Mongo, would you give me some specs on your fab bath??

dixiechick_07March 31, 2009


Love the look of your bathroom. Was wondering if you might share some specifics with me.

1. Width of small divider cab.......looks like might be a pull-out??

2. Length of Vanity portion with sink??

3. Width of tall cabinet at front???

4. Is teak countertop one slab or boards put together???

How does it hold up to hairspray and perfume chemicals?

5. Also, the wood floor, how does it perform with the

chemical element? Is the tile in front of the shower?

As you might suspect....I am strongly considering being a "copycat". Appreciate any info you might share. Thanks for posting your awesome bathroom.

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Let me try a couple of forum searches. I thought I posted one with measurements a year or two ago...

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 8:51PM
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No luck.

I'll try a detailed reply tomorrow with the measurements.

The teak is not a single slab, it's three boards edge glued. Biscuits and West Systems epoxy. Sealed with spar urethane, it's pretty much bulletproof. Still looks as bright and shiny as Day One. Tub deck looks great too, and that gets more sun. The spar urethane has, I believe, a bit more UV resistance to it.

Floor is brazilian cherry over radiant floor heat. Flooring looks great.

There is not a typical curb with this shower. Instead I made a raised platform just outside the shower, maybe 5" tall. Serves a dual purpose; as a tiled drying platform just outside the shower and when getting out of the tub, as well as a just enough of a step-up for getting into and out of the tub.

Copy away!

Tonight I had a woman offer me "whatever it takes" for me to build her a look-a-like "mousehole bed" for her daughter like the one I built in my house for my daughter. It's a slightly fancied up platform bed.

Heck, I'd build someone the same bathroom that I have, but I won't build a bed like the ones I built for my kids for anyone else.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 9:33PM
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I hate to put you to all that trouble, but I certainly would appreciate it. Did you make your cabs??? I am hoping my cabmaker can simulate them. Am sure they will not be as beautiful, but hope the "look" will be the same.

Don't blame you for not building the bed for someone else. Those kinds of things are special for your children. Makes great memories for them.....

Will look for your post tomorrow. Thank you so much.

Just you have an old home??? Your bath lends itself to one beautifully, that is why I am so enamored with it.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2009 at 12:25AM
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Okay, going from left to right:

1) The closet on the left, 20-3/4" wide and 23-3/4"deep.

2) cabinet to the left of the sink: 18-1/4" wide, 21-3/4" deep, cabinet is 33-1/4" tall, with 1-1/2" thick countertop the top of the teak countertop is 34-3/4" high.

3) center sink cabinet: 32-1/4" wide, 23-1/4" deep.

4) same as #2.

5) The tall dividing cabinet: 15-1/2" wide, 32-3/4" deep, the cabinet is 48" tall, and with the 1" thick teak on it, the top of the teak is 49" tall.

Cabinet #5 is indeed a pullout pantry type of cabinet. The top drawer has electrics in it, my wife uses that for keeping her hair dryer, etc, plugged in.

The bottom part of the pantry is storage. Looking at it from the front, vertically it's divided in half. When you pull it open, the shelves that face the sink are 4" deep. It's almost like a medicine cabinet for my wife. The shelves that face the toilet side are about 5-1/2" deep, that's where we store cleaning supplies, rolls of toilet paper, etc. I sized the shelf depth for rolls of TP and paper towels.

Construction was very basic. Birch plywood carcasses and poplar face frames. There is some MDF mixed in there as well. Oil primer. Two coats of latex topcoat in that room. I'm almost always an oil paint guy, but I think I painted that room in the winter and with closed windows I went with latex.

I may have some as-I-went construction photos.

Original design had a slightly different layout; two sinks, and a makeup "desk" area with a kneehole. My wife wanted no part of a makeup area, she stands in front of Cabinet #5 and uses the round mirror. She also wanted no part of two sinks. We share, no issues.

I did a mock up of the countertop height, as I'm 6'4" and my wife is 5'1". She actually loves the taller height.


    Bookmark   April 1, 2009 at 3:36PM
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I'd never seen your bath before. It's beautiful. I've got to get my husband to look at your pics. We're starting to redo our hall bath and I love your cabinetry. We've remodeled another bath (in a previous house) and built a bit of cabinetry before, so I'm pretty sure he could tackle this (hopefully as well as you did yours). What an inspiration!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2009 at 4:36PM
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oh good god.....I'm swooning. Mongo, I had no idea.


