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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm putting down an acrylic shower pan. Mortar is to be used underneath it.

Guy at HD sold me three bags of Sakrete Floor Mud. Says it's for shower pans but I'm thinking tile pans, not acrylic. Should I use thinset mortar?

Or is this stuff ok? What's odd is I CANNOT find anything online about this prodcut. Not even on the Sakrete website!!!
 

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Just use masons mix---the 'floor mud' would work--it has very little cement in the mix--but it costs more that the masons mix---

3 bags? holy cow, that must be a huge pan--one bag usually does it.

Typically, the mortar is mixed rather soft---then 'cow pie' piles are placed on the floor so there is room for the excess to flow into---

Pan is placed on top of the cow pies---wiggled and pressed until it is level and in place.---then roofing nails are driven into the studs just above the flange--so the heads hold the pan in place until the mortar is set.

DO NOT step onto the pan while setting it into the mortar.
Doing so will flex the pan and over compress the mortar--leaving it hollow below.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
First clue.....advise from HD.

Second clue....look at the shower pan installation instructions.
I had regular mortar on the cart when the guy asked me about my project. When he directed me to the Floor Mud bags by Sakrete, it said right on the bag - designed for shower receptors. I was at a loss. Didn't know if this was some kind of new product for that application or what.

Couple things. The pan instructions to use "mortar." The term is pretty generic.

Second, the instrucitons say the pan shoudl sit in a 1"-2" mortar bed. The pan is 36x60 = 15 sqft, hence that many bags. At least that's the calcuation for 'floor mud.'

The pan is made by Sterling and has little feet underneath like most pans. Also, there is a cross pattern design throughout the entire bottom. If I use the pile method, there would be no place for the mortar to flow to. The plastic crosses on the pattern would prevent it from spreading.

I think I need a wet mixture at exactly 1". Each of those small squares undernearth the pan is exactly 1" deep. OR just a tad more to accomodate for the area between the height of the feet and the depth of the squares....Take a look at the picture.

 

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I think you have this figured out----both are mortars and either will work just fine---

Deck mud has less cement and more sand----your choice----keep the mix soft enough that your wiggle and press will squish out the excess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yeah, I saw that. But the written directions state to use mortar if a felt pad is not available. This is going on concrete. Either way, I cracked the unit today putting it in. It's 60" x 36" and I'm trying to get it into a 5 x 9 foot bathroom. Too tight. No room to play, especially with the walls being as high as they are - 18"?

This unit is just like mine but the Accord series. JUst taller walls. Maybe I will buy the Ensemble instead....

Looking at other options right now. Cultured marble is popular in the SW too....Everyone is steering me clear of tile.
 

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Who is 'everyone'?

If you use epoxy grout, the tiled pan is easy to maintain---

As a side note---I like the cast onyx pans---and use them regularly for those that like a simpler looking shower.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Who is 'everyone'?

If you use epoxy grout, the tiled pan is easy to maintain---

As a side note---I like the cast onyx pans---and use them regularly for those that like a simpler looking shower.
I suppose 'everyone' is a generic term. Seems many I've spoken to hate tile because of grout cleaning, maintenance. Looks nice but I agree with them.

Now that I went through two acrylic shower pans, I'm not sure if I'm dead set on them. Cultured marble is very popular in the SW. I'm having a guy come out and price a shower pan for me. I'm suspecting the pan will be EXPENSIVE and HEAVY!

Since removing the shower pan and having 'nothing to do' until I determine which pan to use, I've focused my attention on my prep work. I used a self leveling compound and got my floor pretty level, but it's not perfect. I'm thinking about adding more, but I'm afriad that I will never get it perfect.

So how level is acceptable for a shower pan?

Sounds like a stupid question, but if your bubble is on the line to one side, is that good enough to have the proper drainage in most pans?
 

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It is the same as cultured marble--same product and made by the same people that make cultured marble vanity tops.

I found that the prices are all over the place--so check around---look for makers of cast counter tops.

An yes, they are heavy---do get the floor level before adding the pan---they are not easy to remove and reset--so get it right the first time.
 

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The pan is made by Sterling and has little feet underneath like most pans. Also, there is a cross pattern design throughout the entire bottom. If I use the pile method, there would be no place for the mortar to flow to. The plastic crosses on the pattern would prevent it from spreading.

I think I need a wet mixture at exactly 1". Each of those small squares undernearth the pan is exactly 1" deep. OR just a tad more to accomodate for the area between the height of the feet and the depth of the squares....Take a look at the picture.

[/QUOTE]

I use the Sterling Vikrell products in both their showers and replacement tubs. You won't need as much mud as you're figuring. That unit is strong enough to set without any, however, I always do. Mortar mix is fine, nothing fancy required. You're not trying to fill up all those square recesses. The grid work that hangs down will embed itself into the mortar and allow you to level the unit. Then let it dry overnight, don't step in it. Check your floor with a good level in several directions and see if it's off. The mortar is needed more on the low areas than the high areas. On a 5' tub, which is basically the size you are dealing with, I would mix up one bag of mortar, loose, spread it out and carefully set the unit on top. Check with a level at both ends and across the unit and then gently wiggle into the mortar. Don't try to press it all the way so it bottoms out on the concrete.
And in the future, if a big box employee asks what you're doing, pretend you don't speak English.
Mike Hawkins:smile:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
It is the same as cultured marble--same product and made by the same people that make cultured marble vanity tops.

I found that the prices are all over the place--so check around---look for makers of cast counter tops.

An yes, they are heavy---do get the floor level before adding the pan---they are not easy to remove and reset--so get it right the first time.
Took your advise, and installed the pan. I about to drywall above the shower pan but had a question. Should the drywall sit on the lip of the shower pan or keep it off a 1/2" inch? I'm assuming keep it off a 1/2" and silcone the heck out of the bottom before applying the culture marble to the drywall.
 

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I don't think you want drywall in a shower----use a backer board, like Durrock--there are many types----but you want a backer that will not be affected by the water/moisture that exists in a shower.

It is also a wise idea to waterproof that backer---Paint on coatings like Redguard or Hydroban are one choice.

As to over the lip or on top?

Set the backer to the top of the flange--fill the gap with thinset---
 
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