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Unread 01-27-2020, 09:36 AM   #61
ss3964spd
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You're a brave, brave person, Karen, when it comes to contractors (present company excluded) I'd not assume anything.

Glad you've received better guidance on the need to seal your glazed porcelain tile, that just made no sense to me.

For the rest you'll have to weigh the pros and cons, unless Mr. Karen will be responsible for all the maintenance duties, then I say install whatever the heck ya want.
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Unread 01-27-2020, 12:38 PM   #62
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Hi Dan,

You hear about so many problems with home improvement stuff between storied about some "pros" doing stuff wrong or cutting corners causing issues done the road, as well as outright scam artists, it is hard not be paranoid...

But for some reason I did not think about that with a granite fabricator with only positive reviews on line... but you are right I should not let my guard down!

As for travertine in an accent, if we did use it in the shower, what type would be least likely to cause issues in the long run with only annual resealing?

Logically it seems it would be wise (and best for looks - assuming one does not want holes!) to only use the pre-epoxy filled travertine in wet areas. I have read that is clear so does not introduce it's own color and would make sure there are no big voids to hold water. Is that right?

After that it would seem to me that filled and polished would be least likely to have water issues. Is that true?

I assume that would still need to be pre sealed, sealed again after grouting and regularly resealed (annually?) as polished granite should be. Is that right?

I think filled honed would go better looks wise, but I would think may be a bit more likely to have issues na polished?

What about filled tumbled? That may look nicest but would that be potentially more issues than filled polished or filled honed? (All these terms and types get confusing!)

I know I'm obsessing over this, but I am very worried about choosing something that will cause issues in the long run and don't want to make a mistake... Mistakes can get very expensive with renovations!

Thanks,
-Karen
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Unread 02-17-2020, 08:07 PM   #63
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I'm back with another question... We are planning to get a granite top for the vanity and have 4 shelves cut from the remnant for the vanity to put in the tub/shower combo. I want the shelves to have a rounded front.

My question relates to how such shelves are typically measured and how much of the shelf winds up behind the tile.

The tub will be 60x32" alcove which for us would be typically used for showers, so not a lot of depth.

While I want the shelves to be big enough to put stuff on (the type we chose can't have anything on the ledges because of the design), I don't want them to stick out far enough to bump into them or be a hazard in the shower.

We we have spoken to people at granite places. Whenever I say I think I want 8" shelves, they keep suggesting 9" shelves which seems a bit big.. but one guy told us that about one inch winds up being the tile... is that right? If not, how deep are such shelves usually set?

Also I just realized I don't know if we are talking apps and oranges with these people.... How are these shelved measured?

A shelf like that would have 2 equal size straight sides at 90 degrees with a rounded front for the rest of the perimeter.

Would the 9 inches be the length of the straight sides, or from the corner to the center of the rounded side?

For this type of Alcove tub/shower what size shelves are typically used in tiled alcove?

Thanks,
- Karen
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Unread 02-17-2020, 09:26 PM   #64
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Shelves are measured in a manner that all parties understand and agree upon, Karen.

Some people might think an 8" corner shelf is the measurement across the front of the shelf, and that would be a very small shelf to my thinking.

Other people might think an 8" corner shelf is the measurement from the corner to the front edge measured along the wall. That would be a shelf of about 11" across the front and a useful shelf to my thinking.

Still other people might think an 8" corner shelf would be the measurement from the corner to the front face measured perpendicular to the front face. That would be a rather large corner shelf to my thinking.

Best you and the folks making the shelf be on the same page.

The amount of lost space if your corner shelf were set into the wall tile surfaces would be only the thickness of the tile plus the thinset mortar to bond the tiles. Likely only about 3/8ths of an inch on each wall.

My opinion worth price charged.
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Unread 02-23-2020, 01:19 PM   #65
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Thanks CX!

I though the 1" under the tile made no sense.. I think I will go with the straight sides being 8"... I could use more space 9" shelves would give, but I think the shelves might stick out a bit too far into the tub area.

-Karen
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Unread 02-23-2020, 02:49 PM   #66
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Should you choose an unfilled stone trim, you really would want to fill all of those holes with your grout, assuming that color wouldn't be a distraction. Otherwise, choose a filled one. Leaving those pockets in a shower is just asking for it to end up looking lousy as they fill up with dust, soap scum, body oils, etc., and become breeding grounds for mold. It's hard outside of a shower to keep them from eventually filling up with dust. I wouldn't want that maintenance task.
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Unread 02-23-2020, 02:49 PM   #67
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We have given ourselves a deadline of next Sunday to finalize what we want done on the re-model, write that up, and start the contractor search (giving them copy of the the writeup)

The house was built in the early 1950s.