    Bookmark   April 1, 2009 at 7:31PM
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Thanks so much, mongo. I don't have quite the space requirements but think I can still replicate on a smaller scale. LOVE the idea of outlets in the top of the 48" high cab. I am assuming it pulls out too.... I can spare 16" for the tall cab, with 48" in between that one and the 48" high one, which I can only go 10". Would love to have your same sink, but I checked and it only comes in a 30", soooooooooo, I am thinking of using a smaller sink and a little more vintage looking. Will configure the 48" wide cab with a 24" sink cab (bumped out slightly) with a 12" cab on each side. I know 12" is rather small, but I figure I can make drawers on one side of the sink and maybe another pull out for the other side (next to the tall cab)...... Do you think that will work???? I have an old claw foot tub being restored and will use it for the Bathtub. I really love your teak,,, where did you get teak boards and are they 1x???? material?? I know you said you glued and made biscuit joints to put them together. The only thing I can find is teak flooring!!!
Again, thanks so much for your help.....I had a whole other plan in mind until I saw your fab bath and now I can't stop thinking about it......

Would love to see in progress pics if you can locate them. Again, thanks for your time.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2009 at 11:56PM
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Wow, Mongo, I knew you were good just by how much help you provide around here....but seeing your actual work just adds a whole other dimension! That is beautiful! Uh, when will you schedule a house tour? I'd be more than willing to drive up from Westchester! ;-)

    Bookmark   April 2, 2009 at 10:14AM
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I thought I had a more comprehensive series of photos, but I might have not brought them over when I bought new computers a few weeks ago.

The following are not pretty, but they might help:

ABOVE: This shows a couple of things I had to work around. High over the toilet is a jog of the vent pipe, it comes into the room because it jogs around a load bearing beam in the wall.

Lighting: You see two illuminated light bulbs. Those are the sconce locations for the "new' design. The original design had two sinks, two wall mirrors, and three wall sconces. The old wall sconce locations are the covered up junction boxes. I redid the wiring so there is no live wring in those now unused j-boxes.

Outlets: Look at the middle shelf in the closet on the left. In the back right corner you can see a box. I built that to house a couple of electrical outlets. Two outlets for inside the closet, another outlet that is on the closet sidewall facing the sink, you can barely see the cover plate for that box on the closet wall to the left of the drill.

More electrical: In the 48" tall cabinet that hides the toilet, there are four outlets in the upper part of that cabinet box. There is one outlet that faces the sink, there is another on the opposite side that faces the toilet. There are two inside the upper cubby to provide power to items in the upper drawer. To protect those outlets, there is a false back wall in the rear of the upper cubby of that toilet cabinet. The cabinet itself is about 32" deep, the false back wall is about 10" out from the cabinet's back, affording roughly 22" of depth for the upper toilet drawer.

The cabinets: Nothing fancy, 3/4" birch plywood boxes. Horizontal shelves/tops/bottoms are recessed into the cabinet sides in a 1/4" deep dado. Titebond glue and screws. Cabinet backs are 1/2" MDF, recessed into the cabinet sides/top/bottom. Glued and screwed. Recessing the cabinet backs into the cabinet helps keep the cabinet perfectly square.

I typically use a 2" wide vertical stile on my cabinet face frames. I prefer my frames to be flush with the edges of the cabinet sides. With the cabinet sides being 3/4" thick, two of them make 1-1/2". So I'll use a strip of 1/2" filler between adjacent boxes to get that 2" thickness. With my face frames being flush with the inside faces of the cabinet sides, to get square face frames you need square cabinet carcasses. You can't disguise sloppy construction with this method.

Toekicks: Under the cabinets you see scrap pieces of 2x4. Those were eventually covered with wood and painted black. They simply limit the depth of the hole under the cabinet to round 8", giving dust bunnies less room to hide.

ABOVE: This shows the same run of cabinets with the face frames installed. You can see the electrical outlet on wall of the left closet, facing the sink. You can see the outlet on right side of the toilet cabinet, facing the toilet.

