Monday, January 16, 2012

Move That Tub!

On Saturday we reached a milestone in the odyssey that has been our bathroom remodel. We moved the clawfoot tub we bought back in March into the bathroom. It was a big day. A big, long, heavy day (brought to you by Ibuprofen and Mt. Dew which, when mixed, give you super human strength). Unsure of just how difficult it would be to move a cast iron tub up two flights of stairs, my parents asked a young man from their church to come and help us. He was looking for odd jobs to do to pay for a mission trip and bless his heart, this was probabl the oddest thing he could do. He was a trooper though, and really helpful. So, let me begin by showing you this super technical doodle diagram to explain the path the tub was to take to get from the laundry room to the bathroom.

And before you say anything, yes, I do realize that my true calling was art but the heart wants what the heart wants, folks. Moving on, I had a genius idea the night before to navigate the tub through our bedroom to avoid trying to round any corners in the hallway upstairs. Step one, we started in the laundry room by putting the tub on our furniture dolly:

Then we rolled it through the kitchen and into the living room

Here's Dave saying something to the effect of, "When it comes time to push that up those stairs, you're gonna have to put down the dang camera, Katherine." (to be read with a sort of Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Kansas accent) From there, we shoved it up the first flight of stairs and onto the landing.

Everyone took a breather before the second flight.

As my dad mentioned, I had to put down the dang camera and help move the tub. When we got to the top of the stairs, we all consulted my awesome diagram, put the tub back on the dolly and rolled it through our bedroom to the door directly facing the bathroom.

Then we took the bedroom door off of the hinges and put the feet on the tub.

We moved the tub into the bathroom and sat it down, only to find that it didn't sit level. We then moved it back into the bedroom (to avoid breaking any tiles), flipped it over and re-arranged the feet. We moved it back into the bathroom and lo and still didn't sit level. So, we made the first of about six trips to Ace Hardware to get some plastic furniture cups. We put one under one foot and that leveled it out nicely. Later, when the tub was ready to go into place with the plumbing, it would sit level on its own. Go figure.

Then, it was time to start installing the supply lines from Vintage Tub & Bath.

We had a little difficulty with the depth of the floor and the depth of the escutcheon for the drain but luckily, Ace Hardware had a flat escutcheon that worked like a charm.

We measured and cut the pipes to fit

Conan took a sheet of rubber material (also from Ace, natch) and cut it to fit behind the antique tub filler my mom and I picked up from Old Town Architectural Salvage for

We installed it, turned the water on and guess what...
it leaked, of course.
Then, we tightened everything up and tried again with better results.
We still need a couple of washers here and there before it's official and I also need to clean the inside of the tub. But I mean, look at it!

I'm just in love. Shorty's in love, too. And as you can see, we painted the outside black. Olympic's Black Magic to be exact. Same color as the dining room doors. Hey, if it ain't broke.
I'll talk more about color choices when the bathroom is done and Conan takes some good pictures for me. Stay tuned!


  1. And believe you me, he's gonna get one.

  2. He'll have fun swimming in that big tub !!

  3. Dog paddle! I'll have to take some pics : D

  4. Smart choice to paint the tub black on the outside. It looks great.

  5. Thanks! I was kind of unsure at first but now I love it!

  6. That tub looks so sharp with the tile and the beadboard.

  7. Everybody in the tub! Cause you are gonna use this, right? It's not just for prettiness and headaches.

  8. Thanks bungalow! Like I said, I was really unsure of whether or not I was going to like it. REALLY unsure. Like, standing in the bathroom at midnight the night before we moved it telling Conan I needed to repaint the walls, unsure. But thanks to nice comments like yours, I feel better and better about it!

  9. Jennifer, we're absolutely going to use the tub. Problem is, it keeps leaking. We thought we had the problem solved the other day only to find a kitchen counter covered in water a few hours later. We're hopefully going to nab the leaky culprit today and then it's bath city for us!

  10. Nicole Dyson-SmithJanuary 19, 2012 at 1:50 PM

    I agree, the tub looks gorgeous painted black! You two have a very sophisticated design aesthetic going on in your house; I like it! I hope the leak isn't too tricky to find...

  11. Thanks Nicole! Conan always says "black goes with everything" and he was right! And we found the leak so...bath time!

  12. You have done a really great job my dear, keep it up!

  13. how did you shove the tub up the stairs? Was it still on the furniture dolly? Did you put boards on the stairs for it to roll on?


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