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Old 03-05-2012, 10:25 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

So after a few months of pleading, my g/f finally convinced me to do a tile backsplash in my kitchen. I did a some research on how to do it, and it didn't seem all that difficult, so I said what the hell. Yesterday we went shopping at a few tile warehouses & picked up a tile combo that would look kinda' cool with the kitchen. Bonus - it was on sale, we spent about $30 on 20 16"x6" main pieces & $40 on 2 sheets of 12"x12" stainless squares to trim the middle of it. The main tile pieces are made from glazed porcelain. I still need to pick up some mastic and grout. Pic of how it's intended to look:



I really should have thought about how to cut the tiles before we made the purchase, because now I'm canvassing through tile saws. I initially inquired with the local Home Depot & they're charging $50/day for a tile saw. A quick search to see how much they cost revealed a few tile saws that are affordable, and some that are outrageous (intended for professional use). I'm thinking about picking up this one from Home Depot mainly because it's inexpensive ($50), and it seems like it'll be ok for what I'm working with.

I was wondering if anyone out here has any experience in doing tile work, has any tips, and/or can tell me if that tile saw would be ok? I've done some research, watched a few videos, but if there's a video or site that's out there that 'yall know that I gotta check out, please pass it along... I'm probably going to starting this over the next couple of weeks...
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Old 03-05-2012, 10:35 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

I'd fore go the stainless center, the thickness doesn't look the same as the other stone (unless I'm mistaken). Could just keep it all stone, and maybe use some border trim pieces (at top, and at ends) if you want to have some variation.

For a job like that, that tile saw looks fine. I've tiled a floor with a hand tile saw, it would essentially just score the tile, and you'd have to pray to god when you snapped it it was a clean break, then you'd have to file the edges smooth lol.


And I pray for your sanity that the stone tile is on a mesh and not individual little bricks.
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Old 03-05-2012, 10:48 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

I bought that same saw and have used it on many small jobs such as the one your about to do. It's a nice little saw for small jobs / tiles but for anything larger than what your cutting it's pretty much useless.

Mastic is something you just have to work with on a vertical surface, some people find it easy, most don't. There is a new way of installing tiles on a vertical surface that works real well, it's easy to use, and home depot carries it also. They are sheets with an adhesive on both sides, one side is formulated for the wall and the other for the tile, makes vertical tiling much easier. The sheets are 9" x 18" and 9 to a box if I remember correctly, and relatively inexpensive. You might want to check those out, I used them to install a boarder of tiles around a bathroom and they worked very well.
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Old 03-05-2012, 10:56 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

I'd also recommend using a grout color matched silicone (looks exactly like grout, special type of silicon) as opposed to using grout right at the edge of your counter top. If you use grout along that edge, more than likely it will flake, crack, or chip away.

best of luck with the project
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:02 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

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Originally Posted by mx5 2nr View Post
I really should have thought about how to cut the tiles before we made the purchase, because now I'm canvassing through tile saws.
Check Craigslist and your local pawn shops. Construction guys get desperate for money all the time and you can sometimes *steal* a pro tile saw. Then you put it back on CL for more than you paid for it. I just found one (wet saw) on our local CL for $25.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:02 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

The stainless center squares are about the same thickness as the brick one, maybe a variance of about 1/16 of an inch, if that & the main brick tiles are one piece that is 16"x6" that interlock together - that'd suck if they were individual! I think the squares appear recessed in the pic because I placed the main tile over the squares to give an idea of the look we're trying to achieve. We're tentatively thinking about doing the little stainless squares to break up the monotony of the brick & help it all tie in with possible stainless appliances in the future (or for future owners).

I think I might go ahead & pick up that saw this week, I can't find anything better in the price range & the reviews seem generally positive on it... I saw that hand tile saw you posted, but damn', I know I'd screw up a billion tiles trying to break them clean.

I've got a few plug outlets & a phone outlet I need to cut out around the tiles, think I could do that with this saw?

Man, I hate this pre-project anxiety. I'm trying to get all my ducks in a row before doing something that's irreversible.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:05 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Check Craigslist and your local pawn shops. Construction guys get desperate for money all the time and you can sometimes *steal* a pro tile saw. Then you put it back on CL for more than you paid for it.

Ya' know - I never thought about Pawn Shops - thanks!!!

bovaco - did you have to sand down the "texture" on your walls when you used those adhesive sheets? I've got to deal with this damn' texture they put on walls here, I've gotta get that crap off first. I'll definitely be looking into those sheets, might make it much easier (and less messy) to get those tiles on the wall.


Do you guys have any pics of your projects?
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:09 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

I also have one more thing to add........If you use the saw be sure to use eye protection as your going to get wet and all that water has microscopic bits of tile in it that will ruin your day if it gets in your eyes and scratch your prescription eye ware if you wear them. Trust me I found out the hard way about the eye ware. Have fun.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:39 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Do you guys have any pics of your projects?
Before


After

[IMG][/IMG]
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:45 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

If you have a regular circular saw, you can buy a masonry blade to cut that tile with. Probably set you back 5 bucks. Although, a dedicated tile saw is smaller and easier to work with.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:46 AM   #11 (permalink)
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If you have a regular circular saw, you can buy a masonary blade to cut that tile with. Probably set you back 5 bucks. Although, a dedicated tile saw is smaller and easier to work with.
If you go that route, make your cuts out side and wear a mask.
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Old 03-05-2012, 02:19 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

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Do you guys have any pics of your projects?
Before





During















After







There are now can lights and a ceiling fan in the last picture. I just haven't taken a new picture.

I'll post pics of the bar renovation. It's more impressive.
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Old 03-05-2012, 02:38 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Before:





During:































After:







I need to get a better full bar picture.
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Old 03-05-2012, 02:49 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

That's in your house!? Too cool!!
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Old 03-05-2012, 03:38 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

Whoa.... We've got some DIY Network people up in here! Robertw, nice kitchen. That's similar to what we're trying to accomplish in ours, albeit without gutting it. Phinz, that bar is crazy, I love it!!!

I kinda feel like a wuss with my little tile project after checking out what yall have done! lol
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Old 03-05-2012, 05:04 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

One of the best parts about moving out of state is that I no longer have to help on my parent's 'projects.' They've build one summer house/sold it and are in the process of building another. When they decided to remolded the kitchen, it turned into a two story addition, in which I was displaced from my room and had to live in the attic for the better part of a year. During that, I had remove/clean the bricks from the exterior wall that was being bumped out/back of the garage for reuse. Total bitch. They also had the new exterior mortar color matched to the old so you can't tell there was an addition.
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Old 03-05-2012, 05:07 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

I've got some envy for others project right now. I bought a house late last year and one of my big wants is to completely re-do the kitchen and modernize it. Love what others have done with their houses!
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Old 03-05-2012, 06:38 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: What did I get myself into? (home DIY content)

harbor freight has wet saws starting at about $40 and a "score and snap" like pictured above for $13. Either should work fine, since you're doing small tiles and won't have to do a lot of crazy cuts. If you have to cut angles, wet saw is the best way to go. I borrowed a bigass harbor freight wet saw to cut the 12" tile we used in our sunroom and it worked like a champ.
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Old 03-05-2012, 08:07 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Whoa.... We've got some DIY Network people up in here!
Well, one of my best friends' wives *is* a Marketing Manager with DIY Network, and we spent a goodly portion of our week in Key West hanging out with their interior designer for the Blog Cabin.
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