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Standard For Vct

 
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:53 PM   #1
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Standard For Vct


who is the governing body for the installations of vct. I am doing about 240 base housing units on Eglin USAF base and the inspector is a real ahole, arn't they all. Is there an acceptable allowance for small seam inconsistencies. They want no visible seams or any minute broken corners keeping them line up and square is not a problem but they are looking for an absolute seamless looking floor. Is this even possible. The floors are Armstrong and the seams are very small and only appear between tiles in mabe 1% of the floor. Is it possible to install this stuff and make it look like sheet vinyl I think that that is what they expect. I have followed the manufactures spect and have done a lot of this floor before and the very small seam lines are almost unavoidable. The seams do not run the full length of any tile but only a short distance of maybe 1 or 2 inches from the intersection point of the four tiles and maybe: only 1% of the floor is effected.
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Old 10-11-2012, 05:52 AM   #2
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Re: Standard For Vct


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Originally Posted by floorinstall View Post
who is the governing body for the installations of vct. I am doing about 240 base housing units on Eglin USAF base and the inspector is a real ahole, arn't they all. Is there an acceptable allowance for small seam inconsistencies. They want no visible seams or any minute broken corners keeping them line up and square is not a problem but they are looking for an absolute seamless looking floor. Is this even possible. The floors are Armstrong and the seams are very small and only appear between tiles in mabe 1% of the floor. Is it possible to install this stuff and make it look like sheet vinyl I think that that is what they expect. I have followed the manufactures spect and have done a lot of this floor before and the very small seam lines are almost unavoidable. The seams do not run the full length of any tile but only a short distance of maybe 1 or 2 inches from the intersection point of the four tiles and maybe: only 1% of the floor is effected.
Is there a spec book?

I think to achieve perfection with VCT, you'd need to have a perfectly flat floor, which we all know doesn't exist.

In the end, you can always argue that your installation meets "the standard of the trade", but it could be a rough road until you're paid. Good luck.

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Old 10-11-2012, 08:42 AM   #3
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Re: Standard For Vct


I would get your Armstrong rep to come look at it and make sure it checks out with them. Once they are on your side you have more of a leg to stand on.

I have seen it installed without noticing any seems before..... Although I was not really looking for them.
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Old 10-11-2012, 09:18 AM   #4
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Re: Standard For Vct


#1 Start with a perfect substrate
#2 Lay out a perfectly straight chalk line and a perfectly perpendicular line
#3 Take absolutely perfectly sized, perfectly cut and perfectly handled VCT tile and lay them perfectly tight with the corners perfectly aligned along those layout lines.

Seriously though variations from those factors above are the causal issues for complaints on "open" seam lines.

Other factors that either HIDE or HIGHLIGHT the seams are the color of the tile, the degree and angle of lighting, running the tile "grain" in the same direction as opposed to basket weave/ quarter turn, the factory finish (wax), how clean the work area and workmen are during installation and prior to the job site applied waxing.

A couple or three good coats of wax usually "hides" a lot. You already know that though. Good luck with the inspector. I know of no official governing body for installations.
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Old 10-11-2012, 09:22 AM   #5
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Re: Standard For Vct


A job like that will have a spec book.
It will refer to whatever standards are applicable that the archy chose.

I hear all too often "well I never saw that before".
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Old 10-11-2012, 10:29 AM   #6
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Re: Standard For Vct


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Originally Posted by griz View Post
A job like that will have a spec book.
It will refer to whatever standards are applicable that the archy chose.

I hear all too often "well I never saw that before".

Yes but the specs on many federal jobs very often are not real world scenarios. I was doing a bunch of HUD homes a while back that called out for 12" thick driveways..... By going to the Arch we were able to get approval via RFI for 4" thick concrete based on industry standard practices.

The federal job I'm on now has a spec book that contradicts itself depending on what spec section you look at. So we have to RFI what spec section to follow. Don't get me stated on the drawings.... We still are not done with steel and are at RFI 130.
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Old 10-11-2012, 05:52 PM   #7
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Re: Standard For Vct


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Originally Posted by griz View Post
A job like that will have a spec book.
It will refer to whatever standards are applicable that the archy chose.

