Specifications: Big One 3+

Porcelain stoneware slab produced in 1000×3000 mm size, thickness 3,5 mm, obtained with a clay mixture of high-quality raw materials. A structural support composed by a mesh in fiberglass and resin is then applied back side.
Thickness : 3,5 mm (3+0,5)
Basic size: 1000×3000
Weight : 8,2 Kg/sqm

Specifications: Big One 6+

Porcelain stoneware slab produced in 1000×3000 mm size, thickness 6 mm, with a clay mixture of high-quality raw materials.
Thickness: 6 mm
Basic size: 1000×3000
Weight: 15 kg/sqm

Laying Techniques: Floor application

Big One 3+ and Big One 6 are designed to be installed on any newly-built or pre-existing building substrate, provided that this substrate possesses suitable mechanical strength and finishing for the installation.

For all types of substrate flatness must be checked with a 2 m-long rod, rested on the creed in all directions. The permitted tolerance is 3 mm. If the substrate is not flat along the majority of the surface to be installed, level the entire area using suitable products. If the base is not flat only in certain areas, correct this by removing or scraping away the excess parts and filling any holes using the same adhesive as for the subsequent installation. Before making any adjustments to the substrate, always carry out all procedures required to ensure the bond between the materials used and the exisiting substrate.

Ensure adequate consistency and mechanical strength for all types of substrate. Before installing slabs on existing floors, check that these floors are fully anchored and produce a full sound when struck. Take care to remove all parts that are not fully adhered to the substrate. Fill in the areas removed with suitable levelling products to restore the flatness of the installation area.

The screed must ensure suitable crushing strength for the final use. Rooms for civil use, for example, must possess a crushing strength of at least 200 kg/cm2 Level of compactness and surface hardness.

Level of compactness and surface hardness
The screed must be smooth and even along the entire depth and must I therefore not have any brittle or detached parts. Check the surface by striking it with a mallet of approximately 750 g. This should produce a full sound and should not leave impressions or generate dust or cracks. It should not be possible to deeply cut, crumble or chip the surface of the screed if it is scratched with a steel nail.

Thickness and rigidity
An unsolarised screed must be at least 4 cm thick. Any pipes must be sunk by at least 2.5 cm and, in correspondance with these,the screed will be reinforced with a 2 mm diameter galvanised wire. The screed must be rigid and must be bent once laid. If there are insulating layers, for example thermoacoustic layers or radiant heating panels, the thickness of the screed must be increased according to the density of the insulator used. This prevents deformations.

Seasoning and drying
The creed must have completed the normal hygrometric shrinkage. Generally, 7 – 10 seasoning days for every cm of thickness are envisaged for this type of concrete. Check for humidity prior to installation. Concrete screeds with a humidity value of below 2% are considered to be compliant.

Finish and cleaning
The finish can be created with steel discs, helicopter or hand trowel, taking care not to make the surface too smooth. Prior to installation, the screed must be clean and any cement residues, brittle parts not yet fully anchored must be removed.

Welding and cracks
If the screed is created in several rounds, expansion joints must be used at the connections points. These joints must always bemade vertically. Alternatively, a solution of water and binding agent can be applied to the hardened part to ensure adhesion. Any cracks that become apparent following hygrometric shrinkage must be sealed before beginning the installation. Proceed by removing brittle parts close to the crack. De-dust these parts and weld them using epoxy resin such as Eporip resin by Mapei.

Expansion and desolarisation joints
The screed must be desolarised according to the supporting structure by applying a polyethylene sheet, taking care to overlap the sheet by al least 10 – 15 cm and weld it using adhesive tape. Apply compressible perimeter bands with a height al least equal to that of the screed and create vertical expansion joints at approximately every 25 m2 as well as close to doors.

Anhydirte screeds
Make the screed self-levelling as shown in the material manufacturer’s instructions. In addition to general checks of screeds, anhydrite screeds must be sanded and de-dusted and have a humidity content of 0.5%. Prior to installation, a primer must be applied, as indicated by the manufacturer of the glue used.

Heated floor screed
In addition to the indications given in the general information for screeds, it is essential to ensure that the thermal shock has been performed, in accordance with UNI EN 1264-4, switching on the heating at an operating temperature of between 20° and 25° and maintaining this level for at least three days. Gradually increase the temperature by approximately 2° per day until the maximum operating temperature for four days. Once the thermal shock has been carried out, it is essential to carefully weld any cracks caused by shrinkage. (See Welding and cracking of screeds in general conditions). Only proceed with the installation after returning the screed to room temperature.

Rapid setting screed
These are rapid setting, controlled-shrinkage screeds that are supplied ready-mixed and help to create the screed correctly.Therefore, as well as ensuring shorter shrinkage time, the composition of this screed helps to limit the occurrence of the most common faults of traditional screeds. If heating coils are present, check that the thermal shock has been carried out.

