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Unread 10-25-2009, 04:25 PM   #1
Davek
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California shower project

California Shower Dressup

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
First Hi.

My shower is a typical Ca build piece of Junk.

It is 60 * 32 with a plastic pan that is feeling kind of spongy. I suspect that I will find the floor rotten underneath as I did under the bath I replaced several years ago. Thats no big deal I can cut the rot out and recover with plywood.

When I replaced the bath in the other bathroom the substrate behind the tile was what looked like roofing paper covered with chicken wire and what looked like cement covering it and the tile laid over that, it transitioned to drywall outside the wet area. I suspect that I will fine similar construction in this bathroom. In this case I just pulled the whole mess down and used new backer board.

The plan is a minimalist approach do as little as possible but low risk for future problems of course it will all depend somewhat on what I find.

The plan

Option 1
remove the wall tiles doing as little damage as possible cut out the plastic pan. repair the floor as required. Lay a conventional mud pan and liner tile the enclosure floor to ceiling.

Option 2

Just demo the shower walls go with new drywall and the Kerdi system.

So the question I have never removed tile and tried to preserve the substrate so I have no idea how much of a chore this would be.

Faster to just pull the wall and tiles off together or try to save the current substrate. Any opinions or advice on removing the tiles doing minimum damage ?.
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Unread 10-25-2009, 04:45 PM   #2
jadnashua
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You need to gut it, and don't worry about trying to save the walls!

Review proper shower construction in the 'Liberry'. What you had was a hack and never would have passed code if the inspector had any integrity, nor will your plan. TILE IS NOT THE WATERPROOF LAYER! WATER FLOWS DOWNHILL. Those two facts will go a long way to help you figure out what's necessary. The pan must be sloped with a waterproof layer. You can do this with Kerdi and one of their pans, or mortar. Or, you can do it with mortar and a liner, then more mortar. Then, and only then can you put up the tile.

A kerdi system shower is a little simpler since you eliminate the second layer of mortar on the floor and can use drywall to prepare the walls. Review the videos on www.schluter.com to get an idea of how the Kerdi shower goes together. Note, you can build that first layer of the pan out of mortar if your shower is an odd shape or size...this also saves some money as mortar is cheaper than the pan (but probably not if you're paying labor!).
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Unread 10-25-2009, 05:55 PM   #3
Deckert
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I'd gut the whole thing as well, and forget about trying to save the walls.

Makes it easy to do a lot of nice things like........replace the original valve, raise the shower head to a height appropriate for full grown people, put in a niche or 2 to give you some storage, put in a bench or corner foot rest, install blocking for hinged shower door/future grab bars.

All that stuff is pretty simple if the walls are bare, and damn near impossible if they aren't.
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Unread 10-25-2009, 06:50 PM   #4
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I didnt need a lot of convincing, I'll gut the whole thing.

That kind of construction seems to be the norm here in my neck of the woods.
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Unread 10-26-2009, 10:35 PM   #5
Davek
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Phase one complete the shower is no more.

As I suspected the shower was built with tar paper and chicken mesh stapled to the studs. There was of course a staple in every single mesh of the chicken wire. Thank goodness for HF, for 29.99 I brought a mini jackhammer. The only thing is the pan is not yet removed so I still dont know what I'll find under the pan. The upper section is dry except for a couple of wet spots where the morter meets the dry wall at the top.
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Unread 10-27-2009, 07:52 PM   #6
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That nasty plastic pan is out.

Good news I must have reached it in time, despite a small crack in the pan no water seems to have gone underneath, Its as dry as a bone.


The floor is pretty solid and appears to be 3/4 inch thick MDF and passes the jump test, what do you guys think just overlay it with 3/4 plywood and screw thru the MDF into the joists which are 2 x 10 (actually 9 inch high) they are placed on 12 inch center in the shower area.
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:10 PM   #7
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MDF or OSB??? (MDF looks like sawdust glued together, OSB looks like strips of wood glued together)

Also, we need some pics!!!

Without pics, people lack vision. Without vision folks lose direction. No direction; no motivation. No motivation; no will. No will; people die.

You don't want blood on your hands do you Dave?
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:18 PM   #8
Edthedawg
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dude you're a nut

oh wait... motivation.. waning... urge to kill... falling... falling..............

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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:23 PM   #9
Brian in San Diego
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave
The floor is pretty solid and appears to be 3/4 inch thick MDF and passes the jump test, what do you guys think just overlay it with 3/4 plywood and screw thru the MDF into the joists which are 2 x 10 (actually 9 inch high) they are placed on 12 inch center in the shower area.
Yeah, let's clarify if it's OSB (which I'll bet on) or MDF. If it's OSB you don't need 3/4" on top of it...1/2" would be plenty. You also do not want to screw that layer into the joists. You want to avoid them.

Brian
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Unread 10-27-2009, 09:07 PM   #10
Davek
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Take a look it sure looks like MDF to me.
Notice the way the faucet was held in place with mortar.
The last pic you can see the floor where it comes to the existing tile which will be next to go. Thats about a 3/4 inch step there
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Unread 10-27-2009, 11:02 PM   #11
Brian in San Diego
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Yeah, Dave, that sure don't look like no "Beaver Barf" as CX would call it. The part I don't get is that a 3/4" 4'x8' sheet of OSB is around $15 and the same size sheet of MDF is about twice that. Make absolutely sure it isn't particle board. I don't know what happens to MDF if it gets wet. It'll be interesting to see what's under the tile.
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Unread 10-28-2009, 10:25 AM   #12
Davek
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OK got the plumber coming today to put in the ne shower valve and plumb in the hand shower.

So hopefully I'll have the walls drywalled by the end of the day.

Quick question John suggests making a plywood box for the niche, seems a great idea to me, Especially as I can make it deep. One end of the shower is a false wall so I can make my niche 8 in deep.

Question 1 whats the preferred material for covering the plywood.

Question 2 I have the oppertunity to square up the wall studs before hanging the dry wall is it a worthwhile effort. Not that big a deal just time, big hammer, shims and a couple of screws in each stud.

I'm also as John suggested going to add some provision for grab bars.

Thanks
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Unread 10-28-2009, 04:00 PM   #13
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You might want to think about using some prebuilt heavy plastic boxes for the niches, specifically made for tile work (unless you're attached to the idea of making them 8" deep). I just used them on my recent remodel. They're strong and waterproof and will save you some time.
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Unread 10-28-2009, 04:15 PM   #14
Brian in San Diego
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Dave,

Anything that is going to be covered with kerdi should be drywalled or covered with CBU.

Getting your walls plumb and square is definitely worth the effort.

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Unread 10-28-2009, 04:45 PM   #15
jadnashua
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Note on the drywall...do not tape and mud the seams! The Kerdi and mortar are more than enough. If you have some of the tapered edges, either use a wide trowel or knife to bridge it, or thinset it first, let it set up, then apply the Kerdi.
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