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How to Install Versetta Stone on a Fireplace: A Helpful Illustrated Guide

by Ryan Matheson

Installing Versetta Stone For Fireplaces:
A Helpful Illustrated Guide

Versetta Stone on Fireplace applications

Versetta stone can add a rustic, hefty-looking charm to your indoor fireplace. This construction stone is concrete based, joined with galvanized metal extension tabs for quick installation. Unlike other veneer stone products, Versetta is a real stone and not made of vinyl or plastic. This panel based system can be easily installed like siding without the use of mortar, a mason, or experiencing the mess of traditional construction stone. Many projects can be completed over a weekend. 

The Versetta Stone system is manufactured by Boral, a company trusted for manufacturing a carpenter-friendly product that saves labor and time while maintaining the aesthetic that is brought about by natural stones.

This stone can be installed anywhere in the house, but in today’s guide, we are going to cover how you can install it on your indoor fireplace.

Before we get started, it is important to know that Versetta stone is available in six colors and two profiles and comes with a full line of fittings that can be found here.

So, let’s get started!  

Pre-Project Inspiration

Versetta Stone Fireplace with Sand White color
Versetta Stone on Fireplace Mission Pointe Color
Versetta Stone Deck Fireplace Plum Creek Color

Tools Required

To install Versetta stone on your fireplace, you will need to have a few tools. These tools include a hammer drill with masonry bit (typically 3/16 drill bit), impact driver, hand grinder, masonry saw, or wet saw with diamond blade, laser level, chalk line, tape measure, tin snips, and a brush.

The impact driver might be one of the most helpful tools for this type of project as it enables you to place the fasteners quickly. 

 it's recommended to have some textured finishing adhesive to hide any fasteners, or large gaps in between panels. 

Fasteners

For fireplace applications where there is existing stone, CMU Block, Concrete, or Brick it is recommended to purchase Tapcon Flat Head Concrete Anchors with at least 1" of penetration into the masonry. 

When calculating how many fasteners you will need for a project a good rule of thumb is 4 fasteners per panel, or 2 fasteners for every square foot of the project.  For portions of the installation that are not into masonry or brick, panels greater than 18" long should have 2 of the 4 fasteners into framing. Add 1 additional fastener if only one framing (stud) location occurs behind the panel.  

Use the hammer drill rather than a standard drill when connecting to stone, or masonry surface. 

NOTE -When using concrete anchors you can use 3 instead of the standard 4 per panel when anchors are located one at each end and the third in the center of the panel. 

Tapcon Concrete Anchors used with Versetta Stone

Finishing Adhesive

Versetta Stone Finishing Adhesive Charcoal and Taupe

It’s recommended to use Versetta's textured finishing adhesive for fireplace installation or any installation that has a numerous smaller cut panels.

This multipurpose structural adhesive and finishing sealant is designed for bonding and finishing joints on Versetta stone mortarless stone veneer panels.

The adhesive forms a strong elastic seal with a coarse texture that matches the Versetta stone panels and its accessories. Moreover, it bonds well with metal, lathe, drywall or partial Versetta panels.

For areas where you’ve used finishing adhesive to fills large gaps or cracks its best to use a grinder on a partial Versetta panel to cover the adhesive with stone dust. This will cling to the adhesive and look natural.

Preparing of the Fireplace

For the Versetta stone to properly adhere to the surface it must be free of any loose material such as debris, dirt, and mortar flaking.

After cleaning the fireplace you will likely want to put wood over the existing stone or brick, so that the panels can be installed on a flat surface and lay flush. OSB or plywood can be placed over the fireplace by first framing over the existing material and attaching the framing directly to the underlying fireplace.  Masonry screw should be used when fastening the wood to a stone material. 

Components of the Versetta Stone system

There are 4 components of the Versetta Stone system for fireplace installation. 

  • Standard Flat Panels 8" x 36" (2 sq ft/panel)
  • Universal Corner Panels 8" x 36" (2 sq ft/panel)
  • Vinyl Starter Strip (Taupe or Charcoal)
  • Finishing Adhesive (Taupe or Charcoal)

Standard Flat Panel

Versetta Stone Standard Flat Panel

Corner Panel

Versetta Stone Corner Panel

Starter Strip (Taupe)

Versetta Stone Starter Strip Taupe Color

Finishing Adhesive

Boral Versetta Stone Finishing Adhesive

Measuring Versetta Stone Material

Measuring the material is a quick and easy process that will help you determine the amount of flat and corner panels needed for your project. Use Figure A as a reference.
Note we are only measuring the front face of the fireplace, in reality you would account for material on the sides as well. 

Total square footage of surface area to be covered.
Width x Height
Figure A example  total area on the front of a fireplace.
Fig A above the mantle: 5' x 5.5' = 27.5 sq. ft
Fig A below the mantle: 5' x 2.8' = 14 sq. ft
Total: 41.5 sq. ft Net Wall Area of paneling required

Total number of Corner Panels needed:
Calculate the vertical height and corner panels and subtract them from total area. 

