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Old 07-19-2010, 10:03 AM   #1
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Installing Ceramic Tile over thick pine

We are updating our kitchen and have original pine floors marginally over 1 inch thick on 14 inch to 16 inch centres. The pine was installed around 1890. There is only minimal cupping (centre of boards not edges) less than 1/8 of an inch on a couple of boards (80% are completely flat. The boards range in size from 6' to 4" in width and tight and laid right on the joists as a floor. Boards are fastened to true 2 inch x 12 inch solid hardwood joists with periodic cross braces. This appears to be a very stable floor.

As an aside, we have laid a few tiles on the floor loose and are walking on them, none have cracked.

The kitchen is 10 ft x 20 ft and we are installing (pinwheel pattern) 13" and 6" procelin tiles.

Option 1
pull everything up and put down 3/4 plywood and then thin set and 1/2 inch concrete board srewed every 8 inches as a base

Option 2
screw pine to joists and then add thin set and the 1/2 inch cement board screwed every 8 inches as a base.

The floor is very stable but is pine. However it is stronger and better qualtiy than todays materials. What should we do. Budget and time is a consideration here.

Out of curiousty what is the benefit of installing tile under the cabinets. We have a completely new kitchen going in and do not plan to change in our lifetime. (We are in our 60's).


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Old 07-19-2010, 11:02 AM   #2
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Wrong forum, this was posted in another forum originally.


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Last edited by rusty baker; 07-19-2010 at 02:04 PM.
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Old 07-19-2010, 09:09 PM   #3
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i'm not sure anyone has done testing on material like this. if you get lucky bud or one of the decade + experienced tile guys may know. just on the top of my brain, with those types of joists and that thick of flooring which is obviously old growth i would not be surprised if that floor was stronger than most everything put in residential construction today. one thought is to drop the cement board idea and use ditra.
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Old 07-19-2010, 09:37 PM   #4
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You can NOT install cement backer or membrane direct over plank flooring.

If the subfloor is indeed in as good a shape as you say, I would probably not remove it. Removing the subfloor and replacing it with new 3/4" ply creates new issues. However, you did mention there is some cupping. You have to fix that. Re-screw every board, 2 at every joist, replace as necessary.

Once that is complete you MUST install new plywood underlayment fastened to the planks. Since the planks are as wide as 6" you need to go as thick as possible, I recommend 5/8" or thicker. I would then highly recommend installing Ditra instead of cement board. (either will work) Ditra only adds 1/8" and it'll give you better results.

TILE GUY - retired- TROY, MI - Method & Product suitability consulting.

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