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Old 11-25-2017, 01:40 PM   #1
NHjohn
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NHjohn's Master Bath Reno

Hi all!
We're in the process of planning a 2nd floor master bath renovation and I've been reading up here on the site. Great stuff! The tiling involved will only be for the shower. We'll be ripping out a fiberglass tub/shower and replacing with an alcove shower.
SHOWER DETAILS
-Inside dimensions are Approx 35" x 59"
-Kerdi Membrane over Mud Pan using Kerdi Drain and Kerdi board for walls
-Floor Tile =2x2 Mosaic Honed or Tumbled Carrarra Marble
-Wall Tile = 4 x 12 or 3 x 6 Honed Carrara (not sure on size yet)
-Thinking of a horizontal mosaic band about 4 ft up
-We will not run tile to ceiling, but to about 74-75" up... to correspond with two "free standing" partial walls.
-Top of curb, Caps on partial walls and Ledge/Sill over hot H2O chase will be solid stone (not sure...Carrara or maybe granite...will match with vanity)
-Door = Frameless glass, side-hinged

QUESTION 1
How does deflection come into play here? We have a slightly different situation and numbers don't really plug into the calculators I've found. Is a tile shower even do-able?
-Again, we're only tiling the shower area.
-Floor joists are 4 3/4" x 6 3/4" beams 32" on Center
-Sub Floor is 3/4" (I think) solid pine tongue and groove.
-Span of beams is 13'
-Part of the shower area can't be strengthened from below as it is exposed to the first floor kitchen (see photo)
-Shower area will run perpendicular to beams and looks like we will hit two beams.

Thoughts? Will we be able to get by with just an extra layer of plywood on the existing sub-floor?

QUESTION 2
We have circulated hot water for our heating and the 1" copper pipe runs along the base of external wall or back wall of shower. (See bottom of drawing) Can I build out a chase using 2" Kerdi as shown in the bottom right of the drawing? Thinking of one upright piece of Kerdi, with the horizontal member being supported by that and a ledger attached to the studs. If this seems good, do I also need some sort of blocking strip at the base behind the vertical piece of Kerdi.
Any other possible solutions ideas? We'd like to preserve as much floor space as possible/

Thanks so much! I'm sure I'll have many more questions as the project continues.
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Old 11-25-2017, 07:22 PM   #2
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Welcome, John.

Your floor joist structure may meet your local code for sleeping areas, but it'd be well short of what you need for a ceramic tile installation, so it's good that you don't plan to do that.

If you plan to build what you describe, because off your joist spacing I'd recommend you add a layer of nominal 3/4" plywood rather than your planned nominal 1/2" plywood. Over that a mud floor with a minimum of 3/4" thickness at the drain should work. See my warranty information below.

I would recommend you re-think the use of any sort of natural stone in your shower with the possible exception of some accent pieces. Use our Advanced Search feature and enter marble shower for a couple hundred good reasons why not. Granted, your tumbled marble may have different problems than the honed or polished marbles in some of the worst examples, but do give some thought to whether you really need that additional complication in your life.

On the heat pipe situation, I'd first want to know what temperature water can be expected in that pipe in worst case scenario. We've seen some problems with KerdiBoard and steam shower plumbing and you'll want to avoid that.

Given my options, I'd first elect to move that pipe down onto the floor next to the wall and just let it be covered by the mud shower floor. If it can't be moved, I'd seriously consider furring out that back wall to accommodate the pipe without that little bump-out, which I think you're gonna find to be a PITA in more than one respect.

I'd also wanna move that drain to the center of the shower footprint if that's at all feasible.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 11-26-2017, 08:13 AM   #3
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Thanks CX!
-3/4 ply it is is.
-Ouch...We'll be rethinking the marble idea.

-As for the heating pipe...
Not sure on the max possible temperature of the water but it's 170 at the moment. I was hoping to not need to move the pipe but it sounds like that might be the easiest of all fixes.
**How much mud should be on top of the pipe? Could we shorten the ply on that side to make a shallow channel to get the pipe a little lower?
**If we had to leave the pipe and build out, what are the issues we'd face? Installation? Water shedding? Ankle knocker, tripping hazard? What if we brought the bump-out up higher, say 2 feet? Not sure how we would build that,

-Drain. I'd like to move it but won't know what's down there until demo. Is that offset location undesirable because of the steeper slope needed on the short side?

Thanks again!
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Old 11-27-2017, 09:48 AM   #4
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Was just wondering...if we insulated the pipe, could we alleviate issues with the Kerdi?
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Old 05-22-2019, 07:53 AM   #5
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Hi all...Update...Year and a half later...Finally getting to the shower

New set up is as follows:
-32 x 60 offset Kerdi tray over 3/4" plywood base and Kerdi drain.
-Wall Waterproofing: Kerdi over regular drywall.
-Floor Tile 2x2 (3/8" thick) porcelain mosaic (Gazzini Glamstone Palissandro White)
-Wall Tile 4" x 12" (3/8" thick) porcelain mosaic (Gazzini Glamstone Palissandro White with 1/8" grout lines
-Curb Threshold and 78" walls topped with 3/4" solid Quartz (to match vanity)

Some questions:
1. Thinset: Unmodified for everything? setting kerdi pan, kerdi membrane and tile? I'll be getting that at the tile store.
2. Trowels: Thinking of using 1/4 x 3/8 square for Kerdi tray, 1/8 x 1/8 for Kerdi membrane, 1/4 x 3/8 square for 4x12 tiles, and not sure about the 2x2 mosaic. They're 3/8 thick...would the 1/4 by 3/8 lay down too much thinset?
3. Back Buttering: Would you back butter the 4 x 12s? There is an ever-so slight of a groove, maybe 1/32"? See below

Thanks!!

