Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile

Welcome to John Bridge / Tile Your World, the friendliest DIY Forum on the Internet


Advertiser Directory
JohnBridge.com Home
Buy John Bridge's Books

Go Back   Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile > Tile & Stone Forums > Tile Forum/Advice Board

Sponsors


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 09-01-2011, 07:57 AM   #1
Wagmaster
Registered User
 
Wagmaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 19
Basement project

Hello,

I'm in the process of finishing out my 2k sf. basement (which is 5-6 ft below grade at the front and daylight walkout at the back), and have a few questions for the experts.

There's a small toilet/shower room (about 5x7) in which I'll be framing a short wall and curb, and most likely a bench at the back of the shower. For my sole plates I'll be using the Blue Borate lumber over a foam isolating strip. I'll probably secure the Framed walls to the slab with Hilti nails. This will be a Kerdi install. I have mocked this up in Sketchup and will post pics soon.

My first question is: can I construct my curb from lumber, or do I have to use brick? I think between the foam isolater between the framing and slab, and the visquene barrier over gravel under the slab should negate the possibility of any moisture wicking in from below.

Question 2: Is there a preferred method of securing framing to slab for shower installs? I'm not a big fan of the square cut nails. They just seem to mangle things up. That's why I was just going to rent/borrow a Hilti gun.

Question 3: I'll be installing wood floors in about half of the finished area, so I'll be using Delta FL under 3/4" T&G OSB in those areas. I'll need to build up my tiled areas to match the height of my wood floors. While going over possible solutions, it was suggested that I thin-set Durock (either 1/2 or 5/8 depending on height needed) to the slab, and then proceeed with my Ditra install. Will the Durock provide a suitable substrate directly over the slab?

Thanks in advance for your advice - I'm sure there'll be more questions as I go forward.

Background info: I have a copy of Tile Your World, The Kerdi Shower Book, and the Schluter Ditra Installation guide. I've done the 2 showers upstairs in Kerdi a few years ago when building, and have used Ditra under every piece of floor tile in the house. Very happy.

Best Regards, Dana
__________________
Dana

末This post certified 100% Orc-free末
Wagmaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old 09-01-2011, 08:31 AM   #2
cx
Da Home Builder
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 85,703
Welcome back, Dana.

1. If you're sure you have no water vapor emission problems with your slab, making wood-framed curbs is OK. I've done it for years. If in doubt, don't. Use some sort of CMU (bricks, blocks, etc) instead.

2. If by "Hilti gun" you mean a powder-actuated nailing tool, that would generally be my first choice. You can also use screws such as Tapcons.

3. You'll hear it time and time again hereabouts: Read and follow the installation instructions for the products you intend to use. If you can find an instruction in USG's published literature that indicates the procedure for installing Durock on a concrete slab, follow that. And post a link to it here on accounta you'll find you're the first one's ever seen it.

Seriously, I know of no manufacturer of CBU that permits that installation. There are a couple of foam board manufacturers who do, though. Wedi is one.

I'd recommend you use a bonded mud bed of a minimum 3/4" thickness to raise the floor if necessary.

But let me first vote against installing plywood over a concrete slab for a floor installation. I'd recommend you at least do a rudimentary water vapor emissions test before you commit to that. Just tape a two-foot square of six mil poly onto your bare slab with duct tape and leave it for at least 48 hours (72 preferred) to see if there is any visible moisture apparent.

If the slab is really dry, you can likely just glue your wood flooring directly to it if that's an approved application for the flooring you have in mind. That's gotten to be a pretty common installation method in my part of the country. But the slab must be dry!

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-01-2011, 10:06 AM   #3
Wagmaster
Registered User
 
Wagmaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 19
Quote:
But let me first vote against installing plywood over a concrete slab for a floor installation.
That's where the Delta FL comes in. It raises everything (subfloor and all) about .25" off the slab, and allows for air circulation under the install. I've looked at all the products - Dri-core, Platon, Delta-FL, etc. I chose Delta because it comes in a roll and can be shipped UPS, and doesn't have to be "Special ordered" from the Big Box.

Here's a link in case you've never seen it before...
http://www.cosella-dorken.com/bvf-ca...roducts/fl.php

Quote:
Read and follow the installation instructions for the products you intend to use. If you can find an instruction in USG's published literature that indicates the procedure for installing Durock on a concrete slab, follow that.
I'll let you know how that search goes :-D
I was afraid of the Mud Bed answer, since we're probably talking about 800 or more Square feet that needs to be raised up.

