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How to Build a Custom Wood Bathtub

Customize a bathroom with a wood paneled bathtub with these steps by DIY experts.

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Step 1: Get a Custom-Made Wood Stain

Get the wood stain custom-made to match the existing vanity or other woodwork perfectly. Measure the height and width of the tub front carefully to get the exact dimensions of the area to be covered.

Step 2: Measure and Cut the Planks of Wood

Cut two planks of wood to the exact width of the tub front for the top and bottom rails. Subtract the dimensions of the top and bottom rails from the original height to get the height of the risers. Lay out the top and bottom rails and lay one riser on each edge. Measure and space the remaining two risers evenly to create three window sections of the same size.

Step 3: Apply the Wood Glue

Use wood glue on the edge of the board and press into place. Gorilla Glue is water resistant and has a strong bond for high water areas like bathrooms.

Step 4: Make the Pocket Holes

Use a Kreg jig to make the pocket holes. Clamp the jig to the board, and drill the hole. Carefully align and drive in the screw.

Step 5: Cut Square Pieces

Measure three window openings. Add 1" on each side for overlapping, and cut the square pieces.

Step 6: Attach the Square Pieces to the Frame

Glue the square pieces on to the back of the frame and use a staple gun to attach these pieces to the frame (Be careful not to use a staple that is too long or it will come through the front.)

Step 7: Sand the Entire Surface

Use an orbital sander to sand the entire surface. Wipe down the surface with a cheese cloth.

Step 8: Apply the Stain

Apply the stain with a sponge brush for a smooth application. Allow to dry. Add coats of stain until the color matches the existing woodwork in the bathroom.

Step 9: Apply Polyurethane and Secure the Wood

Apply three coats of polyurethane. For a smooth finish, sand between coats with a high grit sand paper. Matt used a fine 180 grit paper.

Once the wood is dry, glue it to the tub with construction adhesive.

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Save on your next remodel with expert Matt Muenster.

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