Marble slab for a shower

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by spfrancis, Jun 17, 2014.

  1. DougB

    DougB Member

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    Jun 19, 2010
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    Software Developer / Engineer
    Location:
    Minneapolis - Land of 10,000 taxes
    What you're talking about is 'risk'. You can't eliminate risk, but for an amount of money, you can transfer the risk. The TS people assume this risk, they are trained and experience, so they feel confident, and it's part of their price. If the slab breaks, is cut wrong, the transportation fees.... what's the $$ risk you are willing to assume?
     
    Taylor Love likes this.
  2. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple BATHROOM DESIGN & BUILD

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2009
    Occupation:
    Design Work
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    Slabs are transferred on their side not on memory foam....

    The thin slabs cut like butter. The ones I saw where fragile and we cut them with just a small hand skill saw and diamond blade.
     
  3. spfrancis

    spfrancis Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2014
    Location:
    Virginia
    John,
    I see. So, the right saw and blade can cut the thinslab. It is just a matter of supporting it during cutting, and transporting it around. I'm really bummed that folks in my area are not getting back to me. I'm sure it is a busy time period, and people can not respond quickly. I just don't want to drag this out a couple of more months, to keep the peace in the house.
     
  4. ShowerDude

    ShowerDude Showers

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2014
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Spfrancis,

    I was and do not reccomend cutting large tile on a 7" saw meant for 12x12! I do it because i can and sometimes dont wanna lug the heavier 10" saw around.

    There are many affordable 4" wet circular saws available. The balde options are not ideal and a thick rim 4" diamond blade may not be advised for your material. Theres a lot to consider

    You need to make your cutting method/decision based on material. Scribe cutting is hard for the novice and you may end up wasting crucial and expensive material. A pro may nail it the first time.
     
  5. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple BATHROOM DESIGN & BUILD

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2009
    Occupation:
    Design Work
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    I laughed so hard when I read your post. I used my little MK saw for ten years before it crapped out. Later I bought my buddies saw. I did buy a new MK but it is crap compared to my old MK. That little guy could cut anything. Like you I have tiled entered bathrooms with it. The base was littered from self tapping screws holes used to create glides for large tiles. I think the blade is superior as well since it has less vibration.

    Clients don't give me that weird look anymore now that the large saw shows up like they did with the baby MK.....
     
  6. ShowerDude

    ShowerDude Showers

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2014
    Location:
    Minnesota
    To me John the MK 660 is the only 7" saw in their lineup worth a look. I agree the smaller blade more accurate balanced..

    The quality has gone downhill as ive had 3 of these over the years.

    If you can find a well built/maintained older one id say a decent small saw...quiet as it gets for wet saws.

    I have a custom tray table riser to handle larger tile!!! ( a rubber floor mat) !!
     
  7. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple BATHROOM DESIGN & BUILD

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2009
    Occupation:
    Design Work
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC

    I junked the tray and made a wood jig that fit over a 5 gallon bucket. Made another jig that sat on two garbage cans. On inside the tu band one outside. I miss my old saw.

    The cocktails and sun is helping me cope! lol. I'm so burned on my shoulders my daughter is calling me "Cherry"...
     
  8. eurob

    eurob master tile and stone installer

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2013
    Occupation:
    master tile and stone installer
    Location:
    Montreal
    Hey John , you should try the real bridge saw . You will never go back to home made jigs , especially with super dense porcelain. :)
     
  9. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple BATHROOM DESIGN & BUILD

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2009
    Occupation:
    Design Work
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    I would love one Roberto. Problem is I only have a 500 square foot shop. So I have no room to store it! LOL

    One day I'll get it. I'm going to work my second hand Dewalt into the ground first. No sense getting rid of a working tool until it has served out a useful life.
     
  10. spfrancis

    spfrancis Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2014
    Location:
    Virginia
    So I wanted to post an update on what I ended up going with on this solution. I finally had to go away from the 5x10 format panels, as I just don't feel that we have guys here in DC that are comfortable with the product. I had one guy who seemed to have a fair amount of experience putting it in, and we had arrived at a price. Then he starts to tell me that he can't get the panels on site, and that he would have to rent a truck to get it on site, and this would an additional $600 to get an "A" frame truck. The other issue is that, there didn't seem to be much assurance of who is responsible, if the panel get messed up during fabrication. No one wanted to talk about who would pay for that. It just flat out worried me, that I was taking on a lot of "Risk". So I decided to go with the 15x30" tiles instead. I hope to get this installed by next week. I was dissapointed, but I just lost the stomach for it.
    Sony
     
  11. spfrancis

    spfrancis Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2014
    Location:
    Virginia
    Hey, so I wanted to confirm that they are applying these tiles correctly. The mortar and grout has been purchased, and I wanted to confirm the approach to trowel the large tiles. Below is a clip of tile install from "Oregon Tile & Marble" for the thinslab prodcut. Does this sound like the right approach for 15x30. I didn't realize you have to trowel both sides, with different size trowels.. This writeup may be more for the larger format tiles.

    "it is important to follow all TCNA recommendations for the installation of porcelain tile. To assure that the tiles do not crack from point load or impact, it is mandatory that the mortar coverage is greater than 95%, with no voids greater than 1 square inch and all corners and edges must be fully supported. It is recommended that the mortar is spread onto the substrate with a ½” U-notched trowel and it is also spread onto the back of the tile or panel with a 1/8” Squa re-notched trowel.'
     
  12. ShowerDude

    ShowerDude Showers

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2014
    Location:
    Minnesota
    As an installer i would charge a hefty premium to take on the slab panels.

    Theres a lot that can go wrong. Transporting , fabricating, special tooling, helper labor etc.

    1 panel breaks and any possible profit gone, client unhappy, contractor unhappy = lose/lose.

    People want hi end installs at basic labor prices these days! Crazy world.

    Tell us what type of tile your 15x30 are...porcelain?
     
  13. spfrancis

    spfrancis Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2014
    Location:
    Virginia
    I agree that there is too much risk involved in doing the larger 5x10' panels. Either the customer has to take on nthat risk, or the contractors does...either way it isn't worth. I was up to paying 3300 labor for installing 2.5 sheets of ThinSlab. Then when he hit me with a $600transportation charge, I decided it was getting too pricey for me. I'm have decided to go with 15x30" thinslab, so basically the same stuff, just cut down. I spent the last 2 hours with my 7 boxes of that tile, and putting it together like a jigsaw puzzle. The way they come up with the 15x30, is they cut down the 5x10 into 12 pieces. I was able to piece together almost one full piece of the 5x10, with the pieces they gave me. I have a lot of duplicates. It won't have the same look as the single panel, but I couldn't justify the additional cost.

    Respectfully, I don't consider $3300 a basic install rate, but maybe if I was doing the installs for a living, I would think differently. I also feel that an installer who is willing to do this work, should be able to get the material to the site, and not lament about having to rent a truck.
     
  14. hj

    hj Master Plumber

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    I am not sure if in this voluminous posting anyone has told you to be sure to tell the plumber how thick the wall is going to be, unless you intend to come back here afterwards and say, "My shower valve is too deep, or shallow, in the wall. What do I do now?"
     
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