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Unread 04-18-2016, 04:53 PM   #91
T_Hulse
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Schluter doesn't make thinset, take what they say with a grain of salt. They're no strangers to contrarian nonsense themselves ('porcelain over impervious uncoupling mats "needs" non-modified', despite what the mortar manufacturers and all the other similar mats & membranes have said).
The flakes aren't a big problem themselves, just an indicator of a weak bond. I know the dovetail principal (which makes a very weak bond, test it), but when the mortar is all applied together (no prefill), that 3/32" or more above the top of the waffles is able to stay as one full sheet-unit together with the mortar in the cups, instead of tiny independent islands with a thinset-to-thinset bond breaker in the middle of each one. I'm not saying it's a huge problem, but I see it more as turning my expensive, high quality thinset that I'm using into the bond strength of the bottom-basics. Will it work? Sure. But why waste that extra couple hours to get a weaker floor just because you don't want to try an inkline instead of chalk?
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Unread 04-18-2016, 05:19 PM   #92
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You simply aren't grasping the concept Tom. Couple that with your propensity to argue that the sky is not blue, and we arrive at these silly arguments you make. Sorry, nothing personal, but that's just the way it is.

Personally, I use certain modifieds over Schluter products. But, where are all these failures with porcelain and unmodified mortars? Where are they Tom? That's right, they're not there. Thinset bonds to thinset just fine, and Schluter knows the properties of their products better than you do.

What size notched trowel are you using that you are only getting 1/32" above the waffles?
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Unread 04-18-2016, 06:15 PM   #93
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3/32", not 1/32". It's not my thickness, just the required minimum for thinset. I didn't say "all these failures". I said it's not a huge problem and 'sure it would work but...'. Read closer, man, my point is that you're just wasting time prefilling.
You said Schluter knows their products better than we do. Interesting concept, why don't you think about it a little more? You're using the concept backwards. Which product are we really talking about here? You know better than the actual manufacturer of the mortar what it should be used for?
You said "Sorry, nothing personal", I don't think that means what you think it means.
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Unread 04-18-2016, 07:31 PM   #94
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I do agree , Tom , the prefill with the unmod is a no-no , but it is why I use premium modified rapid setting one for it . If the prefill is not an option for you , are you just going with a one step bond over ditra heat or similar?
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Unread 04-18-2016, 07:47 PM   #95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom
If that simple little pull of mortar took you a day for a couple hundred feet, how many days prep would one like this take that is far more difficult per sf to prep, and multiple times larger?
Not here to pull out tape measure and compare whose sf is bigger. The other 2400sf of the job was behind the camera. I was just providing information on which products we like to use for fill other than mud work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom
... you have to know that a real pro...might have the whole area in your photo, or most of it, fully set before your guys even laid down a single tile the next morning?
Good for them. The difference is we got paid for the 1200lbs of extra material installed and a days worth of extra labor. No need to rush when an allowance for prep has been figured.

Should we have just thrown 1200lbs of more thinset under the tile that wasn't figured into the job?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom
How would you tackle one like this that requires piers, rails, and fill for a larger floor?
We dont have an exact go to product for this scenario. I have a laundry list of materials used but thinset is not one of them.
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Unread 04-18-2016, 09:03 PM   #96
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Roberto, if I have a special reason on a very rare job I might prefill with a hard-biting, strong-bond mortar like Laticrete 254, but generally I don't waste the time just so I can end up with a slightly weaker bond. Is the reason you prefill because of the chalk line thing? I really like the super-sharp black line that an ink line gives over Ditra or Stratamat. Very nice to follow with tiny grout lines and rectified tile.

Kevin, you're the second person to say something like 'it's ok if this way is slower overall because we got paid more'. You're following the common myth on this forum that your sell price is only a function of your costs. It's not, your costs only dictate your minimum sell price, not your actual sell price. In a free-market capitalist economy, it is worth exactly as much as the market will bear. Your competition sets your price.
The point is that you are assuming that someone like Petr couldn't charge exactly as much as you did on the whole job including prep, just because you took more days, and that's not the case at all. You think you'll make just as much per day, but customers are really comparing the total cost of the whole job including prep; so you either left money on the table, or had to rush some other portion of the job to make as much as someone doing it the more efficient way.
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Unread 04-18-2016, 10:28 PM   #97
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Tom,
You have no idea what you are talking about in the commercial tile world when it comes to pricing for prep and how we calculate it nor do you have a clue how GC's take prep into account when handing out contracts.

I will let you in on a little secret...on some jobs we almost make more in prep(per sq ft) than we do setting the tile. Try that with residential.


