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-   -   Karin's Bathroom/Shower Re-do (https://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=60187)

queenofthetile 03-04-2008 10:48 AM

Karin's Bathroom/Shower Re-do
Hello all! I've been reading and reading for the last several weeks, and am preparing to start my shower installation, but I have a few questions. (This is my first tile experience - I would pick the most complicated thing to tile for my first try)

I am replacing a leaking 30 year old shower stall (PVC liner only went up 1 inch!! Mud bed was built up HIGHER than the liner edge w/NO preslope! I have no idea how this lasted 30 years, but it certainly explains why it was raining in the basement (literally) every time we showered) It also smelled like swampwater. Ick.

I have bashed and smashed everything out (mortar and lathe set floor, walls, etc) down to the studs, replaced the rotten sub floor (3/4 plywood over 2X8 9.5inOC 3ft span), and am getting ready to put in the pan. My questions are:

1. The sub-floor. I cut out the damaged 3/4 plywood that was previously there, and installed new plywood, BUT, there was a small 1 inch section running along the wall with the pipes in it that I could not cut without damaging my hot/cold water pipes. This part of the wood was not damaged (just stained). I cut it as straight as possible and butted the new piece of plywood up to it, but htere was a small section that was damaged in the corner that I was able to chip out, but it left a hole about 1 inch wide and 4 inches long between the plywood pieces. How would y'all suggest I patch this? It's along the wall near the corner, so there will not be any force from walking on it, but I figure it needs to have something to support the lathe and mud floor over that section. Do I need to put a 2nd piece of plywood over the whole thing? Glue/screw it? I can post a pic after I get home.

2. Is notching the studs necessary where the liner meets the corners if I have extra space in my wall voids where I could store the excess material? I am also planning on attaching a poly vapor barrier to the studs behind the backer, do you think this will help make up some of the thickness of the pan liner?

3. I want to start tiling the walls first, then the floor to keep the floor from being messed up, but how do you attach the liner 8-10 inches up behind the backer if you already attach the walls? Do you build the pre-slope and install the liner first? If so, wouldn't that get messed up too? I might as well do the floor first, if that is the case. I guess I could always cover it with something while I am working on the tile.

4. How do you deal with out of plumb studs? I have heard that you can use furring strips, but how do you attach these (glue/nail/screw)? And where can these be found? Home Depot/Lowes? Any other ways to help fix them without having to replace the studs?

Thanks in advance for your help!

dgunnels 03-04-2008 10:54 AM

Welcome Karin. :wave:


(This is my first tile experience - I would pick the most complicated thing to tile for my first try)
You can do this! And you've come to the right place. You're beyond my level though so you;ll have to wait a bit. The pro's will be along shortly. Post pics asap. We love them and they really help us to help you. Good Luck

Hamilton 03-04-2008 11:04 AM

Hi Karin

1 If you are going to mud your floor the paper and wire should span
the small area you are concerned about. If the wood is un supported
you will probably want to add some blocking under it.
2 Are you referring to the space between the studs? You will want to
install backing here. Either 2x8 or 2x10's to support your pan liner.
Yes its a good idea to notch the studs back to avoid causing a bulge
in your cbu as it goes over the pan in the corners.
3 You got it. Preslope-pan-wall prep-shower floor. Some folks leave the
final layer of mud out until the walls are up. Its safer to put your mud floor
in first to protect the liner. You can cover the mud while working on the
walls to keep it clean.
4 You can fir out your studs to straighten and plumb them. If they are
really bad some folks will use a planer to adjust them a little. Firring strips
can be found at the box stores near the sheet rock. A 1/2" stapler should
do the trick. You will be nailing or screwing through them later.

queenofthetile 03-04-2008 11:33 AM

Thanks! I went crazy blocking and joisting up under the new floor. Its supported everywhere, there was just that little hole in the floor in front of the stud plate near the corner where the old plywood and new plywood meet. it was caused by a rough edge of the old plywood. It is not very big, and I think the lathe and poly underneath it would probably support it, I just wanted another opinion.

