Determining width of tub deck...pros and cons?

raehelenJanuary 12, 2014

I am planning the last BR reno of this house. First time I will ever have anything other than a 'normal' builder's quality 60 X 30 enameled steel tub. Am building into an alcove 78 X 41, and tub is 66 X 33, and I am having difficulty deciding how to divvy up the extra few inches of tub decking.

My plan is to have 10 inches at the end where the faucets/feet/drain will be, and 6" at the inside wall, and 2" on the other two sides, ie 2" at the head end and 2" on the side I climb in. My reasoning is that I could perhaps put up some shelving on the wall with the extra 10", (suggested by this forum) and could place candles, wine glass, decorative items on the 6" by the wall.

However, in what seems like 90% of pictures I have seen, people have the wider edge on the side where they climb in. I don't understand this, and wonder if I am missing something obvious. I guess you then sit and swing legs in, but isn't that what you do on a more narrow ledge anyways?

Please fill me in on the whys and wherefores of tub decking...I could find no documentation anywhere!

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2" at the climb in area, visually, looks too weak to me. How is the counter material put into place? Is there a frame that the counter will sit on? I've never seen a drop in tub but I would think the room side of the rough in would be at least a 2x4. Then your tile, or whatever you will face the side facing the room, will add width too. Having a little overhang for the deck, like another 1". I can see 4" being minimum.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 1:48AM
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Are you planning to sit on the edge to dry your feet or anything else ? How are you going to do that on a 2" edge ? My outside edge is 10" , while my inside one is 4" . I thought that I made a mistake by doing this . However I love it now that my DH and I sit there after taking a shower to dry our feet or do my pedicure . You can use the outside edge too for placing a wine glass . I have candles on the corners .

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 2:37AM
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Just to clarify, the tub itself has a deck edge. It varies, the widest point being 5" and narrowest 3 1/4". The framing for the tub uses 2 X 3 (manufacturer's specs), and part of the 2 X 3 could go under the tub deck, so if I had two" past that,
and used tile let's say instead of granite or solid surface there is no overhang, I can't see any in pics either.

Lillo, I have never ever sat on a tub edge to dry myself off. LOL However, as I said, I've only ever had basic tubs. Pedicures will be done in my Master bath on my teak stool. I don't have shower and bath in the same room. So, I am assuming you then sit and twist to get in to the tub? You don't climb in? So, with your 10" edge, is that all marble, are you including any of the tub deck itself, or is that in addition to the 10"?

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 4:04AM
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Many pics on the net show a small tile deck with no overhang, similar to this:

Traditional Furniture by Miami Furniture & Accessories Beyond Stores

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 4:12AM
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My tub is 66x36. Lengthwise it fits into the area without any extra inches of space. On the front edge I have 3 inches which is perfect because the bullnose tiles used were 3 inches and fit like a glove for trimming it out. The backside were my pathetic looking plant is is 15 inches. We used the floor tiles (cut down a bit) for that area. Hope this picture helps.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 9:04AM
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Badgergal, yes that does help! What a gorgeous bathroom! I now have another question for you. I see that you have all your fixtures on the side of the tub deck, where is your head rest? Next to the closet area? Do you find you have enough room to climb in? I am terrified of spending all this money, and then discovering that spatially I have made some mistake or error? Trying to think of everything before we start gutting.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 12:45PM
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Raehelen, you saw my photos recently so you know we have a fairly nice 'butt-sized' area where we can climb in. This was based on our previous tub also, where we like to sit and put on (or take off) our shoes rather than take our lazy selves into the bedroom and go to the bench there and do it. Also it is not so wide as to be difficult to climb in and out of the tub. The overhang part itself is not that deep, so it's easy. The overhang of the tub in the photo above looks pretty deep so I would think some straddling would be involved, no? I have long legs, but still....

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 2:38PM
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Raehelen, there is plenty of room to get in the tub and it is easy to step over. The height of the tile is 17-1/4 inches and the tub lip is about 1-1/2 inches so approx18-3/4 inches total height. I am only 5'4" and have short legs. I have no trouble what so ever getting in or out of the tub.
Hope you can tell from the attached picture that there is a very nice back rest at the closet end of the tub. With the sloped/contoured backrest and the arm rests it really is a very comfortable tub to relax in.
The tub is Kohler's Mariposa. It comes in different lengths but they are all 36 inches wide. If you could make that work for you, I highly recommend the tub.
Her is another picture of it.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 4:56PM
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Thanks again! Your tub looks similar to the Bain Ultra Thalassa55. Our total height will be 19 1/2", but I'm 5'5", also with short legs, so guess it evens out! LOL.

Seeing your faucets clarifies for me where I could put mine. The tub deck (tub itself, not tile) is 5" wide at the drain end, how wide is yours? One more detail question, if you don't mind, how far is the shower head from the end of the tub? I like using the side for two reasons, closer to reach and tub spout doesn't need to be as long as it would if I put it outside the end of the tub. (tub deck at end is only 2 1/4", not wide enough to install faucets). I really appreciate your answering all my nitpicky questions! Thank you!

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 5:49PM
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Oh, the pictures really help. I was way off on what I thought you were doing.

I drew up this scaled drawing according to your measurements. The pink is the counter. The tan are the walls.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 5:51PM
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Enduring! Thank You! I was just thinking, literally at the moment you must have posted this, that I wish I knew how to use Sketch-Up or some kind of design program. I have tried previously, but have found it just too frustrating to get anywhere!

That's it exactly, EXCEPT, I was thinking put the wider, ie 6" on the top (inside wall), and the 2" on the outside deck. You are a doll!

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 6:12PM
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My picture is with the "climb in" area at the "north" side of drawing. The south end is the room wall. That sounds like your initial description. The tub can be flipped, with the drain on the left side of drawing (west)

Which one is your plan?

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 6:31PM
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The area on the tub deck where the faucets are installed is 5-1/4" wide and about 13 inches long. The handheld shower is 23 inches from the end of the tub. The Forte handheld shower head that you see in the picture is actually supposed to be in our shower. And the Master shower head (which is smaller) that is in my shower is supposed to be on the tub. We never called the plumber back to switch them around the way we wanted them. I guess we could do it ourselves one of these days.

This post was edited by badgergal on Tue, Jan 14, 14 at 7:20

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 6:38PM
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D EXACTLY! You even got the narrowing of width down at the foot end! Except climb in area is on the south side. Top edge (6") is the back wall, East or left edge is my outside window wall. My linen tower (15" deep) will be on the left side, toilet on the right side.

That is awesome!

I originally was giving myself 10 extra inches, but took away 2" to allow more room around toilet. Jealously stretching every single inch of space to its max!

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 6:46PM
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