Can anyone direct me to an STX tile product?
I was trying to find the product that a Crucian man invented that sets tile easily and quickly. Does anyone remember (just a few years ago) what the name of the product is and where you can buy it? I think he started by selling on QVC or something similar??? He was kind of a celebrity for a while and was on the news and in the paper with his invention. Thanks for the help.
You can find the article here:
Thank you for the lead. I did a search for it, but obviously not well enough as you found the article and I didn't.
That is exactly what I was looking for and it is only $40 now!
I don't know why anyone still uses the little plastic spacers to set tile.
Teresa and DL -
I missed this thread the first time around - wondering how many others did, too.......that is just about the coolest thing I've seen in a while. I've been wanting to lay some tile for some time now.......wow. Has anyone used this, and is it as easy as it appears? (I know, I know, nothing is ever as easy as it appears!) I would assume as long as you are plumb that it would go very quickly? Any feedback is appreciated.
I saw a promo video (and an example of tile laid using said gizmo) at the Hardware store in Sunny Isle about 18 months ago?!?
It looked so simple and quick. I thought to myself...I must get one of those...but then my gaze wasdrawn by some shiny object and oops there the thought went.
I am so glad that you reminded me - I am going to try and get oneas I have plenty of tiling to do.
Before I answer your query about why people still use plastic spacers, let me just say that I admire the inventor of this product because he was able to create and sell the sizzle before anyone could taste the steak.
I have personally installed 400,000 sq ft of brick pavers and 150,000 sq ft of tile and I can tell you that this product could possibly save time on jobs over 1000 sq ft.
Here are just a few reasons why this product is impractical.
A bag of 250 spacers cost about $4 vs. $40 for this product.
You still need to hand-lay your cuts which on a typical residential job compromise 25% of the number of tiles laid.
Unless you are perfect in lifting up the tile setter, you will bump the tile out of alignment.
Also, depending on the moisture content of your mortar, you may need to "butter" the back of the tile beforehand.
If you need to lift the tile and add or remove more mortar underneath due to low or high spot, you're probably going to screw up the spacing of the existing tiles because there are NO PLASTIC SPACERS INSTALLED TO PREVENT SHIFTING!
I too thought this product was great at first glance but because tiles vary in sizes, irregular edges, worn molds causing inconsistent sizes. A 1/16 of an inch variance doesn't sound like much until you lay 16 of them and you end up with a 1 inch "banana" in your grout lines.
A lot of people have made a lot of money selling stuff that sounds great until you use it.
I honestly hope he's one of them and I hope I'll be one of them some day.
Get a carpenter's square or a speed square, a string line, and a 4' level and you'll do just fine.
Thoogie, thanks - your remarks make sense....being a VERY novice tile layer, maybe I'm better off to go with tried and true first? My best bet is probably to hire someone who has a clue....I always wanted to do something more than the basic lay, a little pattern, whatever. Well, back up and re-group - but thanks from a newbie to someone who speaks from experience!
Thoogie, thanks from me too! Have you noticed that on island many floors are not level to start with? What did you do to compensate? I think many just tiled away without being level, cause that's what it looked like. In the states I have not had a problem with 'shifting' unless someone did it accidentally, but is that caused because the moisture in the air keeps it from drying or is that just a problem with large tile?
I thought this tool would help me a lot with diagonally placed tile in my kitchen, but now I don't think so. I still would use it for the straight aways. Or if I get rich, maybe a pro can do it or me! 🙂 Thanks all for your help!
If you have dips in your floor you can compensate by either using more mortar or by prepping that area with a latex modified floor leveler. You mix a "milky" liquid with a dry powder. It has the consistency of tomato soup and is more or less self-leveling. Shifting of large tiles has nothing to do with the moisture in the air. It has to do with how the tile was set down and if spacers were used. Mortar has the same kind of bounce-back you see in Jello. If you put the down in the mortar and then slide it into place, it will spring back slightly.
You're right about island floors. They probably just went with how the concrete was poured. The same problem exists stateside but usually gets hidden with area rugs where large area are tiled.
If you're going to use spacers, use four per corner by standing them upright instead of one (that you'll end up having to dig out). This will also help prevent shifting especially if the tile tapers out on the bottom.