Cabin Grade Decision

Discussion in 'Beginners Forum' started by cabingradefan, Jun 5, 2019.

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  1. Jun 5, 2019 #1

    cabingradefan

    cabingradefan

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    I really like the prices on solid cabin grade hardwood. I personally know some friends that have bought cabin and love their floors. I have seen their floors and it looks great.

    I have also looked online and I have seen some horror stories and pictures cautioning anyone to touch the stuff.

    What do you think of cabin grade? Have you bought and installed it in the past? Is buying 15-20% more to account for waste or bad boards really enough?

    I searched for cabin grade and I only found a few old threads started years ago on this topic. Is the general consensus that cabin grade isn't worth the risk?

    The flooring company I'm looking at is saying that their manufacturer has "the cleanest" cabin grade on the market. What do you think about that statement? Do manufacturers really matter when it comes to cabin? Or are all cabin grade floors about the same when you consider the risk?

    Thank you for taking time to answer in advance.
     
  2. Jun 5, 2019 #2

    highup

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    Is cabin grade seconds or is it intentionally rough for aesthetic reasons? Is it solid or engineered?
     
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  3. Jun 5, 2019 #3

    cabingradefan

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    I'm looking at Prefinished Solid Hardwood at 3.25" width. I don't believe its a rough hardwood for aesthetic reasons.

    They describe their cabin as:
    Less color variation, less knots, and a longer average board length than our Rustic grade. Expect board lengths between 60″-10″, with an average of less than 18″. Most boards will be less than 20″. Please keep in mind that our Cabin grade was removed from the #1 or first quality products one board at a time at the manufacturing facility. This grade accepts some visual defects such as: planer marks, wormholes, mineral streaks, etc.

    I have seen a few floors posted by customers on Facebook. They said they put the bad boards in closets. Which is a great idea if most of the boards are good. highup have you dealt with your fair share of prefinished solid cabin grade hardwood?
     
  4. Jun 5, 2019 #4

    highup

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    No, this isn't my real area of expertise. I know just enough to ask some questions to get the ball rolling. It helps to know more about the product and the project. 'Bad' or questionable boards can also be split in half so they end up on opposite walls instead of out the middle of the room. From the size, I've heard those called "shorts". Takes a lot longer to install, but I saw one that a home owner installed and the shorts looked fantastic. It was a large area consisting of entry, dining room and living room. He didn't mention quality issues, but said it was relatively cheap.
    Providing the finish is the same on all of them, so they all have the same sheen level and that the "bad" boards don't have splinters or chipped and broken edges. IE: junk. Then why not? I'm saying, why not if the material is good quality, but simply shorter than normal. It will be a lot more work, not only because of the size, but laying out the boards and not getting too many lights and darks in one area. Sorting out the boards so the end joints don't match up from one row next to another would also slow down the process
    As far as quality? .....................maybe buy one box and see what you think. You probably couldn't return it.
     
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  5. Jun 5, 2019 #5

    highup

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    Also........ is it a large room, more then one room? Most homes I've worked in have rugs in the living room and hallway, meaning a lot will be covered. Put that into consideration too.
     
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  6. Jun 6, 2019 #6

    highup

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    I did some researching for my own knowledge. From what I see, I'm wondering if a better grate of what I call "shorts", might not be that much more expensive.

    The description I found says:

    What is rustic grade hardwood flooring?

    Prefinished hardwood flooring comes in a variety of grades. Rustic grade—also known as utility grade, cabin grade, and #2 common—is one of the lowest of them all. Rustic grade accepts a range of defects, including medium to small knots, missing tongues, sander burns, short pieces, and splits. But “at the bottom” doesn’t mean bad. Sure, it lacks first grade standards, but rustic grade hardwood flooring can still be a feasible option for your improvement projects, under the right conditions.

    What types of defects can I expect to get in a lot of rustic grade hardwood flooring?

    The types of defects in a lot may include but are not limited to:

    • Broken or missing tongues

    • Checks or splits

    • Knots

    • Short pieces

    • Worm holes
    https://www.hardwoods4less.com/learning-center/rustic-grade-flooring-utility--cabin
    The job I mentioned above was finish on site, not prefinished. On site finishing with a material like you are looking at would probably produce a better result since they would screed on wood filler prior to sanding.
    Solid wood flooring needs a more stable environment than engineered or other flooring materials, so you want to keep the homes temperature and humidity reasonably constant.
     
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  7. Jun 6, 2019 #7

    cabingradefan

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    The seller I'm looking at has sepreate grades for a utility grade and a seperate grade for rustic.