We still have to make a final decision on the tile layout in the tub/shower alcove.

We plan to wainscoting outside the shower area, and in the shower area tile to teh ceiling (and the ceiling as it is now) because the ceiling is so low (88")

The tile size we plan to use a 8X16" (floor and wainscoting) and 16X16" for at least the upper part of alcove/shower area wall. Current wainscoting goes to 56" the new one with different tile will go to 45"

I have questions about the RELATIVE practicality/difficulty/cost of some of the things we are considering. I know you guys all have your own ways of deciding such things.

What I am asking is ball park about what percent more would one design be compared to another so we can decide upfront which design to go with. Also in one case i am not sure what I want to is realistically doable.

In terms of designs I think seeing it better the trying to describe so i will post my diagrams. I thin post I will post the the floor plan and then the layout for one wall that is not part of the alcove so you get a feel for what we are doing.

On the floor plan there is a thatched area labeled soffit. That is an 11.75 inch "tall" and 5.5" deep wall (not sure of the right term) coming DOWN from the ceiling over the edge of the tub (if measured correctly it extends once inch past the tub edge). It is currently completely tiled on the inside and bottom edge and has bullnose on the front.

Currently we have two exhaust fans . One inside the shower and one out... If moth are not running when we take a shower the vanity mirror gets all fogged up... (BUT Both are just vented into the attic and NOT to the outside).

I don't know if that is because of that "wall"... We would rather have one fan... But we like the look of that "wall" and would like to keep it if practical.

There two designs for the alcove walls we are considering... I will show one with that wall and one without, but either could be with or without.

I will put the examples and specific questions in a separate posts so the diagrams are not too far from the accompanying text.
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Unread 02-23-2020, 03:11 PM   #68
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Here is the "Window Wall" for which most of the wall is not part of the shower alcove. In one case we continue the 8X16" Block pattern of the wainscoting into the shower area, and continue it to the higher accent strip.

Above the accent strip we use 16x18" tikes at 45 degree to form a diamond pattern. This is shown without the upper wall but it could have it.

The edge of the "shower area" is 3 inches from the edge of the tub and is finished off with a 5/8" pencil. I have read that one should extend tile 2.5-3" from the tub (currently teh tile goes all the way out to the window - but we don't like that look.

The second option uses ALL diamonds for the shower area and the diamond pattern below the accent mirrors that above it..

We are considering
1) doing all diamonds within the whole "shower area"
2) Keeping the 8X16" pattern below the accent for all teh shower area with diamonds only above
3) Keeping the side walls below the accent as the block pattern and only doing the back alcove wall

On the block pattern we want the horizontal grout lines to line up vertical on all teh walls of the background where they are present for a constent

So one of the questions is how much more expensive are doing all diamonds likely to be? I know there will be more material wast and more cutting..

Also ho pratica is it too have pencil coming down to teh radiator (or floor on opposite alcove wall)?

But please don't answer until after you seethe following two walls in teh next two posts
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Unread 02-23-2020, 03:21 PM   #69
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Here is the back wall of the alcove. (BTW for some reasons the colors are not displaying quite right!)

Here you can see the "wall" coming down. As I said I want teh back side and bottom tiled bit instead of the bullnose on teh outer edge I want to use the 5/8" pencil so that it frames the who alcove... if that wall is taken out I would like to use the pencil as to finish off the edge on the ceiling and have have the framing effect rather than bullnose if possible
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Unread 02-23-2020, 03:33 PM   #70
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Here is the last wall wall of the alcove.

Here for all diamonds the pencil goes all teh way to the floor... is that an OK thing to do. Also there is a lot of cutting.

BTW the things in the corner are 8" granite shelves. I would image they would be easier to install with teh block pattern. Teh height chosen were to ensure they were on horizontal grout lines.

So how much more expense would doing all diamonds be? Is pencil to the floor practical?

What about on the edge of the wall that ceiling wall, or on the ceiling itself?

Would the ceiling wall be an issue with using only one fan in the shower/tub area?

I would appreciate any feedback, and if you see any issues (related to the shower alcove or not) with these plans id did not bring up, please let me know.

Thanks for all your help. Without being able to ask questions here this project would feel overwhelming for me!

- Karen
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Unread 02-24-2020, 07:01 AM   #71
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Karen, are you having this bathroom permitted/inspected? If so...

