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Old 03-23-2013, 02:21 PM   #1
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


Ok, so question for you builders. I'm hanging drywall in a bathroom reno, and stupid me put the tub in before drywalling the ceiling.

So, it is going to be hard to reach to put in screws, as well as just hold the drywall above the tub portion. So I'm building/built a platform above the tub for a person to stand on to hold up the drywall as well as screw in. So... on the room side of the tub, I built what I consider a strong enough little half wall out of 2x4's, and screwed it to the floor. It's the other side I'm not so sure about. I screwed a 2x6 into the wall studs above the tub. I screwed into 3 studs, 4 screws each. I then have a platform of 5/8" on top of 4 2x4's to rest on top of the wall and the 2x6. It spans about 3 1/2 feet to 4 feet or so. So I think the platform with the 2x's is strong enough (does anyone think maybe not?) It's the 2x6 screwed into the wall I'm not so sure about. Do you think those 12 screws are strong enough to support a person holding at least part of the weight of 5/8' drywall 4x8 sheet?

I've also just bought some deck related metal brackets. I was going to use a couple right angles to support the 2x4's on the outside of the platform as well as some kind of strange brackets to help support the 2x6 kind of from above.

Is all that enough? Should I screw a larger piece of 2x6 across more studs? Or is that idea just plain bad in the first place? I really only need to stand on it long enough to put up one sheet of drywall on the ceiling. And possibly to mud that section, and also to put up the one sheet of concrete backer board on the top section of the wall? (not sure how I'm going to to tile that high.... worry about that later I guess.

Thanks for any help!

Charlie
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Old 03-23-2013, 02:35 PM   #2
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


???

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Old 03-23-2013, 02:37 PM   #3
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


How high is the ceiling? Sounds like overkill.
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Old 03-23-2013, 02:56 PM   #4
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


What length screws did you use on the 2x6?

Sounds plenty sturdy to me, assuming your screws were at least 2.5" long. Also we always like to see pictures. :-)

I think I would've made a couple supports for each end of the sheet, got it in place, and climbed a 6' stepladder w/ the front legs inside the tub. Know what I mean? But hey, whatever works.
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Old 03-23-2013, 03:51 PM   #5
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


Like the picture of the ladder

But I guess I was worried about putting the ladder legs in the tub.... didn't want to wreck it, not to mention it's quite a bit of weight focussed on a small area no?

I forget the length of the screws off the top of my head, possibl 3 inch... at least 2.... Ok, so hopefully this thing will hold up...

Might try the ladder idea after when I need to tile, because I can't reach the ceiling standing in the tub! And I won't be able to do my crazy screw a platform to the wall idea then...
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Old 03-23-2013, 04:22 PM   #6
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


Your platform should be fine for the drywall. If you're worried about the ladder legs on the tub you could put a 2x4 or something under them to distribute the weight. What kind of tub? If it has a solid base beneath like foam, mortar, etc. then you shouldn't need to worry about ladder legs at all. If not, use a piece of...anything really, to distribute your weight.
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Old 03-23-2013, 07:08 PM   #7
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


Thanks. The tub is fiberglass/acrylic, something like that. It rests on 4 feet, and no mortar underneath for any additional support (I got talked out of it, regretfully). So a bit worried about the pressure from the ladder feet. I can use something to distribute it, but still worried. I think it would be my last choice, but for tiling up high on the wall, not sure I have many other options...

I'll try and post some pictures of my crazy platform.
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:15 PM   #8
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


I understand your worry, but think of it like this. Let's just say you weigh 200lbs. Ladders have four feet so on average each leg will be exerting around 50lbs. (would vary if you lean one way) If you don't have enough faith in your tub to support that load its like saying you wouldn't standon your heels in the tub. If it's that bad then maybe you need to pull it and give it some support. Otherwise I wouldn't worry b/c it's not going to hurt it.
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:32 PM   #9
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


I guess I'm missing something. I just lay a 32 x 60" piece of 3/4" plywood over a sheet of cardboard across the top of the tub. Plenty strong.
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:58 PM   #10
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


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I guess I'm missing something. I just lay a 32 x 60" piece of 3/4" plywood over a sheet of cardboard across the top of the tub. Plenty strong.
That is what I have always done also.
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Old 03-25-2013, 08:51 AM   #11
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


I like this idea as well. This is an alcove tub, so it's supported by 4 feet underneath the bottom of the tub. It sort of rests on its skirt as well on the one side, but nothing on the other side. The plumber put in a 2x4 underneath the rim along the long side of the tub, but not on the drain side obviously. Currently there is nothing along the back because I haven't built the half wall there yet.

Will the plywood on top the tub still work? I just don't want to crack the skirt side or the rim side along the wall... I have no idea how strong these tubs are or arent'.....
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Old 03-25-2013, 05:46 PM   #12
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


Well, I don't know if plywood is the "best" method, but it's certainly the easiest and was suggested to me by a couple of pros (which I'm not). It's convenient, doesn't get in the way and is rock solid to me, pushing 230lbs. You will spend more time up there than you think.

You didn't say what make/model tub you have, but the apron on a well designed alcove tub with feet doesn't carry much of the weight, it's carried by the feet. Unless it's a cheap flimsy tub or the floor isn't flat and level, you can probably slide a piece of paper under the bottom of the apron.
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:24 AM   #13
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


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I like this idea as well. This is an alcove tub, so it's supported by 4 feet underneath the bottom of the tub. It sort of rests on its skirt as well on the one side, but nothing on the other side. The plumber put in a 2x4 underneath the rim along the long side of the tub, but not on the drain side obviously. Currently there is nothing along the back because I haven't built the half wall there yet.

Will the plywood on top the tub still work? I just don't want to crack the skirt side or the rim side along the wall... I have no idea how strong these tubs are or arent'.....
A picture of your tub would help. But when your tub is in use and full of water it better hold a person's weight that is stepping on it without breaking? If so then I would think it would hold a person's weight that the piece of plywood on top has spread the weight out over the whole tubs surface.
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Old 03-26-2013, 09:04 AM   #14
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


You can screw a couple of cross braces to the plywood that fits down into the tub, if you need to add strength and they will keep the plywood from shifting too. That looks pretty darn strong as-is though.
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Old 03-26-2013, 05:03 PM   #15
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Strong enough to support a person + drywall?


Why can't just just put one side of a stepladder into the tub? How high is the ceiling? I installed my tub before ceiling drywall and had no problem, I didn't even need a stepladder as I could reach the celing standing on the edges of the tub.

I don't see what the problem is.

Last edited by amakarevic; 03-26-2013 at 05:08 PM.
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