Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Clay Trap

Work on the new studio is progressing.  I took last Friday off of work to focus on getting it complete.  I put trim molding around the two doors, and helped Julie install the rubber base molding on three of the four walls.  I also shut water off in the house so that I could cut the caps off of the water supply pipes, and install valves.

TJ helped me carry the sink into the house from the old studio.  We had recycled about six feet of counter from when we re-did our kitchen a couple of years ago, and were able to re-use the double stainless steel sink.  I had built a rough frame out of two by fours to support the counter and sink, which I reinforced with a few diagonal pieces of wood to make it more stable.

We wanted to install a clay trap for the studio drain.  For our studio in New Jersey, we had made due with a plastic tub, placed in the sink, that we carefully washed everything into.  The waste pipe from the studio sink goes strait into a sump in the basement, and the water is pumped from there up into the drain line and into our septic system.   When we first moved in, most of the plumbing for the house had been going into the sump, and we burned out a couple of pumps in the first two years before we could address the issue.  We had plumbers re-route the pipes, so everything on the ground floor and up bypasses the sump and goes directly to the drain line out.  The basement bathroom, utility sink, and now the studio are the only lines hooked up to the sump.  A clay trap to protect the sump pump is a really good idea.

I found a design that I liked, made from a plastic storage tote, two square plastic buckets (the bright yellow ones that kitty litter comes in), and an assortment of inch and a half plastic pipes and fittings.

The water from both sinks go into a common drain, which pierces a hole in the lid of the tote, and drops into the first bucket.  I may need to add a p-trap before the whole clay trap if odors become a problem.  Near the upper rim of the first bucket, I created a hole, and joined it to the second bucket (with a male and a female threaded connector).  The water is supposed to settle in the first bucket before flowing to the second.  The second has a set of quarter inch holes drilled in a row, a little lower than the height of the hole from the first bucket, to drain water into the tote.  These holes face the front side of the tote/sink.  Around the back side of the tote, I drilled a hole and added connectors (a male and female threaded connector again, with some improvised plastic washers with compression fittings to join to the house plumbing)  to drain the water from the clay trap along the back side of the tote.  The height of the drain pipe leaving the tote is lower than the holes drilled in the second bucket.  There is a p-trap between the this drain pipe and the house plumbing, which is lower than the height of the drainage for the tote.

I had to build a platform of two by fours and plywood to prop the clay trap up to the proper height, so water could flow through it correctly and then exit through the house plumbing.

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Monday, June 15, 2015

Nearing Completion

Julie and I finished tiling the studio floor this weekend.  There was a little concrete patch work that we needed to do just outside the main door into the hall Saturday, and then Julie laid the final tiles on Sunday.  I shut off water to the house and installed the valves for under the sink.

We brought the sink in from the old studio.  Its a sixty-eight inch piece of our old kitchen counter, with a double stainless steel sink, mounted on a framework of two by fours.  There were lateral braces that I had to remove, since they were at the exact height of the drain pipe in the wall, and a vertical bract that cut across one of the supply pipes.  I rearranged two by fours for about an hour, but we now have the sink in place.  I need to build a clay trap for the drain from a five gallon bucket, which I plan to get to this week.  I also need to anchor the sink to the counter, and the counter to the frame.  I should be able to cut a sheet of plywood to use as a shelf under the sink as well.

The next major task is to get a waterproof base molding around the perimeter of the room, and to paint the newly built west wall.  We should be able to bring the rest of our equipment in once these are done.