MyMason's Case Studies

 Fireplace Case Studies

    Nakkertok Fireplace Surrounds

    Two-Ton Chimney Supported, Fireplace Rebuild

    Fireplace Surround - Wood Burning Insert Installed

    Fireplace Fire Brick Replacement

    Fireplace Surround - Natural Stone

    Electric, Natural Stone Fireplace

    Fireplace Hearth Replacement

    Stone Fireplace

    Cultured Stone Fireplace & New Framing

    Cultured Stone Fireplace Surround

    TV Mounted on Stone Fireplace

    Restructuring Fireplace: Wood to Gas

    Drywall to Stone Fireplace

    3-sided fireplace: Cultured Stone

    Fireplace Removal, Damper Removal

 Chimneys and Brickwork Case Studies

    Chimney Repair

    Chimney Repair, Articulated Boom

    Custom Scaffold, Chimney Repair

    Lower-Chimney's Removal, Wall Restructuring

    Chimney Flue Replacement

    Concrete Chimney Cap as per Building Code

    Chimney - Sloped Side, Repair

    Chimney - Wobbly Chimney

    Brick Pillar

    Brick Garage Pillar Repair

    Window's Lintel Installation

    Brick Sill Creates Wall Damage

    Brick-to-Stone Window Sill Replacement

    Brick Retaining Wall Rebuild

 Stone Work Case Studies

    Stone Wall Rebuild

    Granite Resurfacing of Concrete Stairs

    Stone Step Rebuild

    Stone Stair Rebuild - in Winter

    Stone replaces Brick Door Sill

    Stone Retaining Wall Rebuild

    Dry-Stack Retaining Wall Rebuild

    Dry-Stack Stone Retaining Wall

    Flagstone Patio Rebuild, Expansion

    FlagStone Step Repair

    Stone Replacement

    New Interlocking Stone Walkway

    Re-setting Interlocking Walkway

    Tile Installation

 Algonquin College/MyMason Case Studies

    Cold Weather Masonry Rules

    3 New Cases Studies in 2015

    Salt and Concrete Testing

    Concrete Curing Stress Tests

    Concrete and Rebar Stress Tests

 Parging Case Studies

    Parging, Cement Board

    Parging Examples & Techniques

 Concrete Case Studies

    Broken Concrete Step

    Basement Window, Concrete Cut

    Basement Window, Concrete cut-out

    Concrete Walkway, Landing

    Concrete Stairs and Landing

    Concrete Stairs and Landing

    Concrete Countertop




    Case Study: Tile Installation

        Before and After


    The Assignment:
        Prepare subfloor, apply tile.

        The floor is solid but not completely level, with a 3/8" variance.
        The walls are not perfectly square.

Planning and Preparation
About 2500 screws were put in to secure the new 3/4" tongue and groove plywood subfloor.

My job starts now.
Scraping any dirt and vacuuming the surface completely and carefully is an important step before the thinset is applied, as it doesn't stick to dust, etc..

Taking levels
A wide-angle self-leveling laser is used to measure the height variance at many points across the room.

Dry-Fitting Ditra
Ditra adds expense, in materials and labour, but extends durability significantly.

Here the ditra is cut and dryset, with a slight excess to be trimmed later.

The Schluter-DITRA is a polyethylene membrane with a grid structure of square cavities, each cut back in a dovetail configuration, and an anchoring fleece laminated to its underside.

Applying Thinset.
Mixing well, removing lumps, letting the thinset slake, are equally important preparations.

Thinset is a portland cement with additives, with one type meant for porous surfaces. The anchoring fleece on the underside of Schluter-DITRA is fully engaged in the thinset mortar to provide a mechanical bond to the substrate.


Ditra Applied on Thinset, Floor Leveled
Workable sections are done in sequence; one sheet of pre-cut ditra is applied at a time.

Lines on the floor guide the work.

Dry-Setting Tiles.
Final planning of tiles and cuts, using 2", 6" and 12" Tiles.
The 2" tiles are bonded with mesh to be applied in triangular sections.
Thinset on a level Dytra
The inner mosaic of 2" and 6" tiles are set.
Back Buttering the Tile.
Thinset is placed and raked into position, with thinset applied to the tiles too.
Section by Section
The inner mosaic pattern is set on thinset first, with spacers in the grout lines.
Cutting Tile.
A Wet-Saw was used to make many of the cuts.
Tile Splitter
Bigger and better tilesplitters work best. This is a good one.
Cleaning Grout Lines.
A sturdy knife, with safety glasses, is used to clean the grout lines completely.
Clean grout lines
The scraper can easily fit into all grout joints.
The grout lines are vacuumed before the grout is applied.
The Grout Tools.
Here we are using a float meant for expoxy as its firmness finesses non-sanded grout.

A normal grout float with a more porous surface first applied the grout.

A set of sponges are used to clean off the grout, and are constantly cleaned.

Non-Sanded Grout
In wider joints a Sanded Grout is used.
The non-sanded grout takes more time to apply, as sand helps the shaping of the grout.
Applying Grout.
The grout is applied, with the excess quickly cleaned off, and then the finished look is finessed.

Pressing the grout into the joints is important to ensure air pockets do not form, and floating is done on an angle to avoid digging up the grout.

Hours of work take the floor to a level, tiled, and clean floor.
The homeowner avoids walking on the surface for two days as a final precaution.

A sealer can be applied and is more useful with natural stone. In this case with porcelain tiles it was not wanted, but it is easily a roll-on diy project.


This page last modified: July 19 2009