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1910 Doctors Office Hardwood Floor Restoration Wilmington, DE

This beautiful old heritage house in Wilmington, DE from 1910 had seen a lot of life. For the last 20 years it had been used as a doctor’s office. The doctor’s son had just purchased it and was in the middle of renovation plans when he got in touch with us.

Original Oak Floor

As you can see in the photos above and below, the original hardwood floors were in very rough shape. Unfortunately they couldn’t be saved as they had been sanded and refinished too many times previously and were now far too thin.

Prepping Subfloor

The new owner runs an aborist business so he has access to lots of trees. He had been saving White Oak trees that he felled until he had enough to use throughout the house. After they were kiln dried, he had them custom milled into Rift Cut and Quarter Sawn boards. Very cool.

One of the hardest parts of this project was the subfloor. It was horribly unlevel! We spent 4 days just getting it level enough to install the new floor.

In the photo below you can see the end result and the tar paper being laid prior to the installation...

Ready for Installation

Because this was such a special home with a special history for our client, we had to do something very special with the floor. The end design ended up being a Black Walnut border around the edges of the rooms as well as some special inserts that you’ll see in the photos further below.

Here you can see the preparation for the border...

Cutting for Border

In the photo below the floor and border is installed in the den and library. Where the border juts out into the room is where the custom bookcases will go for the library...

Installation Finished

Here we are custom fitting the newly refurbished 107 year old cast iron vent cover. Originally the plan was for it to just sit it on top of the floor, but we convinced our client that it would look much better sitting flush...

Installing Grate

Below is the custom template we used to router out the medallion...

Routering Medallion

Custom medallion installed...

Installing Medallion

Below you can see the installed medallion and the completed installation with all the borders installed...

First Sand

Another angle...

Second Sand

After the floors were installed we started on the stair restoration. Lots and lots of hand scraping needed to get them looking great...

Sanding Stairs

The section below is what I’m most proud of. This corner was a head-scratcher for a while as we figured out the angles. We also under-cut the bricks on the fireplace hearth so the floor could have a very clean look. As you can see, it turned out great...

Fireplace Border

Once the installation was done, the sanding began. We didn’t use our dustless sanding system on this project as there was so much construction dust around it would have been pointless...

Final Sand

And this is the finished product after 3 coats of oil based finish...

First Coat of Finish

Here’s the corner all done...

Last Coat

Unfortunately we didn’t get to go back to get some great photos of the finished project, but this is one we got sent with the bookcase installed. The painters are still working which explains the plastic hung everywhere...

hardwood floor restoration Wilmington DE

We really enjoyed working on this Wilmington, DE hardwood floor refinishing project. All up it took all of us a full 10 days of work. That’s a LOT of man hours. But the results were amazing and we and the client were both very pleased with the outcome.

Installations are not our regular work, we usually focus on sanding and refinishing. But when a fun project like this comes along, we’ll dust off our installation tools and jump right in. If you have any ideas for a custom floor you’ll like some advice on, please feel free to ask away. We’re more than happy to help.

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Wood Floor
Best Craftsmen around, hands down! We had a very good experience with Delaware Valley Hardwoods. The crews were very professional and polite. The level of detail and time invested by the guys was impressive to say the least! Jim K - Glen Mills, PA | Review on Thumbtack
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