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What The Builder Said...

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by Wilbur, Feb 27, 2003.

  1. Wilbur

    Wilbur
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    Having scanned the forums for everybody's advice on how to wall mount their plasmas I had a builder round last night. He also happens to be one of the guys that worked on my flat and a friend that I trust.

    So, I showed him the 42" Panansonic and the Unicol bracket and started to talk about about the methods that people had been suggesting on the forum (bearing in mind that my walls consist of plasterboard battoned to the original Victorian brickwork with a 2 inch airgap).

    He said that the simple solution was to use "fly-bolts" (I think that's the name, basically 15mm bolts with casing that snap outwards the otherside of the plasterboard to provide a firm grip - I'm sure you know what i'm talking about). I mentioned a post from the site where somebody had used this method and discovered the screen on the floor one morning along with half the wall. He said that was a weakness in the plasterboard not the fixings, noway it could happen here, the board is screwed to batons which are bolted to the walls.

    I was still nervous... He said that he has 2 radiators downstairs in his own flat weighing 60Kg each (without water) held by only 2 of these fly-bolts each. What's more, I could try to rip them off the wall if I wanted! He reckons 4 fly-bolts would be more than sufficient but he would use 8 for my piece of mind. "I am so convinced" he said, "that I would buy you another screen if it came down". Obviously if I could get this in writing I would be laughing!

    So... my question is.... anybody else using the fly-bolt method? Would people think I was crazy if I took the advice? If it came off the wall is my contents insurance likely to cover it (gonna call my insurer about this today to check...)?:suicide:
     
  2. graham.myers

    graham.myers
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    I'm using flybolts to hold my projector to the ceiling. here's hoping :)

    A guy at work used flybolts to hold a tv stand and his portable telly.

    it came down along with half the wall. it was a new house and the builder admitted liablility and fixed the wall
     
  3. Wilbur

    Wilbur
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    I guess with a telly on a bracket there are more moments about the joint than with a plasma... (at least that's what I'll be hoping...)
     
  4. jmack

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    i have seen people use these for things like radiators, but would still be thinking yes the builder can garranty the strenth and build of the plugs can he garranty the strenth of the plaster board, how thick is your plaster board? and how is it attached to the studs,
    you could have 50 screws holding the plasma to the board but it makes no differance if there is only few nails or screws holding the board to the studs . if you get my meaning,
    cant you get him to cut out a section of board and put in some side ways studs so you can then attach the mount straight to this ,
    either replace the board or just the mount on the studs for a flusher finish,

    hope this helps

    what ever you decide try and take some photos along the way for others :) :)
     
  5. jmack

    jmack
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    arh just read your post again about the plaster board and the 2 inch gap,

    why not cut out the size of the plasma and mount straight to the brick would look really flush then,
     
  6. Wilbur

    Wilbur
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    I like the idea of cutting out a plasma shaped panel. Only problem then is the work required to patch up the hole when I come to sell on the flat. Also, would there be sufficient draft behind the plasma to keep it cool during operation?

    I mentioned that I trust the flybolts, but not the plasterboard, he said that it was screwed to the batons which in turn were bolted to the wall. No glue involved whatsoever (a good thing I think ?!)
     
  7. mikeq

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    I would suspect if half the wall came down it would be because there was a horizontal joint in the platerboard above or below the plasma.

    If 1 sheet of plasterboard runs from ceiling to floor I would have faith in this method holding.

    How can you be sure what size and shape of plasterboard was used prior to the finishing plaster being applied? I'd rather not trust it.

    Mike
     
  8. pwhite8314

    pwhite8314
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    I think the recess would look great - could you not do a 'professional' job on it, and re-line it with plasterboard (directly onto the brick), then if you did move the new owners could just stick a picture in the recess. Even better if you pre-run some power cable to the top of the recess so that a light could be installed at a future date. Easy for me to say as it's not my wall that I want to take a chunk out of, but I would guess this shouldn't cost more than £200 for a builder to do. Not sure what to do about the venting - obviously you could just install some PC fans in the recess to drag out the heat, but the same problem would apply when you moved.

    Unless you're planning to move within a couple of years, would it not be worth selling it as a 'feature' of the house? Then you wouldn't have to worry about having a perfect finish or venting the heat. I know I will, partly bacause if I don't there will be 8 dirty great holes in the bricks above the fireplace, and secondly because I know I'll want a new screen.

    Finally, if you don't want to do any of this, you could just use some big coach screws to go straight into the brick - www.screwfix.com are a great place for all this stuff (and half the price of B&Q, even though they're now owned by B&Q!), and they come in lengths up to 120mm (they go longer, but wouldn't fit through the holes in your bracket. They're on pg 22 of the catalogue if you happen to have one. I've used these (into red brick)and they've been fine.

    There's also something on pg29 of the catalogue called the 'multi-monti - it's a bolt that'll go into brick without the need for any plugs. Sounds scary, but they're used everywhere in Germany, and would make bolting through the plasterboard into the brick a doddle. Personally I wouldn't trust the plasterboard, you're totally at the mercy of the original builder.
     
