Question about using tile over cedar.

  • Advertise with us

« back to Designing Woodworking Projects forum

Forum topic by RussellAP posted 08-09-2012 11:46 PM 1771 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View RussellAP's profile


3105 posts in 2708 days

08-09-2012 11:46 PM

Is there anyone out there who is knowledgeable about tile and it’s installations in some rather unorthodox manners?

I would like to inlay a tile on my table.

I am looking for a nice flower tile around 8×8 up to 12×12 with a flat surface. I want to build the table to have the tile in the center. I’m going shopping tomorrow to find one and build the table and see how it looks. I think that I may also replace the decorative cut of the chair skirt with some tile that matches the table.

So what kind of base should I put under this tile and what should I use to adhere it?

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

6 replies so far

View ShaneA's profile


7084 posts in 3020 days

#1 posted 08-10-2012 12:17 AM

You have a couple options Russ, if sticking directly to the wood, you could use a silicone adhesive. It will allow some flex. You could also use a cement 1/4” backer board screwed to the top, with a quality thinset that can handle freeze/ thaw. You would then need a band/edge/frame around it. Make sure the tile can handle frost too. Not a problem for porcelain tile, but can be for ceramic.

View RussellAP's profile


3105 posts in 2708 days

#2 posted 08-10-2012 12:20 AM

Thanks Shane. I was considering one large tile, so I think gluing it on would probably work okay. When I find a tile for the chair skirts, I’ll likely inlay it. I may need to just redesign the whole table. I don’t know how the slats will look with a tile inset. Problem is, I want the slats because it matches the chair seat.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3111 days

#3 posted 08-10-2012 02:17 AM

I inlaid tile (really just framed around it) on a kitchen island. I didn’t attach it but just placed it over a layer of floor underlayment foam. It is heavy enough that you can’t tell it’s not attached and it could be removed with a thin putty knife if it was ever broken or if my wife wanted to change colors. There is a pic in my early projects.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Don W's profile

Don W

19251 posts in 2989 days

#4 posted 08-10-2012 03:56 PM

tile is pretty heavy. Make sure what you have for legs will support it.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View Swyftfeet's profile


170 posts in 2593 days

#5 posted 08-17-2012 03:26 PM

Bonding tile directly to wood in an outdoor application is going to fail at some time. Tile requires a dimensionally stable surface. If you can hide the edges, I would use something like 1/4” wedi-board, which is its own cleavage membrane. Regardless of how you do it, you’re gonna want to use the tinted pure silicone caulk in lue of grout.

If you’re dead-set and you absolutely have to bond directly to the wood, I would used a a flexible sealant like RTV to bond to the wood, no guarantees on how long it would last..

-- Brian

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 3691 days

#6 posted 08-17-2012 03:56 PM

If possible, I would add an underlayment (concrete backer board is commonly used)- it is fairly inexpensive and can be bought at local hardware or big borg stores. Since this is outside, I would use the water resistent version – usually a light green color.

The other issues of using tile on furniture is that it must lay flat and not have gaps or voids underneath it to create flex or torsion – this will cause the tile to crack or the grout to separate (allowing leaks and damage to your underlayment). Underlayment (either concrete backer board – or at least some exterior grade plywood) helps keep the tile flat and helps reduce motion pressure on the tile.

I would also recommend you use a sanded grout (has more flex) and make sure your tile is sealed – or you should seal it with a good water resistent sealer – there are some good products out there to seal and protect the tile from moisture related damage.

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics