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Making a wooden floor from reclaimed timbers is a real challenge, especially if it's an exotic timber you've never seen before.
By Martin Marinov – Head of Production Turgon
I came to the UK straight from Bulgaria when I was just 19 years old, and was fortunate enough to have been given a job as an apprentice mechanic, before finally going on to be a spray painter for high class cars. So when it comes to wooden floor production, and finishing detail, I’m your man !
I’ve been at Turgon now for nearly 10 years, and watched the company grow from just buying wooden floors and selling them, to finishing them, and finally making them in our own workshop in London. Every day is another challenge for me when it comes to making or finishing a high quality floor, because it’s attention to detail, and that takes a keen eye and a lot of time.
This week at Turgon we’re making a herringbone pattern floor out of some beautiful reclaimed timber, and they will be cut into pieces of 120mm by 600mm. The timber is about 100 years old and came from the docks in Liverpool where it has been for nearly 100 years. There is a little problem in that we have so far been unable to identify exactly what species of timber it is, and have explained this to the customer, which of course is no problem to them as they love the wood so much. However, it does present a little problem for us, because when it comes to moisture content, and acclimatization, we need to know the exact species. We know it’s an African timber, but there are literally thousands of species. We’ll find out in the end somehow.
The wood itself is beautiful but incredibly hard to cut, which means we have to be very careful with it. Also, because it’s quite expensive, we’re milling it into 10mm solid overlays with no tongue and groove, so it means we will have to pin and glue down the boards when it comes to installation. Because the customer doesn’t want a perfectly smooth sanded finish, we’re going to very lightly rub down the edges of the board to lose the hard edges, then apply a couple of coats of wax oil to the floor on site. There are other things we do to the board too, but I don’t like to get to technical, or give away our trade secrets !
The amount of work that goes into one of our wooden floors is quite extensive, but really, I think it’s worth all the time and effort when you see the result.