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Old 11-19-2017, 09:22 AM   #1
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Satillo Tile Restoration or Match

We have searched the forum and found some good advice. Below are pictures of our kitchen. We are replacing cabinets, which will require use to put down about a 10x10 area of new tile in the middle of the kitchen. The question is whether we should use this opportunity to restore the entire kitchen floor or try to match the new section.

If we restore the entire floor, we understand from our searches that we should:
1. sand lightly by hand using 220
2. strip
3. clean
4. maybe strip again
5. maybe clean again
6. stain to color desired
7. seal
If anyone has any links to a more detailed description of what the stripping and clean involve, that would be useful.

For the match, we assume we try to stain it to mach. If anyone has advice or a link to a more detailed description of this approach, that would be appreciated!

The pictures below are the full length of the kitchen. And then a photo of tile below the cooktop (which was covered by a cabinet for 38 years). You can see the color variation between the two. How does one color match?

Thank you
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Old 11-20-2017, 08:56 AM   #2
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Hi Van Nuys,

I guess I'm one of the old timers who did a lot of Saltillo way back in the day. My advice is to strip the entire floor and start the staining/finishing project from scratch. Even then you'll need to hope the new tile comes close to the old in color and texture. Saltillo is never made the same way twice.
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Old 11-20-2017, 11:41 PM   #3
Tool Guy - Kg
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Howdy, Van Nuys.

What's the purpose of sanding in what you're describing as step #1 if you're chemically stripping?

Tonto Goldstein….. but my friends call me Bubba
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Old 12-02-2017, 09:48 AM   #4
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I would be careful sanding the tiles. Roughing up the surface may cause it to take the stain darker than other areas. If you have to remove any tiles that are stained and sealed, you might keep a few to experiment with. All Saltillo I've seen stripped was done with chemicals.

Looks like the grout was made from masonry sand and Portland cement. We use to take regular plaster sand (plentiful in Calif) and run it thru a window screen to get rid of the larger pebbles and make grout out of it.

A well experienced wood floor man will sometimes know how to stain and seal Saltillo.

It's been a couple years ago but I remember helping my dad stain a Saltillo job in Tyler Texas back when I was in high school. Installing it was a piece of cake since he had installed tons of it in California. We used Dura Seal to stain the tiles and it was very uneven. Dark and light all over it. We were worried, thought we had ruined the floor but the homeowner loved it. Dodged a bullet and decided our stain days were over. Haven't stained any since and don't plan to. I'd find someone that knows what they're doing or at least some good instructions.

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