  9. StooMonster

    StooMonster
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    Plasterboard is generally in either of two thicknesses -- 9.5mm (3/8") or 12.7mm (1/2") -- one of which is much stronger than the other.

    StooMonster
     
  10. Wilbur

    Wilbur
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    The plasterboard in my house is definately 1/2 inch... The builder comes to do the job tomorrow... Do I take the risk???:eek:
     
  11. adewatson

    adewatson
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    Guys

    Firstly if you cut a recess in the platerboard you will block the ventilation of the plasma thus causing overheating and generally not a good idea.

    Your builder is spot on bear in mind that the weight of your panel will be held in the brick not the platerboard and I personally would use 6 inch rawlplug pre fitted plugged bolts (available from any B&Q)

    I have mounted my plasma in exactly the same way (approx 2 inch gap between plasterboard & Brick) and it aint going nowhere!!!

    Regards

    Adrian

    (ps my panel has been on the wall for almost 3 months and the is no drag in the plasterboard indicating that the installation is indeed very sound)
     
  12. uncle eric

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    Will,
    I've done this quite a few times now so heres how to do it.
    Pick up some 3" by 2" 3/8th or 2 1/2" timber (depending on your plaster thickness. Cut 2 Pieces at the height of the unicol wall bracket. Mark the left pair and right pair of mounting holes. Place the battons vertical and central to the marked holes. Cut out the plaster board to exactly the battons. Push the battons through. These should be flush with the plasterboard provided you bought the correct thickness. Now firmly screw in the battons into the brickwork. And mount the wall bracket with hefty rawplugs and 5 inch coach bolts straight through the battons and into the brickwork.
    Job done.
     
  13. JamesTapp

    JamesTapp
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    My father in law is a plasterer, he recommended exactly what Uncle Eric suggested. The structural integrity of plasterboard is zero, you can cut it with a stanley knife.

    James
     
  14. Dick Scratcher

    Dick Scratcher
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    The fixings you refer to are also known as butterfly fixings or spring toggles, they are used a lot in the sign industry to overcome mounting problems where there is no rear access to the substrate. I don't know why so many people are getting their knickers in a twist over this, I have said it before and I'll say it again, there is nothing wrong with hanging a plasma screen bracket off a plasterboard wall providing the wall is in good nick. After all, you wouldn't fix it to rotten timber or crumbling brickwork would you? I was also a non-believer until I got the expert opinion of the site foreman of McLean Homes and his dry lining contractor, I now have a 14" Panasonic portable and bracket (fairly heavy considering the torque) and a 37" Panasonic plasma fixed directly to the plasterboard via a wall bracket. Both have been removed and refitted in the same holes during decorating and they are rock solid, I know it sounds iffy but it WORKS!
     
  15. MarkHudds

    MarkHudds
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    Hi Will,

    Did you get the plasma up and did it stay up?

    Regards
    Mark.
     
  16. Wilbur

    Wilbur
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    Hi Mark,

    The plasma is up! It's been safely on the wall for 2 weeks now and shows no signs shifting. I'm just building a conduit for the cables and then the job will be complete (at which point I'll take a couple of digi photos and get them posted up on the thread!)

    Kind regards,

    Will
     
  17. dts_boy

    dts_boy
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    i'm gonna sound stupid now but i need to know - how do you know how thick the plasterboard is until you cut it out?
    does it show that i don't do DIY:blush:
     
  18. mikeblanche

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    You don't - try drilling a little-ish hole and using a ruler/tape measure.

    You can always polyfilla it up again. :)

    mike
     
  19. philipb

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    Any views guys about hanging the plasma on an internal plasterboard, ie curtain, wall?

    The wall separates kitchen and living room, and seems to consist of two plasterboard (gyproc) walls separated by an air gap and kept apart and/or joined together by dollops of concrete placed at regular intervals. Each dollop is about the size of your fist and they are placed about 30 cm apart vertically and horizontally.

    Does all that make sense? If anybody recognises this method (MacLeans built), is it likely to be a good support for a plasma?
     
  20. mikeblanche

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    Given you can put your fist or foot through plasterboard without too much difficulty...would not recommend hanging anything worth 3-4 grand on plasterboard like that. It's not even nailed to studwork... the walls must be like paper thin??!

    Maybe I'm paranoid but with this form of construction I would remove an entire plasterboard panel, build a studwork frame attached to floor and ceiling, mount plasterboard on top and attach plasma mount to studwork behind plasterboard.

    You may have to extend your wall out into the room marginally to achieve this if there's not enough gaps between your two plasterboard sheets currently.

    mike
     
  21. Darbyweb

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    Its called 'dot and dab' - after the plasterboard and plaster dabs you will probably find the block construction is 'thermalite' or similar soft block construction.

    Not sure your best way of overcoming it, but i certainly would not recommend fixing to it.

    We've had 'kids' pull storage heaters of off walls that have 10 fixings into this stuff !!

    Perhaps, cut the plasterboard out, clean off the dabs, bond and screw a good heavy sheet of mdf to the wall, refix plasterboard, and hang screen on that..

    Just a suggestion - wouldn't guarantee it'll work, but it'll be better than thermalite.


