Hardwood floor


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Established Member
20 Feb 2004
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In the eternally wet North
I want to lay a hardwood floor in LOML's summerhouse. Probably it will be ash from an aesthetic viewpoint.

I can get ash prepared, t&g for about £36 plus VAT plus carriage (per sq metre) and I need about 13 sq metres...total cost £600 (thinks...what tools could I buy for that :cry: )

OR I can buy in some rough timber from british hardwoods at £16 per cuft for 1" thick ash. My calculations tell me that I need about 12 cu ft (a sanity check of my maths by anyone would be very welcome! Tony's calculator only runs on PCS unfortunately !) and this works out significantly cheaper at under £200.

I have never gone down this route before and so am seeking guidance as to possible pitfalls etc. My plan would be to rip the planks down to the max width I can accomodate on my planer (6") and then run them through the thicknesser. I can run T&G down the sides using my router table. Have I missed anything?

What do I need to factor in for wastage when ordering the actual quantity?

Many thanks

Hi Roger,
You are getting a good price on ash there.

By my calculation you need 93 linear mteres (assuming 140 cover - taking into account a 10mm tongue). If you use narrower boards, obviously you'll need more. I would have thought that it was perfectly doable, although by the end you may possibly have lost the will to live.

BTW I wouldn't rip everything down to 150mm. If yo have a 200mm board, I would rip it into two 100mm, rather than a 150 and a 50. Random widths can look quite nice.


All that Steve says is true - good price, mind loss likely.

The other factor that you should consider in this project is the snipe factor for long boards and the sheer physical task of moving all those boards back and forth for hours and hours and hours and hours. Assuming the 93 linear metres and say each board is c 3m - 30+ long boards to deal with :shock: (hammer) ](*,)



Roger Sinden":3nfdrztf said:
I can run T&G down the sides using my router table.

Don't even think about doing that unless you are sure you can hold the plank down HARD against the router table top for the entire length of the board. If there is any variation in the position of the tongue or groove due to the board riding up off the surface, then that will end up as a raised edge when the boards are fitted together.
I would recommend using a hand held router riding on the boards themselves

I normally factor 50% wastage if I buy through and through boards.

If you buy 1" boards and thickness them they will probably be too thin and certainly not flat, so trying to cut any sort of tongue and groove is a non starter.

John is right trying to cut a tongue on a router table especially with long boards is impractical.

Roger I would pay the £600. :wink:

Hello Roger, i have been thinking about doing the same myself.
i am going to use a spindle moulder for the T&ga , and rather than running 3m lenghs through will cut down to something more managable. Will have to be cut down anyway cause guaranteed its gonna have bows in the sawn lenghs i buy. Aiming for a finish of 15mm which gives me 5mm a side to take off. The floor is going down on ply.

Does anyone think i might have any problems with this way of doing it?

I have just put together some solid oak end panels for some wall units,
using the same method you described and it has worked fine,
the only thing to look out for is that they do match perfectly,
otherwise you will end up with uneven boards!
with the spindle moulder, I used the power feed, and then 2 support boards,
and the 2 support boads were very tight, the result being no difference in height along the length,


Hi Matt, would love to have a power feeder, does it make the job go a lot smoother?. Always find the it hard to push the stock through cutters at a constant feed when your also grabbing the push stick
Tim/Steve/John/Keith - thanks guys for the input - I think I'd better take off my rose-tinted specs and go buy some already done :)

Matt - what spindle moulder do you have? Do you use it a lot and if so, what for? It's one of those pieces of kit that I think I might find useful but struggle to justify it to myself :D

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