commercial carpet install

Discussion in 'Floorcovering Video Collection' started by Andy B Cumming, Mar 10, 2010.

  1. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    I believe that I mentioned it before but I recently arranged for Mohawk to come to Pittsburgh and provide training for a group of installers who specilize in carpet tile. We invited 40 installers and ended up with a group of 24 from Ohio, Pa., and WV. Most were very appreciative of the time spent by Mohawk to give them Master Craftsman certification.

    I guess it is my cheap Swiss heritage, but when training was FREE like this I was all over it. Yet with some of these guys I had to almost beg them to show up.
  2. Peter Kodner

    Peter Kodner Inspector Floors Charter Member Senior Member

    Roland and T : my intent was not to make any feel bad or to be undiplomatic.
    Roland, it is very evident the passion and concern you have and I apologize if you believe I was demeaning the good works your provide! :eek:

    One of the exceptions I should have mentioned was attending a CFI program Daris put on here in MPLS. I have nothing but respect for what you Gents are doing to improve skill levels.

    I ran into several of the attendees of that program about a year later (I'm sorry to admit I did not remember them, they remembered me.) and did an impromptu 90 minute presentation for them (2 from the class, 4 others plus the store owner)covering pattern run off measuring and what an inspector is looking for on sites.

    It would be disingenuous of me to say no one wants to improve and I certainly hope that was not the implication I had made.
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2010
  3. rusty baker

    rusty baker Well-Known Member

    I wish classes were offered in this area. Of course as an independent installer, I probably would not know of any if they happened.
  4. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    Sorry, Peter, I wasn't pointing a finger in your direction. My cooment was made because there are those in our industry that do tear others down when they should be lifting them up.

  5. Roland Thompson

    Roland Thompson Charter Member Senior Member

    Peter I knew were you was coming from and I was just picking on you with saying you hurt my feeling.

  6. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Peter, did ya notice Rock admits he has only one feeling left!!:D

    I think we did him in a coupla years ago in Tulsa.:yesss:
  7. 3rdFloorDesign

    3rdFloorDesign Flooring Professional

    Here are the problems with this install:

    Mixing patch on the floor! I know guys do it, I just do not know why? A bucket with a mixer attached to a drill is so much easier and better.

    Using a trowel to scrape the patch. Just get a scraper and do it right.

    Double cutting the seams without a top cutter or straight edge. I have double cut end seams before, but I always straightedge one side and use a cushion back cutter to top cut the other piece. The free hand utility knife method is asking for trouble.

    They did seal which is good, and I'll give them the benefit of the doubt on the roller. The biggest problem I see is the free hand double cut method for the seams. Row cut the sides, and straight edge and top cut butt seams.

    I would charge $5 per Yard for that install, and being not have problem getting it. You sell quality, and try to stay away from shops and you can do OK as a independent.
  8. strip buster

    strip buster my way is the best way. Charter Member

    i think trace cutting with a top cutter 'cushion back' is asking for all of you have a lot of cutters.... but i wont trace with a top cutter(has to much of a chance to shamfer the pile) if i trace i will use this (pic) and yeah if i double cut use a straight edge....depends if the cpt needs'' to be double cut..... depending how much patch is needed,if not much i'll do it on the floor where it needs it.,otherwise in a bucket or if i'm doin 5 at a time i'll use a rubber drum......

    a scraper isn't the right way to remove trowel marks, a sander is.
    i think stullis again is on the money, not many do a lot of commercial .

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Mar 16, 2010
  9. GoodHouse

    GoodHouse Charter Member

    I think particularly on forums people lose site of the fact that this is business.

    We can talk about methods, practices, best procedures, but at the end of the day this floor trade is a business and needs to be ran like one. I am not promoting that you should install floor coverings with "short cut" intentions. You should not also "rip" anyone off. What you should do however is give people what they pay for. You can't be Holmes on Holmes on a welfare budget. Nor should you give people a welfare price for custom work. Business gets done everyday with customers paying what they feel is fair, for a good job.

    If this installers client is happy with his workmanship and he was paid fairly, thats really all that matters at the end of the day. You can critique all day long what is right or wrong, best or worse.

    One thing I have noticed being a floor installer my whole life is no one treats us as businessman. And most of us are small business owners. So I feel the best approach is to treat your customers fairly, give them a great job at a reasonable price and keep them satisfied. If you were Holmes on Holmes you would be out of business and if you were a clown of an installer you will be out of business. At the end of the day, this isnt charity. It's a means to make a living. Keep business in mind when working everyday.
  10. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    Less than one in ten journeyman level installers could ever manage both the tools and the business end of the job proficiently.

