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Shower Controls

 
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Old 11-27-2012, 01:54 PM   #1
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Shower Controls


I'm working on redoing my bathroom with a barrier free shower, and could use some advice from the pro's as far as getting the shower supply piping roughed-in. Looking to do the typical shower head above and a hand-held. Would like them to have independent operation.

I've done a fair amount of plumbing but just the simple stuff, and unfamiliar with this type of system, so before starting to make purchases I'd prefer to get educated.

For starters, could anyone recommend a manufacturer of the necessary components? Pricing seems to be all over the place with the valves and finish hardware. Not looking to skimp, but not into spending tons of money on "high end" stuff either.

Thanks in advance for any info.
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Old 11-27-2012, 02:11 PM   #2
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Re: Shower Controls


Doing my master bath right now. I wanted to do the same thing. I also decided to dump most of my money into tile. Which left me staring at all of the valve/fixture prices and feeling a bit anxious.

In the end....I guess I skimped. I just found a Moen shower head and hand-held (sliding bar) combo (Caldwell) that requires standard rough and allows you to operate each individually or in unison.

It certainly didn't match the visions of body sprayers and wall mount handheld's with independent valves.....but it was like $100 as opposed to $700 for all the other stuff. Guess I reasoned that in the end, all that stuff was more for show in my case cause I'm a pretty simple showering kinda guy.

But you said "no skimp".

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Old 11-27-2012, 03:10 PM   #3
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Re: Shower Controls


Go to my Facebook page (OconomowocPlumbing) and click photos. Here you will see a very basic but nice custom shower with just a handheld and shower valve.

What's nice about it is it has a 3 way diverter as follows......

1.) Shower only
2.) Handheld only
3.) Both shower head & handheld together at the same time

If that works for you I'll supply the parts list and a quick drawing for you.
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Old 11-27-2012, 03:29 PM   #4
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Re: Shower Controls


Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueRidgeGreen View Post
Doing my master bath right now. I wanted to do the same thing. I also decided to dump most of my money into tile. Which left me staring at all of the valve/fixture prices and feeling a bit anxious.

In the end....I guess I skimped. I just found a Moen shower head and hand-held (sliding bar) combo (Caldwell) that requires standard rough and allows you to operate each individually or in unison.

It certainly didn't match the visions of body sprayers and wall mount handheld's with independent valves.....but it was like $100 as opposed to $700 for all the other stuff. Guess I reasoned that in the end, all that stuff was more for show in my case cause I'm a pretty simple showering kinda guy.

But you said "no skimp".
I'm a simple showering type too, not looking to do any fancy stuff like body sprays or anything, just the basics.
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Old 11-27-2012, 03:33 PM   #5
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Re: Shower Controls


Quote:
Originally Posted by Oconomowoc View Post
Go to my Facebook page (OconomowocPlumbing) and click photos. Here you will see a very basic but nice custom shower with just a handheld and shower valve.

What's nice about it is it has a 3 way diverter as follows......

1.) Shower only
2.) Handheld only
3.) Both shower head & handheld together at the same time

If that works for you I'll supply the parts list and a quick drawing for you.
Yes, that's the ticket, it's exactly what I'm looking to do, and if you can do that for me it would be certainly appreciated.
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Old 11-27-2012, 03:40 PM   #6
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Re: Shower Controls


When I get home tonight I'll whip up a quick drawing.
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:25 PM   #7
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Re: Shower Controls


Go to a professional supply house/showroom and explain exactly what you want to do.

They will have what you want on display and order every component necessary (diverter valve, mixing/temp, wall supply elbow, slide bar etc, etc.... so you don't miss anything for the particular layout you want.

There are too many variations now with all the different manufactures coming up with all the fancy systems. I just send my client to the showroom and let them discuss all the options with the sales person and then they just send me the list of components for the system they selected so it can be priced out along with labor to install.
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:25 PM   #8
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Re: Shower Controls


Ok, let's get this done
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:31 PM   #9
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Re: Shower Controls


The possibilities of shower systems are endless. The following is for a basic entry level system that actually ends up pretty cool and still gives you some room for options.

When it comes to the basic 3 brands which are popular (Kohler, Delta, Moen) I'm a pure Kohler guy - at least for entry level custom showers.

The basic parts you will need are as follows
1.) K-728 transfer valve
2.) K-304 mixing valve

A shower head is 2.5 gpm
A handheld is 2.5 gpm

The K-304 mixing valve is rated at 5 gpm
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:31 PM   #10
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Re: Shower Controls


I'll make a drawing......
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:37 PM   #11
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Re: Shower Controls


Quote:
Originally Posted by ranteso View Post
Go to a professional supply house/showroom and explain exactly what you want to do.

