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Old 07-01-2008, 06:53 PM   #1
Neil K
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Neil's shower demo/rebuild

Hi all,

I'm currently in the process of tearing out a shower stall, and probably the rest of the bathroom as well. Far as I can tell, the stall is original to the house (~35 years old). Without going into too much detail - I'm surprised it lasted that long, after seeing the 'preslope' (1/4" of thinset spread directly on plywood), and the many nails put through the pan liner.

Anyway: The shower walls are old-style fat mud. The tiles popped off VERY cleanly, so I basically have a ready-made mud wall, assuming I can patch it up - which is where I need advice.

I have:
--Several cracks, but the mud still feels solid;
--Some dings and chunks missing;
--Most of the bottom of one wall gone, thanks to extra-sticky tile; and
--An entire 1" lip gone on either side of the doorway, thanks to replacing the entry studs - the lip also took parts of the wall with it.

Given the condition, can I salvage the walls or should I just rip the whole thing out and start fresh? Some things to consider - I've never mudded walls before, I plan to Redguard the whole thing, and I also think the wall studs are in OK condition.

Thanks!
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Old 07-01-2008, 07:30 PM   #2
Tool Guy - Kg
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There's a lot of cracks and stuff to be repaired there.

If you were to install a new pan, you'd have a heck of a time repairing the bottom portion of the wall. Once you put in your pan liner, you can't penetrate it with any fasteners lower than 3" above the top of the finished curb. And you have no lath extending down over this new liner....so no easy way to tie the new patch into the old patch.

I'll ping a super mud-man for ya to see if he has any magic potions for you. In the mean time, how do you feel about a backerboard substrate? It's certainly easier than a first time wall float.
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Old 07-01-2008, 07:50 PM   #3
Davy
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Yeah, looking at all the cracks and holes, I think you would be better off taking it all down and starting over. Mud walls are hard to beat but not much fun if you've never done any mudwork before.

Look into a CBU or Kerdi shower and it'll last a long time.
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Old 07-01-2008, 08:00 PM   #4
Tool Guy - Kg
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Who da man? Who da man? Davy!
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Old 07-01-2008, 08:03 PM   #5
ceramictec
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there right, probably much easier to pull it all down and use a CBU.

it will be hard for you to cut out the bottom loose stuff and re-mud the wall to the same thickness if you haven't some mud skills.
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Old 07-04-2008, 07:56 AM   #6
Neil K
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Thanks, everyone - will rip it all out. I'm not above a challenge, and mud is cheap - but if the experts tell me it'll be hard, that's that.

Plus, I discovered that the stall backs onto the attic of our lower level, and it's not insulated - so this will give me the chance to fix that too.
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