Museum Original Floor Restoration Case Study

Museum Original Floor Restoration

First Floor Gallery

We were asked by our client’s architect to present them with a genuine reclaimed, solid softwood board. They required timber with original surface features that would include time-worn knots and would also blend in with their existing flooring, some of which is hundreds of years old.

For design reasons and to ensure our client had an overall picture of what the floor was going to look like, we displayed the timber flooring spread out over our warehouse floor. We offered reclaimed softwood boards, which we salvaged from two separate and very different places, hence the variety of colours in the original laid out design.

These boards are considered extra wide and extra-long, some in excess of 5m in length. They were very rare boards indeed and command a very high premium, due to their rarity and high demand for them for in both a residential and commercial environment.

Firstly as with all of our reclaimed timbers, we kiln dried the floor to ensure it was compatible with its new environment. Once dried, we fixed this floor using traditional methods, using clasp nails through the surface of the timber and fixing into the existing softwood joists.

Once installed, we hand sanded each board to remove any impurities and surface debris. Then we bleached the surface area to allow for any major colour contrasting before applying various coloured oil finishes, all to the architects discerning eye. Hand finishing each board in situ was necessary to ensure an exact colour match to its neighbour whilst not taking away the authenticity of the overall colour spectrum of the original flooring. Prior to oil application, we had to fill any natural shakes and splits using a solidifying filling compound which was colour matched to the timber, we also filled any nail original holes which didn’t fall over the joists.

Upon completion of all of the above, we returned to site to apply the final coat of oil and buffed the floor to the required sheen level. The end result being one of authenticity, originality and a floor that suits the overall period of the building.

Basement Catacombs, Warders Mess & Cast Store

In the above areas we were charged with ensuring all subfloor works was up to speed. We had to apply damp proof membranes (DPM) and we were responsible for latex smoothing compounds over the subfloors, prior to laying the salvaged and reclaimed flooring.

We also matched up to various softwood and hardwood block flooring, using our vast stocks of reclaimed timber to best match existing. Once laid, we either left the raw surface or renovated the entire area, depending on the client’s wishes.

This process resulted in an authentic rustic look which is true to the period of the property.