Bamboo Flooring Styles & Construction
Horizontal and Vertical Solid
A bit confusing? Originally all we had was horizontal and vertical bamboo flooring in two distinct colors; natural and carbonized. Some variations of the latter include carbon, caramel, and charcoal. Variations depend on who you're talking to or what name each manufacturer has placed on them.
Pictured on the right we have a 3 ply horizontal natural bamboo of standard 5/8" thickness. During construction one inch bamboo pieces are laid horizontally then glued together to form the appearance shown. Hence the term horizontal.
With solid 3 ply products, lengths should also be considered. While some manufacturers only offer three foot lengths, others have six foot lengths which are deemed more visually appealing after the floor is installed.
Vertical type solid bamboos are constructed reversely; or the pieces are laid vertical to one another and glued together. Shown below and left is an example of a solid vertical carbonized product.
Often we're asked which is harder or more durable. Folks, unfortunately nobody seems to have the answers. We've talked to many manufacturers and get conflicting answers. Toss a coin, whatever looks more appealing should be chosen. As mentioned numerous times on our site, care and maintenance will always dictate the longevity of any flooring type.
Engineered Bamboo Floors
Still another term gets thrown into bamboo flooring world. Contrary to popular belief, engineered bamboo (below) is not made up entirely of bamboo. As of this date October 8, 2011 there are many forms on the market leading many to wonder once again; "what's a quality engineered bamboo..and what are its purposes?" The engineered variety offers more stability and will resist cupping. Although solid bamboos are described as moisture resistant, engineered products offer a more worry free advantage within areas of questionable moisture conditions.
Plies? What's the difference? 5 ply or 8 ply? The more plies you have the more dimensional stable the product becomes. Another words expansion and contraction is minimal.
Three Ply Floating Floors
Three ply bamboo floors are generally used for floating floor systems, or what many are accustomed to calling longstrip floors. Most brands run 7 1/2" inches in width and vary from 74 to 87 inches in length.
Micro Bevel or Square Edge?
Most all solid and engineered bamboo products are micro beveled to some extent. Click or glued floating floors are for the most part square edged, having a uniform smooth appearance at the board seams between planks.
We have an entire page devoted to strand bamboo.
Prefinished Stained Bamboo Flooring
There are some companies that provide prefinished stained bamboo floors. A few manufacturers include Greenwood Products, Ifloor.com's Ming Dynasty, and DuraDesign, with the latter having more color choices; 50 at last count.
Hand Scraped bamboo is no different than hand scraped hardwood floors. For the most part, products will be longer in length and constructed in engineered or three ply fashion.
• Bamboo Hardness Differences - Do they scratch?
• Bamboo Manufacturing
• Installing Bamboo Floors
• Bamboo Moisture Content
• Origin Of Bamboo
• Bamboo Flooring Styles, Appearances
• Bamboo Maintenance Problems
• Bamboo Photo Gallery
• Strand Woven Bamboo
• Stair Treads
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