Like Archinect on Facebook.
Sign up to our mailing list.
Anyone bought any tile from MosaicTileSupplies.com??? They have some really good prices, about $3/S.F. for 3/4" tiles on 15 x 15 grids (after discounts).
I'm hoping to use this stuff in my shower surround but I wondered if anyone had any experience with this stuff. Vitreous glass, about 1/8" thick. I'm planning to install it directly onto cement board, unless that's a no-no.
The price blows away the local retailers ($10-20/S.F.).
That is comparable to what tile discount stores sell it for... something to look for if you care is that the cheaper stuff has jagged edges, whereas the more expensive stuff like Bisazza has very straight edges. Also depends on whether you are particular about the colors - Ann Sacks has nice colors and I think it's about $4.50/sf after discount. It is expensive to have installed - if you're doing it yourself just be aware it's difficult to get it to line up properly, and make sure it comes mesh-backed rather than paper-faced (I think they have pretty much phased the paper out now but we installed some about 4 years ago at our house and it was tricky).
I installed the same stuff in my kitchen - though i got mine from dal-tile.
Use unsanded grout and make sure your backer board attachement is firm and stable. I had problems with the tile sheets sliding down the wall as i worked so i ended up using masking tape to hold the sheets in place while the mortart dried. another caveat is not to apply too much mortar since it's a bitch to remove the stuff from the joints. i let it dry too much before peeling the paper backing and had to scrape each joint. i think i calculated that i had to scrape out about 500 linear feet of joint; not a great way to spend the day. but it looks great.
The stuff on that website has straight edges but it's also the paper-faced type. Another place has the straight tiles with mesh but it's more expensive, about $4.50/S.F., like you say about Ann Sacks. I'll check that out, too.
I'm not going to have really experience tile installers so I might go with the mesh.
ell jeffe, can you explain a bit more about the mortar/joints? Do you mean the joints in the cement board? Did you tape the joints first or no?
Seriously, if you are going with cheap tile installers and are not doing it yourself I would think twice about using glass mosaic tile, especially if it's paper faced... If you do use it, have the tile person do a sample that is at least a few sheets. We had the same problem with the sheets sliding down the wall. We also did not use the proper release agent on the front, so the grout stuck into all the little holes. We spent several hours acid washing it, and got a lot of it out, but it doesn't look as good as it could have (looks like it has a film on it). We also have every irregular joints, and many of the tiles popped out while drying though we stuck them back in ok. I worked with a woman once who specified it for her parents bathroom - they used a cheap tile installer and she said it looked horrible and a lot of the tiles popped out - they ended up re-doing the whole thing with different tile.
R.A.R.> Did you use the mesh or paper variety? Does the mesh stuff slide as well? I could be there to supervise and help, but I'm no expert neither. I really love the look of it, though, compared to other tile in the same price range... I'll talk to my guys and see if they've ever done glass tile before.
What about all the extra grout? Is that a royal pain?
i can only recomend the bissazza tiles on paper. the quality of manufacturing is just much better. most of the cheaper versions will break easier, have broken edges, and just look cheap. the most important thing is...the guy doing the mosaik has to be very good. some of the best ones are like artists when streching and placing the tiles. otherwise you can see the squares, joints are not lines up, etc... if you do it, do it right. (carefull with very lite colors, the underground can shine through)
You can purchase mesh backed glass tile here. http://www.hakatai.com/
Yep, that's the other place I found...
the mortar seeped thru the tile joints and i really couldn't see it because of the paper backing until it was too late.
i too had several tiles pop out but it wasn't difficult to re-install them. cutting them was a real PITA - now i know why they make escutcheons. i second the warning about using a cheap installer.
i didn't know about using a release agent to protect the tile fronts while grouting - but i didn't really have a problem. guess i got lucky tomake up for scrapiong mortar out of the joints.
i did tape my backer board joints.
the tile we used was made in mexico so it does not have straight edges and was relatively brittle but it was a simple installation (2' high kitchen backsplash with only one inside corner - no outside corners) so it came out ok.
imo - it's already a really dated look, and it's a bitch to get done correctly - play into the imperfections if you're doing it on the cheap....experiment first with a mock-up and see what you think.
Bisazza actually comes mesh-backed now - hopefully they are phasing out the paper faced. We used Ann Sacks tile (w/paper) and the edges are rough but it's very nice tile. It is all the way up on the walls in our shower - my husband and I did it and he had never done tile before but he's a builder and has some ability to figure these things out. We also had the mortar come through, but I don't mind too much (the mortar is dark gray & the grout off-white, so you see the difference).Still looks very messy - you can see the sheets divisions in places and uneven grout lines between sheets - I love it but it does not look how you would want it to look for a client.
Right now we are doing a mater bath with an entire steam shower in the bisazzo mosaic ($10/sf at Home Depot Expo) as well as full height on a few of the bathroom walls, one which is curved. The tile installation alone, minus the cost of the tile, is around $8000, because we have to hire someone who has experience with this tile (and also because of the steam shower). If it was ceramic tile the installation might cost $3000, for comparison.
rayray> and what's the cutting edge look?
RAR + el jeffe> I just spoke with one of the dealers and they say that if you use the right bonding agent, there should be no slipping. They say that you must use a latex-modified something or other. Can't remember now and I gotta run.
Anyway, I'm gonna get my samples and have my guys do a small test area.
Thanks for the help.
bissazza comes either with a mesh or with paper. the quality is just much better then the rest of the cheaper crap. this has to do with the manufacturing of the tiles. it takes much longer to produce the Bissazza tiles than the other ones. and then they are sorted by hand. the better stability of the bissazza tiles has to do that they are cooling the tiles down very very slowly under constant heat. wherase the other ones, to save time, coll them down very quickly, and therefore the tiles can break much easier. stay to the original. but as said before, you really have to have an experienced guy putting up the tiles.
i used the Mapei's Kerabond/Keralastic System; it's designed for difficult bonding such as glass tile. I don't agree that I should have used another bonding agent/mortar - but perhaps the blend should have had less water so it would have been stiffer???? That would be the only thing affecting slippage. Unless of course there is a special adhesive/agent that is supposed to be put on the backside of the tile that I don't know about.
mpsyp > no clue what the look is, like I said it's just my opinion, mainly from seeing it so much in advertisements, books, and magazines. did not say that it looks bad - how about simple 4 x 4 white cheapo's, very under the radar! : )
lol - best luck and let us know how the mock-up turns out.
Just google it and you can get lot of best Vitreous glass tile shop,size and price as well.