EDIT:
Quote:
Seriously, I know of no manufacturer of CBU that permits that installation. There are a couple of foam board manufacturers who do, though. Wedi is one.
Seriously? A foam board over slab that you can use as a subflooring??? How does the cost stack up versus a traditional mud buildup?
__________________
Dana

末This post certified 100% Orc-free末

Last edited by Wagmaster; 09-01-2011 at 10:13 AM.
Wagmaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-01-2011, 10:43 AM   #4
cx
Da Home Builder
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 85,703
The Delta FL sounds good so long as a fella doesn't plan to poke a lot of holes in it to secure his plywood. I think you'll find that stuff is geared more toward floating engineered flooring. And for that it might work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dana
Seriously? A foam board over slab that you can use as a subflooring??? How does the cost stack up versus a traditional mud buildup?
The foam board would not be subflooring, it would be a tiling substrate, and yes, foam boards work in that application.

The cost difference between that and deck mud would be rather dramatic.

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2016, 09:55 AM   #5
Wagmaster
Registered User
 
Wagmaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 19
Deck Mud Problem

Greetings!

Im building a Kerdi shower in my basement, and I'm having an issue with my deck mud. I mixed it and installed it, following the Liberry guides, and thought everything was fine (see pic). I was all smug and proud of myself. Then the next day i noticed a lot of soft, sandy spots, and other areas that sounded "hollow" when lightly tapped with a metal object. Of course, there was loose sand in those spots, that was easy dug out with a finger.

From what I've read here and on other forums, I'm concluding that I mixed too much at a time, and did not get it set and compacted quickly enough. Or it was too dry a mix, or not thoroughly mixed enough with the water.

Ive torn the majority of the bed out (possibly an over-reaction) and at this point I'm left with some pretty solid areas (coincidently, the areas I laid down first), and I'm wondering if I can use this as a starting point for rebuilding, or whether I should just rip all of it out and start fresh.

Obviously, the area around the Kerdi drain is not coming out, but i thought about shaving it down about a 1/2" under the rim to get a solid layer of new mud under it.

If I can keep the current bed (as shown in pic) can I just pack new mud on top of it, or do I need some thinset combed around to help it stick? Any other advice?

Also, when I go back into this, can I work with smaller areas and just keep adding fresh mud to adjoining areas as I go? I'm too slow at this to do the entire shower in less than an hour...

Thanks much in advance for any help!
Attached Images
  
__________________
Dana

末This post certified 100% Orc-free末
Wagmaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2016, 10:36 AM   #6
Lazarus
Texas Tile Contractor
 
Lazarus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Beaumont, Texas
Posts: 7,462
From the looks of the second picture, seems like you used some thinset to bond the floor mud...but in the areas where the mud came up, I see no "bonding" thinset on the floor. Could this be why some areas did not bond?
__________________
Laz...

"Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea."
Lazarus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2016, 11:25 AM   #7
Wagmaster
Registered User
 
Wagmaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 19
I'm pretty sure that bonding to the floor was not so much the issue as was the mud bonding to itself. There were plenty of areas with thinset underneath, where my deck mud was crumbly and sandy.
__________________
Dana

末This post certified 100% Orc-free末
Wagmaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2016, 11:59 AM   #8
cx
Da Home Builder
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 85,703
Welcome back, Dana. Same basement project from five years ago?

Take out that deck mud and start over. Mud's cheap.

When you apply thinset mortar to the concrete substrate for a bonded mortar bed, you want to apply a slurry of the mortar and your mud must go down while the slurry is still wet.

Yes, when placing the deck mud it's acceptable to keep adding smaller batches and continue forming the fresh mud on your way out of the shower. I do that regularly with larger showers as I work alone 99 percent of the time.

The Bucket Mortar Mixer is a wonderful tool for the purpose as you can mix all your deck mud dry and stage your buckets near the work area and just add pre-measured water and stir when you need more mud.

Name:  Bucket Mixer.jpeg
Views: 199
Size:  22.1 KB

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2016, 02:16 PM   #9
Wagmaster
Registered User
 
Wagmaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 19
Hi CX! Yeah, It's been a while. Same project – I tend to do as much research as possible early in, so I kinda know where I'm headed. Its a huge project – around 2000 sq ft., and its really being done up with lots of architectural details, and custom elements, and I'm doing virtually everything myself. I often hit a wall and take a break from the project to get my steam back. I'm down to flooring, tile, and finish paint. The home stretch!

Back to the mud bed...

What do you mean exactly by "a slurry of the mortar"? Do you mean Thinset thats mixed a bit loose? or are you talking about thinned-out deck mud on top of the raked thinset?

Can I keep the middle section of mud surrounding the Kerdi Drain? That is really solid and is not going anywhere... As I mentioned before, I thought about shaving off the top 1/2" or so to allow packing some new deck mud under the flange...

I have one of those paddle mixers that I use for mixing drywall mud and thinset – I'm assuming the type of mixing tool is relatively trivial, as long as the stuff gets evenly wet in a reasonably short period of time?

