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Unread 05-05-2020, 04:56 PM   #31
koihito
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan
If you read through the TDS, you'll see that it's not recommended for environments where epoxy is often used such as kennels and food preparation areas
I think you'll find that most epoxies you find used in residential applications aren't suitable for those environments either. In fact, I've personally seen some local restaurants and a local laboratory that used epoxy grout that literally dissolved over a period of a couple years.

Industrial grade grouts suitable for those applications meet 118.5 as well as 118.3. Whether or not Spectralock 1 performs as advertised over the long haul is yet to be seen, but Spectralock Pro isn't recommended for those environments either so I can't see that being a negative at this point.
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Unread 05-10-2020, 06:58 AM   #32
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Quote:
posted by Laticrete:
The Grout You Know and Love in a Premixed Formula! Never before has a premixed grout offered the superior strength and performance of an epoxy, now found in SPECTRALOCK® 1. This patent pending, professional grade grout offers all the benefits of SPECTRALOCK epoxy grout without the hassle of mixing. SPECTRALOCK 1 provides exceptional durability, extreme versatility, and excellent color consistency – even with the most demanding applications.
I had not used the SpectraLock for some time I got away from it. Permacolor Select is my choice and I do realize there are other brands with similar grouts. I like the fast setting aspect yet easy to put in and little effort to clean haze off. When I had the recent request for Epoxy on the basement floor I came across the SpectraLock 1 and like many products over the years with many brands I like to try stuff. I stated I would never use a premixed grout again but after speaking with my distributor people I decided to give it a go.

Many aspects of it were similar to SpectraLock, though I found it easier to install and the clean up was easier though it did gum up the sponges like epoxy does. Time will tell how good it is, like any product we will see if there are any issues along the way. Remember the Permacolor Pebble debacle, Brian said we weren't mixing it right.
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Unread 05-10-2020, 12:53 PM   #33
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Just a DIY guy here. I found working with traditional Spectralock Pro premium easy enough. When washing, the excess grout re-emulsified readily.
If there are no savings or real substantial convenience to be had, I'd rather stick with the actual epoxy over the new product. But I am not earning my livelihood with this, so could easily underestimate the time-saving aspect here.

Is it so much work to mix three components together? Aren't many of us here good at properly mixing thinset mortar and cement grout anyway? Mixing the epoxy for me was such a simple thing to do.
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Unread 05-10-2020, 03:53 PM   #34
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Quote:
Is it so much work to mix three components together?
Now that you mention it, that is probably the part of epoxy that I hate most. The little bucket with a margin trowel is a pain and if you use a drill the mixing bar it's not much better with cleanup n all IME. Cementious is much easier to mix and I generally don't run into jobs where epoxy is asked for. The one time I did use epoxy in a pool the grout was 50% or better gone under the waterline 6 years later.
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Unread 05-10-2020, 04:26 PM   #35
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One down side to epoxy is that once you mix it, you have to use it all at once.

I have "saved" the leftover by putting it in the freezer for use in the near future. I've also patched most of the cracks in my garage floor with leftovers.

And I've thrown a lot away.
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Unread 05-10-2020, 05:50 PM   #36
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Quote:
posted by Wolfgang:
Just a DIY guy here.
Yes when you are making your living doing it I would say it's a little different. You are grouting once a week or every two weeks it's critical.

I agree with Jerry is it messy, a lot gets wasted. It does set up quickly sometimes depending on the weather and humidity. Lot of waste so that is an issue. Messy, yes just mixing it. The haze is a big issue as well, over the years I have had full bathrooms which I am grouting with epoxy in a day and cleanup can be a pita. I have had installations where I got a call on and they said they still had some haze now we are speaking big jobs not 20 sq ft. So I am returning to scrape haze, callbacks are costly.

To fill in an area for whatever reason you are mixing more. Using permacolor select just seemed to be the answer. Easy to mix using the right ratio of water, fires off 3 to 4 hours, easy to clean off tile. Though to fill in pin holes or an area once again you will have to mix a good bit since it's a colorant to base ratio mix, so more waste.

Fast forward to SpectraLock 1. No mixing use right out of the container. Clean-up is easier though you are still getting the psi of epoxy and color consistency. One thing I never liked the look of epoxy on walls, I feel it look like plastic, this is why I like PCS.

No waste because the last open container gets used to fill in. The main plus not mixing more the day after to fill in a low area or just a void. I don't care how good you are it happens. You can leave it with the customer and show them how to apply just for a simple void. Return visits add up to loss of time and money. You have all the bennys of epoxy grout but no mixing and easier clean up and similar price points. win-win Again not referring to commercial applications.

PCS will still be my goto with the SpectraLock 1 occasionally for a floor if it proves to be a trusted premixed which only in time can we tell. My nerves were damaged years ago lifting having slabs on my hands so ease of application of grout is critical to my future. I tried Fusion and Mapei's premixed and imo they were not for me because they were taxing to spread. Plasma came out and was too easy, it was junk.