    They have rustic described as, "This floor is allowed to have knots larger than 3/8”, and more color variation than Cabin grade. Some lots may have a large amount of wormholes, but will have very few, if any, cut off ends."

    They have their utility grade listed as, "The lowest grade of all pre-finished flooring, this grade accepts anything; short pieces, sander burns, splits, large knots, pieces missing a tongue on one or both ends, etc. Any and all of these can be in a box of utility grade wood. Expect the majority of boards to be less than 16 inches. Lots may contain up to 50% cut ends.

    This floor will go into my living room and bedroom. A rug is a good idea to put in the living room to hide some imperfections. I think having this type of flooring is in need of adding a finish/stain like you're saying. I'll probably buy a box to show my installer. I don't think he has ever installed a lower quality floor before.

    Thank you so much for your help with this highup! Is there anything else I should know before laying down cabin grade hardwood? Have you heard from fellow experts and their general consensus on cabin?

    It looks like there will be more color variation. Is that what you mean when you are mentioning "if they have the same finish, or sheen" it should be okay?
     
  8. Jun 6, 2019 #8

    highup

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    Don't know of anyone that's installed it around here, so I can't say much about it. Labor costs will be higher because of a lot of extra time involved.
    Rugs quiet the rooms down and in my opinion a room doesn't look as good without them.
    By finish and sheen, I wonder if there could be minor deviations from different lots or production days. Might not be a deal worth worrying about.
     
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  9. Jun 6, 2019 #9

    cabingradefan

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    Awesome, sounds like we are both playing for the rug team.

    It doesn't seem like there is a lot of "cabin grade" or lower grade flooring out there when you compare it to the first quality stuff.

    Should I be worried about the return policy? Is this a common wording of a refund for flooring?

    "We will buy back anything we sell for any reason(s). We allow your return to include 1 open box. Any other opened boxes will not be refunded."

    Is the wording for their disclaimers typical? "Because of the inherent color variation in wood, we cannot warranty that our products will be an exact match to the picture on our website."

    I appreciate all your help with this. I'm new to buying flooring and I just want to make sure I'm covering all the bases.

    The prices and shipping is good for me but can you tell from looking at this help page if they're legit or not? If you don't have time or you believe I'm asking too much I understand. https://www.reallycheapfloors.com/faqs/
     
  10. Jun 7, 2019 #10

    highup

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    I wish our buddy Ernesto would chime in. He does a lot of wood floors, but that said I'm doubting he's done much of this kind.
    If they will guarantee buying it back, be sure to ask who pays shipping. I'd just buy one box and that should tell you what you need to know. If it's not what you expected, maybe make a bunch of picture frames. :DAsk your installer how much different he'd charge for doing a higher quality with no short boards. That is unless you like the look of those short boards.
    Just asking because I don't know if cost is the only reason you want this kind of flooring? The installation cost difference of long boards versus short boards might allow you a different perspective.
    Not trying to talk you out of this. I've seen a few with shorts and they looked really nice to me.
     
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  11. Jun 7, 2019 #11

    highup

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    I did some checking. Saw they have an A+ rating with the BBB.
    I saw come complaints, but the business responded quite well in my opinion. Some customers can be real asses.
    https://www.bbb.org/us/nc/murphy/profile/new-carpet/carpet-mart-0473-5000658/complaints
    Nobody should expect a truck driver to unload a pallet of hardwood flooring. They make deliveries and don't have time to unload stuff into a house. They make deliveries to stores too and things get unloaded with a forklift so he can continue his deliveries. It's best to know when product is to be delivered and have some friends to assist with unloading

    About the quality issues, the owner also responded quite well, explaining what people are to expect as far as quality. They do state pretty well you are buying.
     
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  12. Jun 7, 2019 #12

    cabingradefan

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    Well cost is definitely a big factor. I like the rustic look they seem give. I didn't think to look at their BBB rating. Thank you for digging!

    I'll order a box like you said. I think they explain the quality pretty well and I'm glad you agree more because you're more exposed to this sort of thing.

    Thank you for your help highup! I really appreciate it. :)
     
  13. Jun 7, 2019 #13

    highup

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    Glad to assist. Other consumers read this stuff too, and we all learn something. I did. Let us know what you think of the product.
     
  14. Jun 8, 2019 #14

    DarisMulkin

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    You always order a few boxes estra and cull the worst looking boards out.
     
  15. Jun 8, 2019 #15

    Floorist

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    I don't think Ernesto has been back since Nick passed.
     
  16. Jun 9, 2019 #16

    highup

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    I miss Ern being wrong. (except about flooring) Be nice if he'd pop back to visit so I can be right again.
     

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