I hear all too often "well I never saw that before".
***************************
I ALWAYS remember to check the spec book........after I'm about 80% done!
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Old 10-11-2012, 06:18 PM   #8
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Re: Standard For Vct


Quote:
Originally Posted by mrcharles

Yes but the specs on many federal jobs very often are not real world scenarios. I was doing a bunch of HUD homes a while back that called out for 12" thick driveways.....
Hell my foundation isn't a foot thick.
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Old 10-11-2012, 06:32 PM   #9
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Re: Standard For Vct


look heres the deal with vct---it is very responsive to changes in heat and humidity---you could lay it perfect--which is only a theoretical concept---and the temperature could drop and you will have gaps everywhere---its a flooring system and the vct system only works with wax being applied after the floor is installed---wax converts the separate pieces into a monolithic slab---if you want to tighten up the gaps just turn up the heat before the inspector shows up
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Old 10-11-2012, 06:56 PM   #10
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Re: Standard For Vct


An installer I knew would sweep either white or grey dry patching powder into the seams/gaps which helped to hide them.( Until the first wash, I might add.)
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Old 10-11-2012, 10:42 PM   #11
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Re: Standard For Vct


If there were seam tells that we felt were going to be an issue, we would take scrap of the original vct, shave it off the edge, take that fine granulated vct and force into the gap. Provided you pack it sufficiently post waxing it looks great.
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:57 AM   #12
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Re: Standard For Vct


I've never seen a perfect VCT installation, of course I've only been in the business 40 years.
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:43 AM   #13
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Re: Standard For Vct


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Originally Posted by floorinstall View Post
The seams do not run the full length of any tile but only a short distance of maybe 1 or 2 inches from the intersection point of the four tiles and maybe: only 1% of the floor is effected.
*************************
sounds like the corners "rounded off" probably during the cooling process

so that's not an installation problem------other than the fact that you're installing them and the customer (in your case the inspector represents the customer) is concerned about the seams

there is a "governing body" for the quality of VCT
http://www.astm.org/Standards/F1066.htm

calling the Armstrong rep and getting him out there to speak with the inspector would be a good idea
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:31 PM   #14
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Re: Standard For Vct


I've seen so many poor installations, what does it matter, not a dam bit
Do not install over dust( paint drywall etc. )
Stay square 3,4,5 sl-24 laser square
Lay out properly trying to keep more than half tile in front,back,sides
Use proper trowel and roll it after done, that's it.
6 or 8 coats of burnishing wax by the maintenance company and then Air Force takes over after that.
Oh yeah lay in a step (pyramid) pattern helps, like others said if floor has valleys and high spots it will go out but will come back into square.
Let the inspector lay twenty tiles- he 'll shut up after that
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Old 10-12-2012, 07:38 PM   #15
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Re: Standard For Vct


Quote:
Originally Posted by MIKE ANTONETTI
Let the inspector lay twenty tiles- he 'll shut up after that
That right there, along with getting the Armstrong rep on your side is the best bet lol
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Old 10-13-2012, 10:18 PM   #16
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Re: Standard For Vct


Thanks guys I have already explained all that to the inspector.
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Old 10-13-2012, 10:53 PM   #17
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Re: Standard For Vct


Quote:
Originally Posted by fcfc
If there were seam tells that we felt were going to be an issue, we would take scrap of the original vct, shave it off the edge, take that fine granulated vct and force into the gap. Provided you pack it sufficiently post waxing it looks great.
On the problem areas where there is a lot of slope in the floor we've done the same thing, but softened with some solvent then mixed with glue. Called hoffer TM. Haha
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Old 10-13-2012, 10:58 PM   #18
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Re: Standard For Vct


You guys all have great advice....

BUT...the inspector is going to enforce WHATEVER SPEC was used in the Spec Book...

His job is to enforce that.....

and to make your life miserable....
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Old 10-15-2012, 06:12 PM   #19
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Re: Standard For Vct


Quote:
Originally Posted by griz View Post
You guys all have great advice....

BUT...the inspector is going to enforce WHATEVER SPEC was used in the Spec Book...

His job is to enforce that.....

and to make your life miserable....
**************************
Brings this full circle back to the original question

Who/what is the "governing authority" for vct installations.

Griz most correctly points out that in this environment the INSPECTOR is in fact the governing authority. And that means very literally that HIS INTERPRETATION of the spec book is what matters in any possible example that leaves wiggle room for a subjective opinion. So unless you can find a specific maximum gap size in the specs for any and all seams and break out the magnifying glass, micrometer and hi resolution photography.................it's HIS job to judge your work and enforce his opinion.

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Old 10-26-2012, 03:02 PM   #20
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Re: Standard For Vct


I would suppose if you heat up the VCT prior to waxing with a burnisher all of the edges would melt together.
Seamless -yeah right - if they wanted seamless some idiot specified the wrong product. A liquid applied product would be close to seamless. Unless the space is less than the width of product there will be seams.
I have never seen VCT seamless, it actually shrinks over time and the joints are increased.

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