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Unread 08-30-2007, 08:44 PM   #1
H-man1
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Marble Countertop Questions--Verde Amazonia

Okay, so I've laid the 1,000 square foot of slate upstairs at my wife's new shop (everyone comments on how fantastic it looks, so thanks, guys), and now it's almost time to move on to installing the marble tiles she picked out for the coffee bar top and checkout counter.

I keep reading about how "oriental green" marble tile can curl if ordinary modified thinset is used. We used versabond exclusively on the previous install, and I'm gettin a pretty good feel for working with this thinset--I like it quite a lot. Can someone tell me if this "Verde Amazonia" marble is prone to curl such that I will need to hunt down an expensive epoxy thinset?

For some additional details, I am building the cabinets, so there will be plenty of support built in. The substrate for the tiles will be 3/4" plywood with cement board or Ditra on top of that (I have almost a full roll left over from the slate floor). Do I need more than 3/4" ply substrate? When I built my cabinets here at my house, I used two layers of 3/4" plywood due to someone's recommendation here, but that seems like real overkill. I don't mind building something right, but overengineering for the sake of overengineering doesn't sit really well with me on this project . . . we've got a tight time schedule to keep, and I'm moving right along!

Oh yeah, I promise I'll be using 1/16" gaps and will be grouting with Spectralock.

Thanks for all the help!

Homer
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Unread 08-31-2007, 03:17 PM   #2
Davestone
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Verde Amazonia in general is a granite and isn't prone to warping, now i can't guarantee what you have is granite, so you may want to test it and prove it's granite,can you scratch it with a knife, and does vinegar take the polish off,if you say no to both questions it's probably granite.Now as far as the plywood, 3/4" should be fine, but sometimes you may want the extra thickness for the overhang, it gives it more of a slab look to have the 11/2" thickness.
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Unread 09-01-2007, 03:50 AM   #3
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Thanks, Dave. Can you clarify whether you were commenting on verde amazonia marble or granite? I have the marble--cream base with read and green veins--and your comment says granite.
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Unread 09-04-2007, 08:11 AM   #4
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Okay, I'm getting nowhere fast with this thread, so I thought I'd do a little looking to see if the name I bought this under was the most common name. It appears that the more common name for this marble is "Rainforest." I have attached a picture of this below so that you can see what I am getting ready to work with. If this is prone to curl, where do I need to go to get the epoxy thinset?
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Unread 09-04-2007, 08:58 AM   #5
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Hopefully someone will find this thread helpful at some point in the future, otherwise I'm just having a dialogue with myself here.

From what I have searched out, this Rainforest marble is a highly dolomitic serpentine stone. While the stone is scratch and acid resistant, it is water sensitive, so I will be using Henry's Customflex Marble and Granite fast setting thinset, available at Lowes, to set the tile. It is guaranteed not to curl water sensitive marbles. Apparently, Custom's similar product is Opticure. I don't know if HD carries it or not.

I have Miracle's penetrating impregnator that I used on my slate upstairs. Is there any reason not to use this on the marble?

Wish me luck.
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Unread 09-04-2007, 09:03 AM   #6
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Good luck, Homer!

I think a lot of people took the holiday weekend off from the forum. I know other's have used this stone and will give you some feedback soon!
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Unread 09-04-2007, 12:52 PM   #7
H-man1
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Thanks! When I found out the more common name, this thread popped up from the search: http://johnbridge.com/vbulletin/show...ght=rainforest.

It looks like my old standby--versabond--will work well in this application. That should save me some bank here, and I'm very familiar with its properties, after laying 1,000 square foot of slate with the stuff over the past several weekends.
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Unread 09-04-2007, 01:03 PM   #8
Brian in San Diego
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Homer,

I used Custom's Marble & Grainte to install rainforest marble in a backsplash, but the largest pieces were 3x3, so I don't think I can vouch for the warping problems. I think you'd be safe with the versabond, but you may want to consider the M&G because it's a medium bed mortar. It has more sand in it to prevent the tiles from "sinking" after they are set. You may be OK with Versabond with 12x12 and smaller, but I have just enough perfectionist in me that I would use M&G to make sure I didn't walk away from a perfectly set countertop only to find a tile had settled after I set it.

Brian
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Unread 09-04-2007, 01:20 PM   #9
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Thanks, Brian. The tiles aren't that heavy, compared to the slate tiles I just set using the versabond. Plus, I really disliked working with Custom's M&G the last time I used it . . . it just wasn't sticky enough, and would fall off the back of tiles that I was backbuttering. If Trask can set identical 12x12 tiles in a floor with versabond (see my link above), I should be able to do the same for the countertop.

Does anyone have a recommendation on my sealer comment? I have Miracle's Stone Enhancer or its Penetrating Sealer that I have used on other projects. Any reason not to use it on this project?
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