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Unread 11-08-2022, 02:58 PM   #121
tillytiles
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Hi all,

I need to install a paper-backed translucent glass tile accent strip. The side facing the wall (opposite of where the paper backer is) is beveled all around the edges. Couple of questions:

1) What is the purpose of that bevel? I find it's only complicating my getting clean grout lines. If I use enough thinset that when pressed in, those beveled voids get uniformly filled up with thinset, then that makes an oozing mess coming out of the grout lines. What's worse, is the paper backing essentially makes it impossible to clean out the joint because I can't even see what's happening there. If I use less thinset, then the beveled void doesn't get filled uniformly and this doesn't look correct because the tile is translucent. given this isn't a huge area, I'm almost debating not installing it with the paper backing on and installing each tiny glass piece individually so I can actually see what's happening between each one.

2) Please let me know if my thinking on installing is correct:

a: Install the regular tile below and above where the accent strip will go. Use some sort of a spacer (what?) equal to the accent strip width to hold the upper row while it dries.

b: Once dry, make a sort of a depth gauge to trowel on thinset to a depth just a hair less that the depth of the accent strip, so once pressed in, everything lines up.

c: Alternative to (2), use a different depth gauge to trowel on a thinner layer of thinset into the accent channel first, let that thinset dry, and then go back and install the accent strip. This would avoid having too thick of a layer of wet thinset all at once

Is there something else to make this easier? These tiles are very slick and back-buttering them is not effective - the thinset just smears. My main issue is dealing with filling the beveled void and still having open grout lines. THank you
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Unread 11-08-2022, 05:46 PM   #122
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Sounds like you have the right idea. By the way, they are called paper faced and yes, they're a pain.

As far as spacing the field tiles, Figure out what that space needs to be and use a 1x4 or similar straight board plus a few spacers made from scrap tiles to fill in to the exact size you need. Those little spacers you make need to be all exactly the same size so clamp a speed square or jig to your saw to make them. I even put a few dots of thinset on the back of the 1x4 to help hold it to the wall. Not a lot. Use the tile spacers under the 1x4.

Once the field tiles are set, remove the 1x4 and spacers. I use a cheat stick to fill the area leaving just enough room for the tiles and about 1/16 for thinset. When filling this area, I'll spread thinset in 2 or 3 applications building up about 1/8 at a time. Let it set about 3 hours between coats. The cheat stick for this isn't really a stick. I make it from a cheap plastic putty knife from Home Depot. A stick is too thick for this and will pull at the thinset. The plastic putty knife is thin enough to work well. Just notch the ends like you need them.
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Unread 11-08-2022, 05:54 PM   #123
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Something else, when installing the glass, you have to spread the thinset mortar using the correct notched trowel and then lightly go over it with the flat side of the trowel to knock the notches down flat. Set them using a flat surface to press the tiles in and let them set a while. Maybe 30 minutes to an hour before you wipe the paper a couple times with a wet sponge and peel it off. Then you can wash and scrape any thinset out of the joints. Did I mention it's a pain?
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Unread 11-09-2022, 01:45 PM   #124
tillytiles
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Thank you @Davy - that was helpful. Will know to advise wife against any glass come time for next bathroom

BTW, Do you know why they make each of the glass pieces beveled around the edges on the side facing the wall? Like for the side facing out, I can see it being an aesthetic thing...but for the side going on the wall, I don't get it.
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Unread 11-09-2022, 06:14 PM   #125
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That's a good question that I don't know the answer to. I remember many years ago when I first saw those tiles, I liked the look of them upside down better. The bevel would be filled with grout. Of course, the paper is in the way.
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Unread 11-09-2022, 06:28 PM   #126
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My guess is so they can get it out of the mold.
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Unread 11-09-2022, 06:47 PM   #127
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That's an interesting possibility, Cate. Don't know if you're familiar with the type of tiles Benjaminn is dealing with, but that bevel is really dramatic. Far more that I'd guess would be required as a mold release feature. But, then, I never even thought about them maybe being made in a mold at all.
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Unread 11-09-2022, 11:46 PM   #128
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A back bevel or reverse bevel or inverse bevel is aesthetic and has to do with how it reflects light - gives it kind of a 3 dimensional look.

