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Old 06-10-2006, 05:55 AM   #1
zman
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tile-top desk

hey guys,

i'm thinking about making an oak desk and using either granite or marble for the top. i would like to use some 16" tiles and make the tiled part approximately 64" x 32 with a 3/4" oak trim around the edges.

i would like to butt the tile pieces as close together as possible to eliminate as much of the grout space as possible.

2 questions:
a. can i butt the pieces together without leaving any space between?
b. if so, what type of grout do i use? would i simply use non-sanded grout?

thanks,

zman
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Old 06-10-2006, 08:17 AM   #2
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a. That would be a bad idea. A microbevel doesn't offer much in the way of tooth to hold grout.

b. I would use Spectralock with a reduction of Part C on a 1/32 spacing. An advantage of using Spectralock is you can build up smooth joints that are dead flush with the surface.

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Old 06-10-2006, 08:53 AM   #3
zman
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thanks donb,

so i think you are saying to space the tiles 1/32" apart and use the spcetralock grout.........for the best results.

is that right???????

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Old 06-10-2006, 09:07 AM   #4
Shaughnn
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Zman,
That's an awful small area for a Spectralock purchase. Non-sanded Portland cement grout would do as well in this instance. The key is to use very little water after letting the grout set up in the joints. I agree with Don though about a minimum spacing being needed.
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Old 06-10-2006, 09:32 AM   #5
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Hi Shaughnn,

I've stuffed Spectralock into some very tiny lines in skirting using the full ration of Part C with no problems. In fact, I was able to use it in shallow cracks so tight they were barely visible when I Akemi bonded granite skirts directly under a radius just to fill in any slight unevenness of cuts on the skirts and make them disappear.

If there's one thing I've learned this year it's what Spectralock says and what Spectralock does are two different things. I think a 32nd in granite is plenty of gap. The reason I suggest it is if he wants flush grout and should happen to wash it out to deeply, it ain't no big deal to fill it in and try again. If goes with unsanded on a 32nd and don't like what he gets, it's more of a problem.

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Old 06-10-2006, 09:54 AM   #6
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Don,
I meant that I thought that the desktop was too small of a project for a Spectralock purchase. I agree that it's suited for a tight joint. Sorry for the confussion.
Shaughnn
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Old 06-10-2006, 10:05 AM   #7
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Morning guys,

Spectra-lock has 'mini units' that would cost around $28.00 for the AB liquid and the colorant.

If they have a micro bevel, I would probably slam 'em together, especially if using Spectra-Lock (make sure they're square and consistant or they'll stair step on ya) The sand between the tiles in the thinset probably gives ya a skinny 32
If square edged I'd use 1/16" spacers (sans micro bevel)

Sounds like a neat project. Please post a pic or two when you're finished.
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Old 06-10-2006, 11:42 AM   #8
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Gotcha Shaughnn Duh!

Lowz has Spectralock mini's for $15 + $4. In my book, that's a small investment considering the project at hand. It's not like he has to even use the whole mini. It's an easy deal to mix as little as 0.5% of one and save the rest. I just fold over the bags a few times, clip it with a paper clip and put it back in the fridge.

Oh yeah, I learned something else new today. I did some grouting with Polyblend sanded yesterday and just for chuckles I put a plug of leftover in a baggie and stuck it in the 30 drawer of the fridge. So, I needed a little bit of grout today before I mounted some slate trim. I should have used a bit of Spectralock but since it was a tiny and inconspicuous place and the Polyblend is real close in color, I grabbed my plug and found it to be almost good as new. I stuffed the gaps and they did just fine. 30 extends the pot life to at least 16 hours in the absense of air.

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Old 06-10-2006, 12:20 PM   #9
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thanks guys!!!

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Old 06-10-2006, 12:47 PM   #10
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Don,
I think you wil find that being below freezing temperatures will have detrimentally affected the grout. For a small pinhole it may not be an issue but for anything much larger I think the cement will just powder-out.
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Old 06-10-2006, 01:49 PM   #11
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Stuff don't freeze at 30 Shaughnn. It just gets real cold.

A while back I played with some frozen Hydroment PM, too. Now this stuff was froze hard as a rock. After I thawed it I used it to set a few pieces of slate on the wall between a mirror and a vanity countertop. It bonded just fine. The slate won't be coming off in one piece. I checked

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Old 06-10-2006, 08:07 PM   #12
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Don, I don't know how you get away with it, but my wife would skin me in my sleep if I had baggies of grout scattered throughout the fridge and freezer.

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