I need help determining the best starting point for my first board. Most videos on the internet have you starting at the far left wall (and have no stairs and rectangular). This might still be my best option (or answer).

However, I am laying down 3/4" hardwood flooring north/south. My floor joists are east/west. I am thinking about starting with a full board either at the top transition (kitchen) or the bottom transition (front door) or at the end of that protruding wall on the left. I guess if I measure (and do math) correctly I could start at the far left wall and plan to end with a full width board at a transition. Or maybe straight down dead center of the room? (chalk line of course).

Ultimately I would like to keep any boards that need cutting/rip to the far left. What do you guys think or recommend? Thanks.

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  • 3/4" solid hardwood, tongue and groove, oak Jun 12, 2015 at 17:56

1 Answer 1


I'd set a course of planks parallel to the wall on the right, tongue pointing left. Screw scrap on the left side of that course to keep it from moving. Rip a spline (tongue substitute) and start a course on the right with the tongue facing right. Nail your way toward to transitions on the right, understanding that you'll face nail the ones near the wall. Now remove the scrap on the left of your starter course. Face nail and shim (to prevent movement) between the wall and your starter course. Nail normally where your nailer will fit. Now, just motor to the left. Rip as necessary at the left wall. Once done, congratulate yourself, have a cold one, and sink into a bathtub with epsom salts.

  • Its coming along great so far. I will post a photo update when nearing completion. Jul 6, 2015 at 15:46

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