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Old 04-23-2014, 12:12 PM   #1
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


Hey all.
Had a devil of a time getting logged back in.

This is the 1938 or 1948 old cement brick house with cement tile roof that is in bathroom partial remodel angst.

Thanks to Chewbaca (spell?) & all that gave me floor joist replacement, pier block & re-building joist blocking help! Also, to those that helped me with the ARDUOUS task of cutting & grinding off the tile, adhesive, backer board, green board, plaster with steel mesh embedded to get to the exterior brick surface for the plumbing wall. UGH!

Had to patch with high strength mortar whenre the fools embedded the copper pipes, handset valve & spout the water comes out of for the tub! Even the bath wall acrylic & tub installer said he'd never seen anything like that either

. I have just a couple more patches so the bath guys can fir out a wall there, but only part of the wall over the toilet, due to space. But that's another thread, in the future.


THIS concerns the original floor joists are up to 3/4" higher than 1 corner on the side where I replaced 2 joists, sistered & added a pier block. Believe me, those joists are as high as the existing wall would allow without breaking somethign!

Used a 3 ton floor jack to ensure tight fit. The existing floor now is 2 new & 4 old floor joists, with "rails" of pressure treated lumber in each bay further supporting cross blocking, creating a "solid" floor below the subfloor plywood. I'm installig the plywood but what shall I do?

I understand flat is the goal, not ncessarily level. However, since I CAN, why not add: 1 shims to compensate for the low corner, OR 2 shingles/30# roofing felt OR secure the plywood & use self-leveling compound on top of the ply before the ditra or durarock for the porcelain plank style tiles to be installed...

WHICH is the BEST method? I'm concerned about "voids" between the shims, shingle/felt sounds good, easily controlled and placed exactly in the area that needs it only, self-leveling may be better than I but the area is approx. 33" long, going from just under 3/4" low behind the door in the corner to 1/16" at the other end.

The width of the "low spot" spans less than a joist bay. I'm at work & must go. Will revisit when I get home & upload some pics. THANKS!

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Last edited by oh'mike; 04-24-2014 at 07:25 AM. Reason: added spaces
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Old 04-23-2014, 03:48 PM   #2
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


I'd shim it with wood. Custom-cut the shims on a table saw, if necessary. Or sister new lumber onto the low joist, to raise the top of it, and provide a level surface to secure the plywood .

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Old 04-23-2014, 04:13 PM   #3
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


I was concerned about the "void" space between them...

Perhaps the best of both worlds is to cut the shims, (I only have a circular saw), based on my chalk line across the room, various measurements, etc. It's only under 3 feet and 1/8" to just under 3/4" only in the very corner. kinda odd shims but I can try for as close to a custom fit as possible & fill the "void" between them with felt. While I'm on the subfloor subject, I was told by an old school carpenter to sprinkle baby powder into the plywood then screw it down. It will keep it from squeaking longer... is that a good idea?

Still at work, gotta go! Thanks to ALL!!
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Old 04-23-2014, 07:04 PM   #4
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


Silly idea, use construction adhesive, 3/4 toughed and grooved Advantech not plywood and the floor will never squeak.
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Old 04-24-2014, 12:35 AM   #5
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add on expenses not an option. fighting with bath guys now... I refuse to pay more than the $7775 I paid for tub, plumbing, acrylic no leak panels & custom glass surround.
can't buy specialty t&g now.
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Old 04-24-2014, 12:42 AM   #6
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i paid for it & waited 6 weeks so far. Sales guy went out of town due to mom's illness. I will not pay 1 more cent! The embedded plumbing lines & handset/faucet demo out of cement are worth it. I demo'ed all & provided them with good surface. That's more than equal to firring out the bay for plumbing, when the sales guy knew in advance there were no studs & putting me out of a sink, shower & tub since end of Jan!
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Old 04-24-2014, 12:51 AM   #7
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


low spot only behind door on left corner, opposite toilet
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Old 04-24-2014, 01:28 AM   #8
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


your posts are getting more confusing each time.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:02 AM   #9
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


