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Posts Tagged ‘capitola’

Frameless Shower Enclosures for Bathtubs

These days there are more and more people requesting frameless heavy glass enclosures for their bathtub showers. Several years ago, people began asking if this was a possibility… today, this is pretty common. There are newer innovations that incorporate sliding glass panels with heavy glass enclosures that are suitable for bathtubs. Among these are the “Skyline” series enclosure by Cardinal, and the “Serenity” series by CRL. The latest sliding frameless enclosure is called the “Essence” series enclosure. Click this link – http://youtu.be/EmSJPjmRGBI – to check it out.

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The enclosures shown in the photos above were designed, manufactured, and installed by Showcase Shower Door. These enclosures are designed according to customer specifications, and include Diamond Seal treatment as a standard feature. Diamond Seal helps to prevent water spotting, and protects glass from the permanent damage that hard water can cause over time. If you need help with ideas for your tub enclosure, or just have questions, give me a call any time at (831) 464-3899.

Time for a Comment?

Hello, I came across your website/blog when looking for opinions on mounting a frameless shower door through glass tile.  If you have a moment to offer your opinion I would appreciate it but I also understand if you don’t have time to opine on a project in Minnesota.

The wall is 2×4 stud-1/2” backer board-acrylic modified thinset-1/4” 4×4 glass tile.  The opening is 57” and 32” of that will be dual-swing door with 2 heavy duty hinges and the other piece will be fixed with a metal base and single high wall mount bracket.  The installer said they can try to install it but they might crack the tile, which is understandable.  However, I was wondering if you have ever used or thought about using a metal spacer that the installation screw can pass through and sink into the stud.  If the spacer were an 1/8” proud of the glass tile, passed through the backer board and into the wood a set depth it would then compress the wood stud as it was tightened rather than the tile.

Thanks,

Eric

     

Hi Eric,

Thanks for taking time to contact me. I am always interested in hearing about shower door projects – especially when there is some challenging element involved. It’s not unusual to see glass tile being used in shower stalls these days. When I first started coming across it, several years ago, I was pretty nervous about it. I find that the process of drilling through the tile is the tricky part. Although it is possible to drill through glass with a standard masonry bit, I prefer to use a diamond drill or a “spear-point” bit. The key is to take your time, and keep the material cool to prevent the glass from breaking.

Your idea for using a metal spacer is pretty clever. If I understand you correctly, you are proposing the idea of a hollow metal “tube” large enough to allow the screw to pass through, preventing compression of the glass by the screw when tightened. What I do in this situation is actually very similar. I use a plastic expansion plug in the hole, which protects the glass tile by preventing the screw from coming in contact with it. The down side to using a metal spacer is that the weight if the glass pulling down on the hinge could possibly cause it to, eventually, come in contact with the glass. A plastic plug acts as an isolator, even if the sheer force of the weight of the door forces it downward.

Either way, I have found that glass tile does an excellent job of holding up against a shower door installation. Glass is every bit as strong as most tile, and is actually a very similar material. When you run screws through the hinge plate, through the tile, through the backer board, and finally into the stud, the force of the fasteners is actually spread out over the whole surface area of the hinge’s back plate. The best thing you can do to keep the glass tile from breaking is to drill the holes carefully, and keep the screws from coming in contact with the glass once the door is hung.

I hope this helps,

-Chris

Replacing a Shower Enclosure with a Frameless One

Some people want to know whether they can upgrade their existing shower enclosure to a European style “frameless” shower enclosure without having to replace their tile. We recently had a customer who had upgraded their bathroom, and had some regrets about having settled for a standard, manufactured shower enclosure. The biggest challenge to replacing a “semi-frameless” shower enclosure with a true frameless one is hiding the screw holes in the tiles. In some cases, the previous installer will have drilled the holes into the grout lines. When this is the case, you can simply fill in the missing grout with little effort. This, however, is rarely the case. There is also the issue of removing the silicone sealant, and discoloration due to the “weathering” of the tile, granite, or marble.

 

     

Here are some before and after photos of a shower enclosure that we recently replaced with a 1/2″ frameless shower enclosure. We were able to remove the old enclosure, clean up the silicone sealant, and locate the new shower door and fixed panel on top of the area where the old enclosure used to be. We were also able to find silicone caulk that matched the color of the tile, and used it to fill the holes in the tile left behind by the previous shower door installation. Even though the glass is clear, it is impossible to see the old holes through the glass. As you can see, the improvement is pretty incredible.