Installation on existing floor, ceramica porcelain stoneware, marble and natural stone
after checking the consistency of the existing floor, and that it is fully adhered to the substrate, carry out mechanical abrasion if the surface is smooth or polished. For other types of surface, a careful cleaning with a solution of water and caustic soda may be sufficient. Take care to rinse the treated area thoroughly. If it is not possible to adhere to the expansion joints of the existing floor or there are settlement cracks or specific damage in marble of natural stone floors, apply an anti-breakage mat prior to installation to intercept any movement and make the substrate even.

Installation on parquet/wood and pvc
Check that the floor is fully anchored to the substrate, the wood is not exposed to expansions and that it is stable over time. Carry out mechanical roughening until the surface becomes coarse. Prior to installation, apply an anti-breakage mat then install sizes no larger than 1000×1000 mm or 500×1500 mm.

Installation on resin
Carry out mechanical roughening of the entire surface, open any cracks and fill them with epoxy resin such as Eporip resin by Mapei.

Dry installation on screeds
Made by using sulphate panels produced with calcium sulphate, fibre cement or gypsum fibre which have been installed on elevated or floating supporting structures. Before laying down the floor, make sure that the manufacturer of the products guarantees its suitability for this use, its resistance and eventual applicable size limitations. Notwithstanding other provisions offered by the manufacturers, it is generally necessary to clean the product surface, scraping away any difference in the panels or glue residue from the edges. Smooth the sub-floor by applying an anti-breakage mat then proceed with the installation. Use cement based glue after applying the primer if the manufacturer of the panels requires it.

Adhesive and installation
Apply a double coating of the adhesive in a full spread – first on the back of the slab and then on the substrate, taking care to fully cover the corners and edges and avoiding air gaps between the foundation and the slab. Spread out the glue each time (only on the surface involved installing a slab) to prevent films from forming on the surface and compromising the adhesion. In order to facilitate the outflow of air, it is critical that the glue be spread in the same direction both on the substrate and on the back of the slab. Always spread the glue in the direction parallel to the shorter side when installing floors and perpendicular to the floor when installing the slabs as covering. Beat the surface energetically using a rubber spatula, starting from the side opposite the applicator and taking care to eliminate air gaps and air bubbles. Always check that corners and edges are fully adhered. Do not tread on the floor during and after installation. Follow the trampling times indicated by the glue manufacturer. These times will increase if installing slabs on non-absorbent bases (for example porcelain stoneware floors). Do not walk on the floor during and after installation until the adhesive is completely dry. It is important to respect the times indicated and recommended by the manufacturers of the adhesives, bearing in mind however that for slabs with dimensions
superior to 1000x1000mm, (especially if installed on non-absorbent materials) times may be longer.

Laying Techniques: Installation on Wall

Big One 3+ and Big One 6 can be installed as both for indoor and outdoor covering. Big One 3+ is always recommended for areas containing “L”-shaped cuts or frequent drilling. Irrespective of the type of substrate, check the flatness of the substrate using a 2 m rod, rested on the screed in all directions. The permitted tolerance is 3 mm. It is always advisable to use a framework with suckers when installing the Big One 3, Big One 3+ the 1000×3000 mm size. When selecting a size for indoor applications take into account the possibility of movement that the rooms to be covered pose. In the case of outdoor coverings, it is recommended to use the size 1000×3000 mm only for limited heights and only when the conditions of the site allow the installer to obtain the best results.

Big One 3+ and Big One 6 can be installed on outdoor walls made from concrete or cementitious render. If there are
mixed supports with a reinforced concrete frame and masonry infills, the wall must be plastered prior to installation, reinforcingthe plaster with a plaster support network at least next to the variation in material. If plaster is applied to insulating panels such as polystyrene or similar materials used to eliminate the heat channel in beams and pillars, these must be reinforced with a 2mm galvanised wire and 5×5 mesh, overlapping the adjacent masonry by at least 20 cm and anchored with mechanical plugs.The plaster must be suitable for ceramic tiling. Therefore, it must be made using cement mortar that ensures high mechanical strength against bending and a high degree of adhesion to walls. The adhesion value in the substrate approximately 10 kg/cm2 as requested by the adhesives producers. The substrate must be flat and stable with no brittle parts and must have completed the normal hygrometric shrinkage. Any uneven areas of flatness must be filled in with levelling products. Brittle parts and cracks from shrinkage must be de-dusted and sealed with suitable materials.

