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Old 12-19-2006, 02:24 PM   #1
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Bathroom - Durock


Some advice please.
I'm using durock as my floor on top of 3/4 plywood.

Can I just screw this in, or is a coat of thinset required as well?

Also, do I need to use durock around the shower/tub as well? can i use the moisture-proof "green" drywall instead?

I heard this durock stuff is a nightmare to work with and the drywall is much easier.

Any advice would be great.

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Old 12-19-2006, 03:22 PM   #2
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Yes. You must do set the durarock into the thinset and screw it down to the plywood. For the surround you must use durarock or another backerboard...Greenboard is not a good choice.....
If you are hesitent to use Durarock, you can try Hardibacker, which they sell at The Depot...it is a little easier to work with as you can score it with a carbide blade and snap it.....similar to drywall....obviously a little more tricky to work with then drywall though....also be sure to wear gloves if you do use it...it is very irritating to the skin. For the surround walls use 1/2" for the floor you can use the 1/4" Hardibacker...You still need to thinset and screw it to the floor and for the surround walls you put up a vapor barrier 6 mil plastic and then screw the backer right to the studs...they sell special screws for use with most backerboards....one type is called "Rock On" screws and then Hardibacker makes a screw you can use...they usually sell them right next to the Hardibacker.

Hope that helps...

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Old 12-19-2006, 09:23 PM   #3
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The only thing about Hardie backer board I don't like is that it is cement FIBER board. It dents and shreds easily during installation. Though it is popular with tile installers. I still like Duroc the best.

Installing cement board: One trick I use; is to get it into a well ventilated area...to cut it. I use a good dust mask..... and:

1.) A Carbide-tip Circular sawblade
2.) A Carbide 'dusted' jig saw blade
3.) and... The right manufacturer's screws

With these 'tools' the cuts come out perfect with minimal effort.

We Did an entire steam room (walls, ceiling, benches...) with my 'tools of this trade' .... 2 years ago .... and got rave reviews from the home owner...all the way to.... the tile installer.

Important: It is not recommended by the manufacturers to cut cement based boards this way because of the airborne cementious fibers.
But, that is why I use protective masks and also eye protection along with a well ventilated location....

(my 2 cents : This is just how I prefer to install cement board )
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Last edited by AtlanticWBConst.; 12-19-2006 at 09:30 PM.
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Old 12-19-2006, 10:09 PM   #4
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Also, just another thought, with whatever you use for backer, make sure you tape the joints with alkaline resistent fiber-tape and thinset. When I tile, I do this just before setting the tile to avoid small humps that can be created if you tape before and let it set.
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Old 12-20-2006, 02:07 PM   #5
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I've tiled my bathroom walls, one wall in the kitchen, and the kitchen floor in the last year, all using Hardibacker. I started trying to cut it with a carbide tipped blade and after going through two of them, I gave up and bought a 6-tooth circular saw blade made for for cutting this material. It works great however the gloves, safety glasses and respirator are REQUIRED, especially the respirator and glasses. It goes up really easily using the Hardibacker-specific screws and you can bury the screw heads so they don't make lumps in your installation. I had no problems with denting or shredding, and I left the hardibacker on the floor for a month befor tiling over it. Just a few thoughts, best of luck to you!
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Old 12-20-2006, 09:34 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billinak View Post
I've tiled my bathroom walls, one wall in the kitchen, and the kitchen floor in the last year, all using Hardibacker. I started trying to cut it with a carbide tipped blade and after going through two of them, I gave up and bought a 6-tooth circular saw blade made for for cutting this material. It works great however the gloves, safety glasses and respirator are REQUIRED, especially the respirator and glasses. It goes up really easily using the Hardibacker-specific screws and you can bury the screw heads so they don't make lumps in your installation. I had no problems with denting or shredding, and I left the hardibacker on the floor for a month befor tiling over it. Just a few thoughts, best of luck to you!

Your Carbide tipped blade didn't work???

All Mine work great: 36 tooth.

FWIW:
Though, They last for about 5 sheets +..... of cutting Cement board. (We buy blades in bulk and for discount, so the cost of disposing of a carbide Tipped blade is minimal....)

My point is: that we have no problems with using carbide tipped blades at the 36 tooth count to cut cement board....
I am surprised that you do, especially if you go down to a supply ware house where they sell cement board cutting knives. These are hook-shaped and the blade looks exactly like a large tip of a carbide blade. In fact that is exactly what it is .... and it's the standard 'hand' (manual) cutting tool sold for cement board....
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Old 12-21-2006, 07:46 AM   #7
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Though I have never used them, I heard that electric shears work well with Hardibacker. I think they are approved for cementboard as well.
Like these...
http://news.thomasnet.com/images/large/011/11628.jpg

Atlantic, have you ever tried them? I do enough tiling and thereby work with backerboard that it might be worth it to me if they work well....less dust than a circular saw, way less work than hand scoring....seems like a good idea...
Anybody else is free to chime in on the electric shears as well...I have been thinking about getting a pair for sometime now and wouldnt mind getting a couple of opinions....
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Old 12-21-2006, 10:15 AM   #8
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Thanks for the advice, guys.
I decided to use GP DensShield TilerBacker around the shower/tube. Lighter and overall just easier to work with.

Then I'm going to use the Durock for the floor. Pretty stardard shape floor, so I'm hoping to keep my cuts to a minimum. I'm also putting in a heating mat for heating tile. Any advice on that? It seems fairly straight forward.....
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Old 12-21-2006, 03:35 PM   #9
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Your Carbide tipped blade didn't work???

The one that didn't work was the scoring tool with (what I'm assuming) was a carbine tipped blade. The blade itself was fine, but the place where the blade was welded to the tool kept breaking. Additionally, I would score the heck out of it and still ended up with a ragged edge, so I just gave up and used the circular saw.
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougrus View Post
Though I have never used them, I heard that electric shears work well with Hardibacker. I think they are approved for cementboard as well.
Like these...
http://news.thomasnet.com/images/large/011/11628.jpg

Atlantic, have you ever tried them? I do enough tiling and thereby work with backerboard that it might be worth it to me if they work well....less dust than a circular saw, way less work than hand scoring....seems like a good idea...
Anybody else is free to chime in on the electric shears as well...I have been thinking about getting a pair for sometime now and wouldnt mind getting a couple of opinions....

We have electric shears (We use them for steel framing)> I would not even attempt to use them on cement board because the cuts are far from straight and clean. I like the circular saw because the cuts come out perfectly straight and clean. Especially the corners...
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:46 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murphy54 View Post
Thanks for the advice, guys.
I decided to use GP DensShield TilerBacker around the shower/tube. Lighter and overall just easier to work with.

Then I'm going to use the Durock for the floor. Pretty stardard shape floor, so I'm hoping to keep my cuts to a minimum. I'm also putting in a heating mat for heating tile. Any advice on that? It seems fairly straight forward.....

Sounds like a good plan....
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billinak View Post
Your Carbide tipped blade didn't work???

The one that didn't work was the scoring tool with (what I'm assuming) was a carbine tipped blade. The blade itself was fine, but the place where the blade was welded to the tool kept breaking. Additionally, I would score the heck out of it and still ended up with a ragged edge, so I just gave up and used the circular saw.
Same reason I went to the circular saw years ago.
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Old 02-10-2008, 10:12 PM   #13
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I use a small angel grinder with a diamond blade. Still makes dust but not as bad as a skill saw.

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