On the homefront — I sanded Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It sucked. It was really hard and the sander I used didn’t do a very good job. I picked the square buffer-type sander because the drum sander is too big for me to control easily. The square sander is also really hard to control, and it isn’t as efficient: I went over the floors dozens of times and they didn’t get up all of the first layer of junk off the floor. So I gave up and decided to paint rather than stain.
My reasoning is this: I need to preserve the wood now that I’ve sanded it, or the traffic will damage the wood. I need to do it quickly and cheaply, and hiring a pro to finish the sanding would take too long. Simply putting down a polyurethane isn’t good enough because the floors look like crap. So I’m painting with an oil-based polyurethane paint that will protect the floor for a year or two until I can hire a pro to sand it up and redo the floors.
I put the first coat on the foyer and part of the dining room last night. I take tonight off and pack, Wednesday I’ll spend with friends. Then Thursday, I’ll finish the dining room and put a second coat on the foyer. Saturday the cable guy and the phone guy are coming, and when they’re done, I’ll put another coat over all the floors.