    Abject failure of the industry standards for quality and declining labor prices in our trade should be evidence enough of the need to restructure the basic business model. By an overwhelming margin tradesmen in our industry belong working with the tools as employees. What I predict for the future of the industry is rejection of the flawed model of subcontracting and a gradual DEMAND by the customers to do business with shops that actually hire, train and manage competent crews as opposed to these deranged, fly-by-night operations that currently DOMINATE the market.

    Change will be slow but it seem inevitable nevertheless.
  11. getoverit

    getoverit Pro Member

    When my installation shop was at it's height I had 4-6 full time employees and a couple of subs for larger jobs I didn't have the manpower for. At that time I was married and my wife was a bookkeeper. She did all my taxes, payroll and billing. Then came divorce and a crash course in how much work my wife had been doing. Don't get me wrong. I did good for about 2-3 years but I had no life except for work. Keeping up with the books,taxes,payroll,measuring, bidding and working on the jobs, and all the other things involved in correctly running a business finally wore me down. It's not easy and I agree with Brian's one out of ten estimate.
  12. Daris Mulkin

    Daris Mulkin The One and Only Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    After I got into contracting and got out of the workroom I always looked at any job I took on no matter what the cost or the pricing it deserved the best of my abilities. If I couldn't give it that there was no reason to take the job. When I was riding shotgun on crews I heard so many times that the job wasn't paying the right price. So I would always ask them "Why did you take the job? You took it now give it the best."

  13. rusty baker

    rusty baker Well-Known Member

    Being an independent installer and doing all the paperwork is not hard. Maybe 2 or 3 hours a week doing paperwork. Selling, measuring and installing is a 80-90 hour week. Ran a store, with 9 installers, 2 million in sales a year. At least 70 hours a week. I don't think most installers realize how much harder it is, when you go retail.
  14. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    It is my contention that you are the exception that proves the rule. It is my experience that the installers in the video "rule" the low end, non-union commercial carpet installation market. .

    Exception that proves the rule - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  15. Daris Mulkin

    Daris Mulkin The One and Only Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Brian as much as I hate to say it I think you are bringing in some politics here. Meaning "It is my experience that the installers in the video "rule" the low end, non-union commercial carpet installation market." Does it mean that the installer has to be union to give a quality job? There are some mighty fine installers in this world that aren't. Union doesn't work for everybody and nor does CFI what works for me. Enough of the politics.
    I am sure that there is not one person who is an installer hasn't taken one of the shortcuts at one time in his career unless he just started yesterday.
    I have done everything that guy did in the video except gluing the base that way. At the time I was considered one of the best in my commerial shop at least that was what it said on my paper work the boss would hand me when it said send out your best. I also got the jobs out of town because they knew there wouldn't be call backs. Again I was doing everything this guy did at the time.

  16. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    My point in calling this crew non-union was simply based on my experience in both worlds. They don't look like union guys and they're not working like any union guys I know (well, maybe some) . Union crews are different in quite a few ways and there is certainly a difference in quality. Again Daris I hold you and most participants here as exceptions that prove the rule. I know there are tons of top quality guys in non-union shops. I've worked beside plenty of them. From a general understanding of the work and the men in the trade paying people hourly is a more fair system and leads GENERALLY to higher standards. Doesn't HAVE to be union but that is obviously the system I would advocate.

    Getting back to the main point though is that we're talking about organizing, educating, training and certification programs as possible ways to combat further deterioration in our working conditions. At least consider my argument that the very industry standard model of tens and hundreds of thousands of individual contractors is the MAIN source of the never ending downward spiral in workmanship and pay. I believe it's somewhat inevitable that working under that system leads to those results. So if that's political I apologize but I don't know how I could possibly dance around that opinion I hold.
  17. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    It seems that if it can stay here where it is at and not get into the repetttive rhetoric we have seen in the past all is well.

    I think Goodhouse made a really great balanced thought.
  18. Peter Kodner

    Peter Kodner Inspector Floors Charter Member Senior Member

    I differ with you there Barry. I'm in David's school on this topic: There is no sliding scale on quality and integrity of installation based on cost. Plain and simple, I would not have those installers in my employ.
  19. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    I am not really on the same page as he is, though at one time I would readily tell people that I could work up opr down to the quality necessary. I do not think that way now and haven't for a good number of years.

    My point was to get the thoughts back on track with the thread. GH can be a little forceful with his opinions and I really think this one was a pretty fair post. He shared his opinion and did not do so in a pushy or overbearing manner.
  20. Daris Mulkin

    Daris Mulkin The One and Only Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Brian I hope I didn't offend you. It was the way I read the post. I have worked with many union installers in my time and my stepson is one in Detroit whom I trained who is now the leader in his shop.
    Barry I agree with you on Goodhouses comments. Basically it ends up with the customer being happy and Rg, Peter,Tandy, Curt, Chris or Dan being put out of business as there is no complaints to be inspected then we are good to go right?


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