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Unread 05-20-2008, 09:05 AM   #1
Rajanpad
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Tiling On DITRA

Hi,

I'm a new DIY'er and just laid DITRA with Versabond (modified) thinset. I read that after I lay the tiles I have to wait a week (or more) to grout IF I laid the DITRA with a modified thinset. (The reason being the thinset will take that much time to dry through grout space to create strong bond)

My question is, can I wait a few days (say....2 or 3) before laying tiles so that the thinset will dry faster? My assumption is if I lay tiles and wait a week for the thinset to dry through grout space, why not give the thinset more area to dry faster?

I'd appreciate any help.

Raj
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Unread 05-20-2008, 09:20 AM   #2
jgleason
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Hi Raj,

I think you've got some things mixed up...

Ditra laid over plywood with Versabond is OK and the tile can be set right away if you want.

If you plan on laying the tile on the Ditra with Versabond it would be safest to wait several days before grouting. The concern is that the modified thinset (which needs air to dry) will take longer to set up between the Ditra and the tile. Grouting too soon would exacerbate the problem.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 09:36 AM   #3
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Hi Joe,

Thanks for the reply. Yer, I realize I did get things mixed up after reading your reply.

Let me clarify:

As per Schluter's instrcutions-

I laid DITRA on plywood using Versabond modified thinset.

I plan to lay tiles on DITRA with customblend un-modified thinset.

How long do I have to wait to grout?

Thanks,

Raj
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Unread 05-20-2008, 10:15 AM   #4
ddmoit
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Raj,

You should be able to grout the next day if you use an unmodified thinset.

You might want to consider upgrading to a better unmodified thinset though. Although VersaBond is well-regarded around here, Custom's unmodified thinsets are not. If you are near a Lowe's, you should be able to find Laticrete 317, Laticrete MegaBond, or Mapei's Kerabond. Any of those are fine choices. If you're really lucky, you might find a tile store nearby with Ditraset.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 10:24 AM   #5
jgleason
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What Dan said. Stay clear of the Customblend. You could use the Versabond for setting the tiles although it will void the Schluter warranty.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 10:44 AM   #6
Rajanpad
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Thanks guys.

Thank you, Joe/Dan. I will stay clear of customblend. No wonder it was so cheap (less than $5 per 50lb bag)

I'll let you know how things turned out.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 11:06 AM   #7
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I live in Staten Island, NY and just found out that there's a tile store that carries Ditraset. (Yahooo!!)
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Unread 05-20-2008, 12:40 PM   #8
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What sort of tile are you laying on the Ditra anyhow? Don't forget to use white thinset if you're laying marble etc.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 12:44 PM   #9
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Hi Tim,

I'm laying porcelain tiles (14x14).

btw, what is the recommended grout space for 14x14? Is it a personal choice or does grout size makes a difference in durability?

Raj
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Unread 05-20-2008, 12:51 PM   #10
ddmoit
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Raj,

I don't think durability is a concern when it comes to grout lines. These days, folks seem to want to get by with the thinnest grout lines possible. The key to having the smallest grout lines are having tiles that are perfectly square (rectified) and perfectly equal to one another in size. Tiles are rarely perfect, so larger grout lines help accommodate the imperfections of the tile (and the installer).

FYI... I think all Ditraset is white.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 01:54 PM   #11
ceramictec
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with the 14x14 I would stay around 1/4" or smaller.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 05:17 PM   #12
jadnashua
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Just to be fair, Custom's umodified thinsets meet the specs, and they do make several, but HD only carries their cheapest version with the minimum amount of cement in it.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 07:24 PM   #13
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i have had 2 jobs done with Custom's products where the product failed miserably when all else should have gone smooth.

Had a Custom rep come out to view the job for warantee...he agreed (but without coming out and fully admitting it) that the product failed. All they offered however in return for the botched job was a "sincere" appology, and a free bag of megalite....

I will NEVER use custom, and would highly suggest using cements with more cement in them.
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Unread 05-20-2008, 07:48 PM   #14
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I've used three of Custom's thinsets -

Masterblend - unmodified, dicontinued. Worked ok when I used it.

Versabond - modified. No issues, works great. Good value at $11-$13 per bag.

Flexbond - modified. No issues, I really liked working with it. $25 a bag, pricey.
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Unread 05-21-2008, 07:49 AM   #15
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Hi All,

Thank you all for your inputs.

Yesterday I had a shocker when I went home. I had installed DITRA on plywood using modified thinset (versabond) and, to my horror, there was one area where the DITRA didn't bond to the substrate. The back side of the DITRA was 'clean'.

I checked other areas and didn't find any. (thankfully)

Now this is a real concern for me. What would cause the DITRA not to stick to the substrate? The consistency of the thinset was the same throughout. I did run a rubber float over the area so I'm wondering if things will start coming apart on me on other areas.

I re-applied some thinset and (to my reliefe) there was no discernable bump or elevation on the floor.

Has anyone experienced this type of problem?

Raj
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