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Old 01-22-2018, 05:43 PM   #16
jadnashua
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Most of the mortar manufacturers have some good products. Often, they're in various classes, from okay, good, better, best depending on what you're trying to accomplish. For example, using thinset underneath cbu on the floor, almost anything will work, so why spend a lot of money on it. That cheapest commodity material may have trouble holding a tile up, though, especially if the conditions are difficult. You may need the best thinset available if you are in a freeze/thaw, dry/wet, bright sun/deep shade, heavy traffic situation.

Certain situations call for at least some minimum capabilities. You can get an idea of those by comparing their ANSI specs...the higher the dash number, the higher the capabilities. You can always use a more capable one, but if the situation calls for at least a certain one, you should never go lower. In general, the higher the dash number, the more expensive, but even within the same spec materials, they have differences in their characteristics where some may end up smoother, have different pot times, have different anti-sag characteristics, and their ability to hold up a larger tile.
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Old 01-22-2018, 06:18 PM   #17
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Thanks Jim,

To be honest, I've seen the specs but never really looked at them. Matched them up a few times to make sure that if one material required a mortar of a particular spec that the mortar met it but I've not tried to figure out what the different specs mean.

Good time for that info though. Printed off the data sheets for three of Custom's unmodified thinsets this afternoon. Just got done perusing them and they certainly don't make it clear why one is better than the other. All three meet A118.1 when mixed with water and A118.4 and A118.11 when mixed with Admix so......

The PremiumPlus specifically mentioned uncoupling mats and membranes so I'm planning on that (assuming they stock it). Bathroom is small so cost isn't really a factor. Just want to do it once.
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Old 01-22-2018, 07:13 PM   #18
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And this is why itís time

Found this when I cut into the wall behind the shower valve. Sheetrock. Iíd guess no waterproofing. Though the tile is still attached firmly, itís obviously been wet.
Attached Images
  
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Old 01-22-2018, 09:24 PM   #19
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All Wrong!!

Well based on materials on hand, it looks like the shower will be constructed as:

Hardibacker on studs
Redgard waterproofing
Custom ProLite Premium large format tile (A118.15TE)

Apparently not everything will stick to the Redgard and this is an in-stock that will. Added bonus - extended working time and low sag on vertical surfaces!

So other than trying to fasten the hateful hardibacker to the studs, it seems doable......oh yeah. Still have to pick the pan system. Not sure why Schluter hasn't seemed to embrace the 36x48 size yet. This part may be an amazon purchase.
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Old 01-22-2018, 09:41 PM   #20
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The data safety sheets can sometimes lend an idea of what the differences are between one mortar and another. For example, the amount of actual cement in the product makes a difference. The size of the cement particles and aggregate (often a sand, but not necessarily all of it) will make a difference in how smooth the mixture will be, and smaller particles usually mean better chance of mixing (or separating, if overwatered!), which can make things stronger since you tend to get a more homogenous mix.

So, while not always true, in general, the more you spend, the more capable the product, even within the same class. Most of the pros will have their favorite which may be partly on what is available in there area, what their preferred distributor is, and the price point.
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Old 01-23-2018, 05:27 AM   #21
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Jim,

Thanks for the info. That all makes sense to me though to be honest, I don't see that level of detail in the tech sheets from Custom. They do list the ANSI standard and make some comments regarding specific application. Initially, I wanted to use the Megalite because it met the ANSI 118.15 which seems to be required with the RedGard. At $40/bag, I figured it must be [u]good[u] stuff. However, it's not available locally which is how I worked my way down to the ProLite Premium which appears to meet the same standard. Both are actually 118.15TE. At $25/bag, I save some money which isn't important as small as this project is but it does leave me in the dark as to the difference between the products. I don't want to ponder insignificant differences that novices like me won't notice (workability for example - won't matter as I fumble and drop the trowel!) but if there's a difference that affects the quality/ease of installation or long term durability, I want that clear in the tech sheets. It isn't.

Either way, as long as the combination doesn't throw up a red flag to someone here, it seems to be a compatible pairing.

I am however switching to Wonderboard rather than Hardibacker. Further evaluation seems to indicate that single swap may move me into a warranty installation.
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Old 01-23-2018, 07:47 AM   #22
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Pre-formed shower pan

Reading through the info from Laticrete on their shower pan. Under the section - Limitations; When installing tile less than 2" x 2", the installation must be grouted using Spectralock Pro Premium Grout.

Any thoughts on why (other than they like selling the product) or experience in an equivalent?
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Old 01-26-2018, 07:23 AM   #23
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USG Durock for the win

Considering factors of installation ease, availability, drain grate options, and cost, It appears to be the clear choice.
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Old 02-02-2018, 04:34 PM   #24
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Why oh why?

Demo has begun on the bathroom walls. As suspected, liquid nails seems to be the material of choice for sticking tile. Sure the tile comes off easy enough but it sure doesn't leave much chance of cleaning up the existing drywall.
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Old 02-02-2018, 04:45 PM   #25
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That size and grout requirement is not solely a Laticrete thing...Wedi has that, too. The issue is a point load on the foam pan. If you use cement based grout, the actual bonding together of the tile isn't as strong as it is with epoxy grout. When using epoxy, in some cases, you would break the tile before the epoxy bond would give up, making the whole installation act like a larger tile.

Now, most people won't walk in there in something like high heels, but you never know!
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Old 02-25-2018, 08:57 PM   #26
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Even the shower tile is glued

Well, demo continued into the shower and the tile was stuck with liquid nails there too. The shower walls were sheetrock with a couple of small strips of cbu around the door and on the curb sides. What a nasty mess. The base was an odd poured concrete thing inside of a metal frame. Looks like it was layed directly on the subfloor. Lots of moisture in the bottom 3' of the walls that wicked down under the base and delaminated the plywood. Good times.
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Old 05-12-2018, 09:32 AM   #27
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Slowly - but now we're going back together

Guess I've long departed from the original question that started this thread but in order to keep the project together, here goes!

Very small bath but that's the constraints of a late 50's build.

We're finally ordering tile for the shower walls. American Olean Danya in a 12x24 - horizontal stagger is our choice. It's a 3 sided shower with rough dimensions 40x48x40 with the fixtures on a 40 end.

I'd like to minimize the grout joints as I think it would look better (haven't figured out color yet though matching rather than contrasting is my preference) but is 1/8" large enough?


Similar question regarding the bathroom floor. American Olean Creekwood woodgrain for the floor. Ditra Heat underneath. Smaller gout lines seem to make sense with the woodgrain look but knowing it's a heated floor, is there a consideration for expansion? Dimensions on floor approx 6'x4'


Thanks!
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Old 05-13-2018, 06:36 PM   #28
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Double-down

So it appears that Schluter wants an unmodified thinset to lay the Ditra Heat to the subfloor. However, I seem to read that a modified is required when bonding to a non-cementuous surface.

Am I missing something? Reading bad info?
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Old 05-15-2018, 07:52 PM   #29
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Hopefully this is the answer

Looks like A118.11 for sticking the Ditra to the plywood. Then may as well go with the Ditra-Set. Basing that on a mix of info, some of it from John's 2007 write-up and from Schluter's handbook.

Anyone concur with this?
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Old 05-15-2018, 08:29 PM   #30
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That will work...note, if you buy the admix and mix the DitraSet with it instead of all water, you'll get a modified and only have to buy one type of thinset. Double-check which ANSI level that modifier creates, but I think it is .11.
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