Critique my Curbless Shower/Bathroom Layout [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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02-16-2010, 01:39 PM

*Image edited to reflect CabotandRowe suggestion regardng shower door.

I am planning a total gut renovation of an existing 5x8 bathroom. The project includes gaining the extra space from a small linen closet, a stubby hallway, and the back of a poorly designed master closet. I am an engineer so I've got the minor structural changes under control.

My biggest concern is the curbless shower - and the ambiguity surrounding the codes. I'll be honest - I am not pulling a permit for this - but I like to do things right and in case my parents ever try to sell the home I dont want to cause any issues for them.

The ambiguity comes in around the 2" curb above the drain top rule, in conjunction with the max slope of 1/2" per ft. At that rate your drain can be no closer than 4' from the edge of the curbless shower opening. With a drain that is centered - that would be an 8 foot wide shower! From my research here it seems that this is one of those codes not usually enforced, and for good reason. It seems that many successful showers have been built without the 2" requirement satisfied. PLEASE SET ME STRAIGHT NOW IF I AM WRONG ABOUT THIS ASSUMPTION!

As it lays out now the shower FLOOR will be 60x34, and including the tub will be 60x67. The entire room will be mudded (floor) and covered in Kerdi (both of which I have experience with). Fortunately my structure lays out so I will have no problem notching the joists 2" or so for the shower floor. I'll sister them for stiffness to be safe though.

The shower door will be a custom frameless unit, with a fixed panel and a pivoting door(as shown).

The tub will not be separated from the shower in any way, and any overspray that gets in the tub will obviously just go down the tub drain instead of the shower drain. This is actually not a unique layout. Kohler has this as a suggested layout on their bath designer site, and the new ARIA Hotel at Project CityCenter Las Vegas has this in many of their rooms. I figure if it works in a multibillion dollar hotel it works for me. The tub will be Kohler K-878 - which is the only tub I could ind to fit my criteria of Cast iron, drop in (no apron), AND has a built in tile flange for alcove use.

The shower will have its own controls with a 6 way, 3 port diverter for the main showerhead, the body sprays, and the hand shower. The hand shower will be located on the opposite wall above the shower bench, and close to the back end of the tub for convenience (giving a baby a bath, for example).

The built in cabinetry will be raised on a waterproofed pedestal to baseboard height, due to its proximity to the shower door opening.

That is all I can think of for now. I am open to any suggestions or comments - especially with regard to the curbless shower since this will be a first for me. Thanks in advance.

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02-16-2010, 01:56 PM
:stick: we did all the showers at the Aria.
(and all the other Towers ,about 12000 showers)

Houston Remodeler
02-16-2010, 02:19 PM

The next time I need to fit 10 pounds of potatoes in a 5 pound sack, I know who to ask ! My bathroom is 6x10 and I tried and tried to do the same sort of thing. Everyone talked me out of it. Oh well :cry:

1- The easy one - the shower door swing hitting the front of the cabinet - A bit tight for my tastes. Make sure to show this plan to the glass guys to be assured the door will not be broken in a week when someone slams it open.

2- I would worry about flooding the shower area when the tub is drained when full of water. You'll need to do some fancy plumbing drainage to make sure the water doesn't have the chance to back up into the shower and flood the floor.

3- I do see a few issues surrounding the ability to waterproof the shower / tub area particularly at the edge where it meets the shower. You can treat the tub as a large bench I guess.

02-16-2010, 03:15 PM
e3 - So you guys used Kerdi on all of those Aria rooms right? :lol1::lol1::lol1:

But seriously - did you use NobleSeal TS for everything? Would you happen to have any pictures you could send me? I only saw a floor plan of the Aria bathrooms, no actual pics of the showers with tubs in them. I can give you my email if you can't post them for copyright reasons or whatever.

Cabot - Yea the shower door is a concern for me. 3/8" tempered glass can take alot of abuse. I am actually more concerned with the handle hitting the built in cabinet and dinging it. My two options I think are to add a small third panel about 4" wide on the right side and have it hinge off of that panel instead of the wall - or to simply reverse the layout and have it swing toward the toilet. The CRL hinges stop at 90 degrees exactly, so either of these configurations would stop the glass before hitting anything. The PROBLEM with those to configurations is that they are both glass-to-glass hinging, and therefore probably require a header across the top which I don't really want (ruins the frameless look). I'll hash that one out with my glass guy.

The drainage is not a problem - the joist bays run in the long dimension (i.e. vertically in this plan view), and there is an existing soffit basically under the entire tub footprint. The left wall in the plan is the home's main wet wall. I have plenty of leeway with drainage.

