must be between 60 to 90 days old prior to installation and free of surface sealers or contaminates.

Moisture testing (Concrete Subfloors)

Use of a Calcium Chloride Test (ASTM F-1869) is required over all concrete subfloors. Three Calcium Chloride tests are needed for the first 1,000sqft. Add one additional test for each 1,000 square feet thereafter. For example a job of 3,000 sqft would require 5 Calcium Chloride tests to be performed. Results of 3lbs or less per 1000 sqft are considered dry and appropriate for bamboo installations. Use proper moisture barriers when concrete exceeds limits of use.


Contact your local Lumber Liquidators for Calcium Chloride Test kits . Certain adhesive and moisture barrier products don't require Calcium Chloride testing. Review the Technical Data Sheets of these products before application.

Flat concrete

  • A flat cement surface is very important when gluing down ridged solid wood. To minimize squeaks and gaps the final surface must be flat to within 1/8" in 6' radius or within 3/16" in 10' radius. Sand or grind down high spots. Fill valleys or low areas with cement based leveling compounds compatible with the flooring adhesives. Allow extra drying time for the leveling compounds. Concrete that is not properly leveled can cause improper adhesive transfer, hollow spots, and squeaks.

  • Check Concrete for Sealers

  • All paint, adhesives, dust, debris, and sealers must be removed from the concrete prior to gluing down solid wood flooring. To check for a sealer on the concrete spill a small cup size amount of water onto the concrete surface. If the water beads up, and does not soak into the concrete, a sealer is present. The sealer will have to be removed before continuing with the glue down installation of wood flooring. Check with adhesive manufacture for recommendations on sealer removal. 

  • We recommend using Bostik, Mapei, or Morning Star adhesives that are designed for use with solid bamboo floors.  

  • [CAUTION]: Cured adhesive may cloud, chemically damage or etch the floor's finish.  

    Clean wet adhesive from the surface of the floor frequently using the manufacturers recommended remover. Use clean towels, changing frequently to prevent haze and residue. Contact the adhesive manufacturer for their dried adhesive removal remedies.

    02/2016 


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