original cap and toe pieces
So I started out previously milling 1x6 oak boards and installed them a few months back. Next I work on the a solution for the toe piece. The closest stock lumber was a 1x2 oak that I would have had to rip in half, then rip shorter, then finally run on the router with an ogee bit to get the top profile - lots of work - and not very cheap either. I could also have made the piece from my lot of oak planks - adding even more work, but the cost would have been nothing but lots of time. Then it dawned on me that I had all the oak flooring I took up from the first floor that I had no idea what to do with. And these were already 1/2 inch x 2" - but after you take off the tongue and groove you're there. Plus I had these in up to 12 ft. lengths, so I could do some long runs in one piece.So I went ahead running enough floor boards through the planer and then ripped the tongue (left the groove since it will sit against the floor), and then routered the ogee profile. In an afternoon I was able to make enough to do the three rooms downstairs and the staircase - and the cost was absolutely nothing. Plus I have plenty of flooring to make toe pieces for the entire house.
new 1x6 and toe piece
For the cap I convinced myself that I since I had no original capping in the house to match to (unlike the casing) it would be perfectly OK to use something close to the original if it was easier and cheaper - especially since nobody would ever no the difference but me. So I browsed the trim aisle and found the usual base capping, but nothing else. So I bought a piece and figured I'd see if it would look good enough to use. Unfortunately when placed on top of the true 1x6, the scaling was all wrong - since these are made really to be on top of a 3/4 board. So back to the drawing board.
what's wrong with this picture?
I though I might be back to milling the original, then my buddy John said try shimming out with another piece of moulding - after all lots of mouldings are made from several pieces in ornate woodwork. To make things look right, I needed to come out about 1/2 inch and maybe another 1/2 taller. Hmmm - my flooring stock is 1/2 inch thick..... so I grabbed a scrap of toe piece I made and placed it behind the cap I bought and things started to look much better.
on the right track...
At first I thought this is it.... but after looking at the cap for awhile the 90 degree angle at the joint between the two pieces just didn't look right. The profile should flow smoother than that. Then playing with the two pieces some, I shifted the front piece up until it was even with the beginning of the curve of the ogee on the toe piece. Now everything look right. I just needed to rip the toe piece down so it was shorter and the pieces lined up like this. Problem solved!
So back to the shop to make another run of toe pieces, this time shorter, to complete the cap. The front piece cost about 90 cents/ foot at HD. With the cost of the 1x6 at about $1.00/foot since I made them myself from rough oak boards - at the grand total of under $2.00/foot I have solid oak 8 inch high baseboards, that are a close enough match to original that I'm satisfied I did the house good.
not bad, eh?