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Chimney breast removal to site plasma?

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by RayP, Nov 13, 2003.

  1. RayP

    RayP
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    Hi all,

    I'm considering removing the chimney breast in the lounge of my semi-detached house to make space for a plasma screen and associated kit. I'd be interested to hear the opinion of anyone who has done this or is considering doing it.

    I live on my own so there is no wife or kids to consider. The only other place it could feasibly go is in the window bay and this is undesirable for a number of reasons but primarily because of the backlighting and general inconvenience of blocking off the window.

    I rarely need the fire on and I can add a second radiator under the window to boost the room temperature although it is a warm house generally.

    Removing the chimney breast is pretty much irreversable so needs serious thought. I'd appreciate your opinions.

    Cheers,
     
  2. rob@rar.org.uk

    rob@rar.org.uk
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    As the chimney been removed all the way through to your roof? I'm no builder but I would have thought that removing a load-bearing structure at the bottom without removing the top half of the structure was a recipe for disaster.

    Regards

    Rob
     
  3. RayP

    RayP
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    Rob,

    I'm told that an RSJ would be needed probably between the lounge ceiling and bedroom floor. The chimney does narrow considerably in the bedroom but as you correctly point out it would need some support. A good builder is essential of course.

    I'm chewing things over but having seem another message from a chap who convinced his better half that they didn't need a room with a fire "focal point" maybe there are more people who've done this than I would have guessed.

    Cheers,
     
  4. MattB

    MattB
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    I removed my chimney all the way to the roof to make way for the plasma, and put a radiator under the window to make up for the loss. Also had to relocate the back-boiler. Like yours, the chimney narrowed in the bedroom above - removing it created useful storage space.

    This is on a 1960s semi which is unusual in that the chimney was attached to an internal wall. If it had been on the party wall things would have got complicated getting permission, etc.

    No RSJ needed as the internal wall (load bearing) was left standing.

    Ironically enough I am considering moving the plasma to the bay window and dropping a projector screen in front for night viewing.

    I have some construction pics, not digital unfortunately, which I could scan and post if you are interested.
     
  5. MR2Harvey

    MR2Harvey
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    Well why not do what i am doing.

    Remove fire / fire palce leaving nice hole in wall.

    Site plasma above this hole (bottom of plasma about 1 meter high).

    Fill hole with custom made shelves / cabinet to house all equipment, you even have a ready made channel for the cable to the plasma.



    Harvey
     
  6. mrb

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    Enough of the lurking, first post...

    I am currently converting and old part of my house into a small Cinema room. Originaly the chimney was going to stay, but after much thought it was decided to knock it down.

    The building is about 100 yrs old. The process took about 4 hours to get the stack down, but a a little longer to shift the huge amount of bricks etc.

    I am now so glad the chimney has gone, the room is so much bigger and has a nice wall to mount a plasma and if my pot of cash has anything left after the building work a nice PJ too.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    And finaly after it had been plastered.

    [​IMG]

    Steve
     
  7. RayP

    RayP
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    MattB,

    Sounds like we have similar houses - mine is a 60's semi. The chimney is against a party wall -I'll need to make some enquiries with a builder to see if it's feasible. Don'twant to upset my elderly neighbours.

    Think long and hard about moving the plasma into the window space. My house faces south-east and the sun makes watching TV against a bright background dificult. Also, in the summer evenings the houses opposite get direct sun which makes anything white very bright.

    Thanks for the offer of some pics but maybe in the future. This is early investigatory work and I'm some way off getting the work done (not to mention actually buying a plasma). I tend to plan many months ahead for major things like this. Like you I will also need to reloacte the boiler so there's a lot of money involved.

    I was mainly interested to hear from those who have done this and whether they regretted it or not. I'll continue to visit the forum so I hope we can chat again.

    Thanks.
     
  8. RayP

    RayP
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    MRB,

    Amazing pictures and congrats on taking the plunge. Imagine coming home to that! Your house looks to be considerably larger than mine and your plans are much grander. Hope it works out for you. It will be worth it in the end.

    Cheers.
     
  9. RayP

    RayP
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    Harvey,

    To be honest I need the space the chimney breast is ocupying. I could wall mount the plasma but I already have a decent AV stand which could take the plasma, centre speaker and amp etc. I realiseyour plan is not quite so dramatic and it does leave an option for a fire in the future. But, it's worth thinking about which is why I never jump in on such big decisions.

