My 3 Bath Hardi/Kerdi/what the #^& was I thinking/ditra/slc project [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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Tim P.
03-05-2007, 05:02 PM
Good evening everybody,

I've been a long-time lurker here.. Discovered both Kerdi and Ditra on this site. Read many many (did I say MANY?) posts before I started the 3 baths and 1 shower in my new home.

Projects are well under way now, and I thought I would post a few pictures as my way of saying 'thanks!'.

There are 3 separate bathrooms, so I'll put them in different replies.

Once again, thanks to everybody who unknowingly helped me get these projects underway!

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Tim P.
03-05-2007, 05:09 PM
In the first floor bathroom I did porcelain tile on the floor.

I used 1/4" hardibacker that was placed over Tec Full-flex modified thinset applied with a 1/4x1/4 trowel.

The same thinset was used to apply the tile with a 1/4x3/8 trowel. They are really nice looking tile, albeit very inexpensive that I picked up from the blue store.

Having fought a battle with inexpensive tile before, I opted for a 1/4" grout joint, figuring that the tile would not be uniform enough to use a tight joint.

The tile were actually very uniform, but better safe than sorry.

The toilet flange ended up dead center of a tile. After trying the wet saw, then grinder, I gave up on trying to cut a hole in the middle of the tile. It just ain't gonna happen with porcelain. Luckily the toilet will cover the entire area (I checked after breaking half a dozen tiles, doh)

Tim P.
03-05-2007, 05:22 PM
The guest bath has 3/8" wirsbo radiant tubing embedded in 1" of SLC.

Self-leveling my :x: ! Well, I suppose if you have help mixing, it may self-level. I used Empire Blended products "Pour-a-Floor". Definitely not a 1-man job. I ended up letting the first pour cure then doing a skim coat over the top to actually level it out. I used their "Em-Bond C" in between the pours. Other than the lack of self-leveling (not saying that wasn't my fault, but I'm not admitting it, either!), the product seems very good. I troweled it to a feather edge per instructions and there was no separation.

Over the SLC I laid ditra with a 1/4x3/16 V-notch trowel and Tec Full-Flex. The 2x2 Dal tiles were laid with the same trowel and Versabond. I thought laying the 2x2's would be a real bear (never laid tile that small), but they were surprisingly easy.

I tamped them down with a rubber float, then used a piece of oak handrail to get them in the same plain. I only had to clean thinset out of about a dozen or so joints.

03-05-2007, 05:24 PM
What I did for my toilet flange, was to cut the tile in half, centered on the flange, then using the wetsaw, nibble out two semicircles. The toilet covered it, I was able to get it under the flange and support things properly, and attach the flange through the tile into the subfloor like it is supposed to be. I don't have a diamond wheel for my grinder, and you are right, trying to do anything to a hard porcelain without diamond tools is almost a total waste of time.

Dave Taylor
03-05-2007, 05:25 PM
Thank you fer' posting. Tim. I jest' know yer' projects will turn out great and..... we do love pictures... and we take braggin' rights fair serious. :devil2:
You located anywhere near our beloved "Flatfloor" on the island?

Tim P.
03-05-2007, 05:30 PM
Master bath has the same wirsbo tubing in the SLC. It also has radiant tubing in the wall next to the shower (towel bar in this location, hopefully we'll get some warm towels), in the shower seat, and in the ceiling above the whirlpool tub.

Laid ditra with the v-notch trowel and tec full-flex again. Used versabond and a 1/4x3/8 trowel to lay the 12x12 travertine. The tile is a Florida Tile Pietra Art "Ocean Life". Really nice tile.. Using 1/8" joints.

Man that versabond is some heavy-duty stuff. Tried to pull a tile up to check for coverage, darn near herniated my fingers! It broke my heart when the tile came up in 3 pieces.. but better to sacrifice one then to lay the entire floor and find out they weren't sticking well.

Tim P.
03-05-2007, 05:38 PM
Framed a little half-wall in the back of the shower to make a 3-1/2" shelf for shampoos etc. If you saw my current shower, you'd know that there is no niche large enough to house all the shampoos and conditioners required by the other half.

Hopefully we will be able to line up all the necessary hair care products on this shelf.. but I doubt it :rolleyes:

Have a seat beneath that, approximately 12" deep and 16" AFF. Seems a little narrow, but not uncomfortable. It doesn't feel as though I am going to fall off of it or anything.

There is an extruded aluminum heat transfer plate and wirsbo radiant tube in the seat.

