Casting a Concrete Fireplace Surround
From mixes and molds to finishes and installation details, a master craftsman shows how basic ingredients can yield elegant results.
Synopsis: Concrete master Buddy Rhodes developed a method of precasting concrete countertops and architectural elements nearly 20 years ago. After building molds from sheets of melamine-coated fiberboard, Rhodes casts a simple fireplace surround that consists of a series of flat panels. Then he shows how to install the panels with adhesive and fasteners that extend into the wall framing. This six-page article is meant for the concrete novice who has some general skills. The article includes a source list for materials.
Lately, I’ve been getting a number of requests for concrete fireplace surrounds, and of course, that makes sense to me. Concrete is an exquisite medium that can show the hand of the craftsman like few other materials, and it’s as well suited for a fireplace surround as it is for a countertop or a decoratively stained floor. The finished installation can be a unique composition of shapes, textures, and colors…