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Unread 05-31-2006, 11:46 AM   #1
Fractal
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uh oh... balcony

hey guys.

So now i'm working on my new balcony. i've put in the plywood deck, which is sloped in 3 directions such that the lines of the edges are level. i put ice and water shield over the plywood, then i put aluminum flashing around the posts. i put aluminum flashing to the plywood sheathing of the house, which goes up at least 6" against the wall, then the ice and water shield over that. the ice and water shield goes up actualy a couple feet, since i figured, why cut it.

then i have metal lath over the ice and water shield.

my plan was to first pour a layer of cement 1" thick or so, similar to a shower bed, with very dry mix, and latex admixture. to add more strength around the edges, i hae been planning to add more layers of lath.

but just for safety, i came on here and looked around to see what there is to see, and i came across the article with all the ditra and kerdi etc, and now i'm questioning what i have done up to this point... is what i have put in so far okay? it all drains to the outer edge, where there is right now a piece of L shaped drip cap all around the edge, that the ice and water shield is on top of.

if i'm right so far, then shall i proceed by putting 1" of mud, a more serious waterproofing layer, then another 1" of mud? or what?

-Dave

(ps i know i probably should not put aluminum on treated lumber. hm.
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Unread 05-31-2006, 11:59 AM   #2
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Roofing nails

Did you puncture the Ice shield with the roofing nails?

Schluter has some wonderful products for balconies!!!!!!
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Unread 05-31-2006, 12:13 PM   #3
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no roofing nails penetrate all the way through. i'm not sure if there even are any in the nailing strip. there probably are. (that's where the 33" wide roll overlaps by 6")

ok but i was expecting this would make a good waterproofing membrane to protect the plywood at least when i pour the cement. now my worry is when water gets under the terra cotta tiles and doesn't drain fast enough for a freeze.
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Unread 05-31-2006, 12:25 PM   #4
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How Far?

Project in N.Y.? Lots of frost/freeze issues going on there! There is a very good thread for this as a starter - research;school me on tenting. Very good posting on expansion/contraction. Exterior application puts the project in whole other realm. Read thread first and I believe there are alot of specialists around that will be right with you.

Terra cotta can hold alot of moisture. Might want to research technical data on grouts and adherents, membranes and sealants!!!

TECH PLEASE!!!!!
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Unread 05-31-2006, 01:39 PM   #5
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i saw one thread which had a link to the schluter system, but the pics on their website don't address the rail posts.

do you have a particular link for me to look at?

-Dave
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Unread 05-31-2006, 01:56 PM   #6
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Look under balcony

www.schluter.com/ Rail posts meaning?
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Unread 05-31-2006, 04:38 PM   #7
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rail posts meaning those 4x4 wooden posts protruding through the floor of the balcony
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Unread 05-31-2006, 04:58 PM   #8
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Dave I got bad news. You need to consider reselecting those tile. Anything that will hold water (most things except porcelain & some stones) will blow apart or crack when it freezes.

The nails penetrate your shield even if they don't penetrate the plywood, so you're right that it's more of a temporary moisture resister & maybe we can call it an antifracture layer too. You need full blown waterproofing like that layer wasn't there at all.
If this is not over living area, I might go with 1 layer of 1 1/2" mud followed by Dirtra or Nobledeck with all the seams waterproofed & flashed up the wall & Schluter Bara trims for the edges (they can tie into the waterproofing layer like regular flashing can't). And switch to a porcelain tile that looks exactly like your terra cotta tiles, but is freeze/thaw stable.

If it is over living area, I would go with the full blown Bekotec system for exterior balconies from Schluter. Here is a link to their balcony assembly brochure in pdf form. It shows both systems I described.
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Unread 05-31-2006, 04:58 PM   #9
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Rail posts

SO, by that reply I assume that you are not going with the cantilevered look of insetting the railposts say 4-6 inches from the lip of the balcony. (obviously because there is no structure in place to do that now with the beginings of a substrate already in place) Instead there is some type of system you are anchoring the rail posts to the very edge of the balcony? Explain this to me.
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Unread 05-31-2006, 05:59 PM   #10
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The posts are where they are. He's not going to move them.

I'm with Tom. Right now you have no waterproofing. I did do a balcony a couple years ago on which I used wide galvanized drip edge in place of the Schluter edging. I bridged from the Ditra to the metal with Kerdi-band. Yeah, I used Versabond, and I think it worked. The tiles were 12x12 porcelain.

I flashed around the posts with Kerdi-band (siliconed the Kerdi to the metal posts, but wood posts would work the same way -- silicone). You can bring the Kerdi up an inch or two out of the floor and paint it along with the post. (No, you won't find that one in the Ditra Handbook.)
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Unread 05-31-2006, 06:21 PM   #11
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Balconies, top of the list of installations that scare the hell out of me!

There are lots of good methods and products to waterproof and install this, however no one asked, and nothing was offered about the structure here.

Is it sufficient to carry the weight of a tile installation, plus live and dead load? How is it attached to the structure? What is the orientation of this deck? A south facing deck has much more thermal movement than a north facing deck. Better be clear on this before you go any further, or get an opinion from an engineer.

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Unread 05-31-2006, 07:15 PM   #12
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not waterproofed

ok good. so lets talk action steps here... does that mean i can now pour my pre-slope cement layer? i'm thinking it will be done in a similar way to a tile shower?

i have not chosen any tiles at all yet. i want something that isn't slippery.

ought i invest in any kind of electric snow melting wire for this floor? if so, will that go in this layer of cement?

the edge will have some kind of bullnose tile going over it and it will have a gutter around the entire periphery.

so... with what is down now, am i ready for that layer of cement?

-Dave
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Unread 05-31-2006, 07:17 PM   #13
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Very thorough

Tile's scary band of gentlemen.......

Scare ya right out of it won't they?

Yes, all VERY, VERY , VERY valid issues!

And I do believe I mentioned BEGINNING OF A SUBSTRATE.
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Unread 06-01-2006, 07:27 AM   #14
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the go-ahead

Tom,

This balcony is not over a living area. but it butts up against the house. right now there is aluminum flashing and ice and water shield to flash the "bottom layer" I'm glad i haven't chosen the tiles yet. :-)

ok but i want the go-ahead... is there anything i need to do or change right now on the balcony floor. the only single thing i can think of is that the floor is 18' x 7 and has a slope with a triangle on either side, creating what might be a good place for the cement to crack.

perhaps more mesh along those lines... but other than that... do i have the goahead from the crew to put in my first inch of mud? i want to cover up the ice and water shield and be able to walk around on this thing...

-Dave
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Unread 06-04-2006, 11:57 AM   #15
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awaiting responses?

hi...

its been a few days and nobody has told me if i can pour the first inch of cement on this as it is or if i have to make any changes... please let me knowww...

-Dave
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