Selecting the size, grooves and joints
Installations in outdoor facades are subject to severe heat expansion: when selecting the size of the slab, it is therefore advisable to assess exposure to sunlight, the geographical position and the colour of the slabs (dark colours and black, in particular, attract more heat and consequently much more affected by heat expansion). The choice of size to use for a
facade must be carefully assessed to allow the worker to correctly install it (movement, double spreading, bonding and beating). This will depend on the height of the wall and the building site equipment (scaffolding, cranes,forklifts). Generally, the greater the height the smaller the recommended size. Adhere to the standards in force in the country you are working in. Slabs must always be installed using double spreading with a wide groove. Generally, a groove of 5 mm is recommended. This will be defined according to climatic conditions as well as the size and colour of the slabs. In order to facilitate the outflow of air, it is critical that the glue be spread in the same direction both on the substrate and on the back of the slab. To correctly apply the adhesive it is necessary to maintain a uniform thickness and the direction of the glue pattern must be perpendicular to the ground. Respect structural joints and create fractioning joints next to the stringcourse bands, corners and edges and at every 9 – 12 m2, making the biggest side no larger than 4 m. Joints must be sealed with suitable silicone materials. If installing size 1000x3000mm you are advised to plaster all grooves with silicone. Apply the material in accordance with the operating temperatures indicated by the glue manufacturer. Once the tiling has been finished, it is advisable to use all the necessary solutions to prevent water from seeping between the slab and the substrate (closing caps, flashing, etc.)

Installation on coating
Given the high degree of thermal expansion in the materials applied when creating thermal insulation coating, which can also be highly superior to ceramic slabs, it is not possible to cover traditional coating with any type of ceramic or stone material. Due to its lightness Big One can be applied to a special coating system by Mapei called the Mapetherm Tile System, if carried out as indicated in Mapei’s technical notes. The maximum sizes permitted for this type of application are 1000×1000 mm and 500×1500 mm in finishings that guarantee a reflection index of more than 20%.

Installation on dry wall
It is possible to install the Big One slabs as covering on prefabricated walls made of fibre cement or similar products suitable for the intended outdoor use (for exemple Aquapanel of Knauf). It is necessary to verify that the manufacturer guarantees them for this type of installation, since these walls must not contain materials that can be affected by water and/or moisture. These products can be installed with or without micro ventilations and, depending on the manufacturer, they may or may not require a preventive screed with fibreglass or the application of a primer in order to optimize the subsequent laying of the glue and the installation of the slabs. Usually on these types of structures it is possible to install the slabs using cement-based adhesives.

Installation on indoor walls
The substrate must be flat and stable with no brittle parts and must have completed the normal hygrometric shrinkage. Any uneven areas of flatness must be filled in with levelling products. Brittle parts and cracks from shrinkage must be de-dusted and sealed with suitable materials. Big One can also be installed on existing coatings: prior to installation, ensure that the existing tiling is solid, stable, anchored to the wall and that there are no removable parts. Prior to installation, you are advised to clean the existing tiling with a solution of water and caustic soda, taking care to rinse thoroughly. If chemical cleaning is not possible mechanical abrasion is recommended. Depending on the support to be covered, it may be necessary to use a primer to ensure that the glue adheres to the support, as recommended by the manufacturer of the glue used. Refer to the technical advice provided by the glue manufacturer for applications on special substrates.

Selecting the size, grooves and joints
The size and type of slab to select must also be assessed according to the movement and logistics that the building site allows. For size 1000×3000 mm tilings involving difficult drilling or movement you are advised to use T-ONE 3+. You are advised to use grooves of at least 1/2 mm, to be assessed according to the size of the slab, the size of the wall to be covered and the quality of the substrate. Before plastering the grooves, follow the times indicated by the glue manufacturer: cement- or epoxy resin-based products may be used. These products ensure greater evenness and that the colour is maintained over time. However, they require thorough and fast cleaning.

Adehsive and application
It is important to use a deformable or highly deformable adhesive able to suit the coating natural expansion movement, thus balancing the tensions generated on the substrate. On crumbled or very absorbing renders it may be necessary to use a professional water-based concentrated “insulating”. Product (PRIMER), according to the indications given by the chosen adhesive manufacturer. Apply the adhesive in full bed with backbuttering both on the substrate and on the slab, caring to cover corners and edges, too. The quantity of used adhesive must be directly proportional to the slab dimensions and to the substrates features. The operator shall choose the squeegees to be used: generally smooth or 3-mm toothed squeegees are to be used on the slab and 6-9- mm sloped toothed squeegees are to be used on the substrate. It is important that the quantity of adhesive ensures an application without air gaps between slab and substrate. Apply the adhesive gradually only on the surface involved in the application of a slab, to avoid surface film that could jeopardize bonding.

On-site slabs handling

For a correct and safe handling of crates, A-frame and pallets, it is recommended to use a forklift with a capacity of 2,5 tons and with forks at least 250 cm long. The dimensions and weight of the Big One line require specific safety measures to allow operators to work safely and to avoid any possible breakages of the slabs. Suction cups are absolutely necessary for the handling of each slab and, where appropriate, a trolley can also be used. In addition, the dimensions of the slabs require great caution and attention in all movements.

For the 1000×3000 format the presence of four operators at the same time is compulsory and the slabs must be handled on the long side, in order to avoid bumps or excessive bending.