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At the Festival «Building and Architecture» (Part-2)

Continuation. Beginning - on the page At the Festival...

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How can a buyer check up the quality of the parquet? What does the quality of the parquet depend on? Are there any guarantees?

When buying the parquet its quality is determined with the help of some main, available, alternative methods:

1. Visual examination: look, quality of the mechanical processing and quality of the finishing of the exterior surface (for finished covering).

Criteria of the quality: no violations of the visual sorting of the parquet in the qualitative group of the goods in accordance with the classification accepted by the manufacturer; no defects of the mechanical processing of the parquet slat (boards) such as spalls, scores, pulled out fibres, unevenness of the surface such as «waves», looseness between the edges of the «dry» junction of the pair of parquet slats or vice versa when their junction is too solid and requires considerable effort when joining.

2. Visually, using the simple measuring tools.
The linear and angular parameters (if there is such an instrument) of the parquet slats (boards) are checked up.

Criteria of the quality: no deviations from the linear and angular sizes of the separate slats in the pack of the parquet (better - in several packings), no differences in the thickness and damages of the surface flatness on the separate slats (boards).

*** It is necessary to mention that different producers of the parquet products can have different, documented in their standards requirements, to the quality of the products on this criterion. Some of them have high requirements, and other - too low. Therefore, whose product to choose - it is a buyer's decision, but it is necessary to take into account the producer's attitude to the quality problem...

3. Control of the parquet slats humidity (in this situation the special portable device - drymeter for wood is necessary; by the way, such device must be in each trader that sell wooden floor covering).

Criteria of the quality: no deviations from the standard values in the moisture content in the parquet material.

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What are the reasons of swelling or cracking of the hardwood floor covering?

Wood is the hygroscopic material, that is, the material which absorbs moisture easily, including - from the air of an apartment where it is situated. This characteristic was given by nature. Accordingly - any change of the moisture content in the wood of the parquet causes the change of linear sizes of the parquet slat or board.
In other words: when the humidity of the air in an apartment diminishes and the temperature raises - it results in the shrinkage of the parquet slats (parquet cracking), and vice versa - when the humidity increases - the temperature goes down and it results in the swelling of the parquet slats, but because the parquet carpet is not free to broaden (its limits are walls) - it rises, that is - bulges.

Relative value of the linear sizes change for different wood cuts, shear is approximately the following:
longitudinal direction - 1;
radial direction (from the center to periphery) - 5-6;
tangential direction - 10-12.

Taking into account all this information it is possible to conclude the following: the most resistant parquet floor to swelling and cracking is the one in which the narrow parquet slats of radial cut were used, and vice versa - the most unresistant one that contain the wide boards of the tangential saw cut were used.
Thickness and length of the parquet slat (boards) does not influence the appearance of these phenomena. Ratio of thickness of the parquet slat or the board to its width has the influence on the transversal stability of the slat to the deformations, caused by the changes of the apartment air state.

All the parquet producers follow the strict norms of the damp content in the ready products, which are regulated by the standards. On the other hand - the standards are developed on the basis of the calculations and practical researches, done under the real terms of the parquet floors exploitation in different climatic areas which are characterized by the correlation of the air humidity and the air temperature in the dwellings and public apartments during the basic period of time.

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Which wood species undergoes the least dynamic expansion-compression?

Tic, Ebony, Boxwood.
These wood species have low content of the special natural resinous substances which naturally prevent from the external moisture penetration into intercellular space of the wood and prevent from the appearing of the phenomenon of the humidity compression-expansion. There are only temperature changes of the sizes, but they are insignificant and practically does not cause any problems.

On what stage of the house designing (apartment repair) is it necessary to think about the covering for the floors?

On the stage of the apartment design.
Yet on the stage of the project design it is necessary to project the floor which will harmonize with the interior of the apartment and will become the component or may be the main element of its decorative design.

The well installed parquet floor looks perfectly and requires no additional decorations such as floor carpets and other... However the simplicity of such floor sometimes requires some improvements to emphasize its expressiveness and style. The best way is to project an custom hardwood floor which style will completely correspond the style of your apartment.

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Cost of the hardwood floor covering, what does it depend on?

The cost of the parquet (more precisely - the price) depends, first of all on its quality.
Nowadays the concept of the quality was completely related to the sphere of its original look, that is if we talk about the 1st sort parquet on one price and about the 2nd sort on the other price.., it does not mean that the second variant is less qualitative - the quality specifications to the visual sorting of the ready parquet determine which one corresponds which price. Naturally, there are less beautiful slats at the end of the production process, that is why such parquet will always be much more expensive, even if the demand on it will be less than on the cheap second-rate parquet...

And of course, for example, the tic parquet price will considerably differ from the oak parquet price, because the prices on the raw material were considerably different.

Parquet of the large slat sizes both on length and on width will always be more expensive than the parquet of the smaller size group.

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