Friday, December 21, 2007

Thursday into Friday delirium

I feel like we just pulled an all-nighter on our home improvement final. With the delivery of the kitchen cabinets yesterday, the looming deadline of their installation (12/30) became apparent. So we's gots some tiling to do. But before we can start that, we needed to lay the backerboard substrate....which we did Thursday night into the wee morning hours. And, like school, now I'm keyed so I can't get back to sleep. You benefit by getting a blog entry, but don't push it, I'm cranky! We get to the house at 6:30PM and dry-lay the first two rows of DenseShield (obtained at the Tile Shop). It's pretty cool stuff as it's not too heavy so even I can manage a 4x4 sheet of it. It scores and cracks like drywall and it's waterproof on the "up" side (literally, the side you leave facing up to tile on. Here we a 5 gallon bucket, Eric mixes half a 50# bag of thinset with the appropriate amount of pitcher, I don't know the measurement, go read the bag..also, LOVE the mortar paddle attachment for the made mixing "easy" (well, easier)..go get one. E uses the 1/4" square notch trowel and lays out a 4x4 patch of mortar. We'd pre-cut the sheet to fit the wall. Here's the man in action with the sheet ready to go behind him:
We lay the sheet into the mortar bed and "set" it with a gazillion screws. Every 4" around the perimeter and every 6" in the body of the sheet. Man of the evening Brian Bayer, shows up at 7PM to help with the fixation of the backerboard with a gazillion waterproof backerboard screws. It took us until Brian left at 9PM (something about having to go practice with his band) to afix the first row of sheets across the back of the kitchen that Eric had mortared. I feared this would take forever and came up with a workable technique: use a hammer and pre-set all of the screws in the denseshield, then come along with the drill and put them all in. That easily cut the setting time in half (and it still took forever). The screws get level-set in the sheet, NOT sunk. Then, because we're moisture-averse freaks, we siliconed all of the seams and any screws that accidentally got countersunk. It's 10PM, we're about halfway done and I'm starving...time for a Wendy's break:
A little chicken nuggets and Diet Coke rejuvenated me and we resumed our labor. It's back-breaking, blister-inducing work. When we finally got finished we realized it was 2 AM. Holy crap man, it's two in the morning and we promised Barb we'd meet her back here at 8AM to tile...put the camera away and let's go get some sleep!

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