Project Hardwood: Day 2


  • Sand the entire floor with 80 grit sandpaper
  • Sand the edges of the floor with 80 grit sandpaper
  • Apply stain

First thing upon arrival, I had a little pow wow with my friend the orbital sander and asked her to kindly make sanding today a little easier.  Before I began sanding with the 80 grit, I had to sweep and vacuum the floor.  Luckily, my new Shop Vac arrived the day before. 

cleaned floor with mineral spirits
this shop vac is awesome

I sanded the entire floor with 80 grit, swept and shop vac'd.  Then, pole sanded with 220 grit. Shop vac'd.  Then wiped the floor with a cloth soaked in mineral spirits.  Then got ready for the stain. 

I chose Minwax Dark Walnut.  There are two reasons I went dark - first, I like the contrast that a dark floor gives and how it makes the room feel bigger, and second, I wanted to be sure that the water stains would not show at all.  I rolled the stain on with a roller and then wiped it off with rags made from old t-shirts.  I was so happy to finally be putting down the stain.  This step was tricky and time consuming.  The stain has to stay on for at least 5 minutes to soak in, and the longer you leave it on the darker it will be.  It was really important for me to time it right.  I also wanted to maximize the wait time so I had little 3x5' sections working in differnt spots. 

rolling on the stain

you can see the different sections that I rolled out

I got almost to the end, and I ran out of stain.  ARGH.  I had to make a quick run to Lowes to grab more before the stain dried along the edges which would leave a visible line.  I grabbed my keys and purse, tossed my ventilator mask to the side (which leaves a bright red ring around my mouth and nose), and ran out the door.  Just then, my new neighbor, Rob, came outside to introduce himself.  Quite frankly, I would have ran right back inside with the way I looked -  dripping sweat, hair flying all over, covered in stain, with a bright red ventilator ring on my face.  He didn't though.  We said a few words and I was off.  I came back with a gallon this time, and finished up the first coat by 9:30 that night.

I ran out of stain at this point.  I had to make a speedy trip to Lowes to buy more.  Luckily, you can't tell.

1st coat of stain complete!

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