5 1/2 ft cast iron alcove tub

leennpOctober 13, 2013

I need to order a tub this week for my teenage daughters remodeled bathroom. I want a cast iron tub due to the durability, tub is on first floor on slab so weight is not a problem. Have only found three cast iron tubs that are 51/2 ft alcove tubs, the american standard spectra, Kohler Bellwether, and a Toto. The biggest issue I am struggling with is the water depth to overflow, seems like the AS spectra is 11", Kohler is 11 and 11/16 in and can not find the info on the Toto. On the American Standard website it says you can install their deep overflow drain to make water depth to overflow at 13 inches, has anyone ever done this? Any other comments to help me make a decision? If I had to pick a tub based on finish it would be the Kohler as nothing beats their cast iron look. But if I could get a 13 inch depth to the American Standard that might win over finish! My daughter loves to soak in tub.

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> On the American Standard website it says you can install their deep overflow drain to make water depth to overflow at 13 inches, has anyone ever done this?

Staceyneil has, if you search for her posts.

The Deep Soak drain isn't matched to a specific tub like, say, the Kohler Archer drain is. It's basically a standard drain with the overflow hole on top, so you might be able to use it with the Kohler tub, too. AS says it fits "most" tubs.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2013 at 11:30PM
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Be aware that the Bellwether has two types of tubs. At least last year they did. The original has a slanted front end as well as a back end. It looks great but reduces the bottom length of the tub. It also requires a longer spout to reach the drain hole. I imagine the plumbing would need reworked too to accommodate the atypical drain placement. Typical spout is something like 9" and the need for the original Bellwether is something like 11" to cl drain, if I remember correctly.

The (new version) Bellwether is not a good height for soaking. Kohler considers the new Bellwether more of a builders model, as it can fit into a standard alcove setup, no special fixtures. I don't think it is as wide at the original version either. The 5' original Bellwether had one of the shortest lengths of any of ther 5' cast iron models. The new version, while shallow like the Villager, has one of the longest bottoms of the 5' lengths.

I know you are looking at the 5.5' and so this may not matter to you. It would be best if you could sit in a tub or two to see how they fit. People regularly make a different decision once they sit in one and can get a feel for the dimensions.

I have the (new version) Bellwether in the 5' length and love it, but it is not the primary bathroom. It is in a room that is more of a guest bathroom, and can be used for bathing small children and pets. It would also make a great tub for a tub/shower setup. I wanted a lower tub like the Villager. But I didn't like the looks of the Villager. I am very happy with my shallow Bellwether (new version)

    Bookmark   October 15, 2013 at 7:09AM
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The 5 1/2 ft bellwether is deeper than the 5 ft, or at least according to Kohler's website it is 11 and 11/16 inches to overflow, does anyone know if the 5 1/2 ft also had a style change for the bellwether?

    Bookmark   October 15, 2013 at 7:24AM
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In the 5.5" length it may not be a problem because you have 6 extra inches.

Take a look at the dimensions on the measurement from front end to centerline drain. That is one thing that changed between the versions.

I took a quick look at the drain centerline for the old style 60" and it is nearly 12" which people complained about. But my 60" new model is the typical 9". I see with the 66" model it has a typical 9" drain at centerline from front, which is standard I believe. Kohlers web site is awful in my opinion and hard to navigate. When you search their site for all the Bellwethers, look at the dimensions carefully for bottom length, drain placement, etc.

edited to say: Call Kohler and get the lowdown, they are very helpful.

This post was edited by enduring on Tue, Oct 15, 13 at 7:43

    Bookmark   October 15, 2013 at 7:42AM
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Thanks for info, but I think the deciding factor will be price now that I found out the American Standard tub I can order for 800, the Kolher is 1900!!, this is for teenage daughter who will in no way appreciate or care for either tub more than the other.

This post was edited by leennp on Tue, Oct 15, 13 at 22:14

    Bookmark   October 15, 2013 at 10:13PM
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