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Old 01-12-2018, 08:16 PM   #1
DoRight
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Tile and Wood Inlay

I have seen a few pics of wood laid in a basket weave pattern in a tile floor. Basically 12 x 12 or 18 x 18 tiles in a diamond pattern separated by wood boards (like very wide grout).

Is this an ok idea or is it asking for trouble with expansion issues or other problems.

How is something like that done? If you have backer board set on the enter floor, the thickness of tile and mortar is ... what 3/8 inch thick? Therefore the wood would have to be planed down to this thickness. Would you glue the boards to the cement backer board, nail it, what nails to use to drive through the cement? Other issues to think about? Oh, What grout to use between wood and tile? Sanded? Flexible grout?

Thanks.

Could be a fun project or a nightmare
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Old 01-12-2018, 08:34 PM   #2
Davy
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Did a few of these years ago. One had plywood floors and the hardwood man installed 3/4 plywood strips under his 3x4 thick hardwood. I had 1 1/2 to deal with so I mudded up each area. Another had just 3/4 hardwood strips over the plywood floor and I added 1/4 inch cement board and it worked out flush with the wood. You just have to figure out what thickness filler you need depending on the thickness of the wood and tiles.

Best to caulk between the tiles and wood. It's going to move around.
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Old 01-13-2018, 02:02 PM   #3
DoRight
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Question Davy

Thanks Davy:

I would think in the end I have 3/4 inch over the subfloor to work with. Most of my install will by 1/2 inch cement board and tile so that works out to 3/4 inch. Those areas would transition to wood floor or carpet. 3/4 inch for carpet works well.

So if I have 3/4 inches, are you saying I can run my wood strips, say 3/4 inch thick, directly on my subfloor (glued and nailed ?????) and then cut 12 by 12 pieces of cement board to thinset and screw to the subfloor for each separate tile? Hmm?, fussy, but then the whole project has to be precise and fussy.

originally I was thinking it best to have the cement board continuous under the whole mess. But then I need thin pieces of wood (3/8ish) and might have a hard time fastening it down.

Last question. Do you know how your work stood up to time and wear? Wonder about movement of so many individual pieces and the lack of continuous underlayment making for more up and down movement. Then again maybe individual movement and flexible chaulk might be very for giving.

Please comment and elaborate.

Thank you.
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Old 01-13-2018, 07:11 PM   #4
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I can't say how well they stood up over the long haul but I never had any call backs or repairs. Any time you have tiles going against hardwood, movement can be an issue. I believe both floors started out with 1 1/8 T&G plywood which is very stiff.

Yes, the hardwood strips have to be installed precise. I remember having the same concern and didn't have much faith in the wood floor guy getting the wood strips accurate. On one of the floors I remember helping the wood floor guy pop lines. I wanted to make sure he didn't leave me with a mess when it was time to install the tiles.
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