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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

So far so Good

I have been trying to get my shower tiled. This is the first time I have ever tried tiling, so it has been an adventure. Adventure # 1 mixing this goop. It is the stuff that sticks the tiles to the wall. It is called thin set, and is basically a cement that you spread on the walls and the tile and then slap the tile on the wall. You have to mix it with a drill and a paddle. Beware though, it will probably beat you up before you are done. It pretty much kicked my ass. In the end though, I won! You gotta show that thin set who's boss.

Once this stuff is mixed you have to use it quickly, so you never want to mix too much at a time. About the only thing I knew ahead of time. Thank goodness, or we would have wasted a lot.

To get started you need to put up a batten. That is a level board that you start your first row of tiles on. Most tubs are not level, (especially in a 1oo year old house) so you don't want to start from the tub. Once the batten is installed and you have and idea or "plan" of how you want your tiles, you can get started.

You can see the batten at the bottom of this tile. One thing you don't want to do is install the faucet before you tile. you just have to take it back off again. But Willie wanted to see how it would look, soooo, there it is.

I got two walls up with out too much problem. I'm definitely not a pro at it though. They aren't exactly flat against the wall, which I didn't realize until I took a bath the first night. It was way too late by then to fix. I had nightmares all night that they all fell off. I just have to hope the grout will help cover a multitude of sins.

You can kind of see in this picture the little white spacers in the corners of each tile. They are very necessary to help keep the tiles evenly spaced. They are, however, the bane of my existence!!!! They do not stay where you want them or when you want them to. Willie told me it took me about 32 seconds to put up a tile. He could tell because from down in the living room he could here me cussing the spacers. Apparently, I cussed every 32 seconds.

One thing I learned the hard way was that you need to scrape or sand off any dried on thin set. If you don't you end up with a bulge in your wall. We have a bulge in our wall. I have been sanding ever since.

Next..... Cutting tiles! Starting with 10 fingers. I'll let you know how many I have left afterwards.

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