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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    pennsylvania
    Posts
    17

    Default wet bed for shower pans

    As a beginner in installing wet beds, what products can i purchase at HD(if any) to make the correct mixture and what should the ratio be. A Rep. from A well known maker of cement products told me to just use their sand topping mix w/ a little water . Is this a workable product or should i mix sand w/ another product(eg. dry cement mix ) I saw a crew of tile workers mixing sand and something else together to make a wet bed but the bags were not marked and i did not get a chance to ask them what they were. A definitive answer would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for the help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Between the poles and the equator
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    Buy michaels book, in the first edition he covered it thoroughly.
    kevin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Kiawah Island, S. Carolina
    Posts
    1,210

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    The first step in producing mortar beds of any type is to purchase a copy of tha ANSI A108 STANDARD SPECIFICATIONS FOR THE INSTALLATION OF CERAMIC TILE (1999). This booklet has all the recipe information you need to mix mortars: see particularly A-4.1a through A-4.1c. This section covers both wet and cured setting methods and it includes various mortar mixtures that are mixed on-site from bulk mason's sand and portland. Will you be setting the tiles over a wet mortar bed or cured? will you be using the one-coat or three-coat method? Will you be using a latex admixture?

    A definitive answer is impossible in this format since it is impossible to squeeze an apprenticeship into a few lines. My first book (Setting Ceramic Tile) is out of print, but copies are available through EBay. However, the set of three companion videos (Tiling Floors, Tiling Walls, Tiling Countertops) are still available (go to my website) and cover the one-coat method featuring mortars mixed entirely with latex instead of water.

    Avoid ready-mixed products unless they are made specifically for tile installation. Search this forum for other information regarding sand. Use fresh portland cement (hot, if possible), keep the sun off the mix (even through windows), and make sure you compact all floor mortars.

    I love floating mortar and producing flat, plumb, and level surfaces for tile, and I applaud your effort to go this route, but I urge you to work with a seasoned mortar bed mechanic who can show you the ropes. If that is not possible, consider enrolling in one of CTEF's mortar bed classes. You can contact CTEF at: www.tileschool.org.

    Oh yeah,,,,keep a jug of vinegar in your truck for rinsing your hands off after working with mud. Vinegar eats away at the cement particles and helps prevent skin cracking.
    ________
    mercury milan specifications
    Last edited by mbyrne; 02-09-2011 at 05:19 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Maplewood NJ
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    Hey Mike, I was given a short course in mixing a nice stiff mortar by an old time here in NJ. I bartered by carrying the buckets up two floors. Anyway we then filled the pan and pitched it perfectly to the drain. Then he said Now i'll show you the way we used to do it. He proceeded to sprinkle white grout about a 1/4 inch thick over the entire floor. He waited about 15 min and then laid his sheets of octagons. He said What's grout but cement! All in one day. The next day grout as usual. Thanks for the great books and articles.
    Ken



    Quote Originally Posted by mbyrne
    The first step in producing mortar beds of any type is to purchase a copy of tha ANSI A108 STANDARD SPECIFICATIONS FOR THE INSTALLATION OF CERAMIC TILE (1999). This booklet has all the recipe information you need to mix mortars: see particularly A-4.1a through A-4.1c. This section covers both wet and cured setting methods and it includes various mortar mixtures that are mixed on-site from bulk mason's sand and portland. Will you be setting the tiles over a wet mortar bed or cured? will you be using the one-coat or three-coat method? Will you be using a latex admixture?

    A definitive answer is impossible in this format since it is impossible to squeeze an apprenticeship into a few lines. My first book (Setting Ceramic Tile) is out of print, but copies are available through EBay. However, the set of three companion videos (Tiling Floors, Tiling Walls, Tiling Countertops) are still available (go to my website) and cover the one-coat method featuring mortars mixed entirely with latex instead of water.

    Avoid ready-mixed products unless they are made specifically for tile installation. Search this forum for other information regarding sand. Use fresh portland cement (hot, if possible), keep the sun off the mix (even through windows), and make sure you compact all floor mortars.

    I love floating mortar and producing flat, plumb, and level surfaces for tile, and I applaud your effort to go this route, but I urge you to work with a seasoned mortar bed mechanic who can show you the ropes. If that is not possible, consider enrolling in one of CTEF's mortar bed classes. You can contact CTEF at: www.tileschool.org.

    Oh yeah,,,,keep a jug of vinegar in your truck for rinsing your hands off after working with mud. Vinegar eats away at the cement particles and helps prevent skin cracking.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Kiawah Island, S. Carolina
    Posts
    1,210

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    I, too, learned to broadcast dry grout, dry thinset, and dry portland cement, and later found that this method did not really work all that well. It is much better to spread a layer of wet thinset and stick the tiles on. To keep the ridges from oozing up into the grout joints of very thin tiles (like 1-inch porcelain mosaics), flatten them down with the smooth side of the trowel before installing the tiles.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    pennsylvania
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    Thank you for the imput Mr.Byrne, I will try to find a copy of the booklet you mentioned and also look into the classes. The crew I mentioned in my first thread , used the stiff mix i talked about, packed it in the shower pan over the liner than tiled the next day. I fully understand there are so many different ways of doing things that a definitive answer is impossible but once again thanks for the point in the right direction.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Kiawah Island, S. Carolina
    Posts
    1,210

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    Name is Michael. Mr. Byrne passed away 28 years ago, but thanks for your questions and comments.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Spring Grove, PA
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    To answer the question... What you need is sand and portland cement. 4 parts sand to 1 part cement.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Kiawah Island, S. Carolina
    Posts
    1,210

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    4 parts sand to one part portland is fine if you do not use latex. Latex is recomended because it reduces the need for damp curing.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    north jersey
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    just like the guy above me said 4 parts portland cement to 1 part sand. float so its about a 3/4 to an inch pitch towards the drain and then just tile with a thinset. i personally use special pool thinset for the shower floors like that. i purchase the thin set at a pool supply house, the special thin set is used for underwater pool applacations.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    pennsylvania
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: wet bed for shower pans

    Thanks for all the input, especially the ratios and portland. Talked to a couple tile guys since last post and like the pool thinset posted from tommy k, there are numerous variations and tricks of the trade, just like w/ most trades thanks again , ready to proceed with confidence.

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