Cutting plastic bath panel

Discussion in 'Plumbers' Talk' started by sparks06, Oct 21, 2006.

  1. sparks06

    sparks06 New Member

    Apologies if this is the wrong forum but I thought most plumbers would have carried out this job at some time. I have recently had a new bathroom installed by a plumber but he did not fit the bath panel as he said he was not very good at doing this job and I should get someone else.
    The panel itself is white and is curved slightly. It will need trimming to length and will need a section cut out to go round a boxed in section of pipe work at the bottom section near the taps.
    Could I have advise on;
    1. The correct way of marking out the panel
    2. The best tool to cut the panel with
    3. The best way of fixing the bottom of the panel ie do I fit a slightly raised batten to the floor and clip the panel underneath the batten and secure the panel to the batten.
    Any help would be very much appreciated.
  2. takethemoneyandrun

    takethemoneyandrun New Member

    Bath panels are a pain in the arrrrrse.
    1, good question
    2, tin snips
    3, yes or use mirror fixings and screw the fuuuuker
    RS Plumbing likes this.
  3. tgs

    tgs New Member

    The normal bath panel is very flimsy and there are very few situations when a complete bath panel can be fitted. The ends of the bath panel help keep the little rigidity there is and some makes come with some double-sided sticky tabs to glue the offcut behind the cut end to restore some rigidity.

    First off is to keep the plastic protective film on throughout. Second is decide exactly what needs to be cut and where. Often the panel comes in a floppy carboard box so you can practice on that to make sure you are cutting. Measure twice cut once is the dictum.

    Having decided and measured, mark on the film where you want to cut. For the long cut (top to bottom) use some black insulation tape and fix one end next to your line and stretch gently across the panel before sticking it down. This should give a straight line to cut up against, but check again that this is so.

    For cutting I use a Jetcut 15 inch saw which produces a clean cut and the short saw is easy to control. The tape means you have a clear mark to cut along. The plastic can be scored with a knife and snapped but making sure you get one clean straight score I think is more difficult than cutting with a saw. When cutting you need to support the panel right up to the cut edge.

    Since you have only straight lines to cut it is just a case of careful measurement.

    The underside of the edge of the bath should have a channel into which the panel should fit. The bottom edge can (as you say) be fixed to a batten using screws and white plastic screw covers. A vertical batten might be required to help the cut end keep from bending in or out and small battens round the box section might be needed to support the panel from behind.

    The very last thing to do, once everything has been sized and cut and fixed is to take off the film and fix the panel in finally.
    RS Plumbing and Malcolm Harrison like this.
  4. Captain Leaky

    Captain Leaky New Member

    or buy a solid bath panel - much less hassle!
  5. If you have a Dremmel or similar with a burr bit you may be able to mark the shape to cut and grind most of the way through with the tool.

    Cutting with a saw often jams and causes a split at 90 degrees to the direction.

    Its not surprising the plumber wanted to leave out that job!

    It is surprising that he was allowed to get away with not fitting it!

  6. tightenit

    tightenit New Member

    If you find existing tiling out of level, and you set the bath to match the tiles, then you sometimes need to also deal with a sloping floor. This happens for example when the original 40mm waste is high and exits horizontally through an outside wall. You can either repipe the waste (not always possible) or jack the bath up. Have had some success in extreme cases setting the bath too high for the panel, and using a long wedge of wood along the bottom which can be dressed with plastic to no great detriment.
    Wouldn't recommend levering a bath panel under the bath rim, since this puts strain on the pipework and can make the panel bend outwards in the middle.
    RS Plumbing likes this.
  7. Mr. Handyandy

    Mr. Handyandy Screwfix Select

    You should be able to measure and mark to the length you require. Using tape on a curved surface is a good tip.

    But I would use masking tape, get it right, then draw the line down the edge of the tape and remove the tape.

    Sawing it with a fine toothed saw such as a tenon saw, at a very narrow angle(a tenon saw will help to stop you getting carried away with the angle because of the strengthener at the top edge of the saw).

    An old rolled up dustsheet under neath should be enough to support is while you cut(it's mainly to stop it bouncing up and down without warning).

    Gently does it, keeping a narrow angle all way round the curve(don't let the last bit snap itself off).

    To mark the cut for the boxed in pipework, take the newly-cut-to-length piece back to the room and stand it next to the boxing, mark where the top of it is.

    Lift it and put it on top of the boxing(and to the wall ?) and mark the depth. Square it off and cut the same as before.

    Fixing to the bath(floor), 2x1" packed (2mm) at back 1" and fixed at back 1". When satisfied it all fits, splurge line of silicon along 2mm slot and push panel ledge into it.

    No fixing screws showing or needed.

    Mr HandyAndy - Really
  8. Angela

    Angela New Member

    Nah,,,, stick with the tin snips. WISS aviation snips are spot on. LH, RH, or centre.

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