So the base was in and we continued to install the walls. Heres where the drama happened.
My feeling on this shower base is that it's a little delicate until the tile is installed. I was concerned with something puncturing the surface, negating it's waterproofing. I'm always dropping tools, screws, tape measures, and I thought something might happen. Well, when we were putting the walls in the shower stall up, we needed a step ladder for the top piece. I told Wino, "get the rug pads and some wood to spread out the weight of the ladder feet so they don't puncture the base" (see picture).
Guess what happened. He didn't want to go look in the garage for scrap wood and thought I was over-reacting so he just used the bunched up rug pads and ended up puncturing the base, not once but twice! Now I'm picturing water
penetrating the grout, running down the base towards the weep holes in the drain but being diverted into these potholes, seeping into the foam and collapsing the whole base. I have an active imagination. Wino was banished from the bathroom and I finished the walls myself (we were mostly done). To fix the pothole problem, I filled them with high grade silicone caulk, and decided to look for a waterproofing product to apply to the whole base as a precaution. More on that in the "shower wall and waterproofing" post.
To sum up, I would use this base again, at this point. I'm procrastinating tiling it but so far, it's performed as advertised. Installation was straight forward, and if you can mix mortar (but no lumps!) it's really easy. In the future, if I used this product again, I would be more cautious about the surface until the tile is in. Stepping on it with shoes or bare feet is fine, but ladder feet, not so much.