Replacing that Old Shower Enclosure with a New One

Here are some before and after photos of a shower enclosure that we replaced this past week in Aptos. George and Jackie are a lovely couple of senior citizens who were referred to me by Josh McAuley of McAuley & Son Custom Tile (247-9856.) The couple had spoken to a few different companies about getting their rickety old shower door replaced, and ended up with more questions than answers. It’s not surprising that by the time I spoke with them, they were pretty much burned out on the whole process. They were also a bit suspicious of me, another contractor that, they figured, had come to sell them something that they really didn’t want, or couldn’t afford.

     

This is a 1/4″ glue-chip bypass enclosure with brushed nickel aluminum and hardware

As I told them about designs, glass types, and features available, Jackie interrupted “but the other company told me that…” I replied “Well, I’m here to tell you the truth!” I wish I had a photo of the look on their faces when I said that! George was also impressed to learn that I would be the “technician” who would install his enclosure personally. Anyway, needless to say, we made the sale, made two new friends, and they LOVE their new shower doors. Jackie got exactly the enclosure that she was looking for, and George can enjoy a peaceful existence now that his wife is completely satisfied. Sometimes people think that because we do so many fancy and luxurious frameless shower enclosures, that we are not interested in small, less expensive ones like the one you see here. The opposite is true. We are happy to replace your old existing shower door or enclosure with a brand-new Showcase shower door! Call us today!

Satisfied Customers Become Repeat Customers

This past week I had the pleasure of installing a shower enclosure for an existing customer. This was the second of three shower doors that we will be installing for her. The first shower door that we installed was in the master bathroom, which had been newly remodeled. We were able to install the second enclosure in the upstairs “guest” bathroom. It has also been recently remodeled, and the homeowner decided on a frameless bypass type enclosure with 1/4″ clear glass and brushed nickel aluminum and hardware. We also treated the inside of the glass with Diamond Seal, to prevent hard water stains.

     

We get the majority of our business from customer referrals. Doing business in a community like Santa Cruz County requires building, and maintaining lasting relationships. Over the years, we have had the chance to get to know a lot of the locals, and make friends with a number of local contractors as well. The result has been a great network of both customers and business professionals in the area. It’s great making new friends, and it’s nice to have such an excellent pool of resources to draw from.

Frameless Shower Enclosures – The New Standard

The frameless “Euro-style” heavy glass shower enclosures and doors have become really popular lately. When I first went into business for myself back in 2004, about one in five of the shower enclosures people bought were of the heavy glass variety. Today, the vast majority of people want frameless heavy glass enclosures… probably eight-out-of-ten. There are situations where the old standard manufactured shower door makes the most sense, and we still install quite a few of those as well. But there is no doubt that these frameless shower doors have become the new standard.

     

It became obvious that these types of shower enclosures were here to stay when I started noticing them more on American TV. When you see a  commercial for soap, shampoo, or some other bathroom product, you will notice that the shower doors are the frameless type. This is a sure indication that they have become part of the mainstream. Today, when people remodel their bathrooms, they are installing larger tiles, granite, porcelain, marble, and nice fixtures. They have discovered that you don’t have to be rich to have a luxurious bathroom… A nice 1/2″ frameless European frameless shower enclosure is the natural “finishing touch” that accents the whole project!

Bringing in the New Year

Now that 2010 is nearly over, it’s time to start thinking about what the new year will bring us. We have good reason to be optimistic about 2011. This has been a great year for custom interior glass work in Santa Cruz County… at least it has been for Showcase Shower Door! We have been especially busy this month getting shower doors and custom mirror projects done in time for the holidays. We have also been blessed to have been awarded more commercial projects this year as well. Right now we are in the process of working on a major remodel at Terrace Court Motel in Santa Cruz. There are a total of 12 rooms being remodeled, and each of them is getting one of our custom frameless heavy glass enclosures. We are also in the process of installing a custom frameless shower enclosure at the new Pure Valley Water store in Scotts Valley, CA.

     

It has been our pleasure to work with a lot of great local contractors this year too. These are the companies that keep the steady stream of projects coming in all year long, and we really appreciate them! I want to take this opportunity to give a “shout out” to all of the quality builders who use Showcase Shower Door for their enclosures, custom mirrors, glass shelves, glass backsplashes, and other assorted specialty glass projects.

Special thanks to: Alsman Construction Co., Cairn Construction, Carr Construction, Cort Hellenthal, CR Hunt Building & Design Inc., Elite Construction Services Inc., James Reilly Contracting, Jared Lewis Construction, JHK Builders, Larry Favor General Building, Medina Project, North Coast Construction, Ryder Web Construction, Santa Cruz Kitchen & Bath, Vic Brooks Construction, Wald Ruhnke & Dost, and Westport Builders, Inc.,

Thanks everyone, and have a most excellent 2011!