Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Redecorating Advice Needed

Okay, Quangsters, I have a question that I am hoping you can answer for me.  We moved into The Toothpaste House about ten months ago. Previous tenants thoughtfully installed a wood-burning stove. It's been a lifesaver this year since Computer Geek has been out of a job and we have used the stove as our sole source of heat.


...this is the problem we have. Beautiful, eh?  Not so much.

We are not sure how to make this area look a little more civilized. As you can see, the paneling has been removed in order to make room for this pipe. We are cautious about applying anything because we are not sure what cover materials and adhesive to use to make it fire-resistant. Explosions during the night mess with my sleep.

Does anyone have any experience dealing with this type of problem?


  1. Hmmm Randy...I'm stumped. I promise to try and think of a solution and get back to you. I have a few crafty friends who may have an idea or two.

  2. Ooops..sorry. I can't believe that I wrote "Randy" instead of "Randi". Can you tell that I'm punchy from jury duty? Sorry my dear friend Randi!!!

  3. septembermom: So many people spell my name as "Randy" that I now just look right over it without noticing! No worries! I also answer to Brandy, Randall, Randalina, Sandy, Grandma (even if I'm not) and Randie. I'm glad to hear jury duty is over, but sorry to hear it didn't turn out like you had hoped. So much work to have it end like that. But I'm happy to hear that you are back in blogland--they kept you away from us for far too long!

  4. Hi Randi! You have me stumped on this. If anything I would try to paint it the same color as the wall, perhaps even get new piece and put it over the existing and make it even and nice at the bottom. You got me on this one. Hope all is well otherwise. XO

  5. Remember when that dryer exploded in the basement at the apartments.

    Also she answers to "Randi is too hot to handle!"

  6. Debbie: I am stumped as well. I hadn't thought about painting it though. I will keep that open as an option. Thanks for the suggestions!

    Levizmom: Yes, I do remember the dryer incident. I thought we were homeless for sure that night. No comment on the "Too hot to handle." But I will get even.

  7. The Unc has a couple of suggestions. First, where the stovepipe enters the "wall" there is a white colored "plate." What is that plate made of- if it's painted wood that's a fire hazard.
    You might want to take a picture of this to a home supply store to see if they have small samples of a cement board; or, if you have a fireplace store nearby,they probably would have similar material to replace the wooden plate. If you have an old timey hardware store, they might have a metal "collar" that could be used to separate the pipe from the wall. You might find something on the internet that deals with accessories to a "Franklin Stove." Good Luck! The Unc

  8. Hmmm... Don't heating stoves need a fireproof backing for the full length of the wall behind it? Danny has a backing behind his that he eventually plans on covering with something like river rock, or brick. River rock is my personal favorite. Can you take anything out of rent to do something with it? - Camilla

  9. Hi Randi
    I would certainly remove the backing...all of it (it looks very suspect) then fit a 90 from the fire back as far as you can...perhaps right into the breast cavity beyond the panel and then box it with regulation fire resistant sheeting. The stuff we use here can be easily cut, drilled and screwed before facing with a nicer finish. It looks very much like asbestos but isn't, of course. The flu pipe needs to be sound all the way out of the property. In fact, I would remove the flu anyway and inspect it to see what the resin buildup is like as a result of burning high glue content soft woods. If it is clogged, there is a real danger of fire. Alternatively you can get special blocks to burn (they create enough intense heat to burn off the resin safely), but I would remove the material around that entry point first.

    Another option would be to make a feature of the flu by building a brick wall backing directly behind the flu. This would provide a much safer entry for the flu at the top.

    Either way, remove that wood panel.

  10. If you want a modern look, perhaps you can face your wood panel with a stainless steel sheet.

    It's difficult to make suggestions when you can't see everything, but how about inviting friends over for a party and ask them to make suggestions to solve your problem.

  11. Auntie M., Unc., Camilla, and Ken: Thank you so much for all your valuable suggestions. You've given us a lot to go on and we really appreciate your thoughts. I'm hoping to post a much better picture soon. Thank you for sharing your expertise and perspective. And Ken, when I have that party, you're all invited!


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