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Boxing into the Chiminey

Postby shellsworth » Mon May 18, 2009 12:23 pm


We currently have a disconnected gas fire which is just sat on top of a old titled mantle peice.

We plan to knock this out over the bank holiday weekend, but we are thinking of the best use of space. The easiest option would be to plasterboard over the top of the hole.

However I was hoping someone would be able to give us some advice about creating a plasterboard box into the chimney breast. Not for use but for design, so we could place an ornamental wood burner into it?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated :)
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Postby Captain Nel » Fri May 22, 2009 10:25 am

Behind the fireplace there is a larger hole called a builders opening. Depending on the age of your house this can be up to 36x36 inches, by 12" deep [ish]. Post 1970 this can be smaller, 24 x 24 max.
Stage 1. Remove exg fireplace and all rubble behind. Knock out opening - do not remove structural lintels. Remove debris and any rubbish from chimney - if necessary have chimney swept. Flatten area under hearth.
Stage 2. Install ventilated cap on top of chimneystack/ pot. No vents = damp.
Stage 3. line opening with plasterboard and make good plastering. If you are fitting an electric stove ensure that an extension lead is installed so that it is invisible from the front.
Stage 4. Fit new flooring or replacement hearth and raise level of opening to match. If no hearth is being fitted ensure that the opening level is as high as any new floor.
Stage 5. Dust and keep dusting for days! Painting new plaster requires a thin base coat and 2 top coats.
This is all a good weekends work for a competent DIY-er
Don't buy your stove until you see how big your hole is!
The tiled fireplace is held on by 2 or 4 screws on the sides only - and is really heavy. 2 man job to carry out and break up before carting off to recycling centre.
It is worth doing and looks good afterwards.

Good luck

Captain Nel
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