Vertical corner coverage = corner height (in feet) x 0.75 
Fig A Corner Height: (5.5' + 2.8') = 8.3'
8.3' x .75 = 6.225' 
Corner Panel Coverage = # of Corners (2) x vertical corner coverage
Fig A Corner Panel Coverage: 6.225' x 2 corners = 12.45' sq. ft

Total Corner Panel Needed: Corner Panel Coverage / area of a panel (2 sq ft)
12.45'/ 2 = 6.225 rounded up to 7 Corner Panels

Flat Panel Area = Net Wall Area - Corner Panel Coverage
Fig A Flat Panel Area: 41.5'-12.45' = 29.05'

# of Flat Panels: Flat Panel Area / area of a panel (2 sq ft) 
Fig A Flat Panel Area: 29.05' / 2 = 14.525 rounded up to 15 Flat Panels

Total # Corner Panels = 7 panels
Total # Flat Panels = 15 panels

*If you'd rather have us provide a quote then feel free to use our Versetta Stone Quote Request Form Button Below.

Figure A - Sample Fireplace

Versetta Stone Fireplace measurements

A Scrap Factor should be included in material calculations to account for waste and mis-cuts on panels. Generally 5–10% is a good starting place, however as you become more familiar with the product you may not need as much.

Click here for the Versetta Quote Request Form and one of our Versetta Stone Specialists will contact you

Getting Started - Overview 

  • Measure and level a start line at the base of the wall. This is where your starter strip will go and creates a level and plumb base. Fasten the Starter Strip and begin your wall.  

Starter strip may not be required in all fireplace installations, wall distances shorter than 3' long typically do not require starter strip.  Contact a Versetta Stone specialist to confirm.

  • Cut a full corner into 2 pieces at a random length, but not leaving any single piece shorter than 8 inches long. See panel cutting tips below for how to cut a partial panel to avoid vertical joints. 
  • Start at a corner bottom side of your fireplace placing a (cut) universal corner panel and work your way across the face using flat panels. Stagger all panel courses to avoid alignment of any vertical joints. Cut corner panels typically provide the necessary stagger.  
  • place panels nail flange up into the starter strip. Any cut panel faces should be directed away from the corner ends. 
Versetta Stone Installation on a Fireplace
  • Remove the standard flat panel side tongue so that the flat panel can seat tightly against the universal corner. Panels are lapped in shingle fashion, so that tongue seats completely in groove.
  • position second panel into the starter strip and slide to nest end tabs next to the first panel.
  • Fasteners are to be driven straight and flush through the metal tabs into the framing or masonry behind.
  • Continue across face of wall until another cut corner panel is required for the edges. 
  • Repeat this process for the entire wall. 
  • Make some fine adjustments of both pieces in order to get the perfect fit.
  • Apply finishing adhesive in any large gaps.

How to Cut Panels

  • Use the tools recommended above to cut the panels. It is advisable to use diamond tipped, or equivalent masonry blades when cutting panels
  • Be sure to cut the panels with the metal tongue facing the fence of the saw
  • Use hand grinder for detail trimming and staggered cuts 
  • A masonry hole saw is good for making clean holes on the panels, or drill using a masonry bit.
  • Do not cut more than one panel at a time

Example of off center corner panel cut

Off center corner panel placement 

CAUTION: These panels contain Crystalline Silica and any dusts from modifying panels have the potential to create health hazards if breathed in or ingested. OSHA cutting standards are best followed when working with any materials like these. 

Using protective gloves and eye-wear is a must. A properly fitted N-95 series disposable face piece respirator (formerly referred to as “dust masks”) should be used when modifying this product (e.g., sawing, cutting, drilling or similar dust generating processes). It is also best practice to wear a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, protective glasses, and properly fitting gloves when handling and working with this material. Be sure to wash hands and face with soap and warm water following the handling of Versetta Stone products.

Conclusion

Versetta is a great solution to transform an interior fireplace or accent wall. It can be easily installed over existing fireplaces without mortar, a mason, and with a bit of DIY elbow grease. Of course there are many professional installers nationwide who are familiar with our product and would be glad to assist.

The Versetta material is roughly $15 - $16.50/ft depending on the color and style of panels you wish to use.  An average interior wall project is roughly 72-120 sq ft.  

For questions regarding custom project quotes, or to find out where you can pickup Versetta for your fireplace project contact us at (800) 604-5537, or email us your questions at support @mainlinematerials.com 

Versetta Install Video

Resources:

Ryan Matheson

Product Director  

Ryan is member of the Mainline product team and as a former landscape contractor lends his expertise to Mainline blog. Ryan can be reached by emailing Support@ mainlinematerials.com 

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