Mounting Delta body sprays & wall mount shower spray on Sterling Accord tub wall

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by JOHN_P, Mar 8, 2010.

  1. JOHN_P

    JOHN_P New Member

    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Ok, after a leaky toilet turned into a gutting of the entire bathroom and smashing out a cast iron tub, I thought I've put enough effort into this whole project that I might as well do something that I might really enjoy having and thought of doing a Delta tub/shower with the wall mounted two-spray body spray and adding on the extra wall mount handshower.

    I have enough pressure for all of this stuff I think, and have figured out most of the components I need, no thanks to Delta's complex maze of parts, but anyway...

    On the instructions for the Sterling Accord tub surround, it says that it will only allow for a 7-3/4" (or so) escutcheon. I'm not sure why but it left me concerned about wanting to mount the extra body sprays on that wall along with the wall mount outlet for the hose for the handspray.

    The back of the Accord walls are ribbed/honeycomb for extra stiffness, and I'm assuming that I would have to cut some of that ribbing away in the area where the body spray assembly goes (so it can butt up against the back of the tub wall. Same for the extra hose outlet I'll need for the hand spray.

    Is this a really bad idea to cut away some of the webbing off the back of the wall? has anyone done this before? I figure I could use a dremel tool to carve away the extra area I'd need. The main diverter/control for temp/flow is mounted down lower where they don't have any of these supporting ribs so that's OK, but the body sprays would be higher up where they have all of this extra support.

    Any tips, ideas are welcome.

    Thank you for all of the help I've found on this site for so many other things that I have already done or are in the process of doing (like setting the tub in mortar, which I haven't done yet, don't really want to do, but it sounds like it's the best way to go, so I'll figure that out.) And reading other posts gave me the confidence to smash out the cast iron tub (though I thought I'd be able to save that one item in the bathroom, I figured if everything else was new, why not get a nice tub/surround that fits together nicely (tho no fun making the walls perfectly square.)

    Thanks for any help! Sorry for long post!
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,268
    Location:
    New England
    It's always good to follow the manufacturer's guidelines. Now, I'm not sure if those extra holes would compromise the strength of the surround. I'd consider scrapping the surround and tiling the shower. If you want some handholding and expert help, check out www.johnbridge.com. They helped me and many others.

    A couple of 'system's can take a lot of the chance out of building a shower for the DIY'er - Wedi and Kerdi. Each made by different companies. A Wedi kit can be ready to tile in a few hours. Kerdi takes a little longer, but is potentially more flexible.
  3. oskarjones

    oskarjones New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    Portland
    I (well actually a plumber) installed a Delta valve (not sure of model #) in my master shower that has 2 body sprays and 2 shower heads. I like having the two shower heads (one is fixed and the other is a removable wand on a slide bar). The body sprays get very little use and tend to leak a bit. I have good water pressure 65psi and good volume. If I had to do it over I would have passed on the body sprays. I'm not trying to rain on your parade, just sounds like a similar story to mine.
  4. JOHN_P

    JOHN_P New Member

    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Hi Jim and thank you for your reply.

    I'm pretty committed to installing this tub/surround as I've already returned two others that wouldn't have worked with the cast iron tub well (without being a pastry chef with caulk), so I went for this combo that needs no caulk (why do I hate caulk so much?) But at the same time I'm realizing that shimming in the existing space is turning out to be an equal pain, but I'm getting through it.

    For some reason I was really soured on tile because I ripped out all of the walls that were tiled horribly from the previous owners, but I browsed some of the info you mentioned and I think I just might give that a go when I tackle the other bathroom and do a very large shower area. It inspired me to do one with a nice sitting bench and make it feel like a really nice spa shower, but I'll have to wait til I finish this project first :(

    I'm leaning towards grinding down the webbing to fit the extra jets, yes I know it might take some of the strength away from it, but I'm thinking that if the surround walls are a tight fit to the studs that there will be little movement and hopefully nothing that could flex or crack.

    Thanks again Jim!
  5. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,048
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Are the body sprays part of the Delta assembly or separate units. And if separate units why can't you just drill a hole all the way through the web for the pipe?
  6. JOHN_P

    JOHN_P New Member

    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Hi HJ,

    They are separate units.

    This is the valve and diverter combo used:
    http://www.deltafaucet.com/bath/details/R18442.html

    The dual body spray/diverter module is mounted separate and above the main control valve. The only way I can see to install that is to grind away enough ribbing (about the size of the oval plasterguard) so that that can fit up against the back of the wall, not the back of the ribs/webbing of the wall.

    For the wall mounted handshower, I think that will be ok since I only need to have the 1/2 pipe come out of the wall for the handshower elbow and that can go in-between the ribs.

    Thanks!
  7. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,048
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    It looks like you do either have to cut the ribs away or go with a different type of valve unit.
  8. JOHN_P

    JOHN_P New Member

    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Thanks again hj.

    I was just about to size up for where I needed to start cutting out the ribs when I realized the 30" deep model I have, well, it won't accommodate the width of the body spray unit. After dry fitting the walls, I realized then that the center of where the tub drain/faucets go really isn't the center of the wall panel at all since the back wall curves out to meet the side wall. Anyway, glad I didn't destroy it.

    I really like the build and feel of this unit, so I had to order up a 32" wide model of the tub and walls (something no stores seem to carry in stock) where the walls give me an extra inch on each side.

    Sometimes every little step I take, I take two more backwards, but will get there eventually (somehow I guess...)
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