Tack strips over thin wood on concrete?

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dargo

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I have what is hopefully a simple question about how to deal with thin wood and carpet strips.

Long story short, we put in a new granite hearth that was a bit smaller than the existing one. That leaves about a 3" gap around the current hearth to the existing plywood floor. The granite lays directly on some self-leveling concrete. The gap varies in depth from about 1/4' to 5/8" deep. I've custom-cut some glorified shims to fit so that this area is now at the same height as the subfloor all around.

So the floor is now flat and ready for the new carpet. The problem I'm anticipating is that during installation they won't be able to nail the carpet tacks to these shims without hitting the concrete below - the shims just aren't close to thick enough to take a 1" nail.

My thought is to liquid-nail the tack strips to the shims about 3/8" from the granite and have that done and cured for the carpet folks when they show up. Is this a good plan or should I just let the installer figure it out when they arrive? If they decide to use glue then it will take another trip since that takes time to set. Or am I overthinking this and there's an obvious solution the pros will use in this situation?

Thanks!
 

dargo

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It looks like I should use regular wood glue, not Liquid Nails. That said, I also see "peel and stick" nail-less tack strips are also available.

Again, I think my real question is whether I should bother trying to solve this problem before the pros show up,
 

C.J.

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I always carried a few different sizes and varieties of nails on my van for both concrete and wood. If the wood shims are too thin to accept a short 5/8” wood nail then I would go for a longer concrete nail and fasten it right through the wood and into the concrete.
 

Tile Tom

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I agree, let the installers handle it. Can't tell you how many times I ripped out brand new tackless to get it right for me. Not to be ungrateful but I don't want someone not in the trade to do things for me. Most times it's not up to par with the way I do things.
 

Floorist

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Let the installer figure it out. As an installer, I would probably drill down into the concrete, put in dowels and nail into those holes. But depending on what I encounter, I might not.
 

dargo

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Sure. Here you can see the strips before I liquid-nailed them down, and the current state. You can also see the leveler (LevelQuik RS) along the bottom of the first image.
 

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dargo

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Ha! I think I've learned enough on this project already, thank you!

Here's a snap of the taper jig (almost) in action...
 

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JPfloor

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Let the installer figure it out. As an installer, I would probably drill down into the concrete, put in dowels and nail into those holes. But depending on what I encounter, I might not.
Ever try aluminum nails? That works too, drill right through the tackless, no dowels. A lot easier with double wide commercial strip. That’s all I ever used in the latter part of my career.
 

highup

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I use Crain aluminum drives myself. They come with a bit so you just drill and drive.
He's hiring carpet installers.
Best a advice I've seen, is give the installers a heads up before the installation date.
 

JPfloor

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He's hiring carpet installers.
Best a advice I've seen, is give the installers a heads up before the installation date.
Yes…Assuming the installers will be well qualified and well equipped. What are the odds of that? At least have some longer concrete pins (or aluminum nails) on hand to reach through the wood. You know the average carpet guy isn’t gonna bring them. Most will use wood nails and let them bend when hey hit the cement. 😎
 
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dargo

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For posterity…

Thanks again for all the good advice!
 

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dargo

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Yes, they did fasten to the slab below the shims. They drilled into it, but I'm not sure whether they ultimately used dowels or screws.

The bump isn't as pronounced in person as it seems in the photo - I'm not sure how real that is, but I've walked over the area a few times more than I had when I took that photo. Overall, they did a great job - including a new runner on the stairs and an upstairs hallway as well.
 

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