I need advice on sorting slate tiles. Which issues should I avoid?

Discussion in 'Remodel Forum & Blog' started by CanOfWorms, Apr 25, 2014.

  1. CanOfWorms

    CanOfWorms Member

    Feb 17, 2013
    Appraiser, Property manager, Realtor, DAD.
    New Jersey
    So I am putting these cheap tiles down in my kitchen.
    It is very clear why they are so cheap. There is no quality control.
    One box will be all garbage and others 9 out of 10 seem good.
    I have more time than money right now.
    So I will just buy all they have at blue box and do quality control myself.
    So far I have sorted 10 boxes and have 7 boxes of tiles that have no obvious flaws to my untrained eye.
    My test has been to check edge to make sure they are not split and separate.
    Check the corners to make sure they don't just break off when I put pressure on them.
    I have tried to avoid anything too thin, but there are some with rust pox that I am not sure about.
    A rust coloration looks good, but some of these have a rust layer under the top layer that I am wary of.
    Here are a few pics of the common conditions I would like advice on.
  2. dhagin

    dhagin builder:anti-builder

    Jan 22, 2014
    Maybe you'd be better off posting this question over at John Bridge's tile site, rather than a plumbing site? :)

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  4. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple BATHROOM DESIGN & BUILD for both Canada & the US

    Jul 20, 2009
    Design Work World Wide: Bathrooms Vancouver Area
    North Vancouver, BC
    Great Post Dana. Way to help out this person. I think Dana is paid a nickel by John Bridge for links. Since he no longer has a company doing renovations.... What a sad life.

    The best thing or checking slate tile is to work out your tile layout. This will help determine how many cut tiles will be needed. Any tiles with chipped edges can be used for the cut list and this saves money.

    Salte should also be gauged so it's easier to install. We like to make simple jigs or tools to do this.

    place a couple of 1/2 shims around 16" apart and screw a straight 2"x4" over them.

    Do the same with 5/8 shims

    With 3/4" Shims.

    Then slide your slate tiles under these jigs to see what the thickness is. If you place the jigs about 16" apart in a row you can continue to push the tile one by one in a line.

    I also recommend the soak test for slate. Some stuff turns to mush. Soak a large variety and see if any one type or colour fair worse in this test.

    You will need a good modified thin set for a slate tile install. Perhaps some mortar mix.
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