Bathroom Mod Blog Four - Plumbing to Floor - jspirate

Weekend Ten (8/23) - plumbing fix

During the course of the week leading up to weekend Ten, it occurred to me that my completed plumbing job was not ideal.  So, I decided to correct that.

Weekend Ten - ouch

Before sharing the pluming fix, let me reiterate that I am no plumber!  Furthermore, I've learned that plumbing can hurt.  Sometimes there isn't alot of room and the clock on the CPVC cement starts ticking the second its applied.  Its tricky when the working space is exceedingly small!

Also, see below for more bathroom pieces...

Weekend Ten - more hardware arrived last week

Weekend Ten - vanity top

Both the vanity and top were made by James Martin Furniture.  Both the wife and I are very happy with the quality and craftsmanship.  The vanity materials are solid wood and plywood.  There is no particle board on this piece.

Weekend Ten - plumbing re-work

Previous week's plumbing work

The cold water line was very close to where the trap for the tub will be.  The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to move the cold water line.  The floor is up and now is the time to make it right.  So, I tore down part of what I built the previous weekend.

In the picture to the left, the cold water line makes a 45 degree turn before going through the joist.  This clears the way for a less complicated installation of the tub drain.  Setting the tub is a few weeks down the road and when that time comes the floor will be closed up.  It would be a bummer to have trouble and poor access.   

Weekend Ten - tub drain

Original drain line

Weeken Ten - side job


The original builders were careless when it came to this cold water line.  The hot water line runs off of the outside wall by at least a foot, but the cold water line fits snugly against the wall. The insulation was placed such that the line was sandwiched between the exterior wall and the insulation.  What in the wide world of sports???

So, I decided to do a little insulation work on the cold water line.  I only got part of the line and will have to wait until I remove the vanity to get the other part.

Weekend Ten - pulling up the OSB

Whew... subflooring glue is very persistent! The specification for engineered joists requires that the plyboard be glued to the joist.  It makes for a rock solid floor, but it sucks if you want to change out a piece of the flooring!

Weekend Ten - glue

Glue and OSB

The OSB pulls apart and the joist is left with both glue and pieces of OSB on it.  Separating these two components from the joist without damaging it is a real pain.  If I had it to do over, I would buy one of those oscillating multi cutter/scrapers.   Instead, I used a chisel and then sanded with a power sander.

Weekend Ten - trick of the task

Getting the OSB away from the joist is a task even when the nails have already been pulled.  This trick worked well.  Basically, I cut three wedges from a piece of 2X8 and used a hammer to knock the wedges in.  With a wedge on each joist, I just kept tapping away.  The sound it made was very distinctive. You could just hear the glue releasing. 

Weekend Ten - its out

Weekend Ten - taking a break

Ceiling Lights

Finishing the plumbing and pulling the OSB led to a well deserved break.  After the break I snapped a few pictures to capture the gravity of working on an open floor.  That sheetrock wouldn't do much to break a fall!

Weekend Ten - cutting new plyboard to length

Weekend Ten - cutting the shower drain hole

Weekend Ten - cutting off part of the "groove"

Bottom of groove is off

Tongue and grove flooring is great.  Each piece locks into the next and makes for a solid floor.  That said, it is a pain in the rear when you have to replace a piece of the floor. One side, but not both can be "tongued" or "grooved."

The solution to this is to keep the tongue intact and cut off the bottom half of the groove. That way the tongue can be inserted and the top part of the groove is still available to help with sags between joists.  If the groove is cut properly, the plyboard easily slips in to place.

Is it ideal?  NO

Is it better than most other options?  YES

Before hauling the plyboard upstairs, I measured and marked the locations of the joists and pre-drilled and counter-sunk the holes for the screws.

Weekend Ten - complete

After dryfitting the OSB, subflooring glue was applied to each joist before lowering the plyboard into its final resting place.  It was then secured with 2 1/2" deck screws. The spacing of the screws was 4" on edge and 6" inches in the field.  Well, I didn't measure it, but that's what I was aiming for.

Total project time to date = 118 hours

Weekend Eleven (8/28) - vanity demo & tile purchase

With the hole in the floor covered it was time to think about building new stuff! Then, it hit me that it just wasn't reasonable to think of building the tub frame without removing the old vanity.

So, I decided to do some demo work.  Not the toilet though.  The toilet is staying put until it absolutely has to be moved.   Its my favorite toilet!  Plus, that is a spot of strategery!

Oh yeah... this weekend started out with me and the the wife going to the tile store and picking out the floor and shower/tub tile.  I've always heard that this process can end a marriage.  We sailed through it with relative ease.  I just nodded my head and supported her every decision.  It was easy like Sunday morning! That said, after the 4 hour ordeal, were both mentally exhausted.


Weekend Eleven - one last good bye

Weekend Eleven - out

Weekend Eleven - dusty work

The old vanity was particle board and ripping it out made lotso dust!

Weekend Eleven - vanity light removal

This piece should have been removed a long time ago...

Weekend Eleven - energy isolation

Just in case one of the boys walked by and felt compelled to flip the switch.

Weekend Eleven - lighting mount

This hole has to be moved because the new vanity is moving to the left by about 7 inches.  The new light would not be centered over the new vanity.  That is not acceptable!

Weekend Eleven - moving to the left

The original hole is half way cut out so that a sheet rock repair can be made. The new hole is smaller and to the left.

Weekend Eleven - hole patch

The piece of wood behind the hole is what the sheet rock patch will be connected to.  This is a great trick that my Dad thought me.  Basically, you attach a screw to the board so you can hold it.  Put it in the hole, and pull it up against the back of the sheetrock.  While holding it in positon you sink a couple sheetrock screws through the sheetrock into the board making sure that the board pulls snugly to the sheetrock.  Then you fasten the patch piece to the board and its ready for mud.

Weekend Eleven - mud

Weekend Eleven - first coat of paint

Weekend Eleven - new light

This picture doesn't do the light justice.  I had to expose the camera based on the light and that was not ideal. So, I dimmed the light way down so that the back (brown part) of the light would show up.  Its bright in the bathroom now, but we are looking at a darker floor, so we will need the light.

I also added a sheet of plywood as is required to make the floor stiffer.  I wanted to get half the floor done, but this was a very time consuming step.  I only got one sheet down.  I left the linoleum down on half of the bathroom.  The plywood was 3/8" and I will also be using a crack isolation membrane on the floor before doing the tile.  The plyboard and membrane together should provide a sufficient covering for the 24" oc engineered joists.

Total project time to date = 128 hours