    A survey with a few friends has seen most of them favouring the chimney removal which has surprised me. It's radical and I'm conservative by nature.

    Cheers.
     
  10. Tel boy

    Tel boy
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    Most chimneys that I have seen that are on the party wall back onto each other (yours & your neighbours) & terminate in one chimney stack on the roof, if this is the case I’m not sure if it would be possible to remove the chimney.

    Also as the chimney is on the party wall there is the “Party wall act” to consider, I don’t know the ins & outs of this but I believe it involves planning permission etc as you are working on the wall that is shared with your neighbour.

    Make sure that you take expert advice on this matter before any work is started.


    Good luck.
     
  11. RayP

    RayP
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    Tel boy,

    The party wall could be a problem. Yes, I will investigate this thoroughly. Thanks for the advice. Oh to live in a detached house. I'm not intending to remove the whole chimney - just the part in the lounge but the same problems could apply.

    Regards.
     
  12. RossC

    RossC
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    Why not mount the plasma on the chimney breast to start with using a slim wall mount and see how you get on - nothing too loose that way, potentially saving much work/cost/time...

    If the removal of the chimney breast is to increase viewing distance, how about using a slightly smaller screen to compensate for the decreased distance, say a 37" rather than a 42"
     
  13. RayP

    RayP
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    Ross,

    The idea of removing the chimney breast was to create space for the stand, amp etc. and especially the centre speaker. It's not a large room unfortunately. However, I'm not ruling anything in or out and a 37" plasma on the wall was my preferred option.

    I have the B&W CM2, CM4 and CMC speakers and the centre is quite deep. The system is used for both home cinema and music otherwise Kef eggs would probably be a better choice.

    Not easy is it?
     
  14. mikeblanche

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    Removing the fireplace could affect the value of your house when you come to sell it. You may be a single man now wanting a funky bachelor pad, and don't need a fireplace, but women like fireplaces, women choose houses.

    Mike
     
  15. RayP

    RayP
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    Mike,

    How right you are. Even though I intend to spend the rest of my days here I wouldn't want to make the sale difficult after my demise. This needs long and careful consideration but given that no-one in my situation with a semi has gone down this route I'm now thinking it's one to avoid.

    The compromise of keeping the chimney breast but not installing a gas fire will probably be the one to go for. Not ideal but at least I'm not burning any bridges.

    Many thanks. Whilst this is an excellent place for enthusiasts it's also got a lot of members with common sense.
     
  16. ancientgeek

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    I demolished the ornamental stonework above the fireplace (modern house), and replastered to give a flat wall. I don't believe heat is a problem, but we hardly ever use the fireplace anyway.

    The centre speaker is on the matlepiece, and some would say the 433MXE screen is a bit high on the wall, but this does give a clear view for more than one row of seats!

    My plastering is not brilliant, but I made a one inch thick modesty panel that tucks behind the screen and covers the power/DVI/VGA/component cables as well as concealing my plastering.

    Finally a money saving idea (works for Pioneer plasmas). As wall bracket I used dexion style angle, two verticals on the wall, and two on the plasma. Screen hooks on at the top, then held in place with a long rod behind the screen passing through all four angles. It doesn't tilt, but the height is adjustable, and the cost is only a couple of quid instead of a couple of hundred for a "proper" wall bracket.
     
  17. RayP

    RayP
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    ancientgeek,

    Thanks for posting your exploits. Because my chimney breast is on a party wall and because it could affect the resale of my house I've decided not to burn my bridges by removing it. Instead it's probable I will forgo a gas fire and locate the plasma above the fireplace. I'll probably sell my existing B&W loudspeakers (they are a bit too large for the room) and get some smaller speakers that can reside close to a rear wall.

    Much useful advice has been gleaned from this place - many thanks.
     
  18. alexs2

    alexs2
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    Having witnessed the atrocities committed by a rogue builder in the last house we had(bought from an old couple who'd had every original feaure removed,including fireplaces and dado rails) I can only advise you to get a good builder,and make sure the structural integrity of the house and wall isnt compromised,if you do this....also,as others have said,consider the resale value.
     

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