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Unread 03-14-2013, 05:23 AM   #1
Quahog
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Tub to Shower Conversion

Hi all, this is my first post so forgive me if I get a little long-winded.

I'm converting a tub in my 30-year old home to a 60x32 shower with a mortar pan base and 40 mil vinyl membrane, porcelain tile surround, and sliding glass door. I've got the demo done, replaced some damaged studs and I am ready to cover the walls. For installation of the doors, I need a 58.5" width between the two sides of the tiled surface. I'm starting with 61" of rough frame. So I thought I would install 1/2" purple board on each of the two sides, covered by 1/2" Hardie backer board, then thinset and tile. I'm thinking this will give me the needed clearance. I plan to put some felt directly against the studs on the back wall and cover it with 1/2" Hardie.

On the floor, I had a plumber move the drain move the drain more towards the center of the shower. I wanted it dead center but it was becoming cost prohibitive so I opted for a compromise of about 1/3 away from the shower head wall. As part of the job, he also put down the framing, mortar base, and vinyl membrane. So that is where I have to complete from. Here's a picture to give you a better idea.

Ok so once the walls are ready for tile, I need to cover the floor. Here are a few questions I have:

1) Should I used mesh and mortar to cover the curb or can I do that with Hardie?

2) I was told by the plumber that I could pour a 1/8" thinset bed on top of the membrane then let it dry before troweling thin set down for the tiles. This is the part that's got me most concerned. Is 1/8" adequate? BTW, the subfloor is concrete slab.

I'll leave the questions there for the moment. Thanks for any advice!
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Unread 03-14-2013, 07:54 AM   #2
Richard Tunison
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Hi Mike and welcome.

You have gotten off to a bad start I'm afraid. Study the schematic below on how to build a proper shower. The curb must not be penetrated with fasteners it is built with wire mesh and fat mud.

http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...ead.php?t=5434
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Unread 03-14-2013, 08:27 AM   #3
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Richard,

If I understand correctly, the curb should not have been nailed on the top edge. The guy who installed the vinyl did so and said it was acceptable to do so providing the fasteners were 1" from the top outside edge. Grrrrr

Not sure how I can correct that at this point other than to replace the vinyl.

No notching was done on the studs but perhaps I can remove the nails and do that before refastening. The roofing nails are about 12" above the pre slope base.

Assuming I can fix that issue, is purple board and/or roofing felt an acceptable choice as a moisture barrier and to shim out the wall?
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Unread 03-14-2013, 08:38 AM   #4
Richard Tunison
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Mike, the vinyl has to come out for another reason also,,,,, you have no pre-slope under it judging from the picture. Not having the pre-slope to direct water to the weep holes will make your floor a swamp in very little time. The pre-slope should be made of dry pack mud that is bonded to your slab with a slurry of thinset or portland cement and have at least 1/4in. per foot of slope towards the drain.

There is no place for drywall of any type in your shower. If you need to adjust the opening do so with wood. Felt is an approved moisture barrier. Make sure it laps into your vinyl pan.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 08:51 AM   #5
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Richard,

Yes, there is a pre-slope of 1/4" per foot from the sidewalls and back to the drain location. It may not appear so in the photo but it's there. When the leak test was completed, the floor emptied of water very quickly so I think that part is good.

Ok on the wood vs. rock to shim out the wall. Again, I was going by the advice of the plumbing contractor.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 09:03 AM   #6
Richard Tunison
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Good deal on the pre-slope.

So I believe you can salvage the liner by removing the nails in the curb and patching each hole with a piece of liner and the same glue you will use to install the dam corners which I cannot see if they are installed or not. Dam corners seal the transition between the curb and wall where you had to cut the liner to get it to fold over the curb.



Lay the liner flat and notch the studs being very careful to not damage it. Re attach it, do your wood work for the shower door, hang the felt and wall board and you should be good for tile.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 09:59 AM   #7
Quahog
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You're right... the reason you can't see the dam corners is because there are none.

Here's a couple of pictures of how the ends look now. I figured I would be able to just extend the Hardie to the outside edges and meet the sheetrock on the one side and make an outside corner on the other (hopefully that made sense).