I've been so pushed I mixed the firring out of a plumbing wall with the leveling of the floor joists & blocking for the plywood subfloor. I willl post new pics as soon as i can... I will be using custom shims to level out the 33+ inch span unlevel. It's only bad at the corner behind the door, where the existing wall & floor wood refused to raise itself, against a 3 ton floor jack. I apologize for all confusion. I'm just 1 person, trying to do it all, working & dealing with other issues simultaneously. I think i blew gasket but am back on the case. Update soon with pics. I will start with wood shims based on my calcs. May fill voids with felt, must get some sleep now. Thanks huge to all who contributed their expertise.
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Old 04-25-2014, 02:52 AM   #10
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


You're doing great. Keep moving forward, and soon you'll be able to look back and enjoy your accomplishments. By the way, since you don't have a table saw, you can likely cut make the shims with your circular saw. You'll just need a straight edge that you can clamp down to your donor stock. http://www.popularmechanics.com/home/reviews/4283497 Almost as good as having a track saw.
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Old 04-26-2014, 06:08 PM   #11
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


ddWill cut the 3/4" pieced to about 15" need slope to 1/2" then will use my 1/2" ply pieces. sucks as my roommate is key to my attic access & I need the roofing felt roll up there to fill between the shims, i will overcome.
Thanks HUGE for the kind words, Seattle. Sometimes I wonder about what I put myself into. Of COURSE I will love the custom glass surround & new waterproof walls! It's just a you-know-what making the old play nice with the new. Plus the bath guys, after making me wait 6 weeks without explanation, no tub or shower or bath sink, now they want ME to pay $750 for bay , plumbing wall buildout, but I told sales guy, bull! I TOLD you at contract time npo suds. YOU said oh they'll fir wall out.
Brother. Always a fight for what you already paid for!~ I did the freaking horrific demo of plumbing embedded in concrete. Geez!
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Old 04-26-2014, 06:12 PM   #12
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


Thanks again. This person will get it done no matter what!

I am good with figures & measurements so hope my next pics will be subfloor... but I need a hand to remove johnny, place subfloor & replace johnny. Yikes SO hard when you are "1 guy"...
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Old 04-26-2014, 11:24 PM   #13
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


Hey here are some pics that I hope explain some about the floor...ok quick reply doesn't allow for browsing pics. going to bed. next time
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Old 04-27-2014, 06:39 AM   #14
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


Gosh, I totally thought I would go 7 3/4" to notch the edge by the water supply line coming up from the floor. I realized after I cut the 1st piece that it only gives an inch below the back edge of the toilet. If I have a 98" width bath, perpendicular to the joists, 4'x8' sheets fit with a 2" strip but is that ok to have a 2" strip behind the toilet, basically equal to the concrete "ledge" the joists are on? I like the idea of a solid piece under the toilet but will an inspector pass if there's a 2" strip to fill the extra 2 inches? I hate to split a piece under the toilet, more ability for leaks if the plywood becomes unlevel over time... or should I put a 2" strip by the door, thus having to cut a "U" to clear the water supply line but the sheet would go all the way to the wall? Which way is best? All will be 60-61" across joist length. I'm also cutting out a rectangle to be able to pull up separately, for the rough in plumbing for tub inspection. I'll try to attach a low corner & patched wall photos, There's a "floor" photo earlier that shows the joists & blocking.
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Old 04-29-2014, 01:16 AM   #15
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UNlevel now -orig joists with blocking LOW in 1 corner!


Progress made! 1st plywood piece down, glued & screwed! Will make measurements for supply line cutout & waste pipe plus 18"x24" access for plumbing rough in tomorrow. Onward! Pics soonish...so many rental isssues preclude my uploading time. Thanks to all & I apologize if any feel it's "wierd" I tried to get answers directly.

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