The waterproofing at the tub shower interface I plan to accomplish as follows: I'll build the tub apron knee wall and drywall and Kerdi it (and only it) BEFORE dropping the tub in. The top plate of the knee wall will be pitched outwards into the shower. I'll then drop in the tub and drywall over the flange as usual, and then Kerdi the walls. I will use Kerdi-fix to seal between the front tub flange and the top of the sloped Kerdi'd knee wall. My only concern is the fron CORNERS of the tub, where the side tiling flanges end a bit shy of the front as shown. I am thinking I will Kerdi-band with Kerdi-fix a 3/8" overlap on to the tub as recommended by John Bridge in other threads. Any other ideas welcome.

The corners I am concerned about are circled. The arrow points to where the knee wall will go obviously. The Kerdi will go UNDER the fron lip since I will Kerdi the knee wall before putting the tub in.


I have also updated the plan to reflect the changed shower door with a third panel added (4" wide, and hinges mounted to it instead of wall) - I may need a header with this. I'll ask my glass guy.


Houston Remodeler
02-16-2010, 03:19 PM
Right, that sounds good to me. Those areas of concern were the same areas I tried to express and as I was writing, it wasn't going well. On one such installation I used some kerdi band and kerdi-fixed it to the tub from the back side as to get more surface area to fix to. Then dropped the tub in. The kerdi was bent forward as to flap in front of the drywall. Added kerdi fix could then be applied in that 1/4" gap where the drywall falls short of hitting the tub surface.

I'd like to see pics of your project all along the way.

02-17-2010, 09:30 AM
The big weakness in your proposed layout is the Frameless glass portion.

As drawn the door will be a weak link and may compromise your waterproofing efforts if the glazers install some U channel through your tile and waterproofing.

A safer idea is to build out the wall like I show in your revised drawing and then the short section of glass isn't needed and the floor need not be drilled.

If it's for your parents consider adding horizontal grab bars along the glass wall and door for safety. If you install them on the door back to back they could act as a towel bar.

Good luck.

02-17-2010, 10:59 AM
thats a valid point about drilling the floor for clips or U-channel - but there really is no way to avoid it for the left solid panel. I am pretty sure my glazier usually wants to put U-Channel on the bottom of a fixed panel that size. There would be 1 clip at the top of the side, and U-Channel along the bottom.

I'll provide blocking between the joists under the whole glass area. I make sure they fill any holes they drill through the Kerdi are filled full with silicone before they drive the screws in.

This is a common issue and I have never heard of a better way around it. This problem of drilling the waterproof membrane exists whether the shower is curbed or curbless - and whether Kerdi/Nobleseal or a traditional pvc/lead/hotmop is used. Penetrating the waterproofing is penetrating the waterproofing no matter how you slice it. The problem is that there is no elegant solution to hanging frameless glass without bottom fastening (short of using a full header). If anyone has an elegant solution please let me know.

02-17-2010, 11:22 AM
So to get to the tub, you either go through the shower or a window :scratch:

Maybe I'm seeing things but if this is true it sounds so crazy it just may work.

02-17-2010, 11:34 AM
About the layout:

Although the idea of the siamese shower/tub isn't bad, you are trying to cram too much in that space. There is so little room around the vanity it is going to feel real cramped it there. I would sacrifice either the shower or the tub for some more room.

02-17-2010, 11:56 AM
Muddman - The space around the vanity is equal to what is currently in the bathroom in its standard 5x8 layout. This area has never felt cramped - and the shower addition is not what defines the side to side dimension of 5' anyway - that is limited by the kitchen and master suite on either side.

The reason for this layout is that we need both a tub and a shower - but hate the tub/shower combo we have now. So, dropping either is not an option.

02-17-2010, 12:14 PM
I think I may have a solution for holding the fixed panel/panels along the bottom WITHOUT the use of clips or aluminum channel.

I fugure since I am still in the design phase - I can easily set my tile so as to leave a 'channel', with the bottom of said channel simply being the Kerdi surface. I found one company online that seems to do their installs this way - although they are ambigous about how they create the tile channel. They imply that they make the channel after installation - but that would obviously destroy the Kerdi if I tried that.

I am going to talk to my glazier today I will being it up to him.

02-17-2010, 12:24 PM
If you install the U Channel while you set the floor you will hide the mortar view and plastic bumper pads used when installing the glass to the floor. This could just be siliconed in place but wouldn't have the locked in affect of being pinned by tile. It wouldn't hurt to drill a few small 1/8" holes on the shower side of the channel to allow any moisture a path to migrate through the thinset.

gitchi gummi
02-17-2010, 03:31 PM
How about a trench drain against the tub. (I'm surprised John Whipple didn't suggest this after supplying us with all those great pictures.) Allows you to slope the floor toward the tub in one plane only and allows for tile continuity in the entire space. Larger tiles can be used in the shower.

