We got the keys to our house on Friday. Thirty minutes after we arrived the carpet and pad were all rolled up and in the driveway. Our home has old growth red fir floors. We were quite surprised to find the condition that they were in. In the living room they had only finished the edges about two feet out from the wall. It didn't look like the center had ever been finished, but it is 60 years old, so that may not be the case. In some spots they had spray-painted black on the floor. It was really weird. The bedrooms were both all finished. At some point someone had painted inside and didn't bother to put down a drop cloth so near the walls it was all white with over spray. We pulled all the staples (from the carpet pad) out of the floor and made sure it was ready to sand the next morning.
Saturday morning we got to work with the floor sanders. We had a total of 6 people working on it and eight different types of sanders to use. We sanded all day Saturday, my husband stayed there until 3am working on it. Sunday morning we were up and at 'em again. The people who had attempted to refinish them before did not know how to use a sander and there were deep groves all over. After two straight days we were able to get it all flat.
Monday, I had to work, but my husband and my parents went and wiped the ceiling and walls down and vaccummed up all the dust so that it would be ready to put the finish on. We decided that we like the color of the natural wood without stain. Today my husband has been putting coats of varnish on the floor. He has been sending me pictures via camera phone and it looks beautiful. He said it looks like my hair in the summer sunshine. I am excited to go "home" after work and see it tonight.
I have taken pictures of each step and will post them soon.