Brad's Corner Shelf [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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11-30-2008, 01:04 PM
Hi There,
I've installed a corner shelf with thinset. Kinda wished I read up on installation before doing it. My corner was wider than 90 degrees so I used a bit of extra thinset to make up the gap. I also used the 1/4" notched trowel and never put any extra thinset in the two holes. I thought the holes were just from the manufacturing of the tile. The shelf did not have any raised lips like the sample shown in this thread. It was just a smooth surface. So far it hasn't fallen off the wall. That would be a nasty hit to an acrylic tub :(

My question is how should I finish around the shelf. I have a 1/8" gap above and 1/4" gap below, and even larger on the sides. I placed it in a desirable position relative to a band of mosiac tiles. Grout or silicone caulk? I have unsanded grout. The gaps may be too large? Should I pick up some sanded grout for my larger than 1/8" gaps?

Corner Shelf Photo

Grout or Caulk Photo

This is my first tile job. A very time consuming scary venture that I fell in love with.

Surround Photo

The tub tiling lip varies out of level from one corner to the other corner by 3/8". The sis-in-law demanded I not cut any tile around the tub lip. The tiles are bevel edged. So this has me stressed out. I going backer foam rod and silicone.

Tubline Photo

Thanks for your input,
Brad Johnson
New Westminster, BC

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11-30-2008, 01:10 PM
Welcome, Brad. :)

I split your post from the other thread so it wouldn't confuse the issue there and/or get lost.

You can't post links until you have a few more posts due to an anti-spam measure we have in place. Nothing personal. :) Just spell out the url in plain text and one of the moderators will light it up for you.

You can post stored photos using the Manage Attachments tab below the Reply dialog box.

11-30-2008, 01:12 PM
Thanks CX! I'll throw the links back in

Photos (

11-30-2008, 01:16 PM
I put the link in your text, Brad, so you can take it out of your signature line if you like. :)

11-30-2008, 01:28 PM
Finally I fooled the bot.

11-30-2008, 01:30 PM
Well, the anti-spam hack is made special by our official geek (davem) and keeps even the bots at bay most of the time. :shades:

But of no concern now, make another post and your urls will work fine. :)

John Bridge
11-30-2008, 01:36 PM
Hi Brad, :)

Make a nice bead of silicone around the edge of the soap dish and let it set up for a few days. The Silicone will hold it. :)

11-30-2008, 01:41 PM
Thanks John! and Thanks CX!

11-30-2008, 02:05 PM

so your saying your corner shelf didnt have the thin wall extruded back ?

did you use a premixed thinset also ?
looks kinda pasty sandy like it to me.

* I would take back the corner dish you have and try to find one like I show.
then you can trace the raised back. tile the area an set the corner with thinset and not have the big gaps you have.
and I would also keep it at the bottom of the tile so you would have bigger cut glass tile at the top of the corner dish,
looks better then trying to center it.

11-30-2008, 09:06 PM
Hi Brian,

No the shelf didn't have an extruded back. I used flextile 52 white thinset. I understand if I don't mix it with water, then it's not to be used in the shower. Thanks for your suggestion. But the shelf is set and the tiles too. Next time, I'll look for a shelf with the extruded back. I like your idea of using cut glass tile above the dish. How do you cut the glass? I tried to score it with a glass cutter than use a wrench and pliers to snap it. Results not useful. Never did rent a wet saw for the job. Nice work you have on your site.

Thanks again,

Photo (

11-30-2008, 09:49 PM
I would just grout it then if you arent going ot go with the same sized grout joints you have on the walls and glass tile.
with the wrong corner shelf you dont have other options

05-06-2009, 09:16 AM
Oh ye gods of Ceramic showers.... Show me the way!

I am planing on putting in a travertine corner shelf, doing the traditional method of notching the tile. and putting it in with thinset. Was planing on grouting the shelf.

I was also planing on using matching (100% Silicone caulk) latasil in the corner (change of plane)...

However, after thinking about this change of plane thing, it occurred to me that
grouting the corner shelf in (with Epoxy grout spectralock), I would lock both sides together, defeating the purpose of the caulk in the corner.....

So, I am now inclined to use caulk instead of grout around the corner shelf, but am concerned it won't look great...

Is my inclination correct? Any insight is appreciated....

Grout or Caulk for a corner shelf?

I do know there is a debate about using grout vs caulk in a shower install on change of planes, some pros using only grout.... and spectralock is supposed to be more flexible than regular grout.... This is a old house in Maine, near the shore with quite a bit of temperature and humidity changes, so I am concerned about movement.... unless I am convinced otherwise.