Bamboo flooring
#11
  
We are considering bamboo planks for the kitchen: 5/8 x 6 inch, tongue and groove. We assume it can be coated with polyurethane, since the kitchen floor might get wet. Any of you have experience with bamboo floor? We are looking at Menards who is discontinuing bamboo floor. Do you know why they might be discontinuing? Is there a problem with bamboo?
Thanks. --Peter
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#12
  Re: Bamboo flooring by petertay15 (We are considering b...)
(06-09-2018, 12:08 PM)petertay15 Wrote: We are considering bamboo planks for the kitchen: 5/8 x 6 inch, tongue and groove. We assume it can be coated with polyurethane, since the kitchen floor might get wet.  Any of you have experience with bamboo floor? We are looking at Menards who is discontinuing bamboo floor. Do you know why they might be discontinuing? Is there a problem with bamboo?
Thanks.  --Peter

Do not do it.  I have installed bamboo and besides being a nightmare because of the splinters any water will make the floor buckle and fast.  The reason being is it isn't wood.  It is grass and the tubes that hold water as it grows will expand as it would while growing.  In a living or dining room not so much of an issue but any room with plumbing is best avoided.  I think it was just short of 700ft the portion near the sliding door had to be pulled twice and re cut because the amount of movement


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#13
  Re: Bamboo flooring by petertay15 (We are considering b...)
(06-09-2018, 12:08 PM)petertay15 Wrote: We are considering bamboo planks for the kitchen: 5/8 x 6 inch, tongue and groove. We assume it can be coated with polyurethane, since the kitchen floor might get wet.  Any of you have experience with bamboo floor? We are looking at Menards who is discontinuing bamboo floor. Do you know why they might be discontinuing? Is there a problem with bamboo?
Thanks.  --Peter

I installed a Cali Bamboo floor in my kitchen just about a year ago, same cross section as you are thinking about.  It was an easy job to install it and I've had zero problems with it.  It's got like 7 layers of finish on it so there is no need to apply any additional finish, nor would that likely be a good idea.  Only the face has color on it, but the entire board is sheathed in a heavy coating.  You would have leave standing water on it for a long time for it be a problem.  My only experience is with Cali Bamboo; maybe others are different.  

My only complaints about it are that it shrank a lot last Winter, at least 1/2" over 20' across the width of the boards.  Strangely, all the shrinkage was at one side.  I haven't installed the base moldings again yet, but it will take both a base and shoe molding to cover the gap that is now nearly 1".  I expect it will swell again this Summer but the same thing is likely to happen next Winter.  The other issue I hate about it is keeping it clean.  We got a dark gray color and it shows every spec of dust.  It cleans beautifully with Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner, fast and easy - and looks awful again within a day if you have any dust on your shoes.  Spot cleaning spills, even water drops, leaves a noticeable halo until you clean the entire floor again.  

My wife and I are seriously discussing ripping it out next year, not because of any problems, but because of the cleaning issues and color which doesn't seem to go with anything despite being a neutral gray.  Fortunately, the floor just floats so if we decide to get rid of it it will be an easy job.  

John
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#14
  Re: Bamboo flooring by petertay15 (We are considering b...)
(06-09-2018, 12:08 PM)petertay15 Wrote: We are considering bamboo planks for the kitchen: 5/8 x 6 inch, tongue and groove. We assume it can be coated with polyurethane, since the kitchen floor might get wet.  Any of you have experience with bamboo floor? We are looking at Menards who is discontinuing bamboo floor. Do you know why they might be discontinuing? Is there a problem with bamboo?
Thanks.  --Peter

