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 Post subject: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 1:56 am 
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How many of you out there use Strap Clamps for gluedown?? Just curious about your feedback.

I'm a perfectionist , as most of us pride ourselves on, and I won't install a wood floor without them. I've been installing hardwood flooring now for over 35 years , and with todays milling ,species, characteristics ,and tongue & groove tolerances, I dont see how any installer can havea truly tight installation , without using them. I thought it was because the last 6 years or so I mainly installed Bellawood ( 3/8 gluedown over concrete ).( I was brought up thinking it was tabu to glue solid over concrete). But with the right precautions ( and 3/8 ) no problem. Anyway .... I started using strap clamps as my only solution to have a tight installation with that darn Bellawood ! Without a fight. I got sick of LL & Bellawood last year, for reasons I wont get into. I'm installing all the woods that ProSource carries. And I still find the strap clamps an imperative tool, on every job, for a clean, easy, tight installation. I have done a few sections without the Strap Clamps, since I got hooked on them ( pardon the pun ) , and it's just no comparrison for an easier , professional installation. but curious to what you guys think. Have you tried them on gluedown???

Thanks,
Howard

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 8:47 am 
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It is rare I need to breakout the strap clamps.

I could see Bellawood would be one I would have to use them on. That stuff is a gapping mess.

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 8:57 am 
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Location: Richmond Hill, Ontario
Strap clamps? What are they? :lol: But seriously, we vary rarely use them at our company, but mostly we do nail down or floating installations which dont require strapping the floor.
The glue down floors we do are always engineered so they dont seem to need strapping either.

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 11:36 am 
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90% of what I install now is engineered, ( what a relief not having to install Bellawood , to make a living ) :D Out here in good ole Las Vegas, everything is gluedown over concrete. But I still use the strap clamps on every installation, and run rows of blue tape. Without them I would still see hairline gaps at the seams. It's a tighter installation. And you get into a nice rythem, without pushing pulling and tugging. I just lay out the straps accross the width of the section, stand up and push all my ends tighter, with my foot. Clamp the section tight, and run blue tape. Piece of cake. You also dont have to worry about the customer or yourself , or whoever, walking on the fresh floor, it's not going anywhere.

Howard

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 4:10 am 
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Myself, I carry straps to most every job. The one I'm on now is a 5/16 x 2 1/4 solid glued down over concrete and it absolutely must be strapped to get it tight. The bigger problem for me is twofold. One, I have 36 sets of straps, 3 different brands and all of them want to lift up the last board out of the glue. Secondly, after I get the wood tight blue tape won't hold this floor tight when the straps are released. I'm having to hot glue small scraps between the straps before I can release the tension. This is the most aggravating job I can remember to date. In addition every room has border features and having to do it this way has been a pluck your last nerve ordeal.


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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 5:26 am 
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Ya Jerry, if you are talking about that "Natural Choice" product, we attempted to glue it down a couple of times with the same problems you are encountering. So I threw out the manufacturer's recommendations and re-established our policy of "NO solid products (other than patterned flooring) are to be glued down"

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 6:03 am 
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Smart guy that Dennis :lol: 1520' of Natural Choice :cry:


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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 10:19 am 
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Jerry Thomas wrote:
Myself, I carry straps to most every job.


Yes, am the same way. They go where I go, because you never know. The last gluedown I used them on was a 3 board wide-long plank. Once that big board touched the glue, it would not move. Had to get out the strap clamps to get every end joint and long joint together, with a lot of help of my soft rubber mallet.

Jerry Thomas wrote:
all of them want to lift up the last board out of the glue.



Yep!!! It is a total pain when a board with glue on it decides to let got, flipping it across the room, slinging glue the whole way. Don't ask me how I know!!!!!!!!!!! :oops:

Jerry Thomas wrote:
Secondly, after I get the wood tight blue tape won't hold this floor tight when the straps are released.


Come on `ol Jerry! Haven't I taught you anything?? You have seen the pictures of my floors during the installations.... I have stock in 3M, remember? You have to use more blue tape, 2" wide works good. Blue tape!! don't be trying to fix the wheel with that lime green or purple-no stick tape. Seriously! More tape and stretch it as you place it.



Jerry Thomas wrote:
I'm having to hot glue small scraps between the straps before I can release the tension. This is the most aggravating job I can remember to date. In addition every room has border features and having to do it this way has been a pluck your last nerve ordeal.



Having nightmares are you? Sweaty palms and all, ehh? Been there many times. Makes you want to just give up the flooring gig at times. Been there many times in the last 5 or 6 years. My question is... Why do I worry and have nightmares at night now, unlike when the retailers were selling my worth?? I never worried then???? Maybe because I didn't know what I was doing day to day, week to week, so I didn't have time to think so hard about it, I just dealt with it when I got there instead of having the time to sit and dwell on what I saw during the estimate.

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 10:37 am 
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Location: Tucson AZ
Wrapping around islands or walls on a glue down. LOL

I like the crain ratchet straps the best. I'd post a picture but can't.

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 11:50 am 
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Location: Antioch, CA. 94509
Posting a picture is not hard. However, the picture must be from a website. You cannot upload directly from your computer. In the case of the Crain strap clamps, I googled images and came up with this one. If you right click the image, it will take you to the .jpg file, which is what you want to upload. Then click the Img tag above and add the .jpg link in between, like so.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 8:05 pm 
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Location: Las Vegas
Flipping the plank out of the glue depends on what type of strap clamp you use. The strap clamps with the 'U" shaped ends will flip planks. I used to use the Besseys and they were a pain when it came to that. The strap clamps I sell on my site are "L" shaped and use more of a parallel pressure, so they dont flip planks. They're also a fraction of the price of the Crain. And they dont need "extensions". You can latch my strap clamps together, for longer distance. Ive beat the heck out of these strap clamps, and they keep pluggin away.

Never had a problem with blue tape holding the planks in place. But I also have stock in 3M :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 4:49 am 
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I have never run into this problem before either. So far I have spent over 160.00 in blue tape... 2090,2080, Shurtape... you name it, I've tried it ..... 1", 1 1/2" and the 2". The only thing I've not tried is Duct tape. Nothing, and I mean nothing will keep this wood tight when the straps are released except stopping to glue down a bunch of scraps. beats all i have ever seen and I'm glad this topic started.

I've been on the phone with Bruce and a rep is coming by next Monday to see this in person. I have taken pictures showing where the wood gaps open while covered in blue tape. Wish I could post them here...


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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 6:40 am 
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Location: Bonita Springs, Florida
Quote:
Wish I could post them here...


Something I've missed? You can create a flicker or photo bucket account or do as Perry does...hehe. Load pics from your PC at that other message board buried in some old post that nobody will see.


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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 7:47 am 
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I could load them from my webpage, but it is so much easier just to find my old pictures I've posted over the years on FCI, and link to them.


Kinda like this...


Image

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 Post subject: Re: Strap Clamps
PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 10:32 am 
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I've not had planks flip with the Crain "L" shaped ends either. But I have had the end flip off and go shooting across the room! :shock:

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