Perfect Hand Hewn Mantel Shelf for Bump Out Fireplace (MINUTE-RICE)

Additional information

Weight 90 lbs
Dimensions 77.5 × 5 × 10 in



Size Category:     



1 in stock

Product Description

Available! 10/3/2021 – Fantastic Hand-hewn Mantel Shelf.

We cut an old 1800s vintage hand-hewn 10×10 barn beam in half to create a great mantel shelf. However, as often happens with Red Oak, we stumbled across a rotten spot. We have filled the hole with epoxy, but it really doesn’t make the greatest floating or free-standing shelf. It would be ideal for a brick or stone bump-out fireplace where the cut side could be face down with only an inch or two of reveal overhanging the masonry.

The mantel has been sanded, but there has been no finish applied. We splashed mineral spirits on to give you a sense of our typical finish, but that is certainly not the only way to go. We can keep it close to the natural color with a hand-waxed finish, or we could play with some stains. The unfinished pictures are first, followed by a few with mineral spirits

This really is an exceptional piece. The hand hewing is smooth and flat with crisp corners. I’d imagine that they took several passes with different tools such as a broad ax followed up with an adz to create this nice smooth surface. It is a sign of fine craftsmanship. Even as “just a building,” the men took pride in their work.

The top face has one little mortise pocket (where another beam joined with this one) that has been filled. See if you can find it. The cool thing is that there are actually original scribe marks where the craftsman wanted to place the mortise pocket.

The original beam came from an old barn in Southwest Wisconsin. It is amazing to think that this is the real thing from early American settlers. It probably dates back to the late 1800s. We purchased this wood from an Amish gentleman who lives out in the rolling hills of the area. That area is still dotted with small farms where the cows and other livestock wander out in the corrals and fields. It’s not like the modern farms that we see by our place in Minnesota with hundreds of cows stuffed in a tin building. It is great to see agriculture the way that I remember it as a kid.

The ends of the mantel are currently unfinished. Once we have an exact size from you, we can cut, sand, and finish the ends. We can cut this mantel shorter and refinish the ends for an additional for no additional cost.

It can be shipped anywhere in the lower 48 states via FedEx Gnd for $125

About the tag – Minute Rice –  I think that this ad is from the 1960s. It reads, “Fix it with tomato juice instead of water — see the rosy-red rice you get!” I think this is right up there with putting things (including meat) in Jello. I don’t think I’m a fan.

More Mantel Inventory

You can shop some available mantel beams and thinner mantel shelves on this website. 

However, our website here only contains a small number of all of the mantels that we have in stock.
We are literally a mom-and-pop shop that does lots of custom work. We often just don’t quite find enough time to update this website regularly.
We have nearly 150 finished mantels and another 500 or so unfinished pieces in stock at any time that can be viewed with other links. 

We also do lots of custom work. If we understand what you are seeking, we can find and create that magic piece.

Please contact us for a full list and personal recommendations. We’re happy to chat and find a great piece for you.

We work with a great local blacksmith to add metal straps and other ornamentation to our mantels. He is the real deal — coal forged and hand hammered. The metalwork has great color and tight fit. Nothing machined. We can start with a finished mantel you find on our site, or we can start with raw stock for more options.

Here are a few examples of the hundreds that we have crafted over the years. We can work together to create something unique. You can also browse our Mantels with Metalwork page.

Mantel with metal rings  Fireplace Mantel with Metal Cross 

In most cases, no special and expensive brackets are required — just some lag screws. The different approaches outlined are very strong, simple, and economical. Take a look at our mantel installation tips.

Contact us via email at or call 612-281-9330.