Thanks Again!
Attached Images
 
__________________
Dana

末This post certified 100% Orc-free末
Wagmaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2016, 04:25 PM   #10
cx
Da Home Builder
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 85,703
Yeah, a thick soup of pure Portland cement or thinset mortar will do. The thinset mortar will remain wet longer than the Portland.

You do not wanna try mixing deck mud with that paddle mixer. Your mud would need to be much, much too wet for that to work at all. I've never encountered anything that would mix deck mud in a bucket successfully until that Bucket Mortar Mixer came along.

My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2016, 06:14 PM   #11
Lazarus
Texas Tile Contractor
 
Lazarus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Beaumont, Texas
Posts: 7,462
Yeah, that "paddle mixer" is designed for drywall mud. Minimum is a four wire mixer. Best is a spiral mixer....Lowe's usually has them. (For thinset...although I've used the spiral mixer for deck mud)

As CX mentioned. the "Bucket Mixer" is really the best for that application.
__________________
Laz...

"Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea."
Lazarus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2016, 04:08 PM   #12
Wagmaster
Registered User
 
Wagmaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 19
Fancy! and pricey... :-p

For a one-time job, it doesn't seem worth the investment. I may just clean up my mess and let my tile man re-do the shower deck, when he comes to spread deck-mud for my other tiled areas...

I don't think that mud and I are destined to become best of pals... ;-)

Appreciate all the great advice, however!

An interesting side note - most "pro" tile guys I've talked to hate messing with Kerdi. I've already installed it in two showers in my home - this basement shower will make 3. I've got nothing bad to say about it. They claim its "a pain in the ass" and one fella said "junk". LOL.

Far as I know, most folks here are big fans. What gives?

Anywhoosits, it looks like I'm going to be installing the Kerdi yet again, to make my shower tile-ready for the installers.

PS: I'm pretty convinced my problem with the mud was that it took too long to set it - I mixed too much and it sat too long before installing. The first areas that I put down, I'm having a hell of a time getting it back up. :-)
__________________
Dana

末This post certified 100% Orc-free末
Wagmaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2016, 05:52 PM   #13
Houston Remodeler
Pondering retirement daily

STAR Senior Contributor

 
Houston Remodeler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Houston Texas
Posts: 27,819
Getting old dogs to learn something new is a tough row to hoe for Schluter or any manufacturer. New materials, new techniques, new anything seems to bother some folks. You wouldn't want that quality in your dentist or auto mechanic would you ? Why accept it in your contractor ?

Kerdi has only been around for 35 years. Maybe it will catch on some day.
__________________
Paul1

For when DIY isn't such a good idea...
Houston TX area Kitchen & Bath Remodeling


http://CabotAndRowe.com
Houston Remodeler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2016, 05:53 PM   #14
rmckee84
Moderator
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Southern Illinois
Posts: 2,575
The guys that say Kerdi is junk are probably the same guys that use mastic over drywall in showers or fail to use preslope when necessary, then claim they've never had a call back in 20 years....there is nothing wrong with Kerdi. There are lots of good products out there and it comes down to price point and what you're comfortable with.
__________________
Jack of most trades, master of none...
Ryan McKee
McKee Construction & Custom Tile
rmckee84 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2016, 06:55 AM   #15
Wagmaster
Registered User
 
Wagmaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 19
I wanted to get to the bottom of the issue with my tile man's aversion to Kerdi. Here's what he said:

"I am against the use of the Kerdi system. Especially when using a small format tile. Adherence is a real problem. We prefer Durock with Redgard as our substrate."

I'm sorry, but this sounds like horse hockey to me... I suppose if someone were to use a modified thinset, it may not bond properly. Is it likely that he just doesn't know how to install it? I have two Kerdi showers that have been in use for 7+ years, and theres no loose tiles.

This is also the same fella that suggested i build up my floor height with sheets of Durock under Ditra - instead of using deck mud.

I'm guessing someone will tell me its time to find a new man for the job...? ;-)
__________________
Dana

末This post certified 100% Orc-free末
Wagmaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Stonetooling.com   Tile-Assn.com   National Gypsum Permabase


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Basement Project jbs Tile Forum/Advice Board 10 01-09-2010 11:16 PM
Basement project ? malonja Tile Forum/Advice Board 8 09-25-2007 10:47 AM
Basement Shower Project Dbarkley Tile Forum/Advice Board 1 03-30-2007 02:46 PM
Charlie's basement project CharlieM Tile Forum/Advice Board 34 01-06-2007 08:52 AM
Basement project Crimson Ghost Tile Forum/Advice Board 2 02-14-2006 08:26 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:25 PM.


Sponsors

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2018 John Bridge & Associates, LLC