Tiling stacked bond pattern into corners [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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03-14-2015, 03:55 PM
I'm tiling a tub/shower wall with 4.25x10" tile in a stacked bond or grid pattern and I could use some advice on the short wall. My plan was to use a 2" bullnose along the tub edge from the floor to the ceiling. Doing so would leave a roughly 2" piece at the corners. To avoid this, I thought about doing full tiles all the way which would extend my shower tile another 8" into my small bathroom.

Which would be the lesser of two evils? The 2" piece, or the tile going 8" past the tub?

Thanks in advance. I've been stalking this forum for months now. As a DIYer its been an awesome help in giving me the courage to get started.

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03-14-2015, 05:27 PM
I would probably move the bullnose out another inch and have a 3 inch cut.

Peerless Tile
03-14-2015, 07:54 PM
You could balance the sides and have an equal cut ..... say 5 1/2-6 in the corner and the same next to the bull nose if you have enough tile to do so. If you don't put 4 1/2's in the corners ( 2 for 1's ) and just cut the outside edge to fit next to bull nose so you can lose the skinny's in the corner and still have a tile greater than 1/2 on the outside edge.

03-14-2015, 08:17 PM
Davy - Moving it an inch would give me a 1" sliver next to the tub. However, I'm not sure why I didn't think about just moving it a few inches or half a tile as SC Greg suggested.

SC Greg - Thanks for the suggestion. I'll see about balancing it out.

Peerless Tile
03-14-2015, 08:23 PM
It'll look fine as long as the cut edge is clean. If using a wet saw usually no worries. If a snap cutter, get a rubbing stone to "dress" the cut edge. It's a common practice in the industry to balance the look. and eliminate small unsightly sliver cuts in a layout.


03-14-2015, 08:30 PM
I was thinking that I should have a factory edge against the bullnose. But that was a dumb thought because otherwise running bond patterns would never work. I think I'm going to try a little less than half a tile to give me some wiggle room on the corner tiles.

My only concern now is the bottom row which will now wrap around the tub (since the bottom row will compensate for out-of-level and the shape of the tub). Should I be concerned with that, or is it trivial?

03-14-2015, 08:34 PM
You'll actually wanna start that bottom row well below the level of the tub deck, Fernando, so you can cut the round corner of the tub into that piece that will extend out past the tub face and be the beginning of your "tub leg."

If you don't, you're gonna have a rather ugly little triangle of grout in that part of your layout, which don't nobody wanna look at.

My opinion; worth price charged.

Peerless Tile
03-14-2015, 08:41 PM
Set a level ledger board at around 3 1/2" ( you stated earlier you were using 4 1/4" tiles so this will give you something to cut off ) from HIGH point on tub surround and set the tile level from there....after they have set up, remove ledger board, properly caulk/fill with waterproof material the screw holes that held the ledger up and cut the bottom row to fit the corresponding undulations of the tub....No one will really notice it's not a "full" tile on the surface of the tub.

This should also eliminate the triangle CX is speaking of.

03-14-2015, 09:26 PM
The one inch cut down the side of the tub wouldn't bother me, I've made those smaller than that before. I was taught to always try to start full tiles at the bullnose so I avoid centering the end walls. But, there's no rules when it's your house. :)

03-14-2015, 09:27 PM
Looks like he done got a ledger board set and the back wall tiled. May be too late for that piece o' 'vice. !

Might help me just a bit with your layout dilemna to see how the back wall pices come into the corner. Can't quite see around the edge o' that pic.

Jim Farrell Tiler
03-15-2015, 02:57 AM
looks to me like you have screwed holes in your waterproofing

03-15-2015, 09:23 PM
CX and Greg - I plan to do that. The ledger is actually set at the 3rd row and the first row will vary between 3 1/2" and 3 3/4".

03-15-2015, 09:59 PM
Jim - I've seen a lot of pros screw through the waterproofing and seal it back up before tiling the bottom rows. I plan to caulk the holes then go over them with Redgard.

03-15-2015, 10:12 PM
The holes won't be a problem, Fernando. I wouldn't use any caulk, though, I'd recommend you fill them with the RedGard as CBP calls for.

03-26-2015, 09:15 AM
Another question for you gents:
I have Hardiebacker all the way up to the greenboard on the ceiling with a 1/4" or 1/8" gap. I'm tiling to the ceiling.

Am I supposed to seal the gap where the backer meets the ceiling (with thinset, caulk or joint compound), or do I leave it alone? My plan was to leave the gap alone, but I like to ask before acting.

03-26-2015, 09:26 AM
Your local building code may require that joint to be filled, Fernando, but as you've not entered a geographic location into your User Profile, we got no idea where local might be, eh? :)

If not, I wouldn't worry about it, but you can fill it if you like. Otherwise, just tile to the ceiling and use a color-matched caulk in the tile/ceiling joint.

My opinion; worth price charged.

03-26-2015, 10:22 AM
CX, I'm in southern Illinois. Updating my profile.

