Holy Mesquite Batman!

The bathroom floor experiment continues. The log end tile is grouted but due to a slipping thickness jig had to do a lot more in-place sanding than anticipated to even up the floor. Had plotted to use mostly mesquite harvested from the claim but have found that most of what we had cut and stacked was beetle infested on the outer edges leaving me with an unacceptably holy (hole-y) cross section. Fine for fire wood, not so fine for floor tile. A mix of species filled in the gaps and slicing up old cedar and possibly bois d'arc fence posts yielded the prettiest cross section of them all. Scrub oak branches with thin bark look almost like hard boiled eggs and some cedar pieces are wildly shaped. They have grouted very well with little or no shrinkage in the joints. A dark brown grout color was chosen to be complimentary to the darkest pieces of mesquite. We pre-sanded the 1 3/4" thick pieces, glued them down with the strongest vinyl based tile mastic we could find followed by a sealing coat of varnish before grouting. We were afraid the grout would soak into the absorbent wood obscuring the wood color and grain. The grout will be sealed but not before we sand the wood again with 220 grit on an orbital palm sander to polish the wood up before waxing them individually. Jeree made  a small test sample to check for wood color and grout shrinkage and what would happen when we varnished both together. Simply varnishing the whole thing pulled some kind of mineral out of the grout and left white crystallized spots. Some as yet undiscovered grout sealer designed for absorbent stone may do the trick but we don't want it too shiny. A waxed and smoothly worn appearance is more like it. Obviously a lot more work than ceramic or vinyl would have been but certainly not the unique floor we were looking for. Can attest to the toughness of the floor already as I have test dropped lumber and tools on it several times with no dents or chips. :)  

1 comment:

  1. I love what you have done with your floor. Could you tell me what you used for grout and how it has held up for you? Also, what did you use for subfloor?


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