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Old 05-26-2019, 05:43 AM   #6
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Well, there doesn't seem to be much interest in the above, so I'll move on to another question. I'm going to have to build a mud pan as the drain needs to be further from the wall than the Kerdi offset pan's 10". And I need to raise the sub-floor 1 1/2'. Is it acceptable to screw 2x4's flat on top of the existing sub-floor and then the 3/4" plywood on top of those?
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Old 05-26-2019, 06:14 AM   #7
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I'm using Gazzini wall tile in my project, John, a 12X24.

1) I used a lightly modified mortar, Versabond, to set my USG form pan and the membrane on top of it. And oh, the tile onto of that, too. It is a decent mortar, easily available, reasonably priced, and evidently entirely suitable.
2)I'm certain Schluter recommends a trowel notch size for setting the pan and membrane. I know USG did.
3) It does seem like a 1/4X3/8 might be a bit much for the 4X12's, especially if the walls are nice and flat, and the tiles as well. Experiment with the 1/4X1/4 to see if it gives you enough coverage, go larger if it doesn't. I did my 2X2's with a 1/4X1/4. Back buttering is a good idea when possible but time consuming. At the least I'd make sure those 4X12's are free of duct and kiln release. And BB'g might help ensure sufficient coverage with the 1/4X1/4 trowel.

For the last, not sure I understand completely. Are you saying you are no longer going to use the Kerdi tray? Maybe a photo would help.
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Old 05-26-2019, 07:16 AM   #8
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Thanks, Dan!
I was originally planning on using the 32x60 Kerdi offset tray, but when I pulled the tub I realized the drain has to be at least 18" from the wall, but the drain placement on the Kerdi tray is 10". So, I'm going to do a mud pan with Kerdi membrane on top instead.

Also to accommodate the Kerdi drain and 2" trap etc I need more space underneath and need to raise the sub-floor an extra 1 1/2". This would have been the case as well if I was able to use the Kerdi tray.

-Existing sub-floor is constructed with 4 3/4" wide x 6 3/4" high beams 32" o.c. as the joists, and 1" (actual) planks on top of that. I was planning on gaining the extra 1 1/2" by screwing down 2x4s to the existing 1" sub-floor and then topping that with 3/4" plywood. Then I'd build the pan on top of that.
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Old 05-26-2019, 09:17 AM   #9
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Welcome, John.

Rather than fool with all the layers of wood, if you're already planning to make a mud floor for your shower, I'd recommend a single layer of nominal half-inch plywood (or thicker if it's just handy) over your boards and them build the rest up to your drain with the deck mud.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 05-27-2019, 06:50 AM   #10
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Thanks CX,
The issue, I believe, is if we just put plywood on top of existing sub-floor that only gives us 7" to work with underneath. The 2" trap alone is over 7" high. Additionally it will need some more height for slope to connect to existing plumbing.

If you look at the picture below you can see the existing trap and beam to the right. I need to cut out to the right of the beam to install the drain and outflow. I won't know for sure until I cut out that area, renotch the beam and dry fit, but if I do indeed need to raise the subfloor is my 2x4 approach ok?

And yes, that is 1 1/2" waste going out. Talked with the local inspector and he is ok with 2" trap and then reducing to 1 1/2". Not ideal, but hey, we've been using 1 1/4" shower drain for 15 years.
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Old 05-27-2019, 07:06 AM   #11
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Perhaps I'm missing something, but how do you intend to get that drain line across that beam, John?
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Old 05-27-2019, 07:28 AM   #12
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It is notched out, and I will take a little more out as well. As is, there is 2" space between notch and top of existing sub-floor (which would be bottom of new sub-floor if I just lay down 3/4" ply. The higher I raise the sub floor the less I'll have to notch. Also, I plan to reduce to 1 1/2" just after the trap so it will be 1 1/2" going through the notch. Reducer being closer to the trap will help with clean out too, I assume.
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Old 05-27-2019, 07:50 AM   #13
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Despite what your inspector might be willing to approve, John, I would not use a 2" trap if I had only a 1 1/2" drain line. The only proper place to reduce from your 2" drain is immediately after the drain and into a 1 1/2" trap if that's to be the size of your drain line.

And regardless the trap size or the necessary buildup for height, I'd still just use deck mud for most of it. Good idea to have a layer of plywood over your board subfloor, but that can be as little as nominal half-inch. Might be better to use nominal 3/4" because of the way you've got the subfloor cut up there at the drain.

Entirely up to you, though.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 05-27-2019, 08:10 AM   #14
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Thanks CX!
So what am I looking for to connect the 2" Kerdi drain to a 1 1/2" Trap? I'll start searching different pvc fittings.
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Old 05-27-2019, 08:21 AM   #15
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Just a 2"x1 1/2" bushing should be all it takes, John, if you've got a 1 1/2" riser from your trap.
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