Patrick J. Russell
Learn how to say no.
"Get the house ready for wood, then get the wood ready for that house."—Micky Moore
Pete Helton Jr
Sand everything like it's going to be stained dark.
Wear your knee pads and hearing protection.
Steven Triplett Jr.
Watch your risk to reward ratio. Liability needs to be factored into your pricing and some jobs aren’t even worth taking on. Don’t bet the farm to make a couple grand.
A clean job site is a happy job site.
Spend money on good tools.
An extra five minutes spent can save you $1,000s.
The last small details of the job can make or break you.
Find a good spot for that one board in particular. The homeowner will think you are a wizard.
Do it right the first time not the fifth time because time is money. And knowledge is power.
There are no shortcuts.
Keep your hand tools sharp and power tools maintained.
You’re never too old to learn new things.
Take care of yourself, this work is hard on your body, mind and spirit.
Price your worth, not the “going rate”!
Don’t promise what you can’t fulfill!
Do or do not … There is no try.—Yoda 2024
When you do good work, nobody can tell you that you don't do good work.
When in doubt, rip it out.
Learn some woodworking skills outside the basic flooring realm.
Please do not touch the thermostat.
Check your ego.
You know who.
Set expectations with the client.
Doesn’t cost anything to take pride in your work.
Always read the label.
I've never had an employee last in this profession that wasn't involved in some kind hard physical sport at some point. They have to be made for endurance and enjoy the physical challenge of the work. Runners, climbers, soccer players...they seem to last.
Give a damn, you will go a long way.
Check often those big machine wheels for buildup, drive and vacuum belts for vibration, each new sanding belt for tracking and vibration. It’ll cut down on waves, chatter, etc., and make your sanding life a bit easier.
A good carpenter has a chisel and a plane that will cut hair.
Stop overthinking everything.
Eat properly and stretch often—it’s a marathon, not a sprint and we only get one body.
When you lay a larger wood floor, it doesn't hurt anything when you let it sit a couple days before sanding. Even though you acclimated the wood and tested moisture, the wood needs to expand and settle against itself. If you finish it too quickly after install you can get more initial movement and noise if you're coating with a water-based coating. Can be awkward to explain to the homeowner that the noises will go away with time.
If your final cuts aren't with a planetary with steel discs, your floor won't be as flat as it could be.
Please just get a standalone humidifier.
Measure once, cut twice.
The earth isn't flat.
Charge the electricians/tapers for having to clean the floor three times. 😅
Put the 1.5 scraper blade on the 1-inch scraper handle.
We’re a service industry. We work with people more than wood floors. People provide value, not wood floors. Think of people first.
Love watching the new guy use the buffer, lol.
Once you understand it's all common sense, you'll advance quickly.
Your pricing should always be reflective of your quality of work and service level. Negotiate on work scope, not price. Add value where you can by including a small service at “no extra charge.”
On your first day of hardwood floors, never fall for the old “go get the board stretcher out of the van.” 🚐