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Unread 12-02-2021, 09:17 AM   #1
branimal
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Tile layout for kitchen backsplash

I've been playing around with different layouts for my kitchen backsplash. After a few iterations it dawned on me that getting symmetry around the stainless steel range hood and chimney might be the most appealing look. The tile will be going to the top of the chimney.

The tile in question is 3"x12" 5/16" thick ceramic wavy subway tile. The instructions say NOT to overlap by more than 33% when using a brick pattern.

I put two tiles back to back and there's a bit of a bow in the tiles. See pic.
Can I get away with using a standard 1/2 overlap brick pattern? aka offset-joint or running bond.
This pattern gives me the most tile symmetry in the range hood section.

My other options are 33% offset staggered and 33% offset brick joint. I included a picture of all the patterns.

Also what trowel size is recommended for these tiles? I couldn't find anything definitive on the internet.
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Unread 12-02-2021, 09:26 AM   #2
cx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake
The instructions say NOT to overlap by more than 33% when using a brick pattern.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake
Can I get away with using a standard 1/2 overlap brick pattern? aka offset-joint or running bond.
This a trick question, Jake?

Of course you can use whatever pattern you want in your installation, but it seems the product manufacturer is trying to save you some grief and also save themselves from complaints because people might have unrealistic expectations about their tiles.

You want a 50% offset? Make a 50% offset. You end up with an unacceptable amount of lippage, that's no longer the tile manufacturer's problem.

Your application, your tile, your choice. Pretty simple, really.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 12-02-2021, 09:38 AM   #3
branimal
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Got it CX. I'll play around with the two 33% overlap patterns and see if I can get some uniformity.

Thanks.
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Unread 12-02-2021, 02:07 PM   #4
Gaga Sheri
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Jake,

I'm not a tile pro or a designer, so take my opinion for what it is.

I would straight stack that tile.
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Unread 12-02-2021, 06:01 PM   #5
smifwal
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I personally like the look of straight stacked it is very modern and it is a lot faster to lay this is a kitchen I did in my last flip house
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Unread 12-02-2021, 07:26 PM   #6
Nick Drake
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Set the tiles on a flat surface, look at how much higher the center of the tile is, if you do a brick pattern you will have that much lippage between tiles. We can't tell how much of a bow there is per tile when you have them quick clamped together

On the skinny long ceramic tiles like that its frequently excessive. I'm setting 3x12 on a shower right now and some tiles are 3/16" higher in the center, the things look like bananas.

Next consider your lighting, if you've got much light going straight down the wall (undercab lighting at the back of the cabinet carcass closest to wall) this is going to amplify the lippage. When i have seen people try to do a standard brick design on those tiles it usually looks poor unless there is zero cricital light.
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Unread 12-03-2021, 08:09 AM   #7
branimal
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@Gaga Sheri & @smifwal - I have considered the straight stack. It's definitely a modern style. Given how modern the kitchen currently is, I was hoping to bring a touch of classic style to my design. The subway tile pattern never gets old, at least IMHO.

@Nick Drake I did your lippage test, and it seems to be minimal. Maybe 1/16" in the worst case. But I only tested 10 tiles.

I played around with the 33% offset brick joint pattern. After many iterations in spreadsheet I figured out a pattern that doesn't leave small pieces in the range hood inset. The only small tiles (1 1/2") are inside the inset above the sink. And thats 2 tiles total (there are only 2 rows in the sink inset). And the inside corner to the left of the dishwasher. There will be 1 1/2" tiles there as well. Not a big deal as it will likely be covered by a countertop kitchen appliance.
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Unread 12-04-2021, 01:06 AM   #8
Tool Guy - Kg
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Not always, but tiles like yours that are bowed are more typically bowed where the middle of the tile is the "high spot" compared to the two ends.

1/16" difference looks pretty obvious with a 50% offset and lit with a low angle light, as found with most under-cabinet lights that are close to your wall. Are you using under-cabinet lights?

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