Guys, give me a large enough cleat and a notched trowel to apply the
adhesive, and the ONLY purpose of the fasteners is to hold the cleat
snug while the adhesive cures.
After the adhesive cures, remove the fasteners and plug the holes if
There purpose has been served.
BTW, SFWIW, major difference between Toggle and Molly bolts in my part
of the country.
That I may well have to stand corrected is a distinct possibility, due to my
coonass upbringing where the translation doesn't always coincide with the
The ones I'm talking about are the ones with the "wings on springs" that pop
out after being poked through a pre-drilled hole. They are by far the
strongest "wall anchors".
Reflecting on it, they are more "toggle" like in their description, so
Boudreau probably don't know what da hell he talking about, him.
Those are "toggle bolts".
I try to avoid them at all costs.
They require a large clearance hole to install, and are a single use
"Molly Bolts" have a stamped steel cage around the self contained
screw that expands and grabs the back side of the drywall when snugged
Lighter duty than toggle bolts but very useful for hanging full length
draw drapes for example, and they are reusuable.
I should have elaborated a bit...
The wall is garden variety drywall.
The mantle itself is 8" deep and about 4" thick. It's done with a torsion
box, so it's not solid cherry, but it sure ain't balsa wood. It's the
cantilever force I'm concerned about. That's a lot of weight hanging as far
as 8" out from the wall, with only 4" of surface area against it. I'm not
sure that adhesive would be much of an aid in this case. The cleat itself is
Lee Valley's aluminium Z-clips
two sections of 2' each. It's not very wide, but I reckon I could drill
pairs of holes instead of singles in each location, but maybe not #14.
I suppose it is a bit late for this idea, but I would have approached
it a little differently.
I would have built a torsion box with a tapered (45-degree) removable
front and screwed the back part of the box directly (and flush) into
the studs, with a long screwdriver, and then re-inserted the front
'panel'.... even before applying the finish....maybe.
Those cleats are going to keep your box away from the wall, aren't
they? Or are you letting them in?
(I'm not trying to belabour a point here, but I do run into these
situations, so I'm keeping an eye on this thread.)
I'd forget the Lee Valley stuff and build an exposed cleat at least 8"
high with a reverse 45 on top which then gets glued to the dry wall.
Using a large cleat will spread the load.
Probably require some time back on the drawing board, but worth it.
I would have loved to have done that, and was going to to begin with,
but they decided they really didn't want the mantle to be thicker than
4", and swore up and down they would never put anything heavy on it.
They were also sure the studs were wood, until I insisted they verify
with the builder.
Oh well, maybe I'll suggest they hang it from the cathedral ceiling
with very long wires....
If you use the French cleat(s) with as many screws into the studs as you can
get with self tapping screws, and also fastened to the sheetrock with
"toggle bolts" in between the metal studs, AND, if possible, some
construction adhesive to bond the back of the mantel to the drywall, you
should be in pretty good shape.
Even without the construction adhesive, and providing all your screws prove
to have a solid hold, my estimation from your description thus far is that
you'll be just fine.
Well, that's exactly what I was thinking, and I think they would. A
nice, matching cleat visible behind and below the mantle itself could
actually look OK and be a pretty good solution. The back of the thing
is recessed 1/4" to accommodate the Z-clips, as is the back edge of
the bottom, but I could fairly easily build up the back edges of the
top and sides by another 1/2" to shroud the cleat, maybe in walnut or
some other accent wood.
This can definitely be saved...I think...
I built a kitchen table, per request of a dear client of mine, which
protruded 8 feet from the wall of her kitchen, no support, and 28"
wide. It became a torsion box, Baltic birch and WEST epoxy. The anchor
inside the wall was a simple doubling up of baltic birch.
*I* figured, that if that stuff was good enough for Mosquito bomber,
it was okay for my application.
When *I* sat on the end of that table with my ample weight, the
downward deflection was somewhere between 3/8 and 1/2 inches. It was
only 3" thick.
I luuuuuv torsion boxes.
Well, as an update for them what's interested, I'm going to attach a wide
cleat to the wall, glued, screwed, toggled, etc and hang the mantle on that.
The twist is that the visible edges of the cleat will be bevelled, and the
cleat will be painted same colour as the wall. That way, rather than looking
like a piece of wood fastened to the wall, it will look more like wall
feature. It will aslo be much easier to hide the bolt and screw heads, as
they will be countersunk, filled, and painted.
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