Spec 1 seems to be a happy medium and doesn't hurt my hands. To each their own, I am sure some swear by those premixed other brands. That's the great thing about it you can use whatever works for you, mix and match different colors. The Frankengueuze System will live on forever because they work, as long as they are installed correctly.

I can never be accused of not trying different products I have been to many different manufactures to try out their products and have tried many on the job. I use what works best for me just like the rest of you. We all have an opinion and there is no right or wrong what works for you is the best for you.
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Unread 05-12-2020, 12:54 PM   #37
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The points the pros make are well understood!

However, it seems from a homeowner's perspective, us folks might be served best by sticking to the original formula. You get the actual proven epoxy performance at what seems a slightly better price. I've often mixed smaller amounts and had no problems weighing them out. Never had color inconsistencies either. Thus, my waste has been minimal.
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Unread 07-02-2020, 12:14 PM   #38
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Just used spectralock 1 on a backsplash for my kitchen. Have previously used spectra lock pro premium on a tub surround, vanity, and a couple other odd small projects.

For setting I found it easier to spread than epoxy, but really did have to work it into the joints with some gusto and from different directions to ensure good fill. I had 1/16" lines on a mosaic and it was easy to miss spots. I haven't had that issue with the spectra lock epoxy.

They say that the sand is the same as the spectralock epoxy, and it is in the color process. The aggregate is larger though, it leaves more of a traditional cementitious grout texture than the smoother fine grain of spectra lock pro premium. Could be a pro or con depending on what you're after. Would be excellent for shower floors.

My experience mirrors Jon's on clean up. Very easy to do, but still have to change water and sponges frequently like with epoxy. I would add to be very careful to your sponge wrung out well and apply no pressure on initial wash, just knock the haze loose on face of the tile (also make sure that haze is dry first, for me that was 13-15 minutes). It's really easy to pull grout out of the joints on that first wash if you apply just a hair too much pressure with the sponge, joints really look bad if you tool them on initial wash.
For second wash, make sure it's hard like Jon said. Light pressure in a circular motion with a white doodle pad tooled the joints just right. Wipe off final pass with microfiber towel going one direction.

Compared to the epoxy grouts I think this also holds a ton of positives for a DIYer. The main thing is unlimited working time. If you're just learning epoxy grout is damn stressful, if you don't have a helper for clean up on a bigger job it can quickly be a nightmare. The spectra lock 1 is low stress since you can always just throw the lid back on and come back to do more or if you're stuck working only sections of a job. In my case I used it on my kitchen because I'll be doing another kitchen this weekend with the same grout, it cost less using one tub of spectra lock 1 than 3 mini kits of pro premium epoxy.

Another example for a home owner (or pro) I could see setting a tile floor, grouting, then taking off a ledger to do first row on the wall later, and grouting the wall all with one bucket of spectra lock 1.
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Unread 07-03-2020, 07:28 AM   #39
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Good feedback!
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Unread 11-18-2020, 09:22 AM   #40
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spectralock 1 clean up experience

I realize this is an older post, but thought my recent experience might prove beneficial. I just completed a shower floor with a matte finish porcelain tile that meets the slip specs. First time I've used Spectralock 1.

It was fairly easy to use - similar to Mapei's CQ. On matte tile, however, it surface dries very quickly, and you cannot wait more than 5-10 minutes before first wash. Grout in joint seems to take quite a while to firm up - maybe near an hour. With matte tile, I felt I could not wait that long for second cleanup, or I'd never get it off the surface of the tile. Used wrung sponge again for second pass - no doodlebug required.

After cleaning with completely wrung sponge, no pickup evident, it was allowed to dry. Matte tile holds more moisture on it's surface after second clean than smooth tiles, of course. When completely dry, 'spotting' was evident. Not haze, in the traditional sense - no color to it. More of a clear stain, like someone forgot to wipe excess sealer off of the surface.

Next day, tried vinegar and doodlebug - no impact. Called Tech Services at Laticrete - got Mark. Told to try mineral spirits with doodlebug, then epozy haze remover. Mineral spirits had no effect.

Saw a post elsewhere about using lacquer thinner to remove epoxy grout haze. Tried it with doodlebug and it did the trick. Obviously, you don't flood the tile, but just dampen the doodlebug and scrub. Avoid the joints. Worked very well. I used Jasco.

With Mapei's Ultracolor FA being 5 out of 5 for all around performance - beyond great pot life, clean up ease, joint shaping consistency, color consistency, water insensitivity, set hardness, final appearance - I'd give Spectralock 1 a 3.5 out of 5. Used it because didn't want the hassle of epoxy in bathroom and shower. I'd use again, probably, simply due to ease of application and indefinite pot life in sealed bucket - that is, assuming it's performance as a 'epoxy-like' grout for intermittent wet areas proves to be true. But have some lacquer thinner on hand, as you may need it, especially with matte finish floor tile.
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