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Unread 06-14-2007, 07:31 AM   #1
markmorrison
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Ceramic Tile Baseboard

I need advice on the best method of building a ceramic tile baseboard in my bathroom.

I am installing DensArmor (paperless sheetrock) in my bathroom in non-water-exposed areas and tiling it with 3x6 subway tile. We also purchased quarter round tiles with the intention of creating a tile baseboard. I call them quarter round but they are not like a piece of wood quarter round. There are more of an arc (one quarter of a pipe) instead of one quarter of a cylinder.

How are most tile baseboards constructed?

My current plan is to use a strip of 1/2" plywood to form a 3" tall baseboard. I would then lay a single row of 3x6" tile on the front face of the plywood, followed by the quarter round on the top surface of the plywood. I thought I would cut the top of the plywood at a 45 degree angle to better support the quarter round. I included a pic below to illustrate my current plan

Will modified or unmodified thinset adhere well to the plywood?

See any problems with this idea? Any better suggestions?

Thank you,
mark
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Last edited by markmorrison; 06-14-2007 at 07:59 AM.
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Unread 06-14-2007, 07:39 AM   #2
Brian in San Diego
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Mark,

You don't want to use plywood and attach tile directly to it. It isn't a good substrate for tile application. Is there anyway you could use hardierbacker? I think your plan may work with hardie, but not positive. Thinset type isn't as much of an issue if you use hardi, but a slightly modified like Versabond would be a good choice.

Brian
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Unread 06-14-2007, 08:01 AM   #3
markmorrison
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I could use a backer board. However, it would seem very difficult to cut the 45 degree angle on the top to support the quarter round.....

I have Versabond left over from the tile floor installation, so I was thinking of using that anyways.

Thanks for your feedback.

-mark
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Unread 06-14-2007, 08:03 AM   #4
markmorrison
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I should add that whatever I end up using, I need to add 1/2" to the thickness of the baseboard for the quarter round to sit correctly.
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Unread 06-14-2007, 08:37 AM   #5
WTBtile
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you could buz the backer board using a grinder with a diamond blade to get the 45. you could also use a piece of drywall or maby even plywood but kerdi over it so that it doesnt have and exposed edge on the drywall were you make the 45.
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Unread 06-14-2007, 08:39 AM   #6
Brian in San Diego
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mark,

A skilsaw set at 45* with a masonary blade would work on the 1/2" hardie. Lots of dust, but I think it'd work. The problem with the plywood is that it'll expand and contract at a different rate than the tile/thinset. If you have a skilsaw and masonary blade, it'd cost you a sheet of hardie to give it a try.

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Unread 06-14-2007, 08:53 AM   #7
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If it's a non-wet area, I think I would just use a piece of drywall. Thin cuts and angle cuts on Hardie are a big, dusty, and potentially dangerous mess. I'm sure it can be done with the right tools and a respirator, but it doesn't seem worth it to me.
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Unread 06-14-2007, 10:34 AM   #8
markmorrison
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I guess I could just cut the backer board flat on top and fill in the gap behind the quarter round with thinset? To accomplish good support, I would probably just put a good bit of versabond in the corner between the wall and the baseboard, push the quarter round into it, then clean out the thinset that squeezes out.

Think that would work?
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Unread 06-14-2007, 10:47 AM   #9
Brian in San Diego
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Mark,

To be honest with you, I really didn't see the need for the 45*. What you just described is the way I'd do it. Use some tilespikes to hold everything in place until the thinset firms up. I might even consider back buttering the 1/4 round and placing it on top of the hardie/tile. If you can lay a thin line of thinset on top of the hardie, all the better. I think of the two joints, I'd try to avoid getting too much thinset on the top joint. That's the grout joint you're probably most likely to see. You could make up a little test board and see how it works. You wouldn't have to let it set up, just see what works the best. Let it sit for a 1/2 hour and take it apart and clean up your pieces and use them again on the real thing.

Brian
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Unread 06-14-2007, 11:03 AM   #10
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Whatever you use, I agree with Brian that the 45 cut is not needed.
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