If the shower controls are slender, could the door open into the shower? This would be less cumbersome for the vanity. Is this going to be used by someone in a wheelchair? If so, in-swing would be easier for access.

I don't know what's out there for nice sliding door hardware, but a slider hung from track could make the space more efficient as well. This idea combined with slope toward the tub might work well?

Overall, it is a neat concept. I don't see a problem with going through a shower area to get to the tub. Also, it is nice to rinse off after being in the bath and this allows the user to do that without bringing water into the rest of the bathroom.

02-17-2010, 06:28 PM
I thought about a trench drain along the tub wall - but after hours of research a few weeks ago I determined that as of yet there is no trench drain that is designed to work with a membrane like Kerdi. A trench along that direction would also be going across the joists (which would aready be notched for the curbless) so the plumbing could be tough.

The shower door cannot swing inwards - it is against code (and that is a code that DOES make sense - so I follow it). The reason is in case someone were to pass out in the shower in front of the door - an inswing door could not be opened to get them out.

The sliding options are either the cheapo 5/16" ones you can get at Home Depot - or the uber expensive barn-door roller kind (which ARE really cool).;jsessionid=0a010c471f432afa65d1c8fa4b18b209dc589e879f5d.e3eSch4MaN4Re34Pa38Ta38Pc3f0

One reason I dont want to use a slider like that (beside price) is that they require the clips be screwed to the floor, which again raises my issue with penetrating the Kerdi.

So I went to talk to my glass guy - and got a little sticker shock. I had budgeted $1500-1600 for the frameless door - but the three panel headerless design (which I found out WILL work - CR Laurence certifies certain clips and hinges for this exact purpose) will cost $2350. I really like this glass guy and have used him in the past - but I think I might have to get a few more quotes on this one.

gitchi gummi
02-17-2010, 06:54 PM
The shower door cannot swing inwards - it is against code (and that is a code that DOES make sense - so I follow it). The reason is in case someone were to pass out in the shower in front of the door - an inswing door could not be opened to get them out.

I see, good point. Can you get an 180 degree hinge? That way you meet code, but could use in-swing when you are not passed out in the shower. :)

Yeah, I was thinking about the Uber cool kind. I figured they were spendy. Thanks for the link. That hardware can be had without the glass. another option:,english.gif/,english.gif/

Some trench drains may work without notching.

To incorporate the membrane into a trench drain see this link from John Whipple:

Also, there must be a bulletproof way to screw through the floor if needed?

I wonder what the mark-up is on a $2350 glass panel set?

One more thing, you wrote that your cabinets will be on a raised pad. Depending on the cabinet, floating it off the floor makes the room feel bigger and the cabinet would not need the "curb".

02-18-2010, 12:23 PM
I am planning a bathroom renovation with a curbless shower that will include a frameless door of some kind. Originally I planned for a pivot door with two side panels to be done by a glass company. Refer to my other thread for layout :

I have come across another solution I like better though.


However, installation of this door requires the use of a threshold track and guide clip for the slider that are designed to be screwed down (shown below).


I do not like this for two reasons: most importantly I DO NOT want to drill into my Kerdi floor. I know that many people say it is OK to so long as you backfill the hole with Kerdifix or silicone - but I dont want to take the chance. Secondly - I think the big included threshold/U-channel is ugly and will ruin my curbless look.

I have devised a different installation method that I would like to run by you all.

Shown below is my new proposed method.


This method involves doing away with their included U-Channel/threshhold and instead using a standard CR Laurence U-Channel for the fixed panel ONLY. I will embed this section of U channel in the tile as I go.

The guide clip will also be installed as I tile - and adhered directly to the Kerdi with epoxy (will epoxy eat thru Kerdi?). The tile will be cut around it and it will be locked in with grout. I do not plan to use any screws. The forces on this clip will be minimal unless someone were to really ram the door hard.

By doing away with the threshold and embedding the fixed panel in the tile two problems are created - which I will solve simultaneously with the steep pitch seen for the 2 inch run between panels.

Problem 1. Height of sliding door bottom - By embedding the fixed panel approx 3/8" into the tile, the slider will be lowered respectively by 3/8". If the floor were flat or flat-ish between them then the slider would bottom out on the tile. Therefore I need to lower the tile in the area under the slider. I plan to pitch the 2inch wide strip of floor between panels at a steep pitch to gain the necessary gap under the sliding panel to accomodate a thin vinyl sweep. That brings up the next problem.

Problem 2: Water sealing: The included threshold is the only means they provide for preventing water seepage undr the door (they only include side sweeps for the door sides - not a bottom sweep). With my method of no metal threshold the water could seep out. This problem is solved by the steep pitched area essentially making a ~1/2" tile curb, AND by using a standard CR Laurence vinyl sweep attached to the glass bottom with very high bond tape.


