Laying Hardwood in an Octagonal Pattern

Discussion in 'Wood' started by jboris, Oct 19, 2023.

  1. jboris

    jboris New Member

    I’m going to install a ¾” x 5” solid oak floor (Select quality) in an octagonal room, with concentric octagon “rings” of flooring. Every board will end with a 22.5º miter cut, in which I’ll route a groove and install a spline.

    There are 2 options:
    1) Rings meet at miters (they won't let me post links... google octagon hardwood to see examples)
    2) Rings terminate at “spokes”, which come from a “hub"

    Either takes a ton of precision. I’m a solid carpenter – and have installed a handful of solid floors, did an excellent job I’d say… but I’m but not a seasoned pro. I want to make up for that with good planning + patience :)

    I lean to Option 2, because Option 1 requires *perfect* cuts to make that long hairline between the miters dead straight. The spokes will hide some discrepancy (and will mirror the ceiling beams). Option 1 also requires every piece in a ring to be the exact same width in order for the “ring lines” to look right – even a 5 1/64” piece will create gaps.

    If I do Option 2… should install all the spokes up front or not? I say no – because I’m doing a glue-assist install (cleat-nails + stripes of Bona glue). I’ll have to dry-fit most pieces repeatedly to get a perfect fit… and once I’m there, I’ll have to remove the piece, add glue, put it back, and nail it. Problem is, pulling out a piece perfectly wedged in between 2 spokes is very likely to damage it.

    So, here’s how I’d do it:
    1) Install an octagonal medallion with 5” L sides (so that I can use 5” W flooring for the spokes).
    2) Install just one spoke. Hold in place w/blocks.
    3) Install flooring up to it, stopping where the next ray goes. Stay straight w/14’ L straight-edge.
    4) Put a 14’ L straight-edge against the exposed edge, and sand any proud pieces to perfection (this is a major advantage of this method.
    5) Install next spoke. (Final section requires wedging.)

    Would really appreciate any thoughts or general advice! I’m more nervous about this than the first time I framed a roof… I can’t find anyone in Texas who’s even done this before.
  2. Paul webb

    Paul webb Well-Known Member

    Not sure if this would work, but, fit one spoke, cut angles on one side of boards and fit to spoke, plunge saw and guide rail the other side and fit spoke, continue round to last section, for last section make mdf templates until you're happy with fit, put the boards together and using templates, router boards with flush cut bit
  3. jboris

    jboris New Member

    Thanks Paul! How would you hold the guide rail in place? And I'm not sure what you're suggesting on the last section... when is the flush cut bit used exacty?

Share This Page