Friday, April 12, 2013

Clawfoot Tub End Game: Dual Clawfoot Tubs vs.End Mount Clawfoot Tub Faucets

A dual clawfoot tub is a tub that is rounded at both ends of the tub.  It is also sometimes called a double-ended clawfoot bathtub.  The clawfoot tub faucet is usually installed in the center on the side of the tub.

Frequently, customers ask, "can I get a dual clawfoot tub with the faucet mounted on the end of the tub?"  While they prefer the symmetry of a dual clawfoot tub, they are bound by plumbing that is configured near the corner of a room rather than the middle.  If the faucet were mounted on the end of a dual tub, the customer could have their symmetric tub without changing the plumbing.  Unfortunately, this bit of nirvana is not easily obtained.

There are two important reasons clawfoot tub faucets are not normally mounted on the end of a dual tub:

  1. Installing a faucet at the end of a dual tub defeats one of the double-ended tub's important advantages.  Because both ends of a dual tub are rounded, a person can comfortably sit at either end of a dual tub or two people can simultaneously share a double-ended tub.  This would not be the case if a faucet was installed at one end of a dual tub rather than centered along one side.  If the faucet was mounted at one end of a double-ended clawfoot tub, a person could not recline comfortably with their back to the faucet end of the tub.
  2. The waste and overflow holes for the clawfoot tub drain will always be in the center of a double-ended tub.  The overflow on a clawfoot tub drain requires a relatively plumb vertical surface.  The only relatively plumb vertical surface on a double ended bathtub is the side walls.  The ends of dual tubs are sloped at an angle that would make it difficult to accept the overflow.  Also, if the drain plug were at one end of the tub, the faucet would be the least of the discomforts for the person seated at that end of the tub.

For these two reasons, double-ended clawfoot tubs are not offered with faucet holes drilled through the rim at one of the ends.  However, you can choose a double-ended clawfoot tub without faucet holes and install a wall mounted clawfoot tub faucet or a freestanding clawfoot tub faucet wherever you like around the perimeter of the tub.  Wall mounted faucets and freestanding faucets are independent of the tub.  Installing a freestanding faucet or wall mounted faucet at the end of a dual tub would make it awkward to sit at that end of the tub (see reason number 1) and the drain will always be centered on the side of the tub (see reason number 2) but this would be the one way that you can end mount a faucet for a double-ended clawfoot tub.

Arcadia Dual Clawfoot Tub from Sign of the Crab

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Telephone Style Clawfoot Tub Faucets Answer the Call for a Vintage Style Bath

Most people today have grown up taking baths and showers in bathtubs that have changed very little over the past 100 years. In fact, the modern built-in tub complete with in-wall shower system became the norm for baths soon after indoor plumbing became a standard requirement of new home construction in the early 1900’s. Therefore, those wanting to create a vintage style bath often have to spend a little time becoming familiar with freestanding bathroom fixtures and their unique plumbing. There is much written about freestanding clawfoot bath tubs but comparably much less written about the clawfoot tub shower options.

Telephone Style Clawfoot Tub Faucet
The stand-up shower for original clawfoot bath tubs was an expensive and complicated-looking attachment that included a shower riser and shower ring all made of brass that were often then plated with nickel. Stand-up clawfoot showers were somewhat of a luxury option for early clawfoot tubs with mere bathing and use of simple handheld shower attachments being much more common.

Spigot style clawfoot tub faucets had ribbed down spouts that could be fitted with a simple rubber hose that could be used to shower. These hoses were typically only two to three feet long so the bather remained seated while showering. A strange enhancement to the simple rubber hose shower attachment was a longer hose that ended in a sprinkler yoke that fitted around the hand of the bather while they stood up in the tub.

The British telephone style clawfoot tub faucet offered the third type of shower option for early clawfoot bath tubs. The telephone clawfoot tub faucet has a flexible shower hose attachment connected to a handheld showerhead. Unlike the simple hose on spigot style clawfoot faucets, these hand showers do not attach to the faucets spout but to a separate shower diverter that is usually located on top of the faucet body.

Shop 4 Classics is currently offering the FAUCET5 discount coupon that can be used when your order includes a clawfoot tub shower, supply lines, and drain from the same manufacturer. The FAUCET5 coupon applies in addition to our already discounted prices and, as always, shipping is free for any order of $100 from a single manufacturer.