DIY Soapstone Shower pan question

loobylooDecember 13, 2011

Hi- newbie here. We are about to begin remodeling what will be our master bath.

We installed soapstone counters in our kitchen last year ourselves (well my husband installed it- I picked it out). I spoke to our supplier who told me that a DIY shower pan wouldn't be difficult other than grinding/machining the graded slope to the drain. Curbs can be installed with epoxy. They do sell ready to install soapstone shower pans but they are very pricey.

Does anyone know what the proper slope grade should be in this case? We are planning on creating a 42 x 42 shower with a center drain.


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It would be a lot easier to do a trench drain to one side and use the slab whole than to grind out an even gradual depression in slab of soapstone thick enough for a shower pan. If you start with standard 3 cm stone, it'll be too weak and thin at the drain by the time you get the required 1/4" per foot fall. That's 2/3 of the stone. You need to start with a thicker slab.

And being handy isn't nearly enough to do this. You need a CNC router or a massive amount of jigs or else it will slope unevenly and be a safety hazard.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2011 at 6:57PM
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Thanks for the answer GreenDesign- completely makes sense. I think we will end up doing a schluter kerdi shower and tiling the base as the soapstone is cost prohibitive and all the other shower bases I've seen I don't love. Unless I win the lottery or something that is.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2011 at 6:37PM
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So as I understand Greendesigns suggestion: use a 3cm slab and lay it at a slant to one side, using a trench drain at the end of the slope. The build up for this slope would be made under the slab, instead of removing material from the slab, to get the 1/4" slope needed to drain H2O. I think that sounds doable.

What would one use to build up the slope?

I wonder if you could joined 2 or more slab remnant pieces together (to keep the price down) to get you shower pan size that you want.

I bought remnants at a local stone yard for a potential bathroom remodel in the near future. I am so happy that I got these pieces! I got them for $5/sf. It may have been under priced but the yard went with the quote anyway. They ended up adding an extra piece to the pile that I hadn't planned on but was so happy to get. I got 29sf for $150.

The reason I am interested is that we too put in our own soapstone kitchen counters. I had my husband do the heavy lifting but I did the cutting, scribing, shaping and sanding. I loved doing this work.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2011 at 8:38PM
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