ABOVE: Everyone needs a place to keep their "to do" list. I know I'll never lose this list. At least not until I cover it with the teak top.

ABOVE: Remember that really small vent pipe that jogged into the room? Well, I covered it with this really big soffit. Nothing like overkill, eh? I actually used it to balance out the visual weight of the upper part of the closet on the left side of the sink. Visually, it centers things to the open area over the center of the sink. Might sound like a lot of silly voodoo design, but visually it feels comfortable to me.

The band around the upper walls is backer for the crown molding.

ABOVE: Speaking of teak...this is 4/4 teak, or "four quarter" teak. If you go t a lumberyard and by a "one-by-four", it'll be 3/4" thick by 3-1/2" wide. If you go to a lumberyard and order 4/4 lumber, it'll be 1" thick. For 4/4 thickness or less, I'll use one row of biscuits. For 5/4 and thicker, I'll use a double row. In this bathroom the tub deck is 2" (8/4) thick, the sink countertop is 1-1/2" (6/4) thick, and the toilet cabinet teak top is 1" (4/4) thick.

ABOVE: I usually use epoxy with teak. I thought I read a recent article that the newer titebond forumations work well on teak, but hey, when you buy epoxy by the gallon, you may as well use it, right? Except that I buy Titebond 4 gallons at a time. Hmmmmmm....

Okay, anyhow, I use epoxy. Teak is an oily wood, so prior to using epoxy I'll wipe down the edges to be glued with acetone. The acetone removes the oils. I mix the epoxy, apply it to the biscuits and the edges with an acid (flux) brush, sap it all together and clamp it up. Biscuits are designed to absorb moisture from water-based glues like Titebond and expand within the cut slots, they really lock the pieces together. Although there is no moisture in epoxy for the biscuit to absorb, it still provides more surface area for the epoxy, plus the biscuits help register and align the teak during the clamping process.

ABOVE: After the epoxy has cured. I'm getting ready to belt sand these with 80-grit to smooth it out. Top photo is for the "toilet" cabinet, the bottom photo is a teak window sill for the window behind the tub.

So...not the greatest series of "how to" photos. But hopefully they'll help a bit.


    Bookmark   April 3, 2009 at 1:06PM
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Some answers to follow-up emails:

I built the house in '95-'96. Did everything myself except foundation, chimneys and drywall.

Yes, I designed and built the cabinets myself. Except the cutout at the toe kick. My daughter designed that!

Teak still looks as good today as it did the day it went in. No exaggeration there.

Film versus oil finish n the teak: In a lightly used bathroom (bath countertops being lightly used versus kitchen countertops being heavily used) that might see lotions and potions, I'll use a film sealer like the spar urethane I used here. Bulletproof. And being a bathroom, it's unlikely that something will get dropped and ding the wood. To repair a cured film finish, in general you have to abrade the entire surface then reapply finish to the entire top.

I have teak countertops in my kitchen. On those I used mineral oil. It's easily renewable, is food safe, and if the countertop gets dinged, no worries. To renew that, every 4 to 6 months I'll wipe on a thin coating of mineral oil before going to bed, then rewipe in the morning and it's good for the next several months.

The lighting is from Justice Design. Oil-rubbed bronze sconces and ceiling light, the shades are "waterfall" design.

Yes, I made the mirror frame as well. Mounted on the wall with a french cleat. the mirror frame mimics the window trim over the tub on the opposite wall, which also sort of mimics the corner detail on the breakfront cabinets. Mirror frame is painted a chocolate brown to match the oil-rubbed bronze. Sorry, I don't remember the name of the colors used in the room. The trim is sort of an antique white, maybe slightly creamier than an antique white. We carried that trim color throughout the master suite.

Looking through the arch into the next room in the master suite, that room has the same trim color, but the walls are a deep deep red, almost burgundy. In the room beyond that we flipped the colors, the walls have the same creamy color, and the wainscot and trim color is a darkish sage-green of sorts.


    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 12:26PM
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Mongo, this bathroom is drop dead gorgeous. Do you mind me asking how the heck do you get a wood floor to work in a bathroom? Are you a neat freak? Do you have braz cherry throughout the house? How is the upkeep? Scratching? where did you get your floors? Thanks for sharing this informative post.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2009 at 10:44PM
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