queenofthetile 03-04-2008 09:09 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Okay. Lets see if I can add these pictures correctly. Hopefully y'all will be able to see the hole I am talking about. The darker strip of plywood looks like it is not structurally sound, but it actually is. I made sure to tear out all the stuff that was rotted. This little strip that is left is hard as a rock. I stabbed it with an ice pick and everything, just to make sure it was okay before leaving it. I think the darker stain is actually some sort of grayish spray waterproofing/something that they had tried to spray on it? It was all over the drain pipe too, when I cut it off. The water pipes make a 90 degree turn right under that piece of plywood anyway. Let me know if ya'll think it would be okay to leave it like this then put poly, lathe, and mud bed. It is supported and blocked under all corners and areas.

bbcamp 03-05-2008 06:06 AM

Karin, that area in the subfloor will be OK. The preslope is a reinforced mud bed, and will be thickest at that area, so it will hold together. Also, some folks use wooden screed boards around the perimeter, then leave them in place since the liner assures that they won't get wet. Something to consider, eh?

queenofthetile 03-08-2008 03:43 PM

Deck Mud Ratio
Okay....I've gotten portland cement and plenty of sand and am ready to make my preslope in my shower floor. The question i have is how do they measure the 5 to 1 or 4 to 1 ratio? Does it go by weight or volume? Example: 5lbs to 1 lb. or 5 cups to 1 cup?


queenofthetile 03-08-2008 04:27 PM


queenofthetile 03-08-2008 08:29 PM


DoofusOfTheDay 03-09-2008 05:53 AM



Brian in San Diego 03-09-2008 06:30 AM


It looks like you're having some trouble getting your questions answered. The deck mud calculator is figured in pounds because that's how the products are sold. If you go into a big box store you'll usually see portland cement in 47 & 94 lb. sacks. Sand will usually be in 50 lb. bags. I think you'd get some strange looks if you said "I'd like 5 gallons of portland cement and 25 gallons of sand." But in reality when the deck mud is made it's done by volume. You won't see a tile setter with a bathroom scale weighing the ingredients. What you'll usually see is a person with a shovel and they'll throw 5 shovelfuls of sand for every shovelful of portland cement.

If any of your other questions have been unanswered copy and paste them in a "post reply" and we'll see if we can't get them cleared up for you.


queenofthetile 03-09-2008 10:34 AM

Thanks. This is what I was wondering. I know the bags are sold in lbs, but I bought alot more lbs than I will use at one time out of those bags, and I will be mixing them at different times (pre-slope and final mud layer). So.....I don't have a scale here in my basement at the site I am working, and I doubted that the pros did either, so that is why I was wondering if it was by volume. The 'shovelfull" example is what I was thinking about.

Hamilton 03-09-2008 11:04 AM

Hi Karin

I totally agree with Brian. When i am mixing my own cement and sand
together I use a shovel. Just a little tip, when you are mixing your mud,
mix your sand and cement together well before adding any water. The
cement tends to clump together if you skip this step. Have fun playing
in the mud! :)

JoeM 03-12-2008 11:19 AM

Just a little note on the "Volume vs Weight" argument. I was a first time "Dry Pack Mud" maker a few days ago. And I was confused about what to do. So I bought the pre-packaged dry sand from lowes. I put the sand in a bucket and measured it's height in the bucket. I then weighed the portland cement until I had 10 lbs To get to a 5:1 ratio. I then measuered the level height of the cement in the bucket. It came to, just about dead on, 1/5 the height of the sand.

So, from my limited experimentation, it looks like if you are using dry ingredients you're safe with either method (weight or volume). If, however, your sand is wet (from a sand and gravel yard) you should deffinatley go with the "by volume" method.

queenofthetile 03-16-2008 12:26 AM

3 Attachment(s)
Alright! I've finally gotten all of my prepping done (walls plumb, ceiling/light installed, blocking around perimeter walls for pan to lay against, poly & lathe on floor, poly vapor bariier on walls, and I got my screed boards level on the floor)

Anybody see anything I might have missed, or that I am doing wrong before I do my pre-slope tomorrow?

Also, how long do I have to let my pre-slope cure before I put the membrane & final layer of mud in there?

Any last minute tips or advice after looking at my pics?

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