DIY Stone Wall Just In Time for Summer
The countdown to Memorial Day and the unofficial start to summer is in full swing, and if you’re like many of us, that long three day weekend is best spent having fun and enjoying a nice break, not doing house projects. It’s never been easier to tackle a DIY Stone Wall project than it is now using any of Norstone’s natural stone panel system products. If you’ve got a wall, a weekend, a little tiling experience (or a willingness to learn), and the need to impress your significant other, this project is for you!
Let’s first break down the product itself. Norstone makes natural stone panel system products in a number of different styles, ranging from the traditional split face ledge stone look of the Standard Rock Panels to the modern smooth finishes of the Aksent 3D Panels and Planc Large Format Tiles. The basis of all the panel systems is that the small individual stones that make up the panels come epoxied together in panels. The panels are manufactured with a high degree of calibration ensuring they fit together snug and without gapping on your wall.
A DIY Stone Wall can be created in lots of different applications – ranging from interior or exterior feature walls, fireplaces, back splashes, shower walls, landscape and retaining walls, just to name a few. You can learn all the details about installing Norstone products on our stacked stone installation page. The most important starting point is to make sure your wall is a suitable substrate for a DIY Stone Wall. Any cementious substrate will do – normally cement board for most interior applications, as well as brick, block, pre-fab concrete, and even traditional lathe + scratch coat for all other applications.
An often overlooked stepped in a DIY Stone Wall installation is the application of a waterproofing / crack isolation membrane that goes between the cementious substrate and the thinset that is used to adhere the stone panels to the wall. This membrane is important for any exterior project, especially those in freeze / thaw climates, as well as any interior application where water is routinely expected to be on the stone like a shower feature wall. A waterproofing / crack isolation membrane sounds intimidating, but in reality it’s a product that goes on like a very thick paint, sets up in a couple hours, and most of the time even changes colors to let you know it’s ready to be installed over.
When it comes time to actually installing the tile, the DIY installer is going to use a polymer modified tile thinset to adhere the stone panels to the wall, back buttering each panel and using a 1/2” square notch trowel for the thinset against the wall. All of panel system products cut easily on tile wet saw, which you can rent from an equipment rental place, or even pick up an inexpensive one at a discount hardware and tool shop. Working from the bottom up, checking and staying level is important so the panels continue to fit nice and tight as your work your way up the wall.
Our stacked stone installation guide is the ultimate resource for all your questions about tacking a DIY Stone Wall project. If you have the time the video below by our friend Chris over at Handy Dad TV, also does a great job showing this process for those of us that like to learn by watching and not reading.
Thanks for learning more about DIY Stone Walls and how Norstone’s natural stone panel system products can help the average DIYer get a stacked stone wall in their house much easier than ever before. While most residential sized DIY Stone Walls are going to be installed in a weekend the look you’ll achieve on the wall is going to be really impressive and garner both your design acumen as well as DIY skills some serious complements. Contact us today to learn more about Norstone natural stone panel system products and how they can help you tackle your next DIY Stone Wall project!