    Dean.
     
  22. Darbyweb

    Darbyweb
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    Having just re-read your post it sounds worse than i thought...

    Standard McLean - now Wimpey is metal frame partitions with plasterboard screwed to the framework.

    Another is like corrugated cardboard with plasterboard stuck to it on each side. Or plasterboard and straw...

    Theres loads of different constructions...


    Dean.
     
  23. philipb

    philipb
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    I get the message - thanks guys.

    Don't think I'll go to all that trouble - it looks OK on a stand.
     
  24. Dick Scratcher

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    Philipb,

    No one here seems to be an expert on partition walls yet most are condemning it as unsuitable. I live in a McLean home and I spoke with the site foreman and dry lining contractor, both understood my concern at fixing to what is basically 12mm of plaster sandwiched between cardboard, but they assured me that it was fully up to the job. See my previous posts, I have a 37" Panasonic plasma mounted on a wall bracket which is fixed directly to a cavity wall, 5 fixings in total, thats all. That was last year and guess what? Yep, its still on the wall :eek: Gordon Frazer didn't bat an eyelid when he sat under it to do his ISF calibration thang!!!
     
  25. philipb

    philipb
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    Difficult one this. appreciate the advice

    The other side of this wall - the kitchen side - has all the wall units hung on it. And at one time a radiator was fixed to it. Things is I couldn't give a ....... if a wall unit fell down, but £4k worth of plasma!

    Which bit of yellow pages should I look under for some local professional advice?
     
  26. Dick Scratcher

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    When I was in the process of buying my Stewart Grayhawk I decided that I wanted it mounted in the void above the ceiling so that it was virtually invisible when retracted and dropped through a thin slit when in use. Thing was I didn't know which way the joists ran. I rang McLean's head office and spoke to a very nice lady who was extremely helpful. She put me through to someone in their records department who asked for the plot no. and address. 20 minutes later the guy called back and told me the direction the joists ran in, the spacing and the clearance between ceiling and bedroom floor! I was lucky and was able to mount the screen as planned, nice one.

    So what's this got to do with your plasma? Simple, ring 'em up like I did and ask for the name and number of the dry lining contractor who was used for your house. Call them and ask them if the type of wall in your house will take xkg's over xsq. m's. You could call any contractor but they won't know the type and thickness of the sheets used in your house. Since plasma's are very thin there will be minimal torque. This is one thing many posters to this thread have overlooked, the torque effect will be low because of the close proximity of the mass to the wall. The loading will not necessarily be such that it wants to pull the fixings out of the wall, more that it is pushing down at ninety degrees to the fixings.

    Think of it this way, if you punch a sheet of plasterboard side on you'll hurt your hand and possibly crack the sheet. If you punch it edge on you'll break your hand and leave the sheet unscathed. Now you know :smashin:
     
  27. philipb

    philipb
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    Have done some poking around, and I think I now understand the make up of the wall.

    What we have is 12/15mm plasterboard with a 10mm air gap behind, then what I think is a breeze block wall about 120mm thick. The plasterboard is fixed to - or more accurately kept away from - the breeze block by roughly fist sized lumps of concrete at regular places all over the wall.

    Seems to me the best thing to do would be to try to secure the wall bracket to the breeze block, through the plasterboard and across the air gap. Any recommendations on how to do this?

    Dick - I see what you mean. Logic says it should be OK. What fixings did you use? - presumably the butterfly toggle variety?
     
  28. EffTee

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    philipb,

    As you can see there are lots of views on how this should or shouldn't be done. While I agree that the plasterboard ought to be able to take the load - based on it being a sheer force - I opted to fix mine across the air gap into the aerated concrete block. It wasn't difficult.

    I drilled the right number of holes into the blocks and then glued lengths of threaded rod into them. I had cut slightly oversized holes into the plasterboard previously with a hole cutter. I then put a nut on each rod to take the load and simply bolted the mounting plate on. It looks very neat and is very secure.

    EffTee
     
  29. Dick Scratcher

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    Actually no! I used Rawlplug Self-Drive Plasterboard Fixings. They come in various types depending on the loading that they will bear. Common types are usually plastic but the heavier duty types are cast aluminium which I used due to the thickness of the plasterboard. They basically screw in whilst cutting a very coarse thread into the material. Thats it!

    I've just nipped back into the bedroom and it's still on the wall :smashin:
     
  30. philipb

    philipb
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    Thanks guys.

    I spoke to British Gypsum's technical boys this afternoon, and their advice - DO NOT FIX TO THE PLASTERBOARD. They advise fix through the dabs into the breezeblock.

    Dick - I know the things you mean.

    Efftee - looks like you've done what the British Gypsum guy recommends.

    Now sods law being what it is, you just know that the holes on the Unicol backplate will not all line up with the dabs but some should. I'm thinking i will mount through the dabs where I can, and elsewhere use Efftee's method and/or Dick's method.

    Efftee - where did you get the fixings. Can you remember who makes/supplies them?

    BTW - anything better than the Unicol bracket?

    Dick - what was that noise from the bedroom?;)
     

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