They will have what you want on display and order every component necessary (diverter valve, mixing/temp, wall supply elbow, slide bar etc, etc.... so you don't miss anything for the particular layout you want.

There are too many variations now with all the different manufactures coming up with all the fancy systems. I just send my client to the showroom and let them discuss all the options with the sales person and then they just send me the list of components for the system they selected so it can be priced out along with labor to install.
I hear you but I'd rather shop at home, if at all possible.
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:39 PM   #12
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Re: Shower Controls


Quote:
Originally Posted by rustyjames

I hear you but I'd rather shop at home, if at all possible.
It's easy as pie, I'll walk you through it.
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:40 PM   #13
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Re: Shower Controls


Quote:
Originally Posted by Oconomowoc View Post
The possibilities of shower systems are endless. The following is for a basic entry level system that actually ends up pretty cool and still gives you some room for options.

When it comes to the basic 3 brands which are popular (Kohler, Delta, Moen) I'm a pure Kohler guy - at least for entry level custom showers.

The basic parts you will need are as follows
1.) K-728 transfer valve
2.) K-304 mixing valve

A shower head is 2.5 gpm
A handheld is 2.5 gpm

The K-304 mixing valve is rated at 5 gpm
Thanks, that'll give me a good start
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:41 PM   #14
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Re: Shower Controls


This is PART 1 of the layout. I don't know what knowledge you have so I'll just start with the basics and move forward.



Shower Controls-forumrunner_20121127_174110.jpg
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:49 PM   #15
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Re: Shower Controls


So let's talk about this first drawing. You'll find many opinions about this but here are the numbers I personally use.

1.) The shower head height is 6'6"
2.) The main mixer valve (K-304) is at 42" and according to architectural standards this is the common number, it's also the ADA number. I don't like it, most people don't. Although 42" is the standard I usually put that at 48".
3.) The transfer valve (K-728) is 10" but it doesn't have to be. Sometimes it depends on tile type and size. I'm not a fan of putting trim on grout lines if I can help it so be sure to put some thought into this. The standard trim diameter is about 7" on the shower mixer and the transfer valve is smaller, it's about 5".
4.) The last measurement on here is the top of the handheld bracket. Incidentally the feed/supply for the handheld should always be at the same height. It can look tacky if they are not. 6" below main shower head height is pretty standard.
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:02 PM   #16
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Re: Shower Controls


Ok, we haven't talked about any horizontal measurements and these are very important.

You need to understand 2 horizontal measurements.

1.) Horizontal distance from the shower head/mixer/transfer valve to to the supply hose coming out of the wall for the handheld.

2.) The horizontal distance between the handheld supply outlet to the handheld bracket.

Look at the drawing. The hose is in red. See how the hose is over the trim plate? But also notice how the supply is NOT over the trim yet the hose kicks to the left?

Alright, basically the hose has a MINIMUM bend allowance. If you violate that the hose either pushes the han

Shower Controls-forumrunner_20121127_180206.jpg

dheld on the bracket (annoying) or it pushes to the left and bends it towards the trim plate (annoying).

The goal is to have that hose hang natural and straight and not in the way of the controls. You also want it to hang straight vertical from the handheld bracket.
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:09 PM   #17
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Re: Shower Controls


Now look at the hose (red). See how it falls naturally?

Try and space things in pairs equidistant from each other. So if 5" is the number than use 5" for both horizontal measurements. If 6" is the magic number use 6" for both. The reason why is because optically it's more pleasing to the eye.



Shower Controls-forumrunner_20121127_180825.jpg
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:10 PM   #18
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Re: Shower Controls


Is this making sense so far?
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:18 PM   #19
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Re: Shower Controls


Oconomowoc: Wow, I'm glad I started this thread because you really shed a perspective on this that I was clueless about, especially mentioning the grout lines and the hand-held hose.

Thanks for taking the time to supply me with those drawings, they're really helpful. At least I can procede with my eyes wide open
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:33 PM   #20
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Re: Shower Controls


This is the basic plumbing schematic. Basically, everything is 1/2" except between the two valves, that's 3/4".

When you get the parts you'll be frustrated because the K-304 ports are all 1/2" and you'll think it's messed up because the K-728 transfer valve has a 3/4" port. Don't worry. It's normal. I could explain why but that's beyond this discussion. Just be sure to come out of the mixer and immediately use a 1/2 x 3/4 reducing coupling.



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