Fireplace Screen: Design Cut Build S2E1

Discussion in 'DIY Projects' started by LECS Mark, May 16, 2017.

  1. LECS Mark

    LECS Mark Well-Known Member Staff Member

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    Welcome to Season 2 of our Design Cut Build video series! We kicked off the new season by building this fireplace screen! We gave a little regional highlight by implementing Lake Tahoe at the center of the design. Fireplace screens are traditionally only three pieces, with the outside edges being mounted on hinges; however, embers can still escape from the top of this design, so we opted for the four sided screen that would mount up flush with the fireplace. But this design was a little more difficult to achieve.
    3D Screen.JPG
    Before I got to the fun part of designing the "art" side of the screen, I had to get dimensions and make sure that the geometry was sound. I used a 3D CAD software to do this. So the good news is that all of the math is already done for you! Each of the sides are attached below, but the final design ended up being 41" x 30" x 7". Once we had the dimensions we were ready to start importing images into Torchmate CAD.
    Design Capture.JPG
    This portion took a little longer than I thought it would, mostly because the pine needles had to be designed from scratch. I must admit that my first trial of cutting out the design resulted in some of the pine needles falling off, so I had to make them all uniform and larger than I wanted. But it ended up looking great! The silhouette images I found on the internet worked really well for the design I had in mind.
    Torchmate X Cutting Screen.PNG
    We cut the design out of 3/16" HRPO mild steel on the Torchmate X table; the thickness of steel might have been a little overkill, but we have a ton of it in our facility and I think it really added to the stability of the artwork. We polished it up and tacked together the expanded metal to the back. We double layered, both vertically and horizontally the expanded metal. One layer wouldn't have been dense enough to prevent any embers, and doing it vertically and horizontally made it look really interesting. And it was cheap!
    Expanded Metal.PNG
    We looked at a few manufacturers of expanded metal online, and even considered buying some wire mesh. All of it was very expensive though! If any of you have any suggestions of some alternatives that we could have used, feel free to comment below! We also thought it would have been really cool looking to patina the expanded metal in a copper or blue, but we couldn't figure out how to attach it to the back. We thought it wouldn't adhere as well if we welded through the patina and it had a risk of showing through the black paint on the front. If you have any other ideas for adhering the expanded metal once it's already been painted or had the patina applied, let us know below!

    Thanks for watching guys! A new video and build thread will be up next Tuesday!
     

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    Last edited: May 16, 2017
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  2. sldrummer

    sldrummer Member

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    Good job guys! That looks great. Talk about creativity!
     
  3. Randy Dobbins

    Randy Dobbins Member

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    quick question, why didn't you cut the expanded metal on the table---would a been a cool way to show off that you can do that.
     
  4. nwaPLASMA

    nwaPLASMA Well-Known Member

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    Good job smokey!
     
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  5. LECS Mark

    LECS Mark Well-Known Member Staff Member

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    You know, I've never tried cutting expanded metal, but I didn't particularly want to open up that can of worms in a public-facing YouTube video. Maybe we'll try it out for some R&D.
     
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