I have 3 1/4in baseboard molding that I want to transition from to a flat surfaced bathtub/shower. What are the generally accepted options for doing so? I could cut it at a 45, 90 or some other option but I really have not come into such a situation before so I'm not sure what is recommended for aesthetics or otherwise. If it isn't clear, I do not want the baseboard on the shower/bathtub, I want to end it on the drywall.

Baseboard to shower transition

  • Is tile baseboard an option? I think white tile with a bullnose top would look great with that floor. – jqning Dec 23 '15 at 3:30
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    Have you bought the base already? Mdf doesn't do well if it gets splashed. You might consider PVC base molding such as: <homedepot.com/p/…>. If you stick with mdf, at the very least, paint all surfaces with a decent primer. – Aloysius Defenestrate Dec 23 '15 at 4:44
  • @AloysiusDefenestrate - Actually we only install poplar (pine 2nd) in bathrooms even if the rest of the house is mdf. No mdf in basements or bathrooms. Now PVC is great but that is a different look. – DMoore Dec 23 '15 at 5:53
  • @DMoore -- I hope I didn't sound like I was anti-wood... the only minor bad thing about wood is that we like to prime all cut surfaces, which takes a bit of time. (And there are a few different profiles available in the plastic stuff, though they aren't universally stocked, so you can often match the rest of the house.) Since I have characters left, I'll mention that the PVC wants to be cut quickly. Otherwise you have gobs of melted plastic messing things up. And the cut ends don't look great, so one would definitely want to do a return. – Aloysius Defenestrate Dec 23 '15 at 14:37

I created mockups of a few different configurations and decided that I liked the look of the following the best. I created a 45°(an opposite cut of my original example cut; sorry I don't know the correct terminology), and created a "return" that was at the opposite 45° and cut 90° to butt up against the wall. I liked this option because it left no grain exposed and seemed to be fairly clean. I didn't like it because the final piece is so small and was difficult to cut precisely.

Example return baseboard

  • I like this. Some people just go straight across. – DMoore Dec 23 '15 at 6:10

You could cut it at a 45, like you've done.

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You could back cut it at 45, then glue in a small triangle of molding to fill the gap.

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You could install an end block.

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You could simply cut it at 90°, and leave it. Really it's up you your personal preference.

  • @dpollitt That's true, which is why I said you could "back cut" it. Basically I was describing exactly the same thing you showed in your answer. – Tester101 Dec 23 '15 at 2:13
  • I presented three options – Tester101 Dec 23 '15 at 2:23
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    4th option would be an end-block: lifeandhome.com/… – DA01 Dec 23 '15 at 3:05

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