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Old 09-13-2006, 09:18 PM   #1
mrobichaud3@cogeco.ca
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trowel notch size

Hi all.

Wondering what size notched trowel I should use with a 13 inch tile? One pamphlet I have says to use a 1/2 x 1/2 x1/2 saying that "larger tiles need a deeper thin-set bed to make up for the minor adjustments in flatness of the floor and tile". I am using speed set fortified thin-set if that makes a difference. Also, when setting the tile , do you typically push down and twist until you can't push any further, or is the idea just to set it in the thin-set without hitting bottom? I was wondering because it seems that if I use a 1/2 x 1/2 x 1/2 notch, there will be a heck of a lot of thin-set that will potentially squeeze out. Any thought are much appreciated.
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Old 09-13-2006, 09:31 PM   #2
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For 13" tiles you would be better off with a smaller trowel, like a 3/8"x1/4".
If you skim coat the back of the tile with a consistent flat skim of thinset
and lay your tiles in a notched bed of thinset you wont have to push and
twist (as much) to get a proper bond. Any excess thinset should be tool'd
from the grout joint and the tile and joint wiped clean with a wet sponge.
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Old 09-15-2006, 07:34 PM   #3
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Thanks much Jack.
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Old 09-16-2006, 01:32 AM   #4
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Ditto what Hamilton said. Sometimes I use a 1/2" x 1/2" trowel on concrete floors if it seems a little humpy, otherwise it's the 1/4 x 3/8". Just a reminder: there's no fooling around with speedset. It doesn't just set up faster than regular mortar, it sets up FAST, like in 20-40 minutes you won't be able trowel out any more. Just FYI


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Old 09-17-2006, 09:03 PM   #5
mrobichaud3@cogeco.ca
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Thanks for the heads up Mike. I guess I'll mix just a little at a time.

Mike
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Old 09-17-2006, 09:22 PM   #6
Shaughnn
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Hello M,
Why have you chosen to use Speed Set? It's really not DIY friendly and I think you'll find that most of the other "slow poke" thinsets out there will still set up fast enough for most home work.
Shaughnn
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Old 09-18-2006, 09:04 PM   #7
mrobichaud3@cogeco.ca
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Hi Shaughnn
The bathroom I'm doing is the main bath and has the only shower in the house. With three adults and one teenager all having to get ready for work and school,social functions etc., I just can't have that room out of commission for long. Being able to grout after only a couple of hours will save a 24 hr wait. I'll still need to wait the 24 hrs for the grout to set but one day lost is better than two. It's only 40 sq. ft. so I'm hoping to finish it quickly.
My only choices are lose the bathroom for two days or use the speed set.I just don't see any other options.
Do you have any suggestions when using speed set?
Thanks very much for the replies.
Mike
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Old 09-18-2006, 09:09 PM   #8
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hi Mike,
If it's a straight shot from the door to the shower, I'd consider setting up a "walkin plank" by using a length of 2"x12" with a towel over the edge of the tub/shower. I honestly think that you'll appreciate the longer pot life of a modified thinset over the hyper-quick setting time of the Speed Set. I hate the stuff and avoid it at all costs. I can imagine someone with a bit less experience getting frustrated very quickly.
Best of luck,
Shaughnn
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Old 09-18-2006, 09:30 PM   #9
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Hi again Shaughnn,
The walkin plank is a great idea. Unfortunately, won't work with the layout of my bathroom. But it did get me thinking of a possible alternative. I'll keep you posted. Thanks so much for the input. This forum is fantastic. I hope at some point I'll be able to offer something that might be of some help to someone else.
Mike
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Old 09-18-2006, 09:48 PM   #10
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Hi M,
I use speedset quite a bit for my installations and it really is not DIY friendly, especially if you have not done much tile work. If you must use a rapid setting mortar I would suggest you use mapei's ultraflex RS instead. You should be able to get it from Lowes in your area. It still will set quickly but if gives you a little more working time than speedset. Understand you will have little or no time to make adjustments in the installation. With a small area like yours I would go ahead and do a complete dry lay out making all your cuts ahead of time, pick up tile rows in order so it easier to find the tiles you need. Make sure you mark layout lines on the floor so the tiles will go back in the same spot when you are mortaring them. I would mix only half a bag at a time unless you feel really comfortable w/ what you are doing. Get all the mortar out of the bucket and on the floor initially even if you do not spread it all immediately-- the exothermic reaction is sped up when it sits in a mass in the bucket. Just make sure you have all the steps in your install well thought out ahead of time you will not have time to make many corrections. Good Luck
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