One of the toughest finish systems that we have used for heavily trafficked floors or commercial areas is Basic Coatings StreetShoe. This is the finish I have on my personal floors at home (I have a busy household) and I have been pleased with how well the finish is holding up.
Hardness is one of several measurements that helps determine a finishes wear properties and durability, others such as Taber numbers, Sward and Pencil hardness can and should be used for this purpose also. Measuring hardness of a finish is usually done after the first day and then each day after for the duration of a week. What can be determined from this is the speed at which the finish cures from one day one to the next and final cure on the seventh day. In the end, hardness testing is one of the tools that helps determine how well a finish will perform on the floor.
The R&D team at Basic Coatings were so sure on the superior durability of their product that they conducted a head-to-head hardness test against their main competitor Bona Traffic. Using a Koing Hardness test they found that at the end of Day 1 Bona traffic came in at about 36 on the hardness scale while StreetShoe came in at 65. At the end of 7 days Bona Traffic came in about a 62 while StreetShoe settled in at 75. The clear winner in the hardness category is StreetShoe.
It reaches 90% of its full cure within 24 hours, which benefits you because you can get back to normal use of your floor sooner. It can be lightly walked on after 4 hours. It has UV inhibitors in it which help slow down damage caused by UV light. With a low VOC content of 275 the smell is light and dissipates quickly, depending on the situation you don’t have to spend the night out of your home while the floor is being finished. Being a water based finish it is not a combustible product so you don’t have to worry about the vapors catching fire.
When we use this system we apply it in a 4 coat process. The first two coats we use either Lock-N-Seal or a Catalyzed Sealer depending on the situation. Then we apply 2 coats of the StreetShoe. Upfront, this is our most expensive finish option but its durability makes it worth the price.
Here is a pic of my floors that I sanded and stained. The fir floor is original from the early 1900’s. I finished it with 2 coats of Catalyzed Sealer then 2 coats of StreetShoe 275.