Dutchman Repair Of Wood Floorboards
- CSI Division:
- Division 9 - Finishes
- Wood Strip Flooring
- Last Modified:
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Prior to inclusion in GSA’s library of procedures, documents are reviewed by one or more qualified preservation specialists for general consistency with the Secretary of Interior Standards for rehabilitating historic buildings as understood at the time the procedure is added to the library. All specifications require project-specific editing and professional judgement regarding the applicability of a procedure to a particular building, project or location. References to products and suppliers are to serve as a general guideline and do not constitute a federal endorsement or determination that a product or method is the best or most current alternative, remains available, or is compliant with current environmental regulations and safety standards. The library of procedures is intended to serve as a resource, not a substitute, for specification development by a qualified preservation professional.
We’ve reviewed these procedures for general consistency with federal standards for rehabilitating historic buildings and provide them only as a reference. Specifications should only be applied under the guidance of a qualified preservation professional who can assess the applicability of a procedure to a particular building, project or location. References to products and suppliers serve as general guidelines and do not constitute a federal endorsement nor a determination that a product or method is the best alternative or compliant with current environmental regulations and safety standards.
- This procedure includes guidance on repairing small localized damage to wood floorboards by cutting out a geometric piece of the board slightly larger than the damaged area and replacing it with a piece of wood cut and fit to match. This method of repair - called a dutchman - enables as much of the original material to be retained as possible.
- This procedure may also be used for making small repairs to wood trim and may include filling holes left from heating or plumbing pipes.
- See "General Project Guidelines" for general project guidelines to be reviewed along with this procedure. These guidelines cover the following sections:
- Safety Precautions
- Historic Structures Precautions
- Quality Assurance
- Delivery, Storage and Handling
- Project/Site Conditions
- Sequencing and Scheduling
- General Protection (Surface and Surrounding)
These guidelines should be reviewed prior to performingthis procedure and should be followed, when applicable, along with recommendations from the Regional Historic Preservation Officer (RHPO).
- A wood floor surface can be either a series of connected planks or parquet (small wood pieces arranged in decorative patterns). The wood used is either plain sawn or quarter sawn. Plank flooring, the more common type, is assembled by joining: butt joint, tongue and groove, shiplap, doweled or spline. Wood floors are usually secured to the under structure by countersinking nails, blind-nailing, or screwing and plugging.
- Wood for dutchman (match existing material to be repaired including species, saw/grain)
- Wood glue such as Elmer's or equivalent
3.01 ERECTION, INSTALLATION, APPLICATION
- Remove damaged portion with hammer and chisel.
- Cut an irregular geometrically-shaped cavity in the wood that is slightly larger than the damaged area. Select a geometric shape that is easy to reproduce such as a diamond or trapezoid, but is not obvious to the eye (a plug in the shape of a circle or square is more apparent).
- Bevel the edges of the cavity.
- Fabricate a plug to match the surface cavity bevel from matching wood stock. Make sure that the grain direction also matches. Glue the plug into the cavity.
- Allow the glue to dry, then plane or sand if necessary and refinish to match surrounding floor.