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Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

by SweetTobyBoy last modified Jun 30, 2008 08:25 PM
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Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

Posted by SweetTobyBoy at February 27. 2008

I am doing a whole home reno and addition all modern, one item left out is the existing brick, floor to ceiling fireplace.  I was thinking about having it resurfaced in a thinset or mortar, looking for a very smooth finish that can then be polished or waxed to look like polished concrete.  Any ideas or thoughts??

Re: Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

Posted by Peter Smith at March 02. 2008

We inherited a smooth concrete finish fireplace that had some heavy cracking on one side. So the same "stucco guy" who put a smooth finish on a block wall we had built outside did a patch job that blended in nicely. So I believe that any experienced "stucco guy" can work with a thin set product.

As to polishing, check out the forums on the concretenetwork.com

 

 

 

 

 

Previously SweetTobyBoy wrote:


I am doing a whole home reno and addition all modern, one item left out is the existing brick, floor to ceiling fireplace.  I was thinking about having it resurfaced in a thinset or mortar, looking for a very smooth finish that can then be polished or waxed to look like polished concrete.  Any ideas or thoughts??


 

Re: Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

Posted by marc at March 05. 2008

I have a similar issue with a floor to ceiling brick fireplace that has approx. 100 sq. feet, and I decided that I wanted a cement look.  I was given quotes for three solutions (i) cover the brick with a product called Skimstone that is a hybrid cement product and applies like a plaster for $1300 incl. labor; (ii) attach cement backer board to the brick, apply cement to the backer board and then polish for $1600 incl. labor, and (iii) for a cement counter top company to cover it in slabs of cement that they would fabricate (each around 30 sq. feet), which would be glued to the brick, for $8k incl. labor. 

I am going to go with the cement backer board idea and apply real cement to the wall.

Re: Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

Posted by Bo Geigley at March 25. 2008

I am a huge fan of finding materials not typically used for remodeling and giving it a shot.

 

I used corrugated steel and the bases of metal studs(solid with no cable holes) to create framing and a mantle on my slate covered fireplace it worked out really well and gets a lot of compliments - I think the whole re-do cost maybe $100 after the slate of course.

 

On my other fireplace I used polished stainless that I had cut to 10 X 12 and used polished stainless screws to make it look like it is screwed to the white drywall (the were stuck with construction adhesive)

I just watched the grain and made it work out with a base piece that sits on the ground that is 4" tall by 10 feet wide covered in stainless on the sides and marble on the top - another inexpensive option - but with all of the visible hardware and straight lines - it looks cool!

 

Just go buy some random cool looking materials and see what happens - I will post some pictures soon.

 

Good luck!  Bo

 

Re: Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

Posted by Jacqueline Blint at May 08. 2008

Previously SweetTobyBoy wrote:


I am doing a whole home reno and addition all modern, one item left out is the existing brick, floor to ceiling fireplace.  I was thinking about having it resurfaced in a thinset or mortar, looking for a very smooth finish that can then be polished or waxed to look like polished concrete.  Any ideas or thoughts??

I think it's a great idea - I did it myself some months ago.  It was an accident in a way: I was smoothing out the brick so that I could tile it, but my husband liked it so much he asked me to leave it alone. Since then, I have had a lot of positive fedback. It's just grey - as I mentioned, I had planned to install tile - but it works well in that room. Then I just built a simple mantle and and installed it over the whole thing.  Was trying to insert a before and after for you, but can't find the files. If you would like to see them, please let me know and I will have my husband find them (he should know where they are).

After dealing with the dust from hardwood installations, I decided I would not polish the face. It came out very smooth anyway, so I lightly sanded one or two small areas then used some stone sealer/polish which gave it a satin finish.

Good luck.

 

Re: Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

Posted by mordo at June 25. 2008

The system employing cement board with a skim finish is sort of going around one's ass to get one's elbow. A direct application of Portland cement plaster, i.e., stucco, to the brick masonry is the easiest way to make this fireplace look like concrete. It can also achieve the effect of concrete when applied properly since stucco is in essence concrete.

A good plasterer can give you a polished surface by employing the appropriate fine sand aggregate in the finish coat and troweling properly.

A good plasterer should also be able to color Portland cement to suit your tastes.

 

 

Re: Need ideas to resurface a brick fireplace

Posted by darrel at June 30. 2008

Bo...I anxiously await your photos!

mordo: while true, I hate to see brick permanently covered. The nice thing about backerboard is that future homeowners can always revert to the original if so desired.

 

Personally, I like brick. It feels 'loft-like' and would fit into a modern decor. That said, there's lot of kinds of brick fireplaces, some looking better than others ;o)

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