Finishing exposed joists and flooring

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Forum topic by Woodstock100 posted 04-08-2021 01:57 PM 216 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 14 days

04-08-2021 01:57 PM

Hi everyone!

This is my first time posting here so I hope I’ve done this right.

My wife and I are in middle of our first renovation and just put in an old beam to sure up the second floor. This worked great and now we want to leave the beam and the joists exposed but thinking it would be good to sand the undersides of the joists and the flooring between the joists. The wood is very old and rough and seems like it would collect alot of dust. Also, we’re thinking it may be nice to lighten the color a little. I attached some photos.

My question is, how would you go about doing this? It seems like it will be time consuming and very challenging to get the inside corners between the joists and the flooring.


3 replies so far

View LittleShaver's profile


746 posts in 1678 days

#1 posted 04-08-2021 02:37 PM

You are correct. This would be a time consuming and tedious project. If it were me, I’d clean it up with a dry scrub brush (still tedious, but not as time consuming) and a shop vac. Then I would put on a clear coat. Probably a flat or matte water based poly to seal it up and limit future dust accumulation. Spray would be quickest, but brushing and rolling would work. As this is a “no-wear” surface, one coat may be enough, but two will catch any holidays in your first coat.

Please note, I have not done this project, so I’m just going on what I think I know.

-- Sawdust Maker

View controlfreak's profile


2001 posts in 660 days

#2 posted 04-08-2021 02:39 PM

I would leave it like it is natural and spray a sealer on it if you like. If you are thinking about sanding the only way I could see that working is to blast it with an abrasive material. I don’t think I am in favor of that expanse and mess so I say seal or cover. Good luck and welcome to LJ’s.

View Woodstock100's profile


2 posts in 14 days

#3 posted 04-11-2021 12:43 AM

Thanks for the responses!

@Littleshaver, love the scrub brush suggestion! I think that would work well to clean them up with much less work then sanding. We’re thinking about white-washing instead of clear coat.

@controlfreak yeah, thinking about sand blasting in here seems like it would be quite a production! Fun maybe but a hell of a lotta clean up. My wife would have my ass. Sanding is probably out.

I’m really looking forward to trying out white-washing the joists and flooring. Thinking that will go well with the less-red beam. I’m going to try out a few different methods on some scrap wood to see what works best in context.

I like the ideas on this video:

I’m going to try w/ and without brushing, using grout-adhesive, using milk paint and normal ceiling paint to see how they turn out.

What do you guys think?

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