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Old 02-11-2010, 11:00 AM   #1
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Hi

I'm trying to really find out what the Big difference is between Ultraflex 2 and 3 other then $20 and more Polymer like they ad on the bag says.

Ultraflex 2 is $22.00 and the Ultraflex 3 is $45.00

I'm Installing Schluter Ditra on a Plywood Subfloor

Has anyone used Ultraflex 2 and then used 3 on another job and found a hugh difference.

The Tile is 13x13 Porcelain

I know they make the product for a reason but the website is very limited with info and customer service could not give me a real answer and tells me to use Kerabond/Keralastic

I hoping some of you members have used this product before

Thanks

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Old 02-11-2010, 08:15 PM   #2
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


I think Ultraflex 2 is plenty good enough to bond over plywood. Some would even choose Ultraflex 1.

It's GOOD-BETTER-BEST.

I've never used 1 or 3. What are you using to install the tiles over Ditra?

Jaz

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Old 04-12-2010, 04:16 PM   #3
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Ultraflex 2 gives you some points if you're pursuing LEED certification.
According to the bag, it's Dust Free, in compliance with ISO standards C2E, S1, P1 (adhesive over plywood).
Meets or exceeds ANSI A118.4 & A118.11. Bag said it's a better bond over plywood.

www.mapei.us (You can download data sheets there with more information; choose Products then Polymer Modified Mortars; I found the website helpful)
Ultraflex 3 is a premium-grade, single-component, high-performance, polymer-modified thin-set mortar for interior and exterior installations of tile. This mortar has a high content of unique dry polymer, resulting in superior adhesion to the substrate and tile. In addition, it can be used for most interior/exterior residential and commercial tile applications on floors and walls. Ultraflex 3 meets or exceeds ANSI A118.4 and ANSI A118.11 when mixed with water.

Ultraflex 2 is a professional-grade, single-component, high-performance, polymer-modified thin-set mortar for interior and exterior installations of tile. This mortar has a high content of unique dry polymer, resulting in excellent adhesion to the substrate and tile. Formulated with low-dust technology, Ultraflex 2 reduces dust by 90% during pouring and mixing, resulting in a cleaner environment.
Ultraflex 2 meets or exceeds ANSI A118.4 and ANSI A118.11 requirements when mixed with water.

I used Ultraflex 2 because the description made it sound like the better product (and if it's cheaper, even better; it was on sale when I bought it).

I'm a newbie so I can't compare based on personal experience.
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Old 04-12-2010, 04:26 PM   #4
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Quote:
Originally Posted by JazMan View Post
I think Ultraflex 2 is plenty good enough to bond over plywood. Some would even choose Ultraflex 1.

It's GOOD-BETTER-BEST.

I've never used 1 or 3. What are you using to install the tiles over Ditra?

Jaz
JazMan, if you're going with the Mapei line, is this what would you use for granite tile over Ditra? (Schluter Handbook (page 8) says use "unmodified thin-set mortar – ANSI A118.1".)

Keraset is a professional-grade, dry-set mortar for use in most interior and exterior residential floor and wall applications. Keraset meets or exceeds ANSI A118.1 requirements when mixed with water, and ANSI A118.4 requirements when mixed with Keraply™ or Keralastic™ .

What other products are recommended if not using a Mapei products for granite tile over Ditra (in a bathroom)?
========
Found the answer (Kerabond (premium grade) - or Keraset for prof. grade): see product data sheets at www.mapei.us
questions about thinset
Thanks!

Question: At that link, you said "Unmodified; over Ditra /// Custom; They don't make one I could recommend."

Is that still the case? If yes, I'm driving 1.5 hours for Keraset (I probably need to make the drive to get other stuff but the other stuff could have waited!)

Last edited by lazzlazz; 04-12-2010 at 04:51 PM. Reason: found answer in another thread
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Old 04-12-2010, 11:17 PM   #5
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


I like to follow the manufacturer's directions, and so I'd use a premium unmodified as Schluter preaches. I would not use the cheaper Keraset, Kerabond is premium. What other brands are available near you? I'm lucky my distributor carries Ditraset, which is what I use to set tiles over Ditra.

