Mosaic Fixing Instructions
Paper faced mosaics:
1. Due to the hand-made character of many of our glass mosaics, each has degree of artistic variation in shade, colour, tone and size within each sheet of tiles. Also surface veining, chips, occlusions, bowing and many other inherent characteristics that add to the hand-made nature and charm of the product.
2. Open and inspect each carton of tiles to confirm shading through the boxes delivered. The client/installer is responsible for determining the acceptability of the product. Randomly select 5 sheets from different cartons to establish colour control during installation. Before installing the mosaic, blend sheets from different cartons to assure random placement during installation. As sheets are being installed, check them against control samples prior to placing them in the setting material to assure acceptable shade variations and quality.
3. These mosaics should be tiled with the paper side facing outwards towards the installer. Ensure that surfaces to receive tile are stable, flat, firm, dry, clean and free of oil, waxes and curing compounds. In the case of tiling on to cementitious, concrete, screed or render substrates ensure that the surface is bone dry and has been allowed sufficient/proscribed curing time.
4. Due to the transparent nature of glass we recommend using a white cement powder-based flexible adhesive. Using a suitable notched trowel, apply the adhesive onto the substrate, spreading only enough adhesive that remains workable. Take the flat side of the trowel and smooth over the adhesive to produce a uniform, ridge-free 3-4 mm bed. This will avoid unsightly adhesive ridges, voids and colour variation. The mosaic back must be 100% in contact with the adhesive.
5. The sheets should be placed so that all joints match. With mosaics it is important that individual sheets cannot be distinguished. This may be easier to achieve by laying the sheets brickbond. Use a wooden beating block and carefully tap across the entirety of each sheet, thereby achieving a flat and uniform surface whilst ensuring the mosaics are firmly and fully embedded into the adhesive.
6. The adhesive should be allowed to partially set, but before the tiles have become fully bonded, the paper must be removed. Setting time will vary according to wetness of the mix, ambient temperature, type of substrate, etc.
7. The paper is secured with water-soluble glue and can be removed by wetting. Moisten the paper with a damp sponge, do not use a spray bottle as the water does not penetrate as thoroughly making the paper removal more difficult. Dampen a few times prior to peeling it off. If removal is difficult, dampen further and leave for another 5 to 10 minutes before trying again.
8. Any adjustments can now be carried out. Check, and if necessary, eliminate any sheet lines, adjust any crooked pieces, remove any damaged pieces, or any unacceptable colour variation, check the background for colour uniformity, etc.
9. The adhesive must be fully cured and set before any further work is undertaken. Be led by your professional installer.
10. Any glue residue from the brown paper must be removed from the surface of the tile prior to grouting by using a small nylon scrubbing brush and water, then wiped clean with a damp sponge. This will avoid any residue darkening the intended colour of the mosaic. The mosaic pieces cannot be adjusted once the adhesive has set.
11. Using a soft rubber squeegee or float apply with diagonal sweeping movements to the grout joints taking care to fully compress the grout into the full depth of the grout joints so that no air pockets exist and the joints are fully filled. A timber dowel of an appropriate diameter can be used to compact the grout within the joints. Work in manageable areas and clean off any residues when the grout has begun to firm up in the joints, but before it sets on the tile face. Cleaning with a damp but not overly wet, fine textured foam sponge will provide the best results. Do not over wash the grout as this may cause a white bloom (efflorescence) and discolour the grout. Ensure your grouting is completed in one continuous sequence, particularly with mosaics, to avoid colour variation.
12. Due to the impervious nature of glass the grout will take longer to set than with more porous materials.
13. The surface of some tiles can be easily scratched so the application and cleaning of the grout must be carried out carefully. Ensure that any tools used for grouting are completely clean and free of any hardened grout, etc.
14. All perimeter joints must be finished with a good quality silicone sealer.