Some guys need to stick with the Sally Homeowner and her 70' tub surround, 200' kitchen floor and 25' backsplash they spend 3 weeks working on and complain they make no money.
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Unread 04-19-2016, 12:04 AM   #98
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Lol. Craig, I sold wholesale for about a decade in the 90's, most of it for the 10th largest flooring company in the US. I probably bid and won more floor contracts in a single year than most installers would see in their whole life. That's where I learned the hard realities of only cost bidding vs market rate bidding. You can't tell a genuine hard-core pro bidder he doesn't know exactly what commercial GC's are thinking. I "retired" from the commercial world in 2000, took a year off and then started enjoying my work, but I still know every commercial bidding trick in the book. If you & I bid head to head on a large commercial contract I would eat. your. lunch. (please have a sense of humor!) But the person I was talking to included the prep as part of his initial bid, not quite the same as the system you are imagining when you describe making tons of money off the prep.
So enough with the personal stuff. Do you have anything factual about the points I made, or do you just want to whine about what you think my experience is?
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Unread 04-19-2016, 04:42 AM   #99
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With this type of commentary between ourselves for anyone to read, is there any real reason speculate why attendance and viewership is down. IMHO we come across as a bunch of back biting step sisters arguing over who's going to get the family inheritance.....Oh, Please have a sense of humor when reading this, It'll help.
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Unread 04-19-2016, 05:03 AM   #100
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Unfortunately Greg its in every forum. I tried Laticretes Tile Geeks Forum and its the same over there. Sometimes worse.
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Unread 04-19-2016, 05:13 AM   #101
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom
I sold wholesale for about a decade in the 90's, most of it for the 10th largest flooring company in the US.
Thats not a qualifier for commercial floor prep.

Quote:
I "retired" from the commercial world in 2000
Lot has changed since then

Quote:
If you & I bid head to head on a large commercial contract I would eat. your. lunch.
No. You. Wouldnt. I don't eat lunch.


Quote:
Do you have anything factual about the points I made, or do you just want to whine about what you think my experience is?
I dont have time,i have a job.
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Last edited by evan1968; 04-19-2016 at 05:48 AM.
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Unread 04-19-2016, 10:37 AM   #102
T_Hulse
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Quote:
Thats not a qualifier for commercial floor prep.
Alright my loving stepsister. You still want to discuss my experience? Really? Ok. Almost all wholesale salesmen are paid on 100% commission based on the final paid profit of the job, so the they're more like complete project managers. Remember that my comments you went after with the insults were about getting paid for prep. I know what it's like to have to bid million-plus projects that are still a year away without ever seeing the condition of the floor. I've been in the trenches of the change-order wars on large projects, fighting to get paid for prep, and I've felt the sting in my own wallet of loosing some of those early battles over prep. I earned my experience the hard way.
Still, all of that is not a reason to use only cost-based bidding (how much I need per day to make my desired profit). Commercial builders don't give a rip about your personal costs or effort, they just want to manage their total cost. So if someone admits to going slower but thinks it's ok because they're paid "more" for prep; they're probably missing that anyone, even the guys who took less time doing prep the more efficient way, could have gotten the exact same "more". They really lost profit that was available to them by spending more time & wages on prep.
I apologize, Craig, for saying I would eat your lunch. You seem to have plenty of time to talk about the drama, couldn't you spare some of that time to talk about the business?
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Unread 04-19-2016, 11:22 AM   #103
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Quote:
originally posted by K Tile
We typically use Ardex products for prep. The elevators (L to R) had an 1" elevation difference. So we could not level this floor due to existing elevator constraints. So we choose to deep fill with 10ft straight edge with SD-P on the left side then again on the right side. Followed with a tight coat of Ardex feather. With Ardex's drying technology this floor was prepped in one day with multiple coats.
Kevin,

Another vote for Ardex SD-P! With action photos too! In a high traffic area! Now I'm itchin' to try me some. With my luck I'll get nothing but mud over hydronic for eternity.

Thanks for taking the time to post.
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Unread 04-22-2016, 07:28 AM   #104
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For those who’ve replied, or who’ve just been following along, there’s been a shift. This is second hand info as I’ve had no direct or even virtual contact with the client since the first meeting: According to the other contractor the client has ground the slab! His guys will probably install the Ditra too. Hopefully they’ll properly address the ¼” crack running through the slab in one corner of the room, beforehand.

I wouldn’t describe the other contractor as the insistent type. He’s more of the “oK, whatever you say” type when dealing with “in charge” contractors/GCs, which in reality is what this homeowner/client actually is. I’m just about positive he didn’t push the grinding issue much. It’s not his style. Plus, he seemed content to let it go once the client resisted the idea. On the other hand, I made a case for it. I’m not shy about making a case.

Yet, it’s hard to say what actually changed his mind. Did the collective majority position of the JB forum, manifested in vibrations, beam across the astral plane into his sixth chakra? I’m not a Yogi, so I can only wonder. Or, did he simply read these posts, then came to appreciate the opinions offered by a range of serious professionals who were willing to invest their time, pro bono? I’ll never know.

What I do know is that this thread has it all: Great advice, bonafide experts, useful information, and even some intrafamilial squabbles! Hopefully nobody gets socked at the next shindig!
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Unread 04-22-2016, 07:31 AM   #105
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich
Hopefully nobody gets socked at the next shindig!
I lol'd.
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