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Unread 05-29-2016, 09:51 AM   #1
KeithM
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Epoxy grout depth?

Keith in Frisco, TX here. Hello all and thanks in advance for any advice!

I just finished building my wife's dream shower and on to tiling now. I'm going to use spectra pro epoxy. The redgard path and shower floor will be black pebble, thus requiring massive amounts of grout. I was thinking of setting and building up around the stones with Custom's large stone/tile mortar to cut down on the amount of grout I'll need. It can be used for thin setting or as a medium bed up to 3/4".

My question is, how much depth do I need to leave for the grout? The only info I've found is for regrouting and states I need to remove old to a depth of at least half the value of the joint width. Obviously, this doesn't apply here. Anyone have some experience that could help here?
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Unread 05-29-2016, 09:53 AM   #2
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Another pic...
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Unread 05-29-2016, 09:53 AM   #3
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And another...
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Unread 05-29-2016, 02:14 PM   #4
BennyBen
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If you go with epoxy grout you should grout what is already done and grout a piece of your stone apart.

Sometime epoxy change the look of the stones and people doesnt like that.

I install most most of the pebbles with a 3/16x1/4 vnotch trowel.

If you want to build up the grout joint with thinset to save on epoxy thats a bad idea. Youll have lot of thinset to clean and after you grout, youll need to deal with all the grey thinset spot.
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Unread 05-29-2016, 02:28 PM   #5
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Your job look great. Do it right and avoid headache trying to clean thinset sourring by epoxy. You could scratch some stone too. You wont save anything at the end.
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Unread 05-30-2016, 05:03 AM   #6
Raidthefridgeguy
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The stones will use a lot of epoxy. It is just the way it is. I would suggest a silicone float so that your starting point is as close to where you want to end as it can be. The silicone float bends around the stones and scrapes the soft epoxy making it easy to shape. You will also go through a fair bit of water and scrub pads. Good luck!
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Unread 05-30-2016, 11:55 AM   #7
KeithM
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Thanks for the tips. Looks like I'll just need lots of epoxy and a silicone float. I still don't have a product for sealing the stones if you guys have a favorite. I started this bathroom two years ago and am sooooooooo excited to see it finally coming together!
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Unread 07-03-2016, 02:41 PM   #8
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Ouch!

Well, the tile is looking great, but I just estimated and priced the amount of Spectralock I would need. Sooooooooooo much money!!!!

I was pretty sold on Spectralock, but now that I'm considering alternatives I have no clue. Is there a reasonable alternative or should I eat the Spectralock cost? I've been reading for days and that's just confused me further.

Urethane? Edited to clarify that by "Urethane", I'm referring to all the single component stain resistant offerings, whatever they're actually made of. I read horror stories of moisture ruining the grout and long cute times. I have the luxury of allowing any amount of cure time and being able to grout twice on the stones to make up for the shrinkage.

I've done plenty of DIY grouting with regular cement grout. It's cheap and easy, but I was trying to avoid the red oculus maintenance, ESPECIALLY in the shower!

Kinda overwhelmed here, but after working by myself for over two years on this massive project, I'm so afraid of making a mistake in the home stretch. Thanks for any insight you can give a non pro like myself who still expects pro results.
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Unread 07-03-2016, 11:34 PM   #9
Steve in Denver
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The epoxy grout is expensive, but have you priced it online? I have bought from (I think) Stone Tooling before. I just checked, and a commercial unit of the part A and B liquids (not including the part C colorant / powder) is $150. A commercial unit is 4 full units, each of which is 4 mini-units...so it's quite a bit. But, as I understand, pebbles do eat grout.
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Unread 07-04-2016, 10:41 PM   #10
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Keith, that looks awesome. Looks like you took a lot of time setting up your tiles with the numbering system and the curves. I'm using the pebbles in my shower floor and will use Spectralock and I heard it will indeed use more. But I've heard that is really good especially in the shower.

Please post pictures when you are done. I really would like to see it.

Thanks.
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Unread 07-05-2016, 01:58 AM   #11
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Your shower definetly look great.

Before you go with an epoxy grout, try to find a place where pebbles was grout with epoxy. If you like than go ahead. I did few job with that on pebbles and most people didnt like how it look fake after.

If you go with cement grout, use quality one like ultracolor, permacolor, prism...

I missed your post about sealer. Use a prenium one (aquamix sealer choice gold, miracle 511 pourous plus,...) Pebbles are porous so you will always have maintenance to do anyway.

Let me see if one of my customer can send me a picture where i grouted pebbles with epoxy. Ill post it here.
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Unread 07-05-2016, 05:59 AM   #12
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I don't know why anyone still uses/recommends cement-based grout anymore (except when price is a major factor) when there are superior products available. Especially for someone who is not a pro and who is doing their own home where high quality and durability trumps low price.

Use either the epoxy or acrylic grout and you don't need to worry about messing up the "water to product ratio" or sealing. They come either premixed or have pre-measured components. And they are more forgiving regarding cleanup mistakes. IMO. I used the SpectraLock on my pebble shower floor and I liked that it left the stones with a "wet look" (although additional cleaning would have removed that residue).

Either the SpecraLock or FlexiColor CQ would be my first choice.

-Jut the opinion of a DIYer.
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Unread 07-05-2016, 08:37 AM   #13
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I still use it and recommend it. Understand and believe the benefits of epoxy, the others not so much, especially on pebbles.
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Unread 07-05-2016, 08:46 AM   #14
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Steve, thanks for the tip! I did find the commercial kit on their site for $150, which is dirt cheap compared to what I thought I would pay.

Ben, I would definitely like to see that pic if you get it and appreciate the sealer recommendation.

I just tiles the curved bench and shower interior. I'll post pics when I get some free time.
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