So, there is my plan. Please give me your thoughts - specifically about the epoxying of the clip to the Kerdi and whether this will be strong enough, etc...thanks!

02-18-2010, 11:01 PM
Kyle, you can drill into the tile 1/4" or so without drilling into the kerdi and use a good epoxy glue (locktite) that is recommended for metal to tile adhesion and just simply glue that bottom bracket to the tile.

I did this on my shower and have had no issues. That glass bracket is as solid as the ones screwed in up the wall.

The 1/4" deep hole provides a bite for the epoxy to act like a bolt into the tile.

There is no "official" answer to this issue anywhere.....I searched and asked. This method worked for me and I would do it again. No hole in the waterproofing.

John Bridge
02-19-2010, 12:22 PM
Hi Kyle, :)

I think you're creating a cleaning nightmare. :)

Glass sliders are suspended from the top rail. Why not just use a small bracket at the bottom similar to those used on closet bypass doors? You could cement that onto the floor with epoxy glue. No rut in the floor. The doors will simply float a quarter inch or less above your floor. You can open the shower from either direction. :)

P.S. Snets, I've still got your plumbing pics and still intend to use them. I'm way behind on the project, though. ;)

02-19-2010, 01:20 PM
Have you seen prices on their products?

02-19-2010, 01:28 PM
thanks for the replies.

John - if you look at my layout (posted up top in my link to my other thread) you will see that I dont need a two way slider due to the toilet proximity. I only want one side to slide the other should be fixed - just as it would be if I used a custom pivot door. The Dreamline door linked above is designed to be used this way. I am not talking about altering the top mounting or the bottom guide clip - just changing the included bulky U-channel for a CR Laurence one - embedding it in the tile, and adding a vinyl sweep to the bottom of the slider to take care of water that would otherwise have been taken care of by the included 'bulky U-Channel threshold'.

My biggest concern is really how to attach that bottom guide clip without using screws. I know that no forces are placed on it by the door itself - but I am concerned with someone leaning on the door, etc.. and causing a sideways shear force that shears the clip off from the epoxy. I guess if I do it to the surface of the tile and it shears off I can re-epoxy it easier than if I were to do it straight to the Kerdi and tile around it. That could destroy the Kerdi with it and I'd be screwed.

Brian in San Diego
02-19-2010, 06:41 PM

I merged your new thread with the original (I think) for this project. We would ask that you keep all project questions on one thread in keeping with our "one project, one thread" policy. Makes it easier for those trying to help and those following along to have all the information in one place. We can rename the thread if you like.


02-19-2010, 09:00 PM
Kyle, I also forgot to suggest, if you are worried about the shear strength of using epoxy only, you could also epoxy a metal pin (or shortened bolt) through the clip hole and 1/4" into the hole in the tile. I thought about doing that.

As you can see, my bottom clip is 12" from the wall and holds a 180-degree swinging 30"X72", 3/8" thick door with just epoxy. Door has been opened a thousand times at least.

02-19-2010, 11:29 PM
thanks alot Snets. I actually was thinking today about your suggestion of drilling just the tile and thought to use a metal pin in the epoxy. Great minds think alike!

Well I am feeling better about this door system if I do decide to go with it instead of a custom pivot unit.

02-19-2010, 11:47 PM
I have no doubt it would work and severely improve your predicament. Which is the whole reason for this forum.

gitchi gummi
02-20-2010, 03:32 PM
This sliding track system requires no glass drilling or holes in the glass panels and no floor track:,english.gif/pos,0

All showers have holes in the membrane. The drain, shower controls and shower head all penetrate the membrane. I think your insistence on avoiding a well sealed screw hole in the membrane is a little extreme. Water is never going to sit on and penetrate the floor in this area.

Brian in San Diego
02-20-2010, 05:02 PM
Mark, where the penetration is is extremely important to the integrity of the waterproofing method. The shower valve and shower head are nowhere near as important as the bottom 10" and the curb. The drain doesn't count because properly installed the drain isn't a penetration at all. In the case of kerdi the membrane is bonded to the flange so it isn't a penetration of the membrane. In a traditional shower the liner is bonded to the drain via the clamping collar and sealant. Putting a screw or any other penetration through the floor, curb or 10" up the wall is of major concern. We have seen many examples of these types of penetrations of the membrane in the past and none of them are pretty.

02-20-2010, 05:38 PM
well I have decided to nix the slider and I am back to using a 3 panel custom pivot door. I called Wilson Glass (recommended alot on this site it seems) and they quoted me $1400 shipped to NY - a far cry less than the $2400 I was quoted locally(by 3 places). I will still be using embedded U-channel on the bottom and sides of both fixed panels. I'll use 3/8" for the 30" wide fixed panel and 24" door, and 1/2" for the 6" wide panel that is being hinged off of.

