Which Mortar To Use For Fireplace Refacing Project?


Old 04-09-07, 10:54 AM
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Which Mortar To Use For Fireplace Refacing Project?

Hi, I'm a first time tiler and I'm refacing my fireplace.

I went to Home Depot and I got all confused with which thinset/admix to use. I'm specifically looking at the "Custom Buliding Products" CBP brand. http://www.custombuildingproducts.com/ProductCatalog/SettingMaterialsDIY/

Our prefab gas fireplace is currently brick face. I made a half-frame to sit on top of the bricks and attached to the wall studs. I covered it with hardibacker so its flushed with the bricks vertically. http://gompol.googlepages.com/fireplacereface.jpg

I'm using 12.5" x 12.5" x 7/16" glazed tiles. http://gompol.googlepages.com/glazedtile.jpg

Overall, its about 50 sq ft and about 8 tiles high, and will be using a 1/2" x 1/2" x 1/2" notch trowel.

1) Which of this CBP product should I use to fill my hardibacker butt joints? Can I use the same thinset that I will pick for the tiles?
2) Which CBP thinset (and CBP admix if necessary) should I use that is good for this project? The thinset will hold the tiles to the bricks and to the hardibacker. (Pic is wrong, I ended up not putting hardibacker on the bricks)

Thanks so much!
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Old 04-09-07, 05:31 PM
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Use the fiberglass mesh tape to cover the cement board joints and coat with modified thinset , like Custom's versabond or flexbond or Porcelain tile thinset. White or gray, both are fine. Use the same thinset to set the tile. You will need to build a temporary support to hold the tiles in place above the firebox while the thinset cures overnight, something like a 1x3 and it has to be as straight as you can get it. Use spacers to keep the tiles from slumping as you stack them one over the other, at least 1/8" , better would be 3/16" for this tile. You could also use a 3/8" notched trowel and spread the back of each tile so there is full and even coverage of the thinset, no high or low spots. As this is a wall a little less than full coverage is ok but shoot for the optimum of full coverage.
Old 04-09-07, 07:42 PM
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I also asked the CBP via email and they recommended the Flexbond.
I was going to use a different thinset but I'm glad you pointed that out that I can use the same thinset for the butt joints. By the way, do I let that dry first? or can I go ahead and set the tiles right after?

I had that wood approach also on my mind too. My first 5 tiles would be that lowest full row, right above the fire place. And the whole row would rest on clamped-on wood support.

Thanks again.

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