03-26-2015, 10:28 AM
When it is required to be filled, what is normally acceptable? I figure I might as well fill it if it's a better safe than sorry situation. I assume filling the gap would not be structural like the changes in wall plane, so is caulk acceptable?

03-26-2015, 11:32 AM
If you have a code requirement it usually that the gap be filled with drywall compound and taped to prevent cracking. It's a fire spread consideration.

If you're in a code compliance jurisdiction I recommend you contact the local compliance office to be sure.

03-28-2015, 07:51 PM
Eh, makes sense for fire code. Thanks for the info.

03-28-2015, 08:17 PM
I just finished priming the walls and ceiling and I'll be either retexturing the walls or skimcoating to remove the texture.. Haven't decided yet, but I may be skimming.

Niche questions: What is the slimmest width of a niche that you feel is usable? And if I need move one of my niche sides 2-3 inches, is the best way to fill in the void just adding a couple sistered 2x4s for support and a 2-3" piece of backer?

Because of stud placement (and my not moving studs), I couldn't line up my niche with my vertical grout line as I had hoped. So I cut it out it a few inches over and planned to use a 2" bullnose as a picture frame. I decided I didn't like that look with the stacked tile and I didn't want a 2" piece of tile on one side and a 6" on the other side, so now I'm planning to do a half tile on each side of the niche and the horizontal grout lines match up. I'll be trimming out with a metallic Schluter Rondec. Doing so will give me a ~10" niche instead of ~12".

Photo attached. The top niche will be a 2-tier and the bottom niche will be within reach for baths and little people.

Houston Remodeler
03-29-2015, 08:38 AM

The slimmest niche is sized to what Mrs Fernando agrees to. :ct:

Pretty simple

03-29-2015, 12:55 PM
Find her favorite bottle of shampoo and/or conditioner and make sure it fits comfortably. :)

05-03-2015, 03:45 PM
I got busy on some other projects, but now I'm back to this shower and hope to finish this week. Any suggestions on the best way to "move" the niches about 2-3 inches to the right? If this were drywall, I'd just use plywood.. So my first thought is to sandwich 2x4s to cover the left gap, then Hardiebacker, (tape?, thinset?) and Redgard.

Is this correct or is there a better approach?

05-03-2015, 03:59 PM
And thanks for the replies on the niche size. I think the size will be perfect. I'm going to use matching reusable bottles so I should have plenty room for 2 shampoos, 2 conditioners, a body soap and an extra whatever else. I hate having a bunch of product cluttering the shower so I should be able to keep this tamed :think:

Houston Remodeler
05-03-2015, 04:05 PM
With all the "necessary" products setting around, somedays I feel as though I'm showering at Walmart

08-16-2015, 09:22 PM
Finally getting around to finishing this shower except the niche and tub leg transition to the floor :clap1:

Is a white modified thinset acceptable for a marble niche? I have white Flexbond that I've been using for my porcelain subway tiles but I'm cautious because I'm a novice and it says "For porcelain and ceramic tile." I'm planning on framing out the sides, tops, bottoms and center shelf in a white/gray marble that I found at HD. The back will be a marble and glass 1x1 mosaic in different shades of gray since I couldn't find all-white 1x1s locally :(

Also is it more standard to take the wall tile all the way to the floor or should there be a transition piece like I've seen PC use? I'm thinking of using a 4x4 block of this same marble at the floor since I haven't decided if I'm using normal baseboards or some kind of tile. All I know is that I'm not butting a wood/MDF/PVC baseboard against the tub.

08-16-2015, 09:23 PM
The white modified mortar is exactly what you want to use there, Fernando.

My opinion; worth price charged.

08-16-2015, 09:44 PM
Thanks, CX. Just what I was hoping for. Just gotta polish the edges now and remember where I got the 12x12 sheet for the back so that I can go buy a couple more to finish the job.

08-18-2015, 11:53 PM
I was too lazy to deal with thinset today to finish tiling the top half of the top niche, but I wanted to be semi-productive so I grouted my side walls and lower niche and started installing my tub spout, shower valve and trim.

Unfortunately, I cannot find two plastic pieces I need to finish installing the diverter control on my Grohe valve kit. :noid: So I guess I'll be contacting Grohe in the morning after I turn my house upside down again looking for these pieces. Lucky me.

UPDATE: Fortunately I'm only missing the chrome cap that goes on the end of the temperature knob. They gray plastic ring is what I thought I was missing but it was already in the diverter handle pictured. Grohe's instructions can look like instructions on building a time machine sometimes--or at least for us novice DIYers.

08-31-2015, 09:47 AM
I have a few questions regarding caulking since I'm wrapping up the shower portion of my project.

1) Should I use the Color Sil 100% silicone caulk everywhere? I am debating using my opened CBP siliconized caulk only at the wall/tile transition since I don't believe the 100% is paintable. But I guess this depends on my #2 question:

2) Should I caulk before or after painting? My walls have already been primed with Bulls Eye 1-2-3.