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Old 09-22-2017, 12:19 PM   #1
ihatethinset
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Is it necessary to use white thinset for glass mosaic tile?

Hey all! I am at the point of my tile install where I am putting the accents in. I have a glass mosaic tile. The instructions recommend to use white thinset, but I have a ton of grey thinset (full set plus) I have been using. Would it be an issue if I used grey thinset? I'm installing it over kerdi membrane. If I should not use grey thinset, is there any way I can get just a bit of white thinset (pre-made or otherwise) somehow to use for this purpose? Thanks!

Edit: I want to link to an image of the tile, but it wont let me.
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Old 09-22-2017, 12:36 PM   #2
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The gray might create shadows you won't be able to get rid of. The premix might not dry creating the same problem. Your job, risk is up to you.
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Old 09-22-2017, 12:39 PM   #3
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Take a sheet of the glass tile, put it on a bright white piece of paper, then, place another on a sheet of grey paper and check if there are differences. Especially if they recommend white, it is very likely that the tile is at least somewhat translucent. Plus, you'll always get at least a little bit in the grout joint, even if you clean very well (important for glass tile). That grey from the edge can change how the tile looks, too. You might like the look with grey, but it will differ, and likely be brighter, if you use white.

Several companies sell smaller containers of thinset for glass...you don't have to buy a whole bag, but glass thinset tends to be a bit more expensive.
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Old 09-22-2017, 01:30 PM   #4
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Yes, you should use a white mortar.
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Old 09-23-2017, 02:51 PM   #5
ihatethinset
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Thanks guys! Didn't know it needed to be a special type of thinset. I dont really know much about any of this stuff. Not sure if there's a difference between thinset and mortar so sorry if my terminology is wrong! I know that the thinset should be unmodified, though i can only work on this project sparingly so i'm not sure if it matters since it has a lot longer to dry (i was told it has to be unmodified to dry faster), but can I just choose any premium white glass thinset/mortar I can find in the home improvement stores around me?
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Old 09-23-2017, 04:04 PM   #6
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Don, thinset is a method of ceramic tile installation, not a product. Thinset mortar is a bonding material used in that method.

You'll find the word thinset very widely and incorrectly used to indicate the thinset bonding mortar. You'll also find the word mortar used in a number of other contexts in the tile industry. It'll take a while to get used to the usage of both terms and you'll still likely be confused at times.
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Old 09-23-2017, 05:41 PM   #7
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Thats very interesting, and confusing, thank you cx! Would this stuff work: TEC® Full Flex® Premium Thin Set Mortar ?

Its cheap (although not per pound compared to the full set plus!) and white and locally available. I used full set plus for my kerdi membrane and the tiles since I searched the forums and it was recommended.
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Old 09-23-2017, 06:09 PM   #8
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Will it work? Probably, but all I see on the website is for use with ceramic, stone, and porcelain.
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Old 09-23-2017, 06:14 PM   #9
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Home Depot sells glass tile thinset in small boxes.
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Old 09-23-2017, 06:42 PM   #10
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A quality white thinset made for use with glass tile will be whiter than a 'typical' white thinset, and usually has more cement in it along with a high concentration of modifiers to help anchor the glass tile well. It typically, clearly says if it is made for use with glass. Having a bright white background for the tile means it doesn't pick up a grey tinge, which can make the tile lose some of its 'pop', and mute the colors like putting a grey filter on it.
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Old 09-23-2017, 07:11 PM   #11
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FWIW the mortar the Mapei gent linked to runs ~$11 for a 10 lb bag or $30 for a 43 lb bag. "Premium" pricing for sure but in the scheme of a multi-thousand dollar shower job it's nothing.
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Old 09-23-2017, 07:18 PM   #12
ihatethinset
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greenjp, thats actually not bad at all! I just cant figure out where to buy it. Expensive, yes, but not much more than other ones of similar quality. I wont need too much of it. I thought i had to use unmodified thinset for tile over kerdi, is that not right? Thanks for the advice everyone!

Edit: this stuff is available, but damn is it a ripoff. http://www.homedepot.com/p/Custom-Bu...W7-4/204847121
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Old 09-23-2017, 08:08 PM   #13
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There are at least 4 different groups of materials that can be used to make a mortar modified...the US specs do not include a distinguisher to tell them apart (the European mortar specs do). A latex based modifier needs to dry, and those do not fair well on a waterproof membrane. Because the US spec does not distinguish what modifier is in it, Schluter for the NA market, does not recommend one, except for the new one they have made to their specs. That does not mean that others can't work, but it's not always easy to tell for sure.

If you can wait awhile before grouting, it should work. Typically, a rapid setting mortar will work. What you want is a mortar that reaches its full strength in the presence of water...i.e., one that doesn't also need to dry its modifier. Call the manufacturer to verify if it is recommended for use over Kerdi.
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Old 09-23-2017, 09:43 PM   #14
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For the Adesilex™ P10, you can try Lowes. However, lowe's has a poor habit of pogo-sticking back and forth between Mapei and Laticrete every two years and I'm not sure which brand they're on at the moment. But lots of folks live near a Lowes.

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Old 09-24-2017, 12:34 AM   #15
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Oh great, looks like it's available at the Lowes near me! Thanks a lot! I had searched their website before but it didn't show up; i think i omitted the p10 and it brought it up.
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