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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:11 AM   #1
nates
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New Homeowner / Old Home Bathroom Remodel (need encouragement)

So my wife and I just closed on our first house. Basic 3/1 built in 1954. We're working on a minor remodel for the bathroom (new tub, tiled floor and surround, etc.). The bathroom is rock lath (buttonboard) plastered, and only about 5'x7'.

Current projects in BR:

Replacing tub: Thought it was cast iron, but the neighbor just had theirs taken out and it appears to be enameled steel (not very heavy at all) and we know it was the original tub, as she is an original occupant. Problem is it's plastered in and fitted (though not tightly) up to the studs. It's also currently got a thick plastic overlay over the original tub that I can't seem to get off. The tub is my biggest area of concern right now. I'm the kind of person that hates to break/cut something out as removing it in 1 piece "proves" to me that I can get a new one in. I'm also worried about if I'm going to be ABLE to get the tub out without demo'ing all the walls in the bathroom which I was hoping to avoid. I have the plaster chipped out about 6" above the tub and can see all the upper edges. Need advice about getting it out without tearing all the walls out. What needs to be unhooked? How do I get the stupic plastic liner out? How is the tub likely held in place? Should I replace it with a tub of similar material? But mostly how the heck to I get it out?

Tiling Surround: Hopinig to only have to remove 1-2' of plaster for tub and fur/scab studs out flush with surrounding plaster. Screw CBU through plaster/exposed studs down to the tub (leaving a gap of course), waterproof with RedGuard or Kerdi (probably Redguard) and tile over that. Sould ok or do I really have to remove all the plaster from the surround walls?

Floor: Floor was linoleum which when pulled up was also over linoleum, which was over thick vinyl squares, which was over... well you get it. About five layers deep there's plywood over diagonal subfloor (both of which seem to be ok). Planning to figure out the depth of the plywood and use a circular saw to cut it out to expose subfloor. Lay new plywood then ditra and Tile. No real questions on this yet as I haven't finished removal, but I'll add them as I get them.


Thanks a ton I've loved this forum for ages and am glad to finally have a project to post about.
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:12 AM   #2
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I'll post pics when I can figure out how to do it
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:12 AM   #3
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which apparently takes 3 posts
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:24 AM   #4
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Nates,

I'll be greedy and ask you to post those pichers here

I can't see any of the image storing sites thru our firewall at work. plus storing them here preserves them better for future reference, in case your offsite storage ever moves, changes, shuts down, etc...

Just use the "Manage Attachments" popup below the posting text entry box. Browse for your files, Upload them, and then Close that popup.

thanx!
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:30 AM   #5
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First pic is from 2 days ago I've since opened it up about 8" around the top of the tub

Second is what it used to look like.
Attached Images
  
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:34 AM   #6
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"thick plastic overlay you can't get off"... possibly a Better Bath or Bathfitters acrylic tub overlay? If so, then there's no a lot you can do short of ripping it all outta there, OR deciding to live w/ it.

But that, coupled w/ the wire-lath / mud walls - ugh. I don't envy your prospective demolition

You have a lot of gravity, nails, butyl tape, and other nasty adhesives to deal with in your future, i'm afraid
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Unread 10-27-2009, 08:42 AM   #7
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it's not metal lath. It's drywall lath. The drywall with the holes for the plaster to key to, and the walls aren't mud, just plaster. The black stuff in the surround area was just a rolled on waterproofer under the fiberboard surround. Thanks for the reply
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Unread 10-27-2009, 09:07 AM   #8
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Nate, you have only one bathroom, so you can't afford to be playing around. Trying to save the plaster will eat your lunch, time wise. Also, not knowing exactly what your tub rough-in dimensions means you can't buy a tub and have it ready to install.

So, start stripping the plaster down to the studs. All of it, everywhere. New drywall/backerboard is cheap and fairly easy to install.

Open the back side of the water wall to gain access to the plumbing. The drain and overflow pipes are slip joints, so you can remove them through your new opening.

The tub probably has a flange along the upper edge, removing the plaster should reveal it so you can remove any nails or screws holding it down. That's all there should be connecting your tub to the house. If it is cast iron, get you a big sledge hammer and wail away at it until you reduce it to rubble. If steel, get a sawzall or abrasive cutoff wheel for your angle grinder (Look, I make you a tool shopping list! ) and section the tub so you can get it out. But, get it out you must, so you can get your bathroom back in order.
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Unread 10-27-2009, 09:31 AM   #9
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Thanks Bob,

I've got a little over a month before we need to be in the new place, but that's going to get eaten up quick. I'm finding it hard to take the plunge and take it to the studs everywhere, but maybe that's what I've got to do.
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Unread 10-27-2009, 09:39 AM   #10
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Nate, a month is enough time to get your bathroom serviceable, if not finished. For example, set your new tub, then hang shower curtains around all four sides to protect the walls until you can tile them. You don't really need the lavatory sink (everyday), but the toilet needs be in place as much as you can. Since wax rings are cheap, removing it 2 or 3 times is an option.

Get your plans in order, then have at it.
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Unread 10-28-2009, 01:35 PM   #11
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Thanks for the replies all,

I got most of the flooring up (2 layers of linoleum, and 2 layers of vinyl squares, along with a layer of 3/8" ply) and I've got 6" planks (not t&g) on diagonal. Not sure of the thickness (I'll check later but I'm pretty sure it's 3/4 or 1"). I'm hoping to replace the steel tub with a kohler villager cast iron unit. My question is when I run plywood for the second layer of subfloor (probably 1/2", 3/4" if I can fit it), should I run it under the tub as well or just up to it? I know this is sort of ambiguous, but I'm at work right now and can't post measurements.

Thanks again
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Unread 10-28-2009, 01:52 PM   #12
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I don't know what that steel tub weighs, but I just put in a Kohler Villager in my remodel and that thing is pretty heavy (around 330 lbs.). It also sits on four "feet" rather than resting on a wall mounted ledger (look at the tub spec sheet at the link below) so all of the tub's weight is distributed to those four points. Since the likelihood of the feet lining up to rest on the floor joists are slim to none, I opted to install all of my subflooring before setting the tub in. And in my case there was an added benefit of the tub sitting up higher above the joists and creating extra room for the tub's P-trap to sit higher and still have adequate fall on the drain line (mine was a second story install between 2" x 10" joists with a finished ceiling below so plumbing space was tight).

Good luck!

http://www.us.kohler.com/onlinecatalog/pdf/105009_4.pdf
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Unread 10-28-2009, 02:06 PM   #13
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Anyone know if it's a dumb idea to replace steel with cast (due to weight)? My joists are 2x10 on 16" centers with the diagonal planks over that (and possibly 1/2" ply over that).
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Unread 10-28-2009, 02:16 PM   #14
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Nate, if your floor meets the deflection criteria for tile, it's adequate to support your tub. Use the Deflectolator tool to find out.
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Unread 10-28-2009, 03:44 PM   #15
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The Kohler spec sheet I posted above indicated that the floor system needs to support 49 lbs/square foot. Maybe one of the guys here can translate for you how that rates with the deflection calculator which gives its answer in terms of your floor system's suitability for ceramic or stone tile if you need an exact answer. I'm guessing Kohler is also figuring the weight of the tub when filled with water and with an person in it to come up with that support number.

The tub I replaced was actually heavier than the Villager and the 2" x 10", 12" OC, 12' span joists showed no signs of stress after 60+ years, so I didn't hesitate in my situation since I was actually lightening the load some by replacing the old tub.
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