Removing thinset from tile back

I need to clean off the thinset (and layer of plaster) from the back of tiles that I temporarily removed from our kitchen backsplash.
Any tricks-of-the-trade other than elbow grease and chisel?
Thanks
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I never heard of reusing tile. You'll break the tiles trying to get the thinset off.

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Well, the tiles (bull nose, hand made) are $8 a piece, so it really is worth trying...
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I didn't know you couldn't do this, so I did it by soaking the tiles in a bucketful of water/tsp for a couple of days. Then a paint scraper took the thinset off fairly easily. I did break one tile, but it wasn't shattered, so I put it back up with the rest, but up over my head so I won't look at it often.
Keith

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blueman wrote:

Using a 4" angle grinder and carefully skimming the edge of a carborundum blade at 90o to the tile along the back will remove the t/s. Chiseling it will most likely break the tile.
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Hi this works well,
Use a steam wallpaper stripper, the steam will soften it and then you can just scrape it off using a wall paper scraper
Used this to "recycle" a lot of loose tiles in a kitchen and a bathroom.
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Marcus

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Marcus wrote:

Mastic maybe, but thinset mortar?
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I've used a wire brush wheel mounted on a bench grinder with good results. If you don't have one, a wire wheel chucked in an electric drill would be slower but would also work. You don't have to get every bit of old thinset off, just the bulk of it.
HTH,
Paul
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I read about this 6 mos. to a year ago in this newsgroup and the consensus was to soak the tiles in water for awhile. Then the thinset should come off somewhat easily.

Matt
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Thinset is cement based, if water or steam gets it off, something is wrong. Mastic maybe... which is exactly why I'd like to bitch slap the guys who use it in bathrooms especially showers.
Bobby
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