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Wood Floor Rescue: Kiwi Native Woods Uncovered

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"These jobs are the most satisfying ones to do, as you can probably tell," writes Kiwi wood flooring pro Marshal Williams, who works at Auckland, New Zealand-based Wayne Bowden Painters Ltd. This "timber flooring" was in a circa-1800s home that had New Zealand native species, including matai, tawa, rimu and kauri—all covered in glue from old vinyl flooring. The crew pulled out hundreds of staples, nail-punched the old square-head nails, used a 9-inch grinder with a diamond cup wheel to remove the glue and scraped out all the wide gaps between the boards. "After the first cut, I vacuumed out all the cracks and trowel-filled the entire house of flooring with a two-pot epoxy resin colored with black oxide." They then sanded that off. "Exposing the black gaps and nail holes gives the house that rustic character, making the holes and gaps stand out," he explains. Another bonus of the technique? "It stops the draft coming up between the tongue and groove flooring ... That's how we do it in New Zealand."

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