Sandstone cottage name insetting into existing sandstone lintel.


Old 06-28-12, 06:40 PM
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Sandstone cottage name insetting into existing sandstone lintel.

Hi, I am new on the forum.
I have a job which is worrying me a little, I have a sandstone cottage name which I want to inset into an existing lintel above the front door(see pic)

The piece of stone is 30x7inches and 5inches deep, it needs to be flush with the existing stonework. I am planning on chopping out a space for it but am worried it may affect the structural job the lintel is doing. I don't know exactly how thick the lintel is but am assuming it is at least 12inches. Any thoughts?

Also to fix it in place I was going to either bed it in with hidden dowels (threaded steel bar) coming into either end, or have maybe 4 dowels coming out of the back and use resin to fix it in place.

Any thoughts or tips in this would be much appreciated.

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Old 06-28-12, 09:26 PM
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You have a right to be suffering from "worrying me a little." That chunk of stone you want to install above the doorway will weigh about 90 lb. (based on a density of 140 lb./c.f. and a volume of 0.63 c.f.), which is more than enough to instantly kill anyone who happens to be under it should it become loose and fall on them. And compromising the integrity of the existing lintel is also "iffy," as it is carrying a tremendous amount of load from the stonework above it.

If I were wanting to do this, I would first determine the dimensions of the lintel, its make-up (type of stone, its physical characteristics, and whether it's completely sound or has any flaws/fractures in it), and then do a stress analysis to determine if it can continue to carry the load above it should almost half of its mass be eliminated by the drastic retrofitting being proposed. If you're not qualified to do the foregoing, you would do well to pay an engineer to do it for you.

A preferable alternative (meaning less risky and possibly a bit less expensive) would be to install a stout, steel lintel in front of the existing stone members, doweled into the doorway's side columns with epoxied rebar. A few complementary stone members could be fashioned into a faux archway adjacent to the sandstone piece, which could all be attached to the new lintel with welded/doweled steel anchors, with little or no chance of ever coming loose. A neutral paint job on the lintel (with primer) would make it almost invisible, while the relief effect would appear quite natural.
Old 06-29-12, 07:33 AM
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what about inserting the sandstone cottage name into the stone work directly above the existing lintel. The 5" thick sandstone with the name on it would sit directly above the lintel and probably be slightly shorter on each side by 8" to 12". This might give the lintel a stepped pyramid look and you would only be removing some of the stone rather than reducing the effective size of your lintel. You could even complete the ziggurat look by placing a third standstone piece on top of that that is about 20" wide or so and maybe adding a house number or something similar. (Maybe that third piece would be a bit much?)
Old 06-29-12, 11:33 AM
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Thanks guys,

I have reduced the thickness of the piece to 2.5 inches, as 5 was overkill i think!

I'm hoping this won't affect the lintel in the same way.
Old 06-29-12, 01:16 PM
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Why not carve it into the existing lintel. While not something I have ever done if I remember correctly it can be done with stencils and sand blasting. If the lintel is sealed you would need to reseal it after blasting.

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