Getting Floored

The subfloor of the bus is uneven steel topped with a layer of 3/4 inch plywood.  The rubber floor is glued on top of that which gives you that lovely school bus smell…

After a few hours with a spud bar, we had the rubber ripped out. The Plywood flooring was in decent shape so we decided to keep it.   What should we put down on top of it?

Flooring is a tricky business.  The chosen material must be able to handle freezing regularly without developing cold cracks.  Water infiltration is bound to happen eventually, so there should be some water resistance.  We need it to look nice and clean easily too.  Once you have that figured out, you have to contend with the bus bouncing across the country…

We spent many moons debating tile, linoleum, laminate, or hardwood.  In the end, we went with something completely different. The 90 inch width of the bus just happens to match the width of a typical garage bay.  We found PVC sheeting material intended for garage flooring which exactly matches.  We just need to roll out the sheets.

Rolling out the floor

We rolled out the sheets and let it warm up so that most of the wrinkles relax out.

Rolling out the floor viewed from the front of the bus

I’m very excited about this material, but it isn’t perfect. It still expands and contracts with temperature risking cracks, it is very difficult to move as one piece, it is only sold as full sheets so you’ll end up purchasing extra material, and it seems to stretch ever so slightly out of square.  We hope to avoid cracking by puncturing the flooring in as few places as possible, but these issues mean that we’ll probably never get it completely flat.

Even so, I think it is awfully pretty.