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Forum topic by Howie posted 09-23-2011 01:40 AM 801 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Howie

2656 posts in 1670 days


09-23-2011 01:40 AM

The attached photos show a box top I’m playing with that is made out of small tiles(Michaels A&C store)
Ignore the frame it is only there to try and keep them straight. Each tile is glued to the PW with hot melt glue.
Now for the question: should I grout/not grout these tiles. If I do, what should I finish the top with? Lacquer,Poly,Shellac?(can’t use silicone grout sealer)
Remember this is an experiment so any and all comments are welcome. If someone has tried this and it flopped don’t be afraid to comment.
Thanks

-- Life is good.


12 replies so far

View Michael1's profile

Michael1

403 posts in 1407 days


#1 posted 09-23-2011 04:22 PM

Thats a good question Howie. If you used a standard non sanded grout, I would be afraid that the grout would get on the wood of the top and be a mess to clean up, so i would consider maybe a grout that comes in a tube. As far as the finish, I don’t know that I would put a finish over the tiles, just a brushable lacquer on the wood pieces around the tiles. But then again, I am speculating as I have never tried this.

-- Michael Mills, North Carolina, http://www.scicaskets.com

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

6046 posts in 2175 days


#2 posted 09-23-2011 05:09 PM

We have done several counter tops with the 1” tiles. Usually with the mesh backing, but that doesn’t change anything.
If the frame is finished with varnish or poly prior to setting the tiles, you won’t have any problem removing any grout. A damp cloth will do the trick.
Grout will keep liquids and/or dust from settling between the tiles. I’d grout the piece.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View Howie's profile

Howie

2656 posts in 1670 days


#3 posted 09-23-2011 10:28 PM

@Gene, what can I(do I need to?) use to seal the grout. Most grout sealers have silicone in them don’t they?
If I poly the wood first, will the grout still stick? The grout has to fill in the uneven edge around the top. Should I poly or lacquer over the tiles/grout after it drys and consider that a sealer?
This whole thing is an experiment so I’m willing to try any suggestions.

-- Life is good.

View Vicki's profile

Vicki

946 posts in 2091 days


#4 posted 09-24-2011 02:56 AM

I made some tile tops for outdoor cabinets. I used 12” tiles attached to plywood with power grab, framed in cedar. I used ext. caulk instead of grout. I taped off each side of the crack and it turned out great. I would suggest a Ore permanant glue than hot melt glue. Things pop off too easily with it for my taste.

-- Vicki on the Eastern Shore of MD

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

6046 posts in 2175 days


#5 posted 09-24-2011 02:57 AM

Howie,
Is your last name Howe?????
Anyway, how is it to be used? If it’s going to get a lot of liquid, it needs to be sealed.
Finish the wood before grouting. Just be careful not to get finish on the parts of the frame that will be next to the tile. Apply the sealer with an artist’s brush. Fired ceramic tile or glass tiles, do not need sealed. Just the grout.

If you want, you could put it all together then mask off the frame and grout and seal….then poly the frame after masking the tiles close to the frame.
I’ve done it both ways. The first way seems to be easier on vanities and counter tops. Size does matter. :-)

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

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Howie

2656 posts in 1670 days


#6 posted 09-24-2011 05:15 PM

@Gene: Short for Howard
I think I’ll give your masking description a try. Thanks for the tip.
Thanks to all that have responded. When I finish I’ll post a picture of the results(one way or the other:-)

@Vicki: you’re right about the glue. If I do something permanent I was thinking construction adhesive. This jus seemed to be a quick way to start….Hey,Norm always makes a prototype :-)

-- Life is good.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3581 posts in 2707 days


#7 posted 09-26-2011 07:46 PM

Why not put on most of the finish to the frame first, then wipe on the final coat (s). Yep! I’d seal/grout the tiles.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

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Howie

2656 posts in 1670 days


#8 posted 09-27-2011 03:13 AM

I’ll post pictures of this tomorrow(Tuesday) along with what I did to finish it.

-- Life is good.

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Howie

2656 posts in 1670 days


#9 posted 09-28-2011 01:19 AM

Here is the finished(almost) product.
I grouted the tiles on top. Taped off the wood border and sealed the grout with 1/2 mineral spirits and 1/2 poly.
Then I used just poly on the mahogany(2 coats) with a coat of Johnsons.
I still have to clean the tiles some. And do a little more sanding.
Since this was an experiment,overall it didn’t come out to bad.(not great but not bad)
If I do anything like this again I’ll stay away from the grooved tiles(to hard to clean up) and I’ll make sure the edges are more square.
Comments,good,bad or ugly are welcome.

-- Life is good.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15071 posts in 2422 days


#10 posted 09-28-2011 01:27 AM

Nice work, but I would like a nice wood top better. You know what they say about beauty and the eye of the beholder ;-))

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Howie's profile

Howie

2656 posts in 1670 days


#11 posted 09-28-2011 01:35 AM

I’m with you Top. It seemed like something to play with but I don’t think I’ll be doing it again for a while.

-- Life is good.

View Vicki's profile

Vicki

946 posts in 2091 days


#12 posted 09-28-2011 04:26 AM

I like the box and think you did a good job on it. I agree that textured tiles weren’t the best for this project. Perhaps some nice smooth glass tiles next time, or even better…...break them up and do a mosaic.

-- Vicki on the Eastern Shore of MD

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