cast iron tubs - Posted by Bob (Md)

Posted by Anne-ND on February 27, 2001 at 10:36:30:

…whatever the reason, I’ve been grabbed by quite a few shower curtains in old tubs. Magnets in the hem might help.


cast iron tubs - Posted by Bob (Md)

Posted by Bob (Md) on February 26, 2001 at 07:43:37:

Have a cast iron clawfoot tub, with bad finish. Contractor is suggesting I have it refinished and retrofit with a circular shower enclosure that clamps to the tub. This is supposed to be a whole lot cheaper than installing a new stall or bath/shower, and appeals to me because I’m trying to achieve a sort of post-Victorian feel with the other fixtures, wallpaper, etc. Anyone have experience with refinishing these beasts? I’m guessing about $300-350 to do the refinish and add the new shower head/curtain combo.

Re: cast iron tubs - Posted by JPiper

Posted by JPiper on February 27, 2001 at 09:11:00:


More often than not the houses we are dealing with have cast iron tubs. Matter of fact, around here in an historic area it would be considered downright heresy to throw out an old clawfooted tub.

I will tell you that there are people who can pick the tub up, haul it to their shop, where they “bake” new enamel on. It’s not cheap…but it solves the problems mentioned below. So it depends on what you’re trying to do.

I was really amused at all the comments of the inconvenience of shower with one of these setups. I happen to have one in my Victorian house…lol. I take a shower in it every morning. The shower curtain doesn’t “grab me”, no more water splashed on the floor than with any other shower. Sheesh, some of these people ought to try one before they give an opinion about one.

By the way, my wife wouldn’t let me throw this tub out under any circumstances. But she’s an old home buff. In some parts of our city, people actually look with scorn at those fiberglass tub/shower combinations at Home Depot.

By the way, the circular curtain with shower rise and faucet last time I bought one (recently) was $60. They take less than an hour to install. You could probably do it yourself.


Re: cast iron tubs - Posted by Marc

Posted by Marc on February 26, 2001 at 22:00:13:

I repainted a tub in one of my rental units and a year later it still looks beautiful. Not sure if this is what you have in mind for “refinishing”, but standard tub epoxy is what I used (available e.g. at Home Depot). The key is to really get in there and use a power sander to wet sand the finish so that the epoxy will adhere well. Total cost; $30 plus whatever value you put on the brain cells damaged by the solvents (YMMV).

Re: cast iron tubs - Posted by HR

Posted by HR on February 26, 2001 at 21:42:29:

In my area, selling baths with cast iron tubs is the norm. It costs about $150 to refinish, the Home Depot shower adapter is about $90, and installation is about $100 for a total of $340. When you have done these renovations right, they definately feel like an old time bath room. The only problem is that these old tubs aren’t the most convenient things to take a good shower or bath in. But that’s something for the new owner to decide for him/herself.


Re: cast iron tubs - Posted by Ron (MD)

Posted by Ron (MD) on February 26, 2001 at 12:06:45:


I agree with everything Anne/ND said below.

Having said that, I often reglaze tubs…usually because removing them will tear up the ceramic tile above them. The only time I will keep a free-standing, clawfooted tub is if there isn’t enough space to install a new tub/shower with a partition.

In our area, it costs between $200 and $300 to get a tub reglazed. They are usually guaranteed for one to two years, with disclaimers (e.g., don’t use scouring powder, don’t attach adhesive stick-ons). To be honest, I don’t like to reglaze them because I’m concerned how they hold up after a few years, although I have been told that they usually hold up well.

A tub that is in very rough condition, or that has already been reglazed once before, is more expensive to do. If you want a name/number, or two, of guys who do this work, drop me an email.


Ron Guy

speaking of bathroom accessories… - Posted by SusanL.–FL

Posted by SusanL.–FL on February 26, 2001 at 11:55:03:

I took a stroll through our brand new Lowe’s in town Sunday afternoon. The store was set up exactly like Home Depot–right down to the gnat’s a s s.

Anyway, I went through their bathroom accessories department. The variety (of color and design) was remarkable. I thought to myself—for the fairly reasonable initial cost$ of a sink or faucets or toilet, you could have a spectacular looking bathroom.

I saw a cobalt blue sink, fancy copper faucets. Every color, shape, and size imaginable for these accessories.

They SURE have come a long way in 20 years, haven’t they? Doesn’t seem that long ago when pink and black were the trend setters.

It was fun browsing (and dreaming…) :slight_smile:

clawfooted tubs - Posted by Anne-ND

Posted by Anne-ND on February 26, 2001 at 08:50:39:


I now have 4 of these beasties in various garages and basements. Why are they there? Because I’ve found it’s cheaper, if you’re going to do a nice bathroom rehab, to put in a new shower/tub than to fix up the clawfoot and put in a shower ring.

For a period Victorian rehab, if the house has TWO bathrooms, I’d put the clawfoot in one of them without the shower curtain enclosure- just have it as a nice bathtub. The other bathroom would have a modern shower or shower/tub. Those bathtubs are great as tubs, but not as showers. If you’re taking a hot shower, the hot air rises and the shower curtain moves inward and grabs you, which is very unpleasant.

Furthermore, no matter how careful one is about water spillage, in the circular shower cutain arrangement, some water will get on the floor (and on the new wallpaper). Tenants are not going to be as concerned about water on the floor as you want them to be.

Good luck,