With embedding the U-Channel in the tile it should be completely hidden from view and look like the glass goes right into the tile itself.

Just to make sure - I have seen Wilson Glass referred on here a number of times - but does anyone have any experience with getting things shipped from them? Do they crate their stuff well, etc..? It has to make it 3000 miles from CA to NY...

Brian in San Diego
02-20-2010, 07:31 PM

Chances are your glass will be manufactured locally. Wilson has deals with glass places all around the country and I think it's doubtful it'll be shipped from their facility in California.


03-11-2010, 09:14 PM
I'm curious where you guys like to place your mud screeds.

For example: say you have a 7' wide area and are using a 6' straight edge. Do you place the mud screeds 6" in from each wall - and screed the middle first before going back a bit and using that middle area to screed off the two 6" swaths on the edges? Or - do you place them 12" in from each wall so that each screed is no more than 6' from a wall - and you can essentially screed in two steps instead of three?

I personally think the second option seems to make more sense - but at what point do you consider a screed too far from the wall?

03-11-2010, 09:20 PM
Find the high spot against a wall and start there form your screed (I call them runners). Then make it as long as you can go from wall to wall as long as that wall is. Then make a runner perpendicular to the one of the end of it, your creating an L. Then take your L and make a runner perpendicular to the last one so your next runners parallel with the 1st one you should have a U now. The make a return runner that brings you back the 1st runner you made (figuring the room is a square.) This gives you an oppertunity to check and you should be level with the original runner. Then just fill it in with whatever desired straight edge fills the gap. I have 2,3,4,5,6,8 ft edges so I can mud however I want. My next edges to get are a 7 ft and 10 ft.

03-12-2010, 11:34 AM
Yea that is the way I make my mud screeds (in a u shape to start) - but the question was more related to the distance from the wall people place their mud screeds when they have a straight edge that is a foot or more shorter than the width of the room.

03-12-2010, 11:54 AM
do them around the perimeter of the room and then a runner through the middle and pull off them.

03-12-2010, 12:01 PM
You doin' walls or floors there, Kyle?

For walls I want my screed sticks within about 6" of a wall, but if my straight edge won't reach from wall to farthest screed, I'd bring it in a bit. I like to be able to screed the whole wall in one action when finishing it up.

For walls too wide to do with a six-foot straight-edge, I'd want a center screed to allow me to do like above but in two sections.

Truth be known, if my wall is that wide, I'd generally want to hire someone else to do that wall. :)

Floors I generally make a wide mud screed at the wall and additional mud screeds wherever they seem necessary to get the floor flattened.

I don't understand what y'all mean by U-shaped screed sticks or layouts. Gotta give the old guys more hints.

Higher Standard Tile
03-12-2010, 01:05 PM
when I'm in that situation I go with your second option.

03-12-2010, 01:07 PM
I would just use the appropriate edge that fits between yours screeds to fill in. If the edge is short since you have runners around the whole room it's easy to make em wide enough to get your edge to fit when filling in.

Posted via iPhone.

John Bridge
03-12-2010, 01:56 PM
Hi Kyle, :)

Option Two sounds fine to me. The edge doesn't have to quite reach the screeds though. You can move it from side to side as you go so long as you don't dig out too much at a time. Eventually you'll wear the mud down to the screed tops. :)

03-20-2010, 02:53 PM
I am getting ready to install some Light Emperador marble tiles in different sizes in a bathroom. The Hexagon, basketweave, and 2x4 brick patterns are all on sheets that are fiberglass mesh backed adhered with some type of resin. The 4x4 are not mesh backed and have no resin. The manufacturer is AIM Tile and Stone - so I may call tem to see if it is polyesther, epoxy, or urethane resin.

The room is a wet room with curbless shower, so assume they will be in a wet environment. The entire room will be covered in Kerdi.

I generally use Versabond, even over Kerdi - but I am not sure that will work with these tiles. Do I have to use an epoxy mortar?

03-20-2010, 03:16 PM
Typically that isn't considered a resin backed stone,it's just sheet goods and a good modified thinset will work.But here's a good article on this....

03-21-2010, 08:36 PM
Thanks Dave. I actually called AIM Tile and Stone (the manufacturer) and the guy there was not very helpful. I don't have much confidence in his answer given that he kept thinking I was talking about epoxy grout, lol.

I would assume that with the small size of these tiles (2"x4" brick pattern is the largest size I have on sheets) that the mortar will key in to the mesh and the back of the grout spaces enough to make up for any lost adhesion.

