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-   -   grout requires more water than stated (http://www.houserepairtalk.com/f13/grout-requires-more-water-than-stated-4037/)

daniel2229 04-18-2008 07:48 PM

grout requires more water than stated
 
I am using Laticrete Spectra SET mortar for our kitchen tile. The directions call for 5.5 quarts of water for each 50 pound bag of mortar. That is way too dry. My 1/2 drill will barely turn it let alone get to the point where it is usable.

I have been using half a bag and dividing the water, then adding more water until it gets to the right consistency. I am taking it to the point where it looks like thick cake icing. It is really easy to use at that point and does not dry out too quickly.

Is this normal to have to add more water? Or am I messing up big time?

Thanks

TileGuy 04-18-2008 08:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by daniel2229 (Post 18058)
I am using Laticrete Spectra SET mortar for our kitchen tile. The directions call for 5.5 quarts of water for each 50 pound bag of mortar. That is way too dry. My 1/2 drill will barely turn it let alone get to the point where it is usable.

I have been using half a bag and dividing the water, then adding more water until it gets to the right consistency. I am taking it to the point where it looks like thick cake icing. It is really easy to use at that point and does not dry out too quickly.

Is this normal to have to add more water? Or am I messing up big time?

Thanks

I wish I could help you on this one but I stay clear of Laticrete and have no idea what its like. With other thinsets dry or watery is bad, youll probably be fine. If youre worried and still have a ways to go, return it and get Versabond from home depot :)

CraigFL 04-19-2008 06:38 AM

I'd be curious as to how much MORE water you are adding over the approx. 1.4 gallons they recommend.

inspectorD 04-19-2008 06:43 AM

Giggle or...
 
Google Laticrete. Sometimes getting on the site you will get more info for a particular product or at least a way to ask some questions.
Sounds like you need to let it slake (set) for a few minutes, then remix again.

5.5 quarts to 50 lb bag and some time to sit....then mix er up and trowel away.

daniel2229 04-19-2008 04:43 PM

With the exception of adding 1-2 cups of extra water, I am following the directions exactly. Stir for 5 minutes, let it stand for 5-10 minutes and restir.

It trowels on fine after adding the extra water. I also used the Versibond in our bathroom, and it worked fine. The Versibond took the amount of water it called for to stir it up.

The comparison with Versibond and the SpectriSet is somewhat different. The SpectreSet is so much dryer. I don't think the pot life would be the 2-4 hours the manufacturer says it would be if made that dry. Plus, it was making my 1/2 inch drill labor way too much. The dryer mixture was also harder to handle and apply.

I am trying to bring it to that stage where the thinset is just at the cake frostning-like state. Otherwise, the thinset was going to be dry, dry, dry.

I am only mixing a 1/3 of a bag at a time, so as not to waste any of the product. It is easier to mix a 1/3 than a half a bag.

Thanks much for your input.

inspectorD 04-20-2008 06:28 AM

Hmmmm
 
Where are all the tile guy's around here??:D
The issue with adding more water is....the directions specifically say, do not add more water. So what to do??
Contact the company in an e-mail, they may have a boilerplate answer for everyone. Better yet, go to a local tile store, one that knows more than the box stores. Ask them what the installers are saying. Tile installers usually will grip right to the supply house with any issues that come up.
In my experience, a little more water just takes a little more time to set, but sometimes it also lets loose earlier than expected.
So talk some more to the folks who use it, or take a chance with what you are doing. When the tile pops...reset it again. Not a big issue for a DIY er.:)

Tell us what you come up with.;)

daniel2229 04-21-2008 09:11 AM

That is kind of what I have been thinking. All I know is that if I mixed the thinset to their consistency, I would have to do major iron pumping for a week before.

The guys at Lowes and Home Depot did say that the mortar should be somewhere between peanut butter and cake frostning.

The batch I mixed using the SpectraSet directions still had lots of dry powder that definately would not mix in until adding more liquid.

I wonder if humidity could be part of the situation. It was dry here most of the week. In the 65% area.


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