Edge oak floor with Hand Scraper?

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Forum topic by GETTONNA posted 11-30-2015 10:56 AM 1338 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3 posts in 2633 days

11-30-2015 10:56 AM

I am refinishing the oak floors in my home.I am using traditional electric Sanders for the main part of the floor, but have been pondering trying to use a hand scraper to do the edges and corners.anyone out there with traditional wood plane experience that could recommend potential tool?

11 replies so far

View SirIrb's profile


1239 posts in 1739 days

#1 posted 11-30-2015 12:27 PM

If you are talking about a card scraper, I have heard of some using this for those hard to get to spots. Keep a good hook on it and start in a hard to see area to get the hang of it. I wouldnt recommend this with soft wood floors as soft woods dont work well with card scrapers in my experience.

-- Don't blame me, I voted for no one.

View dhazelton's profile


2839 posts in 2805 days

#2 posted 11-30-2015 12:53 PM

Paint scraper with carbide blade from the big orange or blue store, the kind with a big handle and the little ball/handhold over the blade end. But PRACTICE someplace inconspicuous before you do anything like a staircase.

View OSU55's profile


2404 posts in 2498 days

#3 posted 11-30-2015 12:54 PM

For corners, yes. For edges, your hands will be very tired. A regular #4 bench plane set up for smoothing would probably work, If you need to get right up against the wall, a carriage style block or bench plane would do it – the blade goes all the way to the edge of the sole.

View jdh122's profile


1097 posts in 3326 days

#4 posted 11-30-2015 01:03 PM

Definitely possible. Wood floors were traditionally hand-scraped in their entirety and some people still do it, though it’s got to be a lot of work. Not with a card scraper – the usual tool is a ball-joint scraper (Lee Valley sells one with either a steel blade, which is easy to sharpen and burnish a hook, or carbide, which stays sharp for a long time). Or, as dhazelton says, a paint scraper will work too.

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

View Tim's profile


3859 posts in 2470 days

#5 posted 11-30-2015 06:52 PM

I haven’t used a carbide scraper much, but when I tried, it didn’t feel sharp enough in use. Feeling the edge it seemed sharp but when scraping with it it doesn’t work nearly as well as a sharpened tool steel scraper with a hook on it. I can easily take shavings with a steel scraper, but not with carbide for example. Maybe if I took the carbide to the diamond stones it would be different. And maybe for scraping flooring it wouldn’t matter.

I have a vintage ball joint scraper, but I wouldn’t really want to use it for long. Here’s an example:
Starrett floor scraper

Plus I would think if you sand one part and scrape another, there’s a good chance the difference will show through the finish. I don’t have any experience on flooring to tell for sure.

View Hammerthumb's profile


2956 posts in 2484 days

#6 posted 11-30-2015 08:05 PM

If you are renting a floor sander, rent an edger and buffer. Corners will always require scraping with a scraper (like a paint scraper).

-- Paul, Duvall, WA

View Don W's profile

Don W

19331 posts in 3076 days

#7 posted 11-30-2015 08:36 PM

something like this. You can find vintage ones as well.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View conifur's profile


954 posts in 1660 days

#8 posted 11-30-2015 10:44 PM

Black and Decker mouse detail sander just fit under my buddies toe plates on the cabinets and worked great.

-- Knowledge and experience equals Wisdom, Michael Frankowski

View Hammerthumb's profile


2956 posts in 2484 days

#9 posted 11-30-2015 10:47 PM

-- Paul, Duvall, WA

View JohnChung's profile


420 posts in 2583 days

#10 posted 12-01-2015 03:41 AM

I tried with a card scraper. no good for parquet. Since you have planks of wood flooring I would highly suggest you get the ball jointer. Will save your back. If you want use a belt sander. It will work very well.

View GETTONNA's profile


3 posts in 2633 days

#11 posted 12-06-2015 05:37 AM

Thanks for all the replies – I actually have an electric edging sander like the one pictured. Even with the bag, they create a lot of noise and dust. I’ve been moving into using antique planes recently, and I was thinking maybe a bullnose plane, or a scraper type plane with a hook built-in to the edge might work well. But when you factor in having to keep the blades sharp with a hook, and the amount of muscle power used, maybe the electric type is the way to go, with maybe just scraping the corners of the room. Some of the heavier handled scrapers with the ball on top looked promising, but I don’t know if I want to spend $100 plus to try them out!

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