I used 1/2" durock on the wet wall, the seat, and within 12" of the shower pan. I was afraid of water wicking up from the pan into the drywall.

Kerdi was applied with the v-notch again and more TEC Full-Flex. I used the pre-formed kerdi corners and kerdi band first, then applied the membrane.

Tim P.
03-05-2007, 05:47 PM
Jim- that's a good idea around the toilet flange. I had a diamond blade on the wet saw and the tile kept cracking. The mortar was setting so I ended up just cutting the 4 pieces. Granted, this wasn't my 1st choice, but since the toilet was covering it, i went for it.

Dave- I looked at flatfloor's profile, not sure where he's located. I'm out on the east end.

Thanks for the compliments!


Tim P.
04-05-2007, 05:26 AM
Ok, so after getting sidetracked for a while, it's time to tile around the whirlpool tub.

Basically, the platform for the whirlpool is a 2x8 on the flat with 1/2" ply over it. On top of this I did a kerdi membrane and wrapped it up the wall.

Distance between the wall and the edge of the tub is 7". So if I wanted to use the 12x12's I have, I would have about 40% waste.

Of course, that would be kind of boring IMHO, so I was considering doing cracked tile on the deck. Less waste and a little more interesting.

I would like opinions on doing cracked tile. Do the pieces have more/less/the same tendency to pop as larger tile? Is cracked tile ok for a horizontal surface, or better suited for vertical? Any other warnings/tips/suggestions?



04-05-2007, 06:30 AM
Hey, just curious. I am in Chicago now but grew up and got started in the tile biz in Maryland. We used to stop like you did in the doorways and then use a marble sill (saddle). Is that your plans? Because now I don't use them and the tile needs to stop directly under the door and then use a Schluter trim or butt directly to wood or carpet there.

Tim P.
04-05-2007, 07:23 AM
Yes, I use a saddle at the doors to different floor materials. I like them because you cut the bottom of the door a little higher. The door is close to the saddle when closed, but when the door is open there is a little more room so you can swing over a mat.


04-05-2007, 05:51 PM

Tim P.
04-06-2007, 05:41 PM
Ok, so went off to the tile shop again today. Left the wife at home this time as nothing ever gets accomplished.

Decided to go with the AO Greenwich Village 3x6 is Designer White (a matte finish).

As I am going to do a 6" tall swath of glass tile horizonatally on the walls, I wanted a liner bar to give me some fudge factor with the different thickness tile.

The catch.. AO doesn't offer any matte liners.

I ordered the gloss liners, which I can live with. However, I wonder if anyone has ever made a glos tile into matte finish with some sort of abrasive (scotchbrite pad maybe?)

Don't even know if it's physically possible. If nobody knows, I'll give it a try when they get here and let you know.


Brad Denny
04-06-2007, 05:57 PM
Hello Tim,
Haven't tried the dulling process, but someone here has I'm sure. My opinion on the ruble deck is that wet tails and sharp tiles don't mix. I did a shower floor one time and sanded every piece-big and little. Almost pulled out my hair. :bonk:

Tim P.
04-07-2007, 04:58 PM
Ok so the lastest is the wife wants more limestone in the master bath shower.. with a glass swath.

I was thinking of a schluter profile to give me a nice transition from limestone to glass. I see they have the deco profile, but doesn't have many colors.

Can schluter schiene be used in the field? I know it's an edge prgfile, but seems like it would work nicely to transition from limestone to glass.. and has some great colors to boot.

Any thoughts?


Tim P.
04-30-2007, 03:39 PM
So all I have left is grout.

American Olean 3x6 Greenwich Village in Designer White (a matte finish)
American Olean 2x2 SatinGlo in True Blue and Light Aspen.

All applied with a 1/4 x 1/4 notch and Versabond.

John Bridge
04-30-2007, 03:42 PM
Looks outstanding, Tim. You've made it. :D

Tim P.
04-30-2007, 03:43 PM
So, 12x12 Florida Tile on the bath walls now.

3/8" notch trowel and versabond once again.

Schluter rondec in aluminum with "sandpebble" finish used as a bullnose. I like that schluter stuff!

Kind of a funky piece under the bench. Couldn't make it work out very well because I wanted the breaks at the top of the bench and the shampoo ledge to fall somewhat in the middle of a tile. Perhaps some glass tile in there. Not sure yet.

Tim P.
04-30-2007, 03:46 PM
Looks outstanding, Tim. You've made it.

Almost! You caught me while I was uploading photos of the unfinished bath :)

The end is in sight!

Thanks for all the help (and inspiration),