I believe code says you need 24" of space in front of the toilet but your diagrams indicate you have only 19" from the front to the tub. So you might want to check that. For a fix a wall hung toilet might be an option.

How wide is the doorway into the bathroom? It looks quite wide in your diags so, unless there's an actual need for a wide door you could pick up some usable vanity space by switching to a 24" or 26" door.

What is that 52 3/4" X 7 1/4" space adjacent to the utility closet?

Both main baths in my 1980 built house had that "soffit", but not the dropped ceiling, over the tubs. It's very possible that the ceiling over the tub is low for no other reason than that soffit. If keeping the soffit and low ceiling is a "want" then go with it, but eliminating them will definitely make a smallish space feel larger, and the tile layout will, IMO, be cleaner.

Eliminate one of the exhaust fans, place a new 100 (ish) CFM (the Panasonic line has some that are very quiet) roughly in the center of the ceiling, but perhaps more biased towards the toilet and tub end of the room. You really need to have it vented to the outside though.
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Unread 02-24-2020, 08:11 AM   #72
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Some jurisdictions allow as little as 21" in front of the toilet. Check with your local code compliance officer.
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Unread 02-24-2020, 10:14 AM   #73
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Thanks for the replies...

The house was built in the 1950s and the layout above is the same as it exists now. While this will be a complete gut the layout is staying the same.

The 19" in front of the toilet was how it was when we bought the house, and I assume how it aways was.

If I replace the tub and toilet with the same sizes I have now, it should just be grandfathered, no?

If not, as I don't think I could get a smaller toilet, the only other option would be be to get a 30" tub to get the 2 more " to get to 21"...which is and awfully small tub for the main bath!

24" in front of the toilet is simply not possible with this layout.

There is is no other layout I can see to get 24" without raising the cost of the remodel a good bit maybe requiring taking out that BADLY needed closet!!!

While I don't want to, if I have to I can switch to a 30" tub to get 21", but 24" in front of the toilet is simply not possible!

I guess i will need to check with the town and keep my fingers crossed

As for that "soffit", it is only 5" wide. The height of the ceiling over the tub is the same as the rest of the bathroom, and for that matter the rest of the house ( 88"), so it can not be raised.

If the soffit stays, could a single fan be located inside the the shower and still keep the mirror condensation free?

Any comments of the practicality of what I want to so with the pencil and relative costs of the the two designs?

Thanks for all the feedback.

-Karen
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Unread 02-24-2020, 12:26 PM   #74
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Best to check with the town; some locales are stricter than others, and what they will or won't grand-father in might be based on the total scope of the work being performed. They may feel a full gut (down to the studs) is more than a remove/replace and require you to build it to existing codes.

Given your ceiling height I don't know if they'll allow you to install an exhaust fan directly above the shower. If they do, it will have to be on a GFCI protected circuit. Generally, the rule of thumb for bathroom exhaust fan size is 1 CFM per square foot of floor. 50 square foot of floor equals a 50 CFM fan. You could install a larger capacity fan which will help with the condensation issue, but the trade off is it's going to be louder, and more noticeable given your ceiling height. A remote, attic mounted fan would help with noise but are more expensive. Retaining the soffit will help keep some of the steam in the shower but some is still going to roll out. Leaving the bathroom door open, or at least ajar, or cracking the window open will help because for every CFM the fan expels it also has to draw in; called "make up air".

Using a round, instead of an elongated, front toilet will save a few inches and might be an option if the round front is a good fit for those who use it. The aforementioned wall hung would solve the clearance issue but at perhaps significant cost.

I'm just a DIY'er so can't really comment on the relative costs of your tile selections and layouts, but it seems to me setting tile diagonally is more difficult and time consuming so therefore more expensive. No idea, percentage wise, how much more.
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Unread 02-24-2020, 01:47 PM   #75
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Whee I work has plumber on staff so I asked him. He checked the requirements and told me that here the minimum is 21". That means unless I want get rid of the closet I will have to use a 30" tub to reach that minimum.

Not happy about that, but at least there is a solution.

As to the tile I could ask contractors to quote it 3 ways (All diamonds in shower, Only diamonds above the accent. Only diamonds above the accent on side wall and All diamonds on the back way)... But that might slow getting quotes done or make some who are busy not want to bother quoting... (and although altogether it is big bucks for us, I'm afraid around here many contractors might think it is too small a job to bother)

If I had some idea of relative expense, I could just ask for one tile quote from them.

I wish getting home improvement stuff done was simpler!!!

Thanks
- Karen
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