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mmhendrie 04-17-2013 12:02 PM

covering a flush beam

The entryway/header into my living room has an exposed beam, probably 6 feet long, that's basically flush with the surrounding walls on both sides. The beam is ugly - its a structural grade wood, and really shouldn't be exposed. It is structural, so can't be removed. It also doesn't go with the rest of the house, which doesn't have similar features - so all in all, its a bit of an eye-sore.

I'd like to cover it. But, with it being virtually flush to the walls, i can't drywall around it. Can I put mud on it? Will the mud adhere properly? Will it crack over time? Fall off even? Perhaps fiberglass tape the whole beam and then mud? The beams been exposed since the late 1950's if that makes a difference. Has anyone done this before?

Greatly appreciate any help with this!

joecaption 04-17-2013 12:08 PM

Can you hold it closer to the screen, can not see it from here.

hammerlane 04-17-2013 12:10 PM

post a photo when you get a chance. Easier to get idead when you can see the problem.

mmhendrie 04-18-2013 12:49 AM

ok folks, a couple of pics!
2 Attachment(s)
Attachment 69360

Attachment 69361

princelake 04-18-2013 05:13 PM

the only thing i can think of is going over the walls with another layer of drywall so you can drywall the beam. im not sure how talented you are at drywalling but you could make a some art and do some kind of design. anybody else have a better idea? this is a tough one.

chemman 04-18-2013 08:09 PM

Something doesn't seem right here. Are you sure it's structural? The way the drywall and the beam are even on the wall makes it seem decorative.:huh:

Sir MixAlot 04-18-2013 08:45 PM

Looks like there some modifying going on. Whats with the new cornerbead?
What was attached to the bottom of that beam? :detective:

thatbobguy 04-18-2013 09:00 PM

First of all, are you SURE it's structural? Just because we think it looks like crap doesn't mean someone didn't find it charmingly decorative.

A structural member wouldn't be level with the drywall, unless it was faced with wood the thickness of the dw, right?

So check to see if it's wrapped with 1/2" mitered ply - if so, pry it off and replace with dw.

And if structural. it would continue on both sides of the doorway under the dw - drill a hole and see.

If all the above indicate that it's there to stay, you can always do something crazy like sanding, priming, corner-beading, taping and finishing with joint compound!

I just pulled down a plywood wall that was taped and finished to blend into an adjacent drywall partition - it had stood since 1988 with no cracking and there was no evidence it wasn't all drywall.

Gary in WA 04-19-2013 12:07 AM

Another pic from the attic over the top of the beam would help.... another 8' away from the beam, also. Is there a 1/2 wall under the beam and you removed two spindles for decoration already? How thick is the drywall at the end of the beam, above the new corner bead, as said?


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