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Sanding and Refinishing the Telfair Museum in Savannah GA

This was an interesting hardwood floor refinishing project for us. In a couple of ways. First, maple floors aren’t very common down here in the Hilton Head Island, Bluffton, Beaufort and Savannah area. We’re more used to working with red and white oak and pine wood floors. To have a chance to sand and refinish an uncommon hardwood floor with a unique wood grain to the Low Country area is always fun.

Second, it was going to be an interesting challenge trying to organize this project as the Telfair Museum couldn’t shut down and we had a small window to get it done. We would have to work 24 hours straight to complete it on time.

Third, we had never worked on a project with so much glass. The entire frontage was glass and even the roof was glass as you can see in the picture below…

Telfair Museum Savannah GA

The sheer amount of glass is one of the reasons we were called in to sand and refinish these hardwood floors. Below you can see the wood floor with patches of light on them. This was taken in the late afternoon. In the strong midday sun, much of the floor was exposed to ultra violet and infrared light. The UV and IR light from all the sunlight had severely bleached the floors, damaging them in areas. We were asked to repair the damaged areas and to refinish existing bleached areas to bring them back to new.

hardwood floors Savannah GA

Below you can see the start of the hardwood floor sanding. You also get a better view of the glass roof responsible for letting in all the UV light…

hardwood floor refinishing Savannah GA

There was quite a large amount of hardwood flooring to sand and refinish on this project. In the photo above, you can see on of the main exhibition and gallery areas downstairs. There was also the staircase up to the mezzanine level exhibition area as well as two other galleries and exhibition rooms, multiple hallways and the café. All up we sanded and refinished close to 10,000 square feet of hardwood flooring.

Below you can see us in the middle of sanding the wood floor on the mezzanine level…

savannah ga dustless floor sanding

Here you can see our dustless hardwood floor sanding equipment set-up. The last thing the Telfair Museum staff wanted was for us to billow clouds of super fine wood floor dust throughout the building. Could you imagine cleaning up that kind of a mess here. With this powerful vacuum hooked up to our sanders, we kept the sanding dust to a minimum.

refinishing wood floors Savannah GA

Above you can see us finishing up the first stage of the sanding as we refinish existing flooring material. After using the belt sanders, we used special planetary sanders called TRIOs to flatten the floor and smooth it out with higher grit sandpaper. Not all hardwood flooring companies use these, but it provides a far flatter, superior result. Once the sanding was completed we finished the floor with a commercial 2-component water based finish system. It has far less fumes and smell vs an oil based finish. This was important You can see the finished result of the hardwood floor in the photo below…

sanding and refinishing results Savannah Georgia

In the end, most of the UV damage was removed. The freshly sanded wood floors now have multiple fresh coats of commercial grade finish on them to protect them from the thousands of visitors that will be walking all over them in the coming years.

The finish chosen was Pallmann Pall-X 98. It’s a German two component water base finish system that has added UV inhibitors in it to slow down the effect the sun has on the floor. Because these maple hardwood floors are exposed to so much constant sunlight, they need all the help they can get. We didn't need to add a stain color to these floors. The light, tight wood grain of Maple makes this a very unique flooring material and Maple floors look the best when kept light and clear. An oil based finish would have darkened and yellowed them. This crystal-clear coating really highlights the beautiful light maple color.

The finish was also chosen for its durability – this hardwood floor gets a LOT of foot traffic. It was also selected for the clear finish it provides. It's the perfect floor covering and finish for this floor.

We finished this ten thousand square foot hardwood floor refinishing project right on time. We had multiple crews working around the clock 24 hours straight. We’re very proud of the results. We were honored to be chosen out of all the hardwood flooring companies in Savannah for this project. We love how the floors look and the staff at Telfair Museum were very happy with the hardwood refinishing results too.

If you would like to see these floors in person you can visit the Telfair Museum at 207 W. York St, Savannah Georgia. There website is: https://www.telfair.org/visit/jepson/

If you have a hardwood floor in the Hilton Head Island, Bluffton SC, Beaufort SC, Okatie SC or Savannah GA area and would like a quote on having them restored, please feel free to get in touch. We specialize in both large commercial hardwood floor projects like this one, as well as residential hardwood floor installation and refinishing projects of all wood types and sizes. Stop by our showroom or call us for a chat and we’ll help you get the wood floors you’re looking for.

reclaimed barn wood
Kevin and his team did a great job refinishing very old floors in my little cottage in Beaufort. The amazing thing is I was able to handle all arrangements from out of state. Kevin e-mailed pictures to me so I could see the progress! Very pleased. Ellen Flynn – Beaufort SC | 5 Star Review on Facebook
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