Hope someone can help me solve this problem:
I want to put a mantel on our fireplace. Thinking the fireplace was constructed of standard size solid brick, my plan was: (1) drill 3/4” holes into the mortar, catching the ends of the brick, (2) hammer in metal concrete anchors, (3) screw-in 10” x 1/2” lag screws, (4) cut-off the screw heads, and (5) insert those “rods” into corresponding holes in the mantel.
I was expecting 3 5/8” of mortar between rows, but when I drilled a 1/8” pilot hole, the bit went through the mortar at about 1/2”. Then, I drilled into the brick. I find that the drill bit pokes through the brick at about 1/2”; then I hit new brick at about 1 1/2”; then I break through again at about 2”. I only drilled to a depth of 2 3/4”; so I don't know whether I'll hit new brick at 3”. It seems like brick with two rows of holes (so, 1/2” brick + 1” empty space + 1/2” brick + 1” empty space + 1/2” brick = 3.5”) but I've never seen brick manufactured that way.
I've included a couple of pics. I don't want to go bigger than a pilot hole until I know what I'm drilling into and whether I can anchor a mantel into it. If anyone has any ideas, I'd much appreciate hearing from you.
i am no expert on brick.but i have drill a lot of it installing stuff.
if your unsure whats behind it, then a toggle bolt is out and that would be your best option.so your left with what i call blues and screws
plastic inserts that you drill a hole about 1/4" hole. into brick and screw a screw into it
you can find them at any hardware store, if you buy a box of them the masonary drill bit comes with
when drilling into brick, do not use a rotary hammer drill. or do not use the hammer function
the viberation and hammering will break the back of the brick when you break thru
use a regular 3/8 or 1/2 " drill. buy a couple of bits.
Not sure, but what is happening, you may be drilling into bricks with hollow mortar holes? Sort of 3 or 4 holes through the bricks that allow the mortar to partially fill the brick when stacking. These holes are manufactured into the brick mold, different than solid face bricks.
I have mounted and hung many things on brick walls, both indoor and outdoor, and have found drilling into the "mortar" with a pilot hole and using the correct matching Tapcon (super hardened screw) into the mortar. It has never failed me anyway. A wooden cleat attached to the brick wall, could then be used to mount a mantel.
conrad is right,a tapcon would be better than blues and screws
Could be almost anyone of these style bricks.
DO NOT TRY AND USE A PLASTIC ANCHOR!!
If you use a dowel bolt there's no need to cut anything off.
http://www.bing.com/images/sea...B76&qpvt=dowel+boltsThis message has been edited. Last edited by: joecaption,
Chances are that your brick face is made of modular brick which is an alternative to solid brick making them lighter to use. This could be a solid wall, cavity wall or veneer wall. There should be a substraight behind the brick which could be wood, block or brick depending on the technique the mason used. If you are completely through the brick you should be able to use a piece of coat hanger and see if there is a space behind the brick or whether it is block backing the face brick or other brick. If it is block you could continue drilling until you reach the block cavity which will work using a "wedge bolt". They can be obtained in 8-10" length in a variety of diameters (1/2",5/8" or 3/4"). Sometimes brick will be used in combination with a block to even up the courses from the firebox then revert back to block to continue up. Sort of like this
Not sure what type of mantle you plan on installing but generally you are not talking about that much weigth so the 1/2" should work. If you use wedge bolts you will have to cut the head off to allow the bolt to recess into the mantle back with a corresponding hole diameter. That is if it is a solid mantle. Follow up by putting epoxy into the holes and slidding the mantle onto the bolts.
I used wedge bolts to hang a heavy iron wagon wheel on my fireplace.
If it is a hollow core mantle then use the wedge bolt to attach a 2X4 to the brick face then your mantle boxing design will fit over the 2X4 hiding the cleet and attach the mantle to the cleet. If the mantle is just common frame construction then "tap cons" could be used to attach the cleet as well.
I guess it all depends on your mantle design as to whcih method you would use.
If it were me, I'd really prefer the Tapcon type of screws (Long enough to go through your wood cleat and about 3/4 inch thread into the mortar). If, for any future reason, this ever needs to be removed or changed, it can easily be done. And all one need do is fill a few mortar holes with concrete caulk. Once large holes are made into Brick, it is damaged forever.
I'll lay claim to brick expertise.
Look at the link in Joe's post - you have one of those style of bricks. Currently, the style with two rows of holes is the most common.
Go ahead and install your anchors as planned. The holes are only 3/4" in diameter and most will have some mortar on the top and bottom ends. Drilling a hole needed for the soft metal anchor to hold a 1/2" lag screw will take a 3/4" bit. So, even though you are drilling through the empty space of the hole you will still have an almost 100% coverage around the sides of the tube you have now drilled for your anchor. The anchor will hold fine - just as well as if it were in a solid brick.
I've done this type of mantle install many times with this type of hollow brick - no problems.
Just want to thank everyone who replied to my question about brick. Tremendously helpful and much appreciated!This message has been edited. Last edited by: IndianaGuy,
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