If I need to pick up dam corners given this configuration, I certainly will. I suspect you will tell me those low nails on the outside edges shouldn't be there either. For sure I will get the mesh, mortar, glue, etc. to fix the holes in the top of the curb and to finish off the curb proper-like.

Thank you for all the advice!
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Unread 03-14-2013, 10:41 AM   #8
Richard Tunison
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Yes,, the lower nails have to go.

Dam corners are surely required. If you go to utube looking for dam corners you will find many videos of how to properly fold the liner and apply the corners.

Could you take a picture of picture #1 from the inside of the shower please. It looks like a return?

I'll be away for several hrs. but if you have more questions just bump your post so it ques up to the top of the board.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 12:03 PM   #9
Bodie Powers
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It may not be necessary to pull off the liner and notch the studs. As an alternative, you can fur out the studs above the liner which will allow your wall backerboard to overlay the folds in the liner.

+1 what Richard said about nails on the top of the curb.....remove and patch using some liner scraps and the appropriate glue.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 12:28 PM   #10
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Welcome, Mike.

You're gettin' good advice here and I would add only that the area we see in your photo where the pan liner has been notched to allow for the sheetrock at the shower entry jamb is also poor. That sheetrock must be cut back to what is gonna be the dry area (at least outside the shower door) and replaced with your CBU when installed.

The furring in lieu of notching might also provide the necessary adjustment for your opening size. I recommend rips of plywood for such stud furring and gluing those to the stud edges with construction adhesive along with a few mechanical fasteners.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 03:02 PM   #11
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Bodie Powers said:
Quote:
It may not be necessary to pull off the liner and notch the studs. As an alternative, you can fur out the studs above the liner which will allow your wall backerboard to overlay the folds in the liner.
Bodie, I am glad to hear you say that. I was thinking of that same idea at lunch and had intended to post it to get feedback. That will surely be a whole lot easier than pulling down the liner and notching the studs. I'd probably have to relocate the blocks too. Ugh!!
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Unread 03-14-2013, 03:09 PM   #12
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CX said:
Quote:
You're gettin' good advice here and I would add only that the area we see in your photo where the pan liner has been notched to allow for the sheetrock at the shower entry jamb is also poor. That sheetrock must be cut back to what is gonna be the dry area (at least outside the shower door) and replaced with your CBU when installed.

The furring in lieu of notching might also provide the necessary adjustment for your opening size. I recommend rips of plywood for such stud furring and gluing those to the stud edges with construction adhesive along with a few mechanical fasteners.
Thank you, CX. That notched area will be cut straight up the wall to the outside of the curb and finished with CBU. I am surprised he notched that out like that but it is what it is. I will fix that.

Great idea on the plywood... I never thought of that. I was going to go find some furring strips but I like the plywood idea better.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 03:27 PM   #13
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Richard Tunison said:
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Could you take a picture of picture #1 from the inside of the shower please. It looks like a return?
I will check out those Dam videos

Sorry, I too was out of pocket so it took me a while to get these photos. The liner is cut along the notch in the sheetrock and up straight from that notch. I think it would have been better to leave it overhang the sheetrock and I could have dealt with that when I put in the CBU.
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Unread 03-14-2013, 03:42 PM   #14
Quahog
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Gentlemen:

This is from my original post but it's still an area of concern and confusion to me...

Quote:
2) I was told by the plumber that I could pour a 1/8" thinset bed on top of the liner then let it dry before troweling thin set down for the tiles. This is the part that's got me most concerned. Is 1/8" adequate? BTW, the subfloor is concrete slab.
Is there a recommended thickness for the top mud bed?
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Unread 03-14-2013, 03:51 PM   #15
Richard Tunison
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About 1 1/4in. Mike. A little more is better in my opinion. The floor will be made from the mixture in the link. No 1/8in. thinset anywhere in the build. The top mud is installed directly on the pan liner. Don't forget to protect the weep holes when placing the mud!!!!!! Most important.

http://www.johnbridge.com/how-to/deck-mud/
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