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bahamabay08 10-07-2012 01:25 PM

Victorian cottage - are exposed oak beams true to period?
Hi - I have some steel tie rods, approx 1" in diameter, installed from front to back of my Victorian terraced cottage, which are not concealed in any way and are quite unsightly. I accept that I cannot remove them without putting the exterior walls at risk of collapse, so I am considering using hollowed out (relatively small) oak beams to cover them up. I am not sure if this would be being 'true' to the victorian period - although I have some experience at renovating, I am not too familiar with what woud be in keeping with a workers cottage, as opposed to a grand victorian house. There are a few exposed (original) beams in the lounge, so I am thinking it might be OK to do this, but would appreciate any advice on whether this would be a mistake? Many thanks!

kwikfishron 10-07-2012 02:09 PM

Not sure how much you're willing to put into it but it could be the beginning of a coffered ceiling.

joecaption 10-07-2012 02:59 PM

Without some pictures it's hard to know how to cover them up.

mae-ling 10-07-2012 03:34 PM

Do you have a historical society where you are? Restriction on what you can and can not do?

BigJim 10-07-2012 05:05 PM


Originally Posted by mae-ling (Post 1025984)
Do you have a historical society where you are? Restriction on what you can and can not do?

The historic districts I worked in in West Tennessee, were only interested mainly in the exterior of the homes remaining true to historic.

A few pictures may be of help, it is hard to know what the inside of your home looks like.

bahamabay08 10-08-2012 03:13 PM

Thanks - unfortunately, my house is not the grand proportioned rooms that most people associate with the period. It is a 'bijou' cottage, so the coffered ceiling theme would not really work, lovely, though they are!

bahamabay08 10-08-2012 03:23 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Thanks to all who replied. Although I live in a conservation area, my house is not a listed building, so I have a relatively free licence to make interior changes, it's just the exterior that I cannot change.

I have attached a couple of pictures of the offending rods!

BigJim 10-08-2012 04:22 PM

If you could find some old hand hewn, aged beams and hollow them out on the back, would look good. I don't understand the one cable that isn't against the ceiling though.

user1007 10-08-2012 04:55 PM

There must by an hysterical/historical society or even library archivist near you. With a little schmoozing in the latter case I have been able to find a surprising number of original drawings for places I worked on or almost exact to them.

If faux beams make you happy? Go for it. My guess they would not have been included. I certainly would not hollow out nice oak though. Frame the rods and use veneered plywood and trim. Don't overscale this faux beams or things will most certainly not look Victorian and will look out of scale.

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