https://www.houzz.com/products/forev...vw-vr~89897908

It might seem to look the same as this bevel, but it ends up reflecting light differently, and also this is a pain to grout. Of course so is the first one too, just in a different way - the first one going in, the second one wiping up.

https://www.wayfair.com/home-improve...-abos1963.html
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Unread 11-10-2022, 02:41 PM   #129
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That makes sense, Jeff. I hadn't thought of that. Mine aren't as dramatic in effect as the ones you linked to because the ones I have are more opaque and have color swirls in them, but still, those shadow lines do come through.

These will be a total PITA to leave proper space for grout but still get full thinset coverage over the entire beveled surface to prevent bubbles from showing through.
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Unread 11-10-2022, 03:03 PM   #130
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I've never given it much thought either but I guess they have to be made in a mold, don't they?

I've installed a few kitchen splashes with those tiles, one was pretty much all the kitchen walls. Several reasons why I don't like them. You nearly have to draw level lines on the walls to set the tiles to. Some of the tiles aren't set straight on the paper. Then, with the paper on the face, it's hard know for sure if you're setting the sheets straight and inline with the other sheets. Usually the notches in the thinset have to be knocked down flat to avoid seeing them thru the tiles. Doing this is tough because you want to flatten the notches without removing too much thinset. Then, wetting the paper and peeling it off has to be timed just right. You want to remove the paper just when the tiles are bonded a little but still will adjust if needed. I can remember peeling the paper and having tiles sliding all over the place. I've also pulled on the paper too early and pulled tiles off the wall. You have to wet the paper, let it soak in and wet it again and give the glue time to let go.

Just typing this will probably give me nightmares to night.
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Unread 11-11-2022, 07:34 AM   #131
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Yeah, I'm not sure of the best technique. Normally thinsets for glass are always white. But if your grout color is much off from white, you're going to have a hard time making sure that thinset doesn't travel much up the sides of the glass during installation, and ends up at the same place consistently from tile to tile. The more opaque/dark your tiles are, the less this should matter. With a strictly clear glass, it seems nearly impossible
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Unread 12-03-2022, 04:10 PM   #132
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Finally onto installing a quarter round jolly cap horizontally along the top of a half tiled wall. Wondering if you guys can give me input on these three things:

1) I need to make a small 90 degree miter return where the jolly terminates at an outside corner. Do you typically cut your tiny 90 degree return and then glue the miters so there's no grout gap at the corner or do you leave a gap between the miters for grout the same as you would leave between each individual jolly piece?

2) Would you recommend holding off installing the jolly cap until I paint the upper half of the wall, at least the first coat?

3) Do you grout or silicone between the top of the jolly cap and the painted wall?
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Unread 12-03-2022, 06:07 PM   #133
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I'd need a photo of where this is taking place to make a reasonable guess, Benjaminn. This is a ceramic Jolly, or....other?
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Unread 12-03-2022, 10:40 PM   #134
tillytiles
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Sure thing. It’s a transition from a half tiled wall to a full tiled wall. I just glued up a return miter piece for an example. The jolly is some sort of synthetic material almost like between ceramic and plastic and cuts clean.

…..As an aside, wife decided to make things even more interesting by changing the orientation of the tiles from horizontal to vertical at the corner. The vertical tiles will be bullnose once I get past the jolly…that one transition vertical tile where I’m transitioning from regular edge to bullnose will be a bit tricky…will have to notch out part of the bullnose going up to the jolly and then past that point, there’s a corner bead that sticks out more, so the bullnose will then resume.
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Unread 12-04-2022, 09:34 AM   #135
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Busy joint. Probably look better with a continuous grout joint, but you might have difficulty getting that return to stay in place when setting it as a separate piece. I'd say dealer's choice on that one.

Technically, you'd use a flexible sealant between the tile and wallboard, but a color/texture matched caulk would likely be fine, too. You could grout it, but it's likely you'd end up with a crack or separation there at some point. If that would bother you, use the caulk or sealant.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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