Creating a Grill Caddy for Your Portable Grill: Part 3

In the final steps of this article, you will be attaching the Dura-rock backer board to the metal framework you completed in the last article. You will also be attaching the tile and wood finish to the exterior of your new grill caddy.

You’ll need a few tools for setting the tile in place. A Ã?¼-inch notched trowel, sponge trowel and a sponge are needed to set the tile and sponge in the grout. You also need a tile cutter for the smaller pieces of tile. You can rent one or buy one, but if you want to save money, you can simply design your caddy to fit uncut tile. Buy your tile first, and then measure it to fit on your grill caddy perfectly!

Start by cutting the backer board for the top of the caddy. Use a circular saw fitted with a carbide blade. The same one you used to cut the metal studs will work just fine. Cut all the pieces squarely and attach to the top of your caddy with several self-tapping screws. Make sure you keep the lower part of the caddy square to the backer board! This will ensure you have a perfect L-shape box. If you’re going to use tile for a border around the edges attach a strip of backer board to the outside edges at this time. This will give the caddy a finished “lip” that you can attach bull-nosed tile to for a clean and smooth finish.

Once the backer board is in place, you can now begin to set the tile. Using the �¼-inch notched trowel, spread tile adhesive along the top of the backer board. Spread on in a fan shaped pattern for good adhesion. Make sure that the adhesive is spread on with spaces between the notches, and not smeared. This will assure proper adhesion occurs.

Place the tile on starting from left to right. Don’t use tile spacers! Keep each tile tightly together as this will prevent water from leaking through the tiles when it rains or from spills. This will help your caddy last for years to come. Make cuts as necessary and attach them last. Don’t press down hard on the tiles! A light push into place is all they need to stay forever. Use the sponge and a bucket of water to clean any left over adhesive off of the tile and surrounding structure. Let the whole project dry overnight.

The next day you’ll be grouting. Mix the grout to a paste like consistency in a bucket. Use the sponge trowel to squeeze the grout in between all the spaces on the tile. Its o.k. if you get grout all over the tiles, it will be cleaned off later. Just make sure all the cracks are filled uniformly and smoothly. Once the grout dries for a few minutes, you can begin to wipe off the excess with a wet sponge and bucket of water. Change the water in the bucket every so often. Wipe and wipe some more with the sponge until you have a clean surface free from excess grout. If the grout smears out from the cracks when you wipe it off, then refill the grout and wait longer for it to dry.

Cut and attach cedar or other type of wood to the frame using wood adhesive or liquid nail. By using cedar planks with a tongue and groove, you can set the wood trim at a faster rate. You may need to attach a few bottom planks first, then let it dry for an hour or so before attaching any more or they may slide off the metal frame. Cut trim pieces for the corners and glue them on as well. At this point, you should have a great looking grill caddy that will last for years to come!

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