Small shower receptor bathtubs

small vintage bathtubIs is a shower base? Is it a bath tub? Yes. I went to an estate sale last Thursday. A lovely, rambling mid century colonial-ranch… all picket-fence Americana like… quite sweet. The two bathrooms upstairs were pastel delights — but the real prize was this small bathtub / shower receptor. I have seen these small tubs in old marketing materials, for example, in this 1949 Crane bathroom fixture catalog. But I have seen only one “receptor tub” in the wild. The estate sale manager said it was okay for me to take some photos for the blog, so here we have it — a petite receptor tub, in a rosy pink.

vintage bathtubWhy such a small bathtub? This seems to me to be a terrific idea if you don’t have much space… if adults prefer to shower… but there still needs to be a bathtub for a child.

The Crane brochure explains:

Requiring minimum space for installation, the Lahoma bath provides facilities for feet, sponge or shower bathing.

The Lahoma tub in the brochure measured 42″ wid by 31″ to the wall and was 12″ deep. It even had a little seat.

receptor bathtub neuvogue-bathtubAbove: A second bathtub in the 1949 Crane catalog was also billed as a receptor tub. The Neuvogue‘s proportions — 48″ across, 41″ to the wall — were more “Cinderella bathtub”-like. It is billed as having enough space for real bathing (for an adult, presumably).

kohler mayflower tubThe Neuvogue’s dimensions are actually quite similar to those of the Kohler Mayflower tub (above), which is still available today. However, the Kohler Mayflower is not fully recessed on three sides — it is a neo-angle. The Mayflower is 48″ x 44″. It retails for $3,360. Yikes.

As I recall, Eljer (I *think*) still offered a receptor bathtub until the early(ish) 2000s. But then it disappeared.

small bathtubThe receptor tub in the estate sale house was in impeccable shape. The tile around it — and wrapping the entire bathroom — also was beautiful and gleamy and clean and I loved it all.

This story gets filed under Bathrooms/Tubs, Bathrooms/Shower Bases and Woddities, all three!

Do any readers have a tiny receptor bath
like this in your bathroom?
Contact me here — I’d love to add
your photos to this story!

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  1. Peggy S says

    I have 1950s wall tile in my bathroom this color. Does anyone know what the name might be? I need to find this tile in case any of the wall tile is damaged when tub is replaced. I know I’d have to exchange samples to get it exact, but I’m just looking for a place to start. Thanks! Peggy

    • pam kueber says

      Sorry, Peggy, way too many companies to even begin to guess. Send your sample to Chippy at World of Tile (see my stories) to see if she can help you.

  2. Kathy K says

    I have a receptor tub identical to the pink one above, but in a jade green color. It was refinished white by the previous owner. When we moved in one year ago, there was a tiny chip in the white coating. One year later, I noticed that the chip was growing and beginning to curl. 6 hours later, I had the entire tub scraped clean with a razor scraper. It is green once more, but etched and streaky. Any ideas on how to improve the surface? I don’t expect shine, but blending away the streaks would be nice. I love my little green tub!

  3. Sue Flynn says

    My husband and I are purchasing a 1927 American Four Square home and were surprised to find the unusually small bathtub in our upstairs bathroom. I am pleasantly happy to find this website and to know our bathtub is called a receptor bathtub! I love the uniqueness of it and can’t wait to take a picture and post for everyone to see.

  4. teri says

    I have been looking for these for about two years now. We have a home built in the 1800s and have a bath that is so tiny and has a very little shower. Well I was on a trip to WVA and stayed at a hotel that had ones of these little tubs. Anyway I thought what a great idea and could not believe no one makes these anymore. Well I started a search again today and found Honolulu Foot Bathtub. It is 27 x 46.5 x 15.2 inches. Have any of you out here heard of these, because they sound like the modern day version of this bathtub? I think I just may order one and the are only around $250.00

      • teri says

        OK now I am confused, not sure what the difference is between a shower receptor and a small bath tub. Please help explain this so I do not go out and spend $ on something that would not work.

  5. patty says

    I have a pink bathroom and would love to buy a tub like this,its just the right size,where can I find one in pink

  6. Kathy K says

    The tub pictured above is a Kohler Standish bath. I found it on the Kohler website labeled “discontinued.” I’ve been hoping to find a matching toilet for the green one in my second bathroom. Now I know what to look for. I think my green is called Fresh Green.

  7. shannon says

    One of the bathrooms in my parents house has a tub like this. For years my step mom talked about tearing it because of “design/decorative issues”. I’m so glad I found yall, now if I can only convince her to go with the barbie theme I’ve been pushing for since 1990.

  8. teri says

    OK now I am confused, not sure what the difference is between a shower receptor and a small bath tub. Please help explain this so I do not go out and spend $ on something that would not work. I di know that these small tubs are not just like the ones from the 40’s but seem to be good choice since it is darn near imposible to find the old ones.

  9. Linda says

    Becky if you are really interested I am in the process of renovating my bathroom. I have a 1950’s crane receptor tub and 2 sinks in pink all with original crane hardware. Tubs measures approx. 40″ square and sinks are 19″. Located in Los Angeles area. Please respond if interested thru July 2014.

  10. Patti says

    Kohler has a 54″ tub that might work. I prefer the smaller size but this might be a solution. What do you think?

    Kohler K-746
    Seaforth 54″ Enameled Cast Iron Soaking Bathtub for Alcove Installations with Right Drain

    Seaforth Collection
    Length: 54
    Width: 30.25
    Height: 14
    Material: Cast Iron
    Installation Type: Three Wall Alcove

  11. Jeff says

    I salvaged a small tub from a 1924 house we were demolishing. It is a white, cast iron tub, built in application, with a left drain. I saved it because I had never seen one before. It is a Kohler 305-42×36-1S, I was calling it a half size tub or mini tub but it would make sense if it is actually shower receptor/tub combination. Contact me if you are looking for something like this and I can send or post pictures. I have the original drainage piping also if that is desirable.

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