Railway sleeper fire surround
March 24, 2014 in Design Dilemma
I'm going to be making a fire surround from reclaimed railway sleepers- not just a shelf above the fireplace but also on both sides. Very excited.

Has anyone done/ seen this before? Would love to see some examples for inspiration.
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Historically, railway sleepers were heavily impregnated with some delightfully toxic goops to ensure their longevity: not, perhaps, the nicest fumes to be inhaling as you sit by your fire, I'm afraid.

Maybe go to your local architectural reclamation people and buy some reclaimed barn timbers? Similar in heft, and no nasty toxins, just healthy farm grime which can be hosed and scrubbed off!
March 24, 2014 at 3:02pm   
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Hi bubblyjock, I just had a look at some articles after posting and saw the majority are impregnated with creosote :( not sure whether I can get barn timbers but I'll have a look. I guess the next question would be to see if I could perform some sort of reparation treatment to stop the sleepers seeping chemicals...
March 24, 2014 at 3:14pm   
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Patricia Colwell
Not in the house buddy, way too toxic. Maybe try and find some big timbers from a demolition site.
March 24, 2014 at 4:14pm     
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Mark Bischak, Architect
Do you know how a train's plumbing works? Go for the barn wood.
March 24, 2014 at 4:52pm     
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Look online at classifieds such as Kijiji or Craigslist for barn timbers. Or, as I suggested, ask around your local architectural reclamation people.
March 25, 2014 at 12:32pm   
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