Jaz
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Old 04-12-2010, 11:36 PM   #6
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Quote:
Originally Posted by JazMan View Post
I like to follow the manufacturer's directions, and so I'd use a premium unmodified as Schluter preaches. I would not use the cheaper Keraset, Kerabond is premium. What other brands are available near you? I'm lucky my distributor carries Ditraset, which is what I use to set tiles over Ditra.

Jaz
NO other brands are available near me according to 2 people I asked; I also called a slightly larger hardware in a town 40 miles away & they didn't have anything. (County has 25,000 people total!)

I will probably have to drive 1.5 miles to Menards & I think all they have is Keraset. Mapei didn't have any suppliers listed in the area, although that's obviously not correct as Menards carries some of their stuff.

Another option is Home Depot but they don't carry the Mapei brand. Can anyone tell me what the unmodified thin set brand at Menards is for setting (granite) tiles over Ditra? Any opinion whether I should go with the (not optimal) Mapei Keraset vs. whatever they have at Home Depot?

Found my answer here:
http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...p/t-82394.html
Can't find Ditraset so Versabond it is.

Last edited by lazzlazz; 04-13-2010 at 04:00 PM. Reason: found answer
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Old 04-13-2010, 06:46 PM   #7
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Well, it's a problem sometimes when you live away from large populated areas. Driving long distances is common. I remember reading your thread over at JB"s.

If you had to compromise between a cheap unmod and something else, I might consider using an entry level modified instead, and let everything dry an extra day or three. However, technically even those cheap thin sets will work. They all meet A118.1 standards and that's all Schluter wants. The "premium" came in cuz we all hate meeting the lowest standards. The problem is that if the cheap stuff did fail, no one will back you.

The unmod at HD is something you'll want to stay away from, probably worse than the others.

Jaz
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Old 04-13-2010, 11:46 PM   #8
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Quote:
Originally Posted by JazMan View Post
Well, it's a problem sometimes when you live away from large populated areas. Driving long distances is common. I remember reading your thread over at JB"s.

If you had to compromise between a cheap unmod and something else, I might consider using an entry level modified instead, and let everything dry an extra day or three. However, technically even those cheap thin sets will work. They all meet A118.1 standards and that's all Schluter wants. The "premium" came in cuz we all hate meeting the lowest standards. The problem is that if the cheap stuff did fail, no one will back you.

The unmod at HD is something you'll want to stay away from, probably worse than the others.

Jaz
I haven't posted over at JB (just have read it - all). That was someone else.

I got to Home Depot - all their Versabond is Polymer Modified so I was very confused.
Less experienced guy calls more experienced guy (after I showed him the Ditra Handbook) who said that Schluter told them CustomBlend is what should be used of the Home Depot products (not sure exactly of the veracity on that).

I bought CustomBlend & Versabond both, because it's always easier to return 1 than not have what you want. Quite honestly, the choice was Keraset (which everyone said was garbage) or CustomBlend (which was also said to be garbage).

Versabond says on the bag it meets ANSI118.1 (which Ditra specifies for over Ditra & under stone (granite). However, it also says it's polymer modified - which Ditra says is not a good idea. So I'm assuming I should not use the Versabond??

The question is, how bad is CustomBlend? Am I going to regret it?

It wasn't a totally wasted trip - I spent $350 on paint, a bathroom vanity (cheap), needed tools & supplies, drywall tape & compound, etc. And thinset. Neither of which are good.
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Old 04-14-2010, 10:31 PM   #9
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


OK, I thought when you mentioned the other forum, that was you. But now I see he had made a selection.

I've never tried to help someone with your question that wasn't able to find one of dozens of premium unmodified thin set I recommended. From my answer above I suggested comprising and going with a cheap modified instead of a cheap unmodified, I think it's safer.

Now you're telling us the bag of Versabond you saw says it meets A118.1. That's wrong, can't be. Versabond is modified and so it meets A118.4. Is it possible you're now turned inside out and don't know which way is up?

If you could list all the brands and specific lines available to you we might be able to help faster than we're doing up to now.

Maybe you would feel better if you called Schluter and got their blessings about using CustomBlend.