I think I'll wait a few days before grouting to give the Versabond polymers some time to dry - given that they will be sandwiched between Kerdi and a resin backing.

Crestone Tile
03-21-2010, 08:41 PM
I've installed resin / mesh back travertine rope pebble liners with Kerabond and Keralastic where I was able to pull them off the wall two days later without much effort. With Keralastic, that was a bit alarming.

I always test bond a sample now when I run into anything resin, so I know whether or not to go with an epoxy or not. I believe the only resin backed tiles that are good to go without epoxy for sure are those which have an aggregate broadcast throughout the resin backing. Even then, I would set a sample.

03-22-2010, 12:50 PM
Wow thanks for that tidbit. I've never used Kerabond or Keralastic but it is considered to be pretty damn sticky, correct? Certainly moreso than the Versabond I am used to.

I will definitely set a mockup with a scrap of Kerdi on some sheetrock, and the marble on the Kerdi. Thanks for the heads up.

***IF the Versabond fails my mockup test - what options do I have with epoxy? I see on custom's site that their 100% Solids epoxy has just been discontinued. Is there a good epoxy that is less expensive than Latapoxy 300? I have a good 100 sf of the mesh back tile to do.

03-28-2010, 03:01 PM
I am probably going to be using large format square tiles (16x16), with a cross made of 3x6 pieces for a 35" square shower floor. The pattern will continue up the walls and look like an inside out gift wrapped with ribbon.

My question pertains to pitching the mudbed. I generally make mud screeds around the whole perimeter and then screed off from the perimeter to the kerdi drain. This obviously creates a shape approaching a cone - which is fine for small format. With these large format though I would like to make just ONE diagonal cut in each of the 4 tiles. So - I will want my mudbed to be 4 converging triangles instead of a continuous cone. How should I adjust my screeding to make that happen?

Old World Tile and Marble
03-28-2010, 03:28 PM
cut two plywood templates two create the pitch or use screed rails from corner of drain to wall do the mud screeding hard to the rails remove them and infill the voids after the mud sets up a bitso you can shape it without deforming it

03-29-2010, 07:11 PM
thanks. when you say plywood templates do you mean in the triangle shape or are you talking about wedge shapes to use as screeds along the diagonals?

Houston Remodeler
03-29-2010, 08:20 PM
Yes Kyle,

The long sloped screed go where your dashed diagonal lines are. That way the perimeter of the shower pan at the wall can remain perfectly level.

Old World Tile and Marble
03-29-2010, 08:45 PM
if you run your perimeter level you can in fill the triangular shapes high then use the plywood templates to beat these sections down could be tricky,id use the screed rails.

run perimeter level 1 or 2inches off walls lay some dry pack from the corners of walls to corners of drain where you want your sharp angle,tap the screed rails in until they are level with the top of the mud perimeter and level to the top of the drain minus the thickness of your tile,screed remove the rails and fill and final shape where you want the sharp angle

03-29-2010, 09:30 PM
I guess I should clarify my question a bit. I understand setting mud screeds for the perimeter (which I do anyway) and then either mud or some other type of screed for the diagonals. What I am having trouble visualizing is how I will level off between the diagonal screeds - since the two diagonals are converging I would need an infinitely adjustable length straight edge...that obviously doesnt exist so I foresee having trouble with leveling the infill. Do I just have to freehand it?

03-29-2010, 09:34 PM
I've always wished I had an infinitely adjustable straight edge.

Houston Remodeler
03-29-2010, 09:37 PM
I went to HD and got myself some 2 inch strap aluminum. Just like the stuff they use to make t square for drywall. Since I screed my drypack dry, its like running a bulldozer around. If one piece is too short, I take 2 and place them next to each other, overlapped to the desired length then screed again. I can change the length as needed.

03-29-2010, 09:57 PM
Large format tile may present more opportunity for a slip hazard unless the tile surface is sufficiently textured... just sayin. :)

Sounds like yer a Pro Kyle? Where abouts in NY?

Old World Tile and Marble
03-29-2010, 10:35 PM
kyle youd be surprised but screed from top corner to the bottom corner for the most part youll need only two size edges for the two opposing sides or 4 edges total

03-30-2010, 09:16 AM
thanks jason and cabot - I'll try it that way.

Dana - I'm not a pro tiler (more of a remodeler) but I do a good deal of tiling and have come to love using deck mud for most floor jobs, and all shower jobs of course. Due to this great forum I learned of and have switched to Kerdi showers w/ traditional mud floor.

05-11-2010, 12:56 PM
It shouldn't be this hard to find something as simple as unsanded thinset!!!

