We’ve done some painting! Which feels a lot like Making Progress.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves because we’ve done lots more than that.
We’ve finished the structure of the shower cubicle!
For the ceiling, we decided to use waterproof panels in white, because they’re really easy to fit and keep clean, and easy to cut to size. We chose Multipanel.
We cut it to size, squirted high-grab adhesive on the back, and pressed them into place:
We put pressure on with a complicated arrangement of leftover cork panels to avoid damaging the panels and long battens of wood and leftover floorboards to help hold it all in place while it dried. Worked a treat.
Once the ceiling was up, it was time to fit the waterproof Wedi panels to the stud wall frame. We chose Wedi boards because we wanted something that’d be super waterproof and easy to tile onto.
We cut the boards to size, and fitted them butted up against each other, with Wedi sealant between the joins to ensure no leaks.
The boards fix to the stud wall with screws and washers, which we then painted over with liquid membrane to prevent any water seeping through, and also painted over all the joins. We’ve got tons of the stuff, so we also painted the entire subfloor with waterproof membrane too, because why not?
You can see we’ve also fitted the shower head into the ceiling, as well as the extractor fan and spotlight. We cut round holes into the board for the shower valves to poke through as snugly as possible, and are pretty pleased with ourselves at how neat they are.
Using the Wedi boards, we cut smaller pieces to create a wall niche in the shower for bottles and stuff (see above). It’s really nice to work with.
The Poo Pipe
When we were away in Canada, our neighbour Graham (who is a builder) put a whacking great hole in the side of our house and poked a poo pipe through it, then ran it down the outside wall and into the main sewage pipe. He also dug a trench and put in a new manhole cover for us.
I don’t think he enjoyed that very much, but we are paying him so that takes the edge off. It’s why we didn’t want to do it ourselves…
So, we now have the toilet waste plumbed in, which was a big job we were a little anxious about.
Speaking of big jobs we were anxious about, we’ve also fitted the shower tray.
The Shower Tray
The shower tray weighs approximately 5,273 tonnes and is made of stone resin. The instructions say to lift it up and gently drop it into place.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your point of view) we’ve built the shower area so precisely that there was definitely no room to “gently drop it into place” so we had to be creative.
We mixed up sand and cement in a 5:1 mix and added water until it was the consistency of mashed potato.
(Vicky’s aside: this gave me immense anxiety because one person’s perfect mashed potato is another’s sloppy disgusting mess. Is it fluffy? Is it smooth and creamy? WHO KNOWS? In the end we decided on our perfect mash and it seems to have worked out fine.)
Then we spread the base onto the subfloor, which we had painted with the same waterproof stuff we used on the Wedi boards. Rather marvellously, we managed to get the cement pretty much bob on level, so we felt smug about that.
Next, we took some leftover 15mm plumbing pipe to use for runners. Imagine how they built Stonehenge with log rollers? Well, that was our idea for sliding the shower tray into place. There’s no way we could lower it in from above—it’s enclosed on three sides, with not enough room even to slide a piece of paper between the end walls and the tray.
Instead of rolling the tray along rolling pipes, we made little rails from the pipes, and then pushed the tray along them, into the cubicle, and then slide the pipes out afterwards to allow the tray to settle on the cement bed.
Again, it was perfectly level all the way around, and there was much rejoicing.
If you want to see us in action, here’s a video:
Next time: the walls and windowsills…