Non-sagging thinset for marble mini brick mosaic wall tile [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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09-26-2017, 04:16 PM
I'm doing my backsplash with 12"x12" sheets of mini brick marble mosaic. They are mesh backed and the stones are about 9/16" x 1 1/4" and 3/8" thick. They are fairly heavy and I am concerned about them slipping down the wall. I'd be less concerned if they were 12x2 because I could use spacers but not with the mesh backed sheets.

I picked up a bag of Custom's "Natural Stone and Large Tile" thinset and was wondering if that is the appropriate choice. I have access to pretty much any brand's line where I live, but I've used Custom products a number of they are easy to find and affordable.

I've seen others recommend using a thinset for glass tiles, but that stuff is like 3-4x the price. For 50+ sf of backsplash that would get pricey!


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09-26-2017, 05:35 PM
If you like customs I'd check out pro-lite. Laticrete tri lite is pretty awesome too. White works best for natural stone

09-26-2017, 06:29 PM
When I did my two (yeh, not quite the breadth of experience as most of the folks here) backsplashes I found that if I used wedge spacers and put them everywhere the mosaics wouldn't sag. Thinset for glass tile, which I have used, is pretty sticky. Cost shouldn't be a huge issue since a backsplash isn't typically very large.

09-26-2017, 07:29 PM
In the grand scheme of things, I would probably only need 4 boxes of the glass tile mortar....which would probably represent 0.1% of the cost of my kitchen yeah, it doesn't REALLY matter cost-wise. But if I can use 1 bag of the ProLite for half the price I'll probably try that out of principle! Thanks for the suggestions.

As for the wedges....I've got a big bag of them so believe me I will use them if I see any slippage.

1 other question...

Any suggestions on notch size for the trowel? I couldn't find anything from the manufacturer. The closest I could find was a "brochure" on their site for mosaic installation that calls for a trowel 1/16-3/16 and says it depends on the thickness of the tile. It also says not to install tile over drywall. So I am taking what they say as, well, I'm ignoring it.

Here's the stone if anyone is curious....

09-26-2017, 07:49 PM
If you can get ahold of some Ardex X-77, that would be my first choice. But really, any non-sag mortar will be better than what you have.

09-27-2017, 02:58 PM
The notch size depends on how flat the surface is, and how even the backs of the tile are. The less flat either is, the deeper the notch needs to be so you actually have thinset there and can flatten things properly. You said the tile is 3/8" thick, so you could use a deeper notch. Being a mosaic, use something like a grout float or something bigger than your hand or fingers to bed the tile to keep things flat, or you'll get spot locations where you have pushed on it.

09-27-2017, 06:00 PM
For easy access pro lite is pretty good stuff. would start out with a 1/4" trowel. Install 1 or 2 pieces and then pull them to see what kind of coverage you are getting. You should see almost full contact. If not go to a 3/8 trowel. Make sure you set them by tamping with a rubber or wood float. Clean up with a tooth brush for grout joints and a soft sponge.

Shady at Best
09-27-2017, 09:25 PM
If you can get ahold of some Ardex X-77, that would be my first choice. But really, any non-sag mortar will be better than what you have.
I second this. Someone here suggested x77 to me a few months back. I used it and loved it. Wish i could afford to use it all the time.
You will definitely want high end thinset. The 10-15 bucks more it cost is well worth it.
I tend to forget that there are better thinsets for certain applications. I will be doing a backsplash and frustrated as hell and then i will remember that a better thinset will make the installation easier.
Good luck

I am neither clever nor funny