David Gunton's Hardwood Floors.
Grange Lane, Winsford,
Cheshire, CW7 2PS
Tel: +44 (0)1606 861 442
Fax: +44 (0)1606 861 445

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Castle Oak

Hand worked solid English Oak Boards over underfloor heating.

This Englishman's home is definitely his Castle. He has had installed English Oak boards fit for one. For this work we hand- smoothed the floors before arriving with them on site.

The steps are formed in hand worked 50mm thick English Oak from a log chosen for its sweeping curve. We removed the sap-wood, carefully following the natural line of the curve of the grain, then made the steps and undercarriage to suit.

Why bother? Well, the process enabled a very natural look to the curve which was characterised and emphasised by the natural sweep of the grain. It enabled the full width of the boards to be used to produce very generous looking steps - and anyway, it was fun and nice to do!

The oak flooring in this barn conversion has been only lightly fumed to enrich its colour. We avoid using coloured stains, preferring the more natural look achieved by altering the colour of the tannin with naturally occurring chemicals. The dull red brick absorbs light. Large windows have been introduced for sunlight to pour in. It was not desirable to have a dark floor which would absorb it.

As you see the effect is luxurious, warm, sunny, relaxed and welcoming.

Even here in this darker corner, the soft colour of the floor remains attractive. It is interesting how the tone of the floor has a different appearance, dependant upon the point from which it is viewed. Numerous customers have pointed to pictures of oak floors in David Gunton's book of projects, saying, 'I like the colour of that floor, but I don't like this colour', only to be told, 'that is the same floor but from the other end of the room. 'Well, I want my floor to be that colour, not the other one' is a common retort!

You can see the sweep of the steps better on this photograph.

This is a 'before' shot. We are playing around with the curved 50mm boards for the step to make sure we find the right arrangement of the pieces before cutting them. We could not begin fitting the lower or upper levels of the floor until the steps were in place and their carpentry works finished - everything else depended upon them.

The boards are countersunk, screwed and pelleted to stout bearers bonded and screwed to the concrete base. Between the bearers the under floor heating pipes are laid over kiln dried sand which in turn is covered by polythene sheeting to prevent it being scattered.

As you can see, a very plain rustic / industrial environment is transformed by the addition of this lovely floor.

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