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02-11-2010, 11:45 AM
I am beginning a PVC shower liner installation for a tile shower base in a master bath and have a few questions to make sure I am using the correct products:

1. Is a 40 mil PVC liner correct for this application? There are a number of different types of liners and different thicknesses available, 40 mil PVC seems to be the most prevalent.

2. What is the correct concrete product to use for the pre-pitch base that will be beneath the PVC liner. The arrangement as I understand it that should be above the wooden subfloor will be: tar paper, galv wire mesh, concrete (pitched to drain), PVC liner, mudset, tile. Again, looking for the correct product below the liner, is it any old cement or is there a mix that is more suitable in this application. Also have seen mention of "add mix.". What is the best product to use here?

3. For the walls will be installing 1/2" wonderboard. Is rolling "red guard waterproofing" appropriate beneath the mastic and tile? Is there another product that serves the same purpose? Is this precaution wise or unneccessary?

Any help is appreciated.

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02-11-2010, 11:48 AM


I don't care what the directions on the mastic might say, you are asking for problems. No pro would ever use mastic in a shower.

02-11-2010, 01:50 PM
John, most of your questions are addressed in the Shower Construction Thread (http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=5434) in our Liberry. Read through all of it, including the external links, then get back with us with your specific questions.

I'm not sure what you meant by "mastic," but to us, that means an organic adhesive you buy in a plastic bucket. They really have no business in your shower, so stay away from them. That way, Gregg won't have to yell at you again. :D

02-11-2010, 03:19 PM

02-11-2010, 06:01 PM
Thanks guys, great info.

I incorrectly and generically use the term mastic, will go with mod thinset for sure.

Two open issues:

1. Should I use wire lath in the pre-pitch layer below the liner? Saw a statement from John B that it is not necessary. My concern is the house was built with a 1/2 plywood subfloor. I was thinking that the lath mud mix will provide enough support to avoid any movement. Or should I add a layer of plywood on top of existing (I don't want to build it up too much if I can avoid it).

2. Still not clear if I should coat the wonderboard with red-guard before tiling on the vertical surfaces? Is it a wise precaution of overkill? Also, I assume there are no issues with thinset adhering to the red-guard?

02-11-2010, 06:14 PM
Follow this diagram, but without the wire mesh in the mortar bed. You wanna start with tar paper, then lath, then your preslope made out of deckmud (same material as the final mortar bed)

You only want one moisture barrier on the walls, either behind the CBU or on the surface, not both.

Spend some time studying the Shower construction thread and you should be golden