What is correct mud for setting acrylic receptor? [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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11-18-2009, 11:30 PM
I am not new to tile projects, but this is the first time that I have set an acrylic shower receptor and need to know if I have done it properly. I used a dry mud ratio with 4:1 snad to portland cement. I covered it with poly sheeting and set the receptor. Because this mix was so dry, I was difficult to rock into position. We finally got it solid, but the outer rim remained 1/8" front the finished floor, all the way around. I haven't checked the mud for 5 days, but the mud in the bucket wasn't dry, after 2 days. Any thoughts?

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Tool Guy - Kg
11-19-2009, 01:08 AM
Welcome to the forum, Jim.

Some receptors manufacturers specifically tell you what they want supporting the underside of it. Some generically say to support it with a "mortar". Some specifically don't want you to use foam. Others don't say anything about supporting. I use a mason's mix or perilited plaster (Gypsolite), whichever is okay with the manufacturer. What brand receptor do you have?

We need more info about your mud that isn't drying out: Was the leftover mud in the bucket hard after two days? Did you dry blend the sand and portland before adding water? How much water? Are you able to check the mud under the receptor w/o damaging anything? :)

11-19-2009, 11:37 AM
Thanks for you reponse. I could really use some confidence that the job is done right.

Since my post, I checked the mud in the bucket, and it is hard. I checked under the receptor by looking through the motor access doors, in the wall, and the mud under it looks good and solid. The dry pack mud is 1-1/2" thick under the receptor. This is a Kohler neo-angle receptor with a heated whirlpool/foot bath. They call for the use of a mud mix to set the unit, but didn't specify, otherwise. I was just freaking out that the mix didn't dry like I thought it would. I mixed the sand and cement prior to adding the water and added only enough water to make the mud compact in my hand. I think I did a good job of matching the picture that John B has on his site. Being new to dry pack mud, I just wasn't used to how it looked.

I am going to install 12 x 12 marble tile in the corner, to match the whirlpool tub surround and the 18 x 18 marble floor. This will then get a glass enclosure and a glass steam dome. I planned on shimming under the 1/8" crack around the receptor with strips on plexiglass - glued down, just to make sure the curb can't flex. What do you think?

I am sending pictures of this project, in my new house. Pic #1 shows the whilpool tub with a see-through fireplace. Pic #2 is a longer shot showing more of the floor and the shower receptor in the bottom right-hand corner. Pic #3 shows the current shower project with roughed-in plumbing.

All comments and advice are welcome. I just want to make sure this is done right... the first time!

11-19-2009, 01:39 PM
Jim, I think I'd get some toilet shims (nylon wedges) and install 3 or 4 along each of the 3 sides you can see, then caulk the receptor to the floor.

Rd Tile
11-19-2009, 03:34 PM
Nice place for a pizza oven.:D

Oh and, Structolite works great for setting fiberglass pans and tubs.:)

Tool Guy - Kg
11-20-2009, 02:26 AM
...I mixed the sand and cement prior to adding the water and added only enough water to make the mud compact in my hand. I think I did a good job of matching the picture that John B has on his site.You've described how you'd normally mix mud when you're packing a mud shower pan that you beat down with a wooden trowel. You mixed it quite a bit drier than you needed for this application. When setting tubs/receptors, you mix it with more water so it's a thick paste so that the receptor can be squished into it when you stand on it and shift your weight around. But as long as the mud is hard, it's supporting the base just fine.

The gap shows a visual reason why setting tubs and receptors before the floor is installed can help out...as the thickness of the floor tile up against the tub can cover a gap pretty well.

Looks like you're gonna need to add another wall stud to the right of that receptor for the cement board/drywall transition.

From the pics, it looks like it's gonna be the favorite room of the house pretty soon. :)