Peter, Like John T. I put down Cali Bamboo last summer as part of a complete kitchen remodel (stripped everything out down to the studs and ceiling joists).  Like John the installation was uneventful except that nothing is uneventful when you are 75 and flooring a 23 X 16' foot kitchen on your knees.  This year I floored an adjacent 26 X 16' studio with the same Cali bamboo.  I equilibrated the kitchen flooring for around 2 months and the studio flooring for around 4 months.  My casual observation is that there was minimal shrinkage over the winter probably because I am in Florida from early January to the middle of April and our temp is set at around 55 during those months.  My flooring is grey but lighter than the one John used.  It doesn't show dirt as badly but my wife or I are not particularly bothered by a little dust especially as the kitchen remodeling will be ongoing for most of the summer.  My kitchen is over a heated basement but the studio is on a slab on grade.  I took the kitchen floor down to the subfloor and did quite a bit of repair work on this 65 year old house.  The studio had vinyl tiles on the slab which I left in place since they were in good condition and used the vapor barrier that Cali sells.  I have had no problems and it looks very nice.  I think most of  the issues with swelling, which can be a problem with any wooden floor, comes from improper equilibration or restricting the free movement of the flooring when it wants to swell.  You only have to go to YouTube to see mistakes that people make sometimes deliberately.  One guy was demonstrating how to put down Cali bamboo and mentioned that the instructions were to equilibrate for 14 days but that he had only unboxed it 3 days earlier and he thought that should be enough (?).  So my experience is that everything will be OK if you follow the directions.  Ken
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#15
  Re: Bamboo flooring by petertay15 (We are considering b...)
I put bamboo flooring down in my daughters kitchen and dining room about 3 years ago.  I know there are several types of bamboo flooring and I can't recall which this was, but it was hard as flint and has held up fine since installed.  They have a dog and 2 little ones, so it gets plenty of abuse.  No problems to this point.
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#16
  Re: RE: Bamboo flooring by Bill Wilson (I put bamboo floorin...)
We have bamboo in our bedroom and bath.  I don't recommend it next to a shower, tub.  Don't know about a sink.

It will stain dark with exposure to water.
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#17
  Re: RE: Bamboo flooring by jteneyck ([quote='petertay15' ...)
(06-09-2018, 03:56 PM)jteneyck Wrote: [...] Only the face has color on it, but the entire board is sheathed in a heavy coating.  [...]

John

I find this comment confusing.

Everything I've read or heard states that the bamboo is colored by roasting the bamboo.  So the color goes all the way through.  

Also note that apparently the longer the roast, and the darker the color, the softer is the material.

In any case unless they are flash roasting the top surface I don't see how this works.  Or perhaps they are laminating a separate dark layer of bamboo.

Confusing in any event.
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#18
  Re: Bamboo flooring by petertay15 (We are considering b...)
I put in bamboo flooring in my dining room a few years ago.  We like the results and it has held up very well.


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#19
  Re: RE: Bamboo flooring by Cian (I put in bamboo floo...)
(06-11-2018, 10:47 AM)Cian Wrote: I put in bamboo flooring in my dining room a few years ago.  We like the results and it has held up very well.


I would expect it to hold up well.  Blond bamboo is harder than white oak and just a bit softer than hard maple.  

The carbonized (darker colors) are significantly softer.

Here is a hardness chart for various species of wood.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janka_hardness_test
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#20
  Re: RE: Bamboo flooring by Cooler ([quote='jteneyck' pi...)
(06-11-2018, 10:42 AM)Cooler Wrote: I find this comment confusing.

Everything I've read or heard states that the bamboo is colored by roasting the bamboo.  So the color goes all the way through.  

Also note that apparently the longer the roast, and the darker the color, the softer is the material.

In any case unless they are flash roasting the top surface I don't see how this works.  Or perhaps they are laminating a separate dark layer of bamboo.

Confusing in any event.
The type of bamboo flooring that John T. and I put down is called fossilized bamboo by Cali Bamboo, the maker.  It is made from bamboo fibers incorporated with resin.  It is off the charts on the hardness scale, much harder than any wooden floor.  It comes in many different finishes, none related to "roasting".  I think you are talking about natural bamboo which is much softer than what John and I used.  I might use natural bamboo for a bedroom but in my opinion it is nowhere near durable enough for parts of the house that gets a lot of traffic.  You can go to Cali bamboo website to see what John and I used.  We ordered directly from Cali but it is also available through Lowes or HD.  Ken
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