Should I fall to temptation? [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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Houston Remodeler
01-02-2010, 09:57 AM
Ok, So I tiled this shower using 1/2" x 1" green onyx tiles around the arch. The arch also has those rounded drywall corners. The drywall guys didn't listen to my instructions. Anyway, the small tiles were mesh backed and I used the small size to wrap the curve around the arch and corners. The joints look real nice and steady, but of course at the curve are a little larger than on the flat surface. The grout color is very similar to the tiles.

I am tempted to grind down the face of the onyx tiles at the corners so they are more rounded, lessen the width of the joint, and "look" closer together.

Am I over thinking this? Am I tempting myself into something I shouldn't do? (I can do a test area as I have spare tiles) Or is this a cool idea that will make a nice shower even better? I don't have a pic of the job yet. I can get that monday.

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01-02-2010, 10:31 AM
Obviously, any time you shape anything which is already installed, you run the risk of breaking, or damaging something.

Having said that, I think it would be a very cool detail if you can pull it off. :)

01-02-2010, 11:27 AM
Paul, what does the homeowners have to say about it? If they love it, so do I. :)

01-02-2010, 11:40 AM
You're probably over-thinking it. If they're happy, and like you said...
The grout color is very similar to the tiles.

Harkunnah mattata

Houston Remodeler
01-02-2010, 04:49 PM
I had thought about shaping the tiles before install but they are too tiny. Each is about the size of a jolly rancher candy. Shaping them after install gives me the luxury of making a smooth curve that matches the arch perfectly.

John Bridge
01-02-2010, 05:17 PM

Maybe you can round them over a bit by hand -- sand paper and wet/dry sand down to about 800 grit or so. :)

Houston Remodeler
01-02-2010, 05:22 PM
The tools I have for shaping are a variable speed right angle grinder, a variable speed belt sander, and variable speed hands.

John Bridge
01-02-2010, 06:04 PM
If I were going to do it I'd probably stay away from the power tools. Of course, I'm not there. ;)

01-02-2010, 06:51 PM
I did something really similar to what you're describing with travertine around an arch with round corner bead. I used a variable speed angle grinder with dry marble pads. A few pieces came off but were easily repaired and it did look sweet. I did it with porcelain on a shower entry, same scenario. I say do it.

01-02-2010, 08:58 PM
I have polished marble set the following day on benches and stuff, I use a low speed makita tool and alpha dry pads. I start at 80 and take it to 600 but if the finish is matte like some stones I use my eye and stop at 240ish. the numbers are the grits.

Houston Remodeler
01-03-2010, 11:45 AM
I have the dry alpha pads up to 3000. I'll start by hand to see how it goes. I am very confident using a grinder to sculpt the rounded corners. The onyx is quite soft.