I have been wanting to try to set Kerdi with unsanded - but unsanded thinsets are like unicorns. I CAN special order Surebond from home depot but I hate dealing with those idiots. Who knows if a special order of just a few bags of thinset would even ever show up.

I have read in old threads from 2007-ish that bostik was going make an unsanded called Kerdi-Set. It is not on their website that I can find though. Did they never end up starting production?

05-11-2010, 01:19 PM
KerdiSet never actually appeared, to the best of my knowledge, Kyle.

05-11-2010, 02:33 PM
What would be the drawback to using pure portland? Aside from voiding any warranty of course...I think I'm gonna try bonding some with it :)

05-11-2010, 03:47 PM
good luck.... Pure portland will get hard before you lift your trowel off the tile. That why you need to soak your tiles back in the day...

05-11-2010, 03:48 PM
I would then go to a REAL tile store near you that's a Custom dealer and order it from them.
it will come in on their next truck.

or go to a tile store and get Laticrete 211 powder:

What would be the drawback to using pure portland?I agree with Rick, you would spread it and it would probably dry before
you could get it trowed out.

John K
05-11-2010, 06:33 PM
I heard today that Jamo makes an unsanded thinset, but I haven't verified it.

Old World Tile and Marble
05-11-2010, 06:35 PM
where in ny are you we have ditraset in two stores here in albany

John K
05-11-2010, 07:08 PM
Here ya go.

05-11-2010, 08:33 PM

The JAMO Family
Because Jamo is part of the Custom® Building Products family,
our product line is broader than ever.

05-11-2010, 08:46 PM
I asked about Kerdi~Set last year and the folks at Schluter basically said they had issues and it was on hold ..Possibly forever.:eek:

Never used it but have considered it for Kerdi and back when I wanted to wet set tile.:eek:

05-12-2010, 02:56 PM
The guy at my favorite local tile store was able to help me out. He is ordering 3 bags of Super-Tek Unsanded Thinset for me. I had actually never heard of Super-Tek - they are a local NY company it turns out. Anyone have any experience with Super-Tek products?

Here is a link to the data sheet:

It mentions not using it on CBU. I assume because they fear it will absorb too much water from the thinset? I dont have CBU on the walls (they are DensArmor Plus fiberglass drywall) - but I WILL have a mud floor. Do you guys who have used unsanded before think it is OK to use over a cured mud floor? Should I wet the mud with a sponge first?

05-12-2010, 07:55 PM
Unsanded Portland cement thin-set mortar for the interior installation of 4 1/4" x 4 1/4" absorptive body
ceramic tile.
· High bond strength
· Non-sag formula
· Exceeds ANSI A118.1
APPROVED SUBSTRATES: Properly prepared concrete, concrete block, plumb and true masonry, and
gypsum board.
DO NOT USE OVER: Hardwood, plywood, existing tile, cement backer board, masonite, chipboard, flakeboard,
presswood, asbestos board, vinyl flooring, luan plywood, OSB, metal, gypsum based levelers, glass,
plastic or other similarly unstable substrates.
PLEASE NOTE: Use only for the installation of 4 1/4" x 4 1/4" absorptive body ceramic tile. For the installation
of tiles larger than 4 1/4" x 4 1/4", use one of
Super-Tek's other quality thin-set mortars.


OK to use on masonry but not backerboard? Confused, as usual.


05-12-2010, 09:33 PM
well I'm not expecting them to list "for applying Schluter Kerdi" in their list of uses on their data sheet - but yeah the CBU thing is odd to me

06-05-2010, 09:44 PM
I am working on a curbless shower project and will be getting my frameless glass shipped from Wilson Glass in CA. I spoke with them about my intended installation method - and they approved. I Already have the 1/2" U-Channel in hand, and want to install it directly to the Kerdi so that I can tile up to it on both sides - essentially burying it in the tile. I hope this will make for a very clean look.

The door will consist of a straight 60'' wide opening, with a 6" wide fixed panel, a 24" door hinged off of that panel, and then another 30" wide fixed panel. 4 pieces of u-channel are needed - a piece for each wall and a 30" segment along the floor, then a 24" gap and the 6" segment on the floor touching the opposite wall.

This complicates layout though - because I need to make ABSOLUTELY sure that the U-Channel for the two panels are co-planar so that everything lines up when the glass arrives. I wont have any adjustability for out-of plane once the u-channel is set.

What type of laser (or other tool) would you recommend for establishing a single plane across a 5' wide opening - down one wall, across the floor, and then up the other wall?

06-05-2010, 10:15 PM
You should be able to lay that out quite effectively with a long level and a five-foot straight-edge, Kyle.

06-05-2010, 10:15 PM
All you need is a level, or 2 depending on lengths. You need to give yourself some adjustment/expansion room by allowing a little more than the width of the u-channel. An 1/8 over isn't too much. Glass needs room to move... ;)

... don't rush and you'll be fine.

