I need a mason or fireplace guy in the Valley.

Home improvement Q&A, pictures and news fro Mid Century Modern Homes and Houses(NOT for Real Estate)

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paulv
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I need a mason or fireplace guy in the Valley.

Postby paulv » Thu Aug 27, 2009 1:19 pm

I need to undo some terrible river rock veneer that someone placed on top of the original brick fireplace. Not only will the veneer need to be taken off but i need to find a period correct rock to replace it with. I can only assume the brick underneath will be destroyed. The new rock should match the rock around the front door. The house is in Woodland Hills and I believe the architect was Charles Dubois. Does anyone have a recommendation?

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SleazyG
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Postby SleazyG » Sat Aug 29, 2009 1:01 pm

Your brick underneath the stone veneer may or may not be destroyed after veneer removal. I don't know if there's any way to find out other than popping a few stones off and seeing what happens. In any case, I would budget for having to re-veneer the brick and if you don't have to re-veneer, prepare for a lot of hard work scraping and brushing the mortar off the salvaged brick.

There are a couple of options for mid-century-appropriate stone veneer, but I don't know if you'll be able to match the rock around your front door. What is the rock around your front door? Is is drift-stone?

I recently gutted a horrible, 1980's fireplace surround constructed of drywall (what a fire hazard) and replaced it with Pro-Fit Ledgestone by Cultured Stone Veneer. I was reluctant to use Pro-Fit Ledgestone because it's so ubiquitous nowadays, i.e. it's used as wainscoting on every Del Taco in Southern California. But the results are nice and it looks more appropriate than what was there. You can see pics at this blog posting.



What I see a lot on mid-century homes and business in Los Angeles is white or cream colored "castle" stone with dark mortar joints. I wish I would've used that instead of Pro-Fit Ledgestone. Look at the stone color called "Austin" via the link below. I think that would be very period-appropriate. In fact, it looks almost exactly like the stone on the exterior of the Modernica showroom on Beverly Blvd.



Here are some other stone veneer manufacturers:



If you're looking for a mason or just want to investigate products more, (definitely see your exact product choice in person before ordering. I made the mistake of trusting the pictures on the Internet) head on down to the Prime Building Materials showroom in North Hollywood.



Prime carries almost every type of stone veneer, including real stone (not the cement products linked to above), but real stone veneer is much more expensive.

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SleazyG
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Postby SleazyG » Sat Aug 29, 2009 1:07 pm


streinen
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Postby streinen » Sun Aug 30, 2009 8:32 pm

paulv--

You may find that under your river rock veneer is actually the very same stone that surrounds your front door. If you live in a Woodland West (and it sounds like you do), it was very common for the fireplace material to match that of the masonry surrounding the side/top of the front door. Such is the case with my house, a 1960 Dubois designed home in the Woodland West tract. Whatever the case, I agree that you should do a little experimenting and try to take some of the veneer down. Good luck!

paulv
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Postby paulv » Mon Aug 31, 2009 8:49 am

I was able to pry some off and there's brick underneath, and it seems like it will be mostly destroyed because of the veneer. So I'm planning on taking off the veneer and replacing it with some other rock. But I'm skeptical on how real and period correct a manufactured stone will look. Does any one still sell vintage looking rock?

streinen
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Postby streinen » Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:53 pm

If you post a pic of the stone on the front of your home someone on the board will probably be able to recognize it by name. Many Southern California homes of the era utilized stone known as Palos Verde Stone (quarry in Palos Verdes). That exact stone is still being quarried to this day, I believe. You would need to enlist a very skilled mason to do the job, but they are out there and, like everything else these days, probably more available and more affordable than they've ever been.

A less costly route might be to hire a mason to create a veneer out of concrete blocks (by sawing the blocks in half to lessen the depth). You would have many options for the blocks--square, rectangle, etc, that would feel more modern than brick.

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SleazyG
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Postby SleazyG » Wed Sep 02, 2009 1:16 pm


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nichols
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Postby nichols » Wed Sep 02, 2009 2:17 pm


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nichols
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Postby nichols » Wed Sep 02, 2009 2:24 pm

Hey! Mr. Sleazy!

Mr. Wayne McAllister used VERY high quality materials in his Bob's Big Boy restaurants. All the stone at Toluca Lake, for example, was organic.

Image
(Tropico Station)

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nichols
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Postby nichols » Wed Sep 02, 2009 2:28 pm

Maybe you're thinking of this synthetic rock that was popular on the other coast, formstone.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formstone

California coffee shops were all of the highest quality, mixing stone, steel, glass and commissioned artwork into a structurally gymnastic symphony on par with any residential architecture of the period.


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