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Unread 01-04-2020, 12:50 AM   #1
cmilot6329
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Gas fireplace surround

Hey all,

I'm looking to redo our fireplace surround. Last owners had some 12 x 12 tiles attached to the drywall which I ripped off. They came off clean with no damage to the drywall. I'm wanting to put up some sort of stone veneer. Is there a certain type I need to use? It doesn't get too hot around the fireplace. Do I need to rip out the drywall and install cement board instead? If so what kind? Last question for now, what type of adhesive would be best for the stone veneer in this application?

I've attached a pic of what I'm working with.

Thanks!
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Unread 01-04-2020, 04:01 AM   #2
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The tile or stone needs to be non-combustible. Other than that, there aren’t a lot of limiting factors. Do you have something in mind?

As far as your substrate, there’s no reason not to re-use what you’ve got.

To bond the tile or stone, You’re looking at a cementitious bonding mortar. There are a lot of products available. You want to avoid any adhedives that comes as a liquid/paste in a plastic bucket. You’re looking for dry thinset mortar powder in a bag that is mixed with water when it’s time to set the material. If you tell us which brand(s) of tile setting materials you have access to, we can get more specific.

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Unread 01-04-2020, 09:12 AM   #3
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Thank you! I'm near Phoenix AZ so we have quite a few options. All the big box stores but I usually get my tile at floor & decor. I was thinking something like Barrington Multi Color Porcelain Panel Ledger from them. Would that work?

I've also read mixed things about laying stone veneer on drywall. Some people say it's fine up to like 5 feet and others recommend cementboard. You sure the drywall would be fine? What type of prep would it need?
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Unread 01-04-2020, 06:21 PM   #4
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Barrington Multi Color Porcelain Panel Ledger

That would be fine.

The advice for limiting yourself to 5 feet tall on drywall is erroneous. The drywall is supporting the same amount of weight per sq/ft, irrespective of how many sq/ft are being installed. If you had a very large and very tall area (this is not), you might need to take the dead load into consideration. But it’s not, so you don’t need to worry about that. Nor do you need to consider movement joints. The only thing I’d do in preparation is to remove chunks of old setting material that are in the way of installing the new stuff...and adding screws to the drywall to ensure it’s well secured.

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Unread 01-04-2020, 06:55 PM   #5
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You want the surface to be as flat as you can get it. Removing the thinset may be hard to do, you won't know until you try. It might be easier to use a rub brick to knock down the high spots and then skim coat it with thinset, filling in any voids. Sometimes it's easier to replace the sheetrock. If you do decide to remove it, I'd go back with cement board.
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Unread 01-04-2020, 07:57 PM   #6
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Would be surprised if it was all drywall. At least on mine, there’s an area that’s like crushed ceramic or something. Expensive to replace. If that fireplace was original to the house and built to code then leave the substrate as is.
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Unread 01-04-2020, 08:30 PM   #7
cmilot6329
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Thank you all for the advise!

So we are actually going to go with a different product than the one I mentioned earlier (Barrington Multi Color Porcelain Panel Ledger). I didn't realize that Barrington is more of a tile and not the stone look that we wanted until I went to Floor & Decor today to check it out. We decided on Rock RidgeDel Sol Splitface Quartzite Panel Ledger. I believe this will be substantially heavier than the Barrington. Will this still be ok attaching to sheetrock? Also, any recommendations on brands to use for adhering these to the sheetrock?
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Unread 01-04-2020, 08:41 PM   #8
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I didn’t immediately find the new stuff you’re talking about. But if it’s the thickness of your fingers or so, the weight will still be fine. What brand of mortar does your Floor & Decor have?

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Unread 01-05-2020, 12:44 AM   #9
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Here is the one we decided on:

https://www.flooranddecor.com/ledger...Ledger&start=1

It's about 1/2" so yes the width of a finger is about right.

They have a lot of Mapei products. Not sure which one I would need.

https://www.flooranddecor.com/search?q=mortar
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Unread 01-18-2020, 05:52 PM   #10
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Hey all,

Just wanted to update this as the tile has been laid so I'm ready to install the ledgestone around the fireplace. I decided to rip out the drywall and am going to be putting up durock. The drywall seemed flimsy in areas and there were several holes in it. Plus we have a baby on the way next month and just want to be safe that the stone doesn't fall off.

So I ripped out the drywall and am about to put the durock up.

Few concerns:

1) The 1/2" durock seems to only be about 3/8". The existing sheetrock is 1/2" so the durock will be about 1/8" off. Is this a problem? I'm thinking not but just want to be sure.

2) There are a few spots where the durock will rest on the endge of a stud (like 1/4"). I'll be setting the screws on the stud that is about 3 inches in from the edge of the durock. Is that fine or do the screws have to be a certain distance in from the edge?

3) There are no horizontal studs directly above the fireplace due to clearance needs of the fireplace so that edge of the durock won't have any screws. And do I need to add horizontal 2/4's at the very top or are the verticle studs that are 12-15 inches apart be sufficient? I'd also put screws in the middle of the durock where those horizontal studs are going across.

Here are a few pics of what I'm working with along with the ledgestone I'll be using. Thanks!
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Unread 01-19-2020, 04:07 AM   #11
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If your only nailing into a 1/4 inch of the stud, add another stud. If a full stud won't fit in, use a 1x4 instead. Adding blocks across the top certainly wouldn't hurt anything. I'd even add blocking behind the joints in the Durock.
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Unread 01-19-2020, 07:09 AM   #12
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You really want all the edges of the Durock supported, Chris, so as Davy points out adding some additional 2X4's (blocking) to make that happen, should happen.

It's understood that you cannot add a horizontal 2X4 below the one that already exists, so your CBU will basically be unsupported there, but you don't want a joint, where two sheets meet, there either.

The 3/8" vs 1/2" comment - are you using actual Durock, and not Hardie Board?
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Unread 01-19-2020, 10:17 AM   #13
cmilot6329
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Thanks for the replies!

I'll go ahead and add some 2x4s where I can. In regards to screwing into the 1/4" of stud. I wasn't actually playing to put screws there. I was just commenting the edge would be resting on that and I would put screws on the next closest 2x4 which is 3 inches in. Here's a pic also including the durock i'm using. I remeasured and it is actually about 1/16th less than 1/2". My drywall is about 1/16th more than 1/2" possibly due to the paper, paint and texture. So there will be about a 1/8th" lip transitioning from durock to the drywall. Should I use drywall shims on the studs to get it even? Oh one other question. Should the durock have a gap at the bottom or can I rest it on the concrete slap?
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Unread 02-05-2020, 06:27 PM   #14
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Update and need ideas!

So finally got a chance to try and finish this (hard to find time with a newborn). As I was going along an idea occurred to me that updating the mantel might be a good idea before I get the stone ledger all the way to the top. So was looking for some opinions on how or what to use to cover the existing drywall mantel that has rounded corners? I was thinking a rustic wood look might go well with the white ledgestone and the wood look tile we have. Anyone have any good ideas with what I could do with the mantel? Here is a pic of where I'm at so far. Thanks!
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