06-06-2010, 05:33 PM
Laser will work but it would just basically be a waste of time on that project and not as accurate since the laser line is about an 1/8 inch wide compared to a pencil line..just measure how far out from the straightest wall(hopefully outside wall at the back of the shower)draw your line, then use a good level and come up both side walls and then connect the to points to get your ceiling line.

Remember to test your level for accuracy first do this by making a level line then flip over the level and make sure it reads the same...don't assume.

Houston Remodeler
06-06-2010, 09:00 PM
I love my laser. I think its the perfect tool for this job. A rotary laser will give you a perfectly plumb lines up the walls and across the floor and ceiling. All matching perfectly.

Yes the laser line is thicker than a pencil line, but you can use the center of the laser line, or one of the edges of the laser line. Rent a digital rotary self leveling laser. Or find a buddy who has one.

06-18-2010, 09:56 AM
I am installing the Kerdi and while I know it really ins't necessary with Kerdi showers (and no actual inspection, ahem) - I would like to water test it anyway.

I would need to make a temporay dam/curb to hold back the water. I was thinking just a 2x4 wrapped in plastic braced on the rear (dry side) with some sand bags to hold back the pressure. The question is how to seal it? I remeber hearig somewhere to use alot of plumbers putty but I am worried that all of the oils in that will leave a residue on the Kerdi that will affect the bond of the tile or maybe even leach through the light colored marble that Im putting down.

Obviously silicone would work but there is nothing temporary about silicone...

It is not imperative that I water test it if it is unreasonable - but if there is a simple solution I would like to try it.

Houston Remodeler
06-18-2010, 04:03 PM

Get yerself some tubafors and a roll of gorilla tape. Place the tubafors where you want your dam, then using the tape, make an L between the floor and the side of the wood.....oh and don't press too hard, you'll rip the fleece off later.

06-18-2010, 04:31 PM
not a bad idea paul...have you tried that method?

Houston Remodeler
06-18-2010, 04:32 PM
Yes, necessity is the mother of invention. :idea:

06-27-2010, 10:41 AM
I thought I had all of the little details taken care of - but I forgot about a shelf for the niche. The shelf needs to be 18.25" x 4", and the entire bathroom is being done in a combination of Emperador Light and Emperador Dark marbles. I would prefer Emperador Light for the shelf. The problem with just getting an 18" tile is that I think most are resin backed, also they will probably be nominally less than 18" and I need 18.25" :mad:

I'm getting slabs in Emperador dark fabbed up for the countertop and shwr seat - but those are gonna be a full 1.25" thick. Is there anything in between large format tile and pure slabs available in this type of marble???

Houston Remodeler
06-27-2010, 11:03 AM
cut the shelf out of one tile diagonally

07-20-2010, 03:24 PM
So the measurement gods are not in my favor today. The shower seat that is shown above will be covered in a 1.25" thick marble slab that I will have cut after I tile and make a template. That is an old pic where no tile is shown but basically I really want the top of the slab to be 1.5" above the Kerdi due to where my other grout lines line up. I pitched the bench already so I WAS planning on setting the slab right on the kerdi. Now I want to shim it 1/4" all around so that I end up with my magic 1.5" that I want. How can I go about shimming up the whole slab 1/4" and not end up with pooling water? I still need to tile the front edge of the bench with mosaics so if I extend the mosaics up above the kerdi 1/4" I will be creating a 'dam' to hold in water that gets under the slab. Any idears?

07-21-2010, 11:29 AM

07-21-2010, 12:07 PM
You already have the slope on the bench so you are good there.

I would cut small pieces of (2x2 squares) of 1/4 Hardi. use them as spacers under the slab set in the thinset The slab won't sink any farther than your spacers

use a 1/2"x1/2" notch trowel - notch the thinset (I would use Laticrete 4 XLT) on the bench mixed semi loose - set in your 2x2 hardi squares the set the stone and tap down to where you want it - clean the front edge and set your face tile.

you won't have standing water under the seat cuz you have the slope built in already. (any water thats gets under the slab will works it's way out through the grout joints)

07-21-2010, 12:21 PM
lol i wasnt even thinking of setting the slab in thinset...i was going to use lines of silicone running parallel with the slope...

Thinset seems like the better way to go. I cant get 4xlt here easily so I'll probably go with the versabond that I've been using or maybe Custom marble and granite.

07-21-2010, 12:29 PM
You want full coverage under you slab - your using emperador right - lots of veining - sillycone is not the right choice under your slab. use thinset

also have the slab guys fab up a shelf for the niche too (may have to be rodded) - same thickness - looks sweet when all tied together