- Product Wood: White Oak
- Product Texture: Hand Hewn
- Product Color: Medium
- Product Mantel Type Mantel Beam (more square-like)
- Product Size: 91 inches and over
–ON HOLD FOR ROD in California 10/26/2016–
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This is a really nice hand hewn fireplace mantel beam. The front face has some curious, variable color ranging from a a yellowish-tan, right up through sienna brown, and black nail stains. The hand hewing (those marks made from an original settler swinging an axe in the 1800s) is nice — not overly strong and not overly light. There are some old powder post beetle trails in there. We’ve kiln treated the beam, so there is no risk that they are still around.
The top side has much more even color but sports a line of lighter colored sapwood along the back edge. There’s some pleasant checking (cracking) along with an abundance of ax marks.
The bottom of the mantel is much lighter in color. It is slightly tapered on both edges — the remains of the original round tree edges. Along those edges, there is visible lighter colored sapwood (the wood that runs right beneath the bark).
On the end grain (on the photos of the tape measure), you can see how incredibly tight the these growth rings are on this piece. There as some areas there that look like really tough drought years. On a quick count, I spied about 85 growth rings. Assuming this building was build in the late 1800s, this tree could have very well been born in the 1700s. In Wisconsin, that mean that American Indians were really the only only human inhabitants of the area. On the East coast, the Revolutionary war had probably just come to a close. (I tried to look up a historic rainfall chart, but it only goes back to 1885 — about when this tree was cut).
Note, the mantel had a little twist. We cut the back and the top — keeping those faces nearly perpendicular and averaging out the twist as much as possible. This is a nice beam. I would not hesitate in the least on this one.
The color on this mantel is all natural. We apply a hardwax oil on the mantel to enrich the color, but we do not add any additional stain.
This mantel beam came from a late 1800s vintage barn near Southwest Wisconsin — out in the beautiful rolling hills. It is always nice to head out to this part of the country. You still see lots of small family farms with animals still out in the pastures. It is a welcome relief from the industrial farming that we see in our parts.
This is a gorgeous beam. It’s not going to last long on the website.
This beam is priced at $115/LF. We can cut the beam down to any length and reduce the price by $9.58 per inch, up to a maximum discount of $115. At it’s full size, it is 195lbs. It would need to ship truck freight for $200. If we cut it down to about 66 inches, we should be able to ship via FedEx Gnd for $65.
The tag— “One little whisper shattered my pride.” It is advertisement for a 1947 edition of the Saturday Evening Post for Lifebouy (deodorant) soap.