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Oak Beam Fireplace

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Stewart1966

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I'm buying three oak beams to make a fireplace surround. The top shelf beam will simply sit on the two upright beams using a couple of dowels in the ends of the uprights. The fireplace is in the living room on an external wall so behind the plasterboard is a breezeblock wall. My question is how is it best to fix the two upright beams to the wall so that the fixings are hidden and secure?

Any help is greatly appreciated!!

Stewart
 

toolsntat

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Did you mean plaster board or plaster?
Using ears or tabs let into the plaster and then filled over should be ample.
They will shrink a lot so give a few months to settle beforehand.
How big?
It is usually dead weight when up against the wall so no major forces are involved
Cheers Andy
 

thetyreman

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I would make slots in the back in a keyhole shape so it can be slid into place and locked tight, with screws in the wall that are in wallplugs, usually lifting it up will release it and pushing it down lock it to the wall, it will take very careful measuring though and high accuracy but worth it as none of it will be seen from the front. Also make sure you scribe the fireplace to the wall if you want no gaps, it will look much neater that way.
 

Cabinetman

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As the tyreman said, using keyholes, the way to mark them out is to put a couple of panel pins in the back of the timber to be fastened to the wall and then cut the heads off three or four mil to leave spikes which are then used to mark the wall, pull the pins out and start to mark out your key holes on the wood and use the marks on the wall for rawl plugs and screws
 

Richard_C

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Keyholes would be great if you have the skills and tools.

Not sure you need to fix the uprights. Can't fall down, can't fall back, might possibly fall forwards if a child climbs or there is a minor earthquake. You have dowels holding top in place so uprights can't move unless top does so fix the top. A dead simple way would be a single small L bracket screwed to wall with a decent sized wallplug and screwed to top beam, or a flat bracket screwed to back of beam, in either case dead centre, 'cos that's where the clock* goes so it's easily accessible but hidden. Easy to remove if you ever need to.

* or portrait of the monarch or....?
 

Cabinetman

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Keyholes really don’t take much skill or much in the matter of tools Richard, you need a drill with a bit the size of the screw head or slightly larger and a bit the size of the shank of the screw, if you want to be fussy a couple of chisels but it can be done without. Pimps
I certainly wouldn’t want heavy bits of oak just stood there being only supported at the top with a dowel.
 

Terry - Somerset

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Is this purely decorative or will it have a real fire.

Fixing the beams in place is one issue - but for a real fire I think there are a lot of building regs intended to stop a fire turning into a conflagration!
 

toolsntat

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Few snippets of information there for you Stewart and a few questions.
Wanna fill us in and maybe ,if possible, some piccies?
Is it a modern house with dry lined plasterboarding which means there is a gap between the blocks and board?

Cheers Andy
 

Woody2Shoes

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Is this purely decorative or will it have a real fire.

Fixing the beams in place is one issue - but for a real fire I think there are a lot of building regs intended to stop a fire turning into a conflagration!
There definitely are, but perversely a wooden mantelpiece is ok!
 

Cabinetman

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Yes you’re right Woody 2 shoes, my wood burner has a large wooden/oak mantelpiece and it should have a metal shield with an air gap as it’s within a certain distance of the firebox. I thought it would be bog ugly so I left it off. Even when the fire is insufferably hot I can put my hand on the wood with no problem, so like a lot of these things I
do what I think is right and use my common sense. Ian.
I can just imagine all the bulls getting up and running at the red flag!
 

Sawdust=manglitter

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For the fire surround i made a few years ago i used the below fixings to secure them to the wall. I first saw these fixings on a corner sofa and thought they’d be perfect. I made a recess to the rear of the uprights so it’s flush to the wall. Two fixings to each upright, one to the top and one to the bottom. Does the job perfectly


50DA49B0-847D-4B1C-A2C7-440BFE059AD5.jpeg
 

Stewart1966

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Cheers for all the responses, much appreciated!!!

The fire is just an electric fire that we only use for the flame effect, we don't even have any heat coming out of it!! It's flush fitting sitting in a large marble surround which currently has a modern looking wooden mantel around the marble which I'm replacing with the oak beams. I just wasn't sure how best to secure the upright beams to the wall. I'm still not sure what the best way to go is! The two upright beams will be 1m in length and 150 x 150mm.
 

Stewart1966

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For the fire surround i made a few years ago i used the below fixings to secure them to the wall. I first saw these fixings on a corner sofa and thought they’d be perfect. I made a recess to the rear of the uprights so it’s flush to the wall. Two fixings to each upright, one to the top and one to the bottom. Does the job perfectly


View attachment 93988
looks brilliant but I don't understand how the recesses would look like
 

Sawdust=manglitter

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looks brilliant but I don't understand how the recesses would look like
I cant find any old photos showing what it looks like. If i remember tomorrow i’ll lift it all off the wall to take a photo to show you. The recess is just a chunk routered out of the rear to allow for the thickness of the hooks while connected together
 

Linwoodjoinery

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Cheers for all the responses, much appreciated!!!

The fire is just an electric fire that we only use for the flame effect, we don't even have any heat coming out of it!! It's flush fitting sitting in a large marble surround which currently has a modern looking wooden mantel around the marble which I'm replacing with the oak beams. I just wasn't sure how best to secure the upright beams to the wall. I'm still not sure what the best way to go is! The two upright beams will be 1m in length and 150 x 150mm.
If you have the tools/skills (not being rude just don’t know if you have sorry) I would do a Mortice and tennon rather than dowels. I made one similar a few years ago and the movement in the timber was significant to the point where is annoyed me in the end. Top and both sides twisted and I wasn’t happy with it.
 

Sawdust=manglitter

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This is the fixing method at the back of the uprights. One top and one bottom. I found the sweet spot thickness to ensure that the fixings actually pull the uprights towards the wall, so it sits as flush as possible to the wall. It’s done the job perfectly for nearly the last 5years

6C3545AF-B7DF-451D-BFF9-016AF308CE2F.jpeg


7513EAEF-3F7A-4384-A334-2B2C71EABED8.jpeg
 

TheUnicorn

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have never mounted a fireplace, but my first thought was to use french cleat in hardwood, recessed with a router. so, very similar to
sawdust manglitter's suggestion, only all wood.
 

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