I have a square notched trowel, and an angled (triangle) notched
trowel. What is the appropriate trowel for this job? When would I want
to use each?
In this case, I am using thinset to adhere the Hardibacker. I will
later be doing 1-inch hex tiles to the Hardibacker with the same
thinset and am wondering which trowel to use for that also.
The purpose of the cement board is to get a level surface. The purpose
of the thinset is to fill voids between the flat cement board and the
less flat floor. Your fastening needs to be done with screws/nails,
mortar doesn't stick well to wood.
The shape of the notches is less important than the area. Could be
wrong (long time since I used mastic) but IIRC a "V" notch is for it.,
square notch for mortar.
The idea is to use a notch size so that the residual mortar will
adequately support the tile and that notch size varies with the tile
size. Ideally, it would spread out under the tile when it is set and/or
beaten so that there is a thin but adequate layer under the entire
bottom surface. In the case of your 1" tiles you need a thin
notch...1/8" I would think. For your cement board, you need a larger
notch. 1/4" I would guess if the ply is reasonably smooth. Maybe 3/8".
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My limited understanding is that the thinset under the backerboard bonds to
the subfloor and the backerboard, levels minor imperfections and creates a
very solid substrate for the application of the tile. The subfloor and
backer board become one.
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