Jaz
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Old 04-15-2010, 04:02 PM   #10
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Quote:
Originally Posted by JazMan View Post

Now you're telling us the bag of Versabond you saw says it meets A118.1. That's wrong, can't be. Versabond is modified and so it meets A118.4. Is it possible you're now turned inside out and don't know which way is up?


Jaz
Versabond definitely says it meets A118.1 - the same bag also says it's polymer modified. It also says it meets A118.4 and A118.11. All three are listed one right after the other (I still can read! ). That led to a long discussion with less-experienced Home Depot guy & more experienced Home Depot guy. Locally, I have CustomBlend available. That's it (very small town; entire county is 25,000. 1.5 hours away, I have Mapei Keraset (Menards) and CustomBlend (HomeDepot). Dealer finder on schluter.com doesn't list anything even in the larger town 1.5 hours away. Mapei does not appear to have a dealer locater on their website.

Imagine doing home remodeling in this situation. You either pay the higher price locally (if you can get what you want)- or if you knew you were going to need something, you bought it the last time you were near a big-box. Of course, you never know everything you're going to need. It really slows things down when you don't have a big box a few miles down the road. I've been doing a lot of buying & returning, because I buy every possible thing I think I might need.

Last edited by lazzlazz; 04-15-2010 at 04:05 PM.
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Old 04-15-2010, 10:17 PM   #11
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


I don't know what to make of the A118.1 issue. I'd like to see under what context they're claiming the product meets all three specs. I think it's a type-o

Modified thin sets can meet the .4 - or .4 and .11 spec. Unmodified mortars fall under the A118.1. It can't meet .4 or .11 and still be unmodified.

This is a quote from their website: For VersaBond,

Exceeds ANSI A118.4 and A118.11 standards
without the need for additives


Jaz
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Old 04-16-2010, 09:18 PM   #12
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


What you say makes sense. But they have all 3 listed on the bag. I should call them!

fyi .. If you look at Ditra-Set, it also meets A118.1, ( A118.4, A118.11) *if additives are added*

Go to the website below and you can see a picture of the bag (click to enlarge so you can see the ANSI list):
http://shop.mccoys.com/interior-mate...mortar/p.47654
Attached Images
 

Last edited by lazzlazz; 04-17-2010 at 11:27 PM. Reason: changed 2nd line
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Old 04-17-2010, 02:00 PM   #13
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


for those interested ... Lowes *in some regions* has just stopped carrying Laticrete, according to the Lowe's I talked to.

Last edited by lazzlazz; 04-17-2010 at 11:26 PM. Reason: added qualifier "in some regions"
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Old 04-17-2010, 08:42 PM   #14
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


I have no idea why the bag of VersaBond would also claim to meet A118.1 for unmodified thin set mortar. It is not an unmodified mortar, it's modified and says so on the bag. (If you wanna trust what the bag says).
I have a theory why they're claiming it meets all three, but I'll keep that to myself for now.

FYI; You've misread the info about Ditraset. It is an unmodified thin set. It is impossible for a thin set to meet all three specs. Go read it again and you'll see it can be made modified by adding the additives.

It seems like Lowes wants to handle both Mapei and Laticrete in different regions of the country. They keep switching as market conditions favor one over the other. Both companies are first rate and make products in all price ranges, (although I've yet to find a real cheap Laticrete mortar.) I favor Laticrete because of their local presence and support.

Jaz
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Old 04-17-2010, 11:26 PM   #15
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Mapei ULTRAFLEX 2 VS ULTRAFLEX 3 What's the Big Difference


Thanks for the feedback on Ditraset. Which is less bad: Keraset or CustomBlend for granite over Ditra? I may be stuck with that choice.

There may be a flooring store in the bigger city 1.5 hours away that has Kerabond - they are part of a chain which carried Mapei (Mapei doesn't have this particular store listed as a distributor, however) so I left a message asking. I may be driving another 3 hours Wednesday. (I'd have to drive if I went with the Keraset, too - Menards - Lowe's doesn't seem to carry the Kerabond, either, according to the guy I talked to on the phone. Good chance to return a few things I don't need after all!) I've got to get the tile down next weekend at the very latest.

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