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Need help hanging a large/heavy mantle

Post in 'The Gear' started by beagler, Aug 14, 2010.

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  1. beagler

    beagler Member

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    I purchased a beautiful hand hewn walnut beam that is 10ft X 6in X 7in. I plan to hang this onto my wall studs using three 7 inch lag bolts that are 3/8 in diameter. I will counter sink them and fill in the holes with walnut dowel rods. I have never done this before, but someone told me this is a safe way to hang such a large/heavy beam. Any ideas?

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  2. btuser

    btuser Minister of Fire

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    I've hung a couple mantles so I'm only going by what I've done before. The first one was 1" oak with molding wrapped around the bottom. There is a void in the back so what you do is put a 2x3 or whatever on the wall with your lagbolts. Then from the top and back of the mantle you drill down into the cleat with screws. This way you can remove it easily if needed. The other mantle was more of a setup I added to the hearth, and was free-standing so I just used some construction adhesive to keep it up against the wall.

    If you're handy you could chisel/rout a channel in the beam to accept a cleat, then nail/screw from the top. This way you wouldn't have the dowels on the face of the beam, but if its matching then I don't think it would look bad. It just might make it easier to move it you ever want to take it down.
  3. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    Consider hollowing out a dado in the back and installing a 2x3 on the wall into the studs. Put the mantle over the 2x3 and screw from the top into the 2x3. This will leave you with no visible attachments from the front. It will also be very strong and adjustable with spacers or wedges.
    I might make the dado with a circular saw or a table saw.
  4. burntime

    burntime New Member

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    Thats exactly how I hung mine, its in my avatar. Mine was a 2x4 box with the moldings built around it so I built in the open space... I mounted a 4x6 to the brick and the mantle slides over and is screwed in from the top, then dowels over the holes... It is about 6-7ft wide to give you an idea.
  5. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Now that's a piece of wood!
  6. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah, I really think you need a horizontal support of some kind fastened to the wall, and a slot on the back of the mantle that will fit over. You don't want to just bolt through the mantle into the wall studs, it'll likely sag. I've built a couple, and in both cases, I had a horizontal stringer fastened to the wall (or chimney structure) which was completely hidden once the mantle was in place, and I also put a couple of nice looking angled supports under the mantle toward each end. They looked very nice (I thought :) ) and never budged. Rick
  7. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    +1 Thats one @ell of a beam...We did one last weekend for bed post think it was 90 inchs x 8in. wide and 4in. thick very heavy..But that was eough for all four post!
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