Securing a giant mirror - (Project Completed)


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02/08/19 Edit: I just finished mounting this mirror. I've made a post at the end with a full report of everything I did. - Thank you everyone for your wisdom in this again!!

 

 

Hi everyone!

My wife just bought a gigantic 8ft tall mirror..... that has no anchors whatsoever and with a baby coming to join the family soon, I really have a deep seated mistrust of the damn mirror even if it's 192lbs.

Is there anything I can do/build that I can add to the frame to make sure it's stable (including adding those earthquake straps to the wall towards the top of the mirror? It's currently freestanding and I absolutely loathe the idea of a free standing giant wooden mirror.

I've attached 2 photos for reference. one is of the bottom to show how it currently "stands" and the other is the general overview of it.

 

Tell me what you think guys! I really don't know what the hell I can do to make sure it's secure and wont slip and still look clean and discrete!

 

EDIT: I just want to clarify that I want this mirror to stay on the floor, but I want to make sure that it doesn't slide over the years and in case of any earthquakes we might experience. I do not plan to have it hanging off the wall at all, but would like a way to secure it to the wall but still be on the floor.

20190112_132728.jpg

20190112_132710.jpg

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I would find some really strong "L" brackets, and put a pair under the bottom, and a pair on the top.  A good stud finder, to find the middle of the studs, would be very good to have.  The parts that screw to the wall can be hidden behind the mirror, and if you can find some that don't come out past the face, they shouldn't be that noticeable.  Just leave about 1/16" extra height between the brackets, than the height of the frame, and it shouldn't be too bad to get it into place, but still work fine.

edited to add:   a google search for   "heavy black angle iron brackets"  found many, such as:

https://www.mudsupply.com/Simpson-Strong-Tie-HL33PC-Heavy-Angle-p/3567.htm

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We have a mirror that's about that size - 98' x 42". Heavy as you know what. Ours has turned feet that keep the back about 1 1/2" off the wall. I found some aluminum C channel that width and drilled some holes through one side for screw access for mounting it to the wall. Then I cut keyholes into the front face running vertically with the large end up. The opening was about 3/4" higher than the screws I ran into the back of the mirror frame rail. I had a buddy help me lift it and put the screw heads into the keyholes and let gravity do the rest. It took a couple of tries and a few beers after, but the mount is hidden and it holds really well.

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The back of the mirror is almost completely flat. Taking a look through it makes me think that the wood around it is, as you see, a frame. the rest is like how picture frames are made: a thin wood board in the back where the glass is sandwiched inbetween. backing is secured by a whole host of small screws.

I should probably mention this is the product:

https://www.crateandbarrel.com/stilt-floor-mirror/s214982?st=stilt

 

I'm assuming that I should be able to screw into the frame without fearing of damaging the glass.

I did notice that the top has an additional bar of wood that is used to keep the top edge of the frame from touching the wall. I think I can use that as 1 of the mount points (like Brendon_t's suggestion on a french cleat) especially if i can adjust the bar to be at a slight angle.

 

@Brendon_t I like the idea of the french cleat, but is there a way to install a french cleat at an angle? with a protrusion? since this type of mirror is supposedly the type that you're supposed to set it at a slight angle

 

@Tom King I'm having a bit of trouble visualizing what you are saying. With an L bracket, how would it secure to the wall if one side is already secured to the frame?

 

@Mick S ah that's a pretty cool idea. secure and inconspicuous. I have to consult w/ the wife as to how far out she wants it but I have a suspicion that she probably wants it 8" from the wall at the bottom.

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I have a large wall-hanging mirror, three pieces that hang together to resemble an arched window. I cut a sheet of 3/4 ply to match the shape, painted it to match the frame, and cut a slot in the ply, wide enough to cover 3 studs, and beveled to form a french cleat. Made the mating part from ply, assembled the thing on horses, then hung it on the wall as one piece. Rock solid.

I also have a tall book case that sits on the floor, but has a french cleat up top to prevent tipping. You might need a beveled spacer behind the cleat to angle the mirror how you like, but it should work.

If it were me, there might be an 'accident' that resulted in sweeping the thing out the door in pieces.

Problem solved.

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hahaha that is a $1k accident that would hurt me in the wallet.... and probably send me to sleep in the guest room for the rest of the year. (and well.... you don't want a pregnant woman to be angry.. they're terrifying)

I think I might be able to figure out a french cleat for the top. I just need to figure out the angle and make sure it spans as many studs as I can possibly get. I've never done a french cleat before.. but I'm sure I can figure it out somehow (Youtube is a trusty partner in this hahah)

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Mike,  To answer your question,  I would install four of those brackets where they need to go-two at the bottom, and two at the top.  Then slide the mirror in place, and install some screws into the frame to hold it.  I wouldn't trust any part of that frame to hold it on its own permanently, such as a French cleat attached to the top.

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I'd probably just build a frame to sit behind it so that the mirror is supported along the total height (or at least a few points rather than just the bottom and top). It would be slightly recessed on the sides and top so that it wouldn't be visible in normal use. The frame could be secured to the wall studs at various points along the height and width. It could have a ledge for the bottom of the mirror to sit on so that all the weight isn't just on the back edge, though depending on the angle your wife chooses, this might not be practical or necessary. Then the mirror can be secured to the frame with some z clips or figure 8s into the solid parts of the frame, or some small L brackets depending on space available.

The angles and total height of the frame can easily be found by making a plywood template of the side profile of the mirror frame (~3" wide, 81" long/tall). It doesn't have to be hurricane-proof, just stable enough that it won't tip or get knocked over.

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It appears that the mirror is designed to sit on the floor, which also seems like the most stable situation, anyway.  Rather than trying to hang it, I'd keep it on the floor and just go with one or two of those anti-tip straps at the top, anchored to studs.

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Yes, the mirror is indeed designed to sit on the floor. 

It looks like I wasn't too clear in my original post. I do want to leave it sitting on the floor. i just want to secure it in a way that it will not move at all. My biggest concern is that even though it is designed to sit on the floor, the bottom edge is not made to sit on a floor at all, which is why I am afraid of it eventually sliding. The other part that I wanted to do is to find a way to put some barrier between the frame and floor since it's a hard edge to the bottom and if i can atleast secure the mirror so it doesn't move, i can add felt pads or whatever to the bottom so that it won't damage the floors over the years.

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49 minutes ago, Mike Vee said:

Yes, the mirror is indeed designed to sit on the floor. 

It looks like I wasn't too clear in my original post. I do want to leave it sitting on the floor. i just want to secure it in a way that it will not move at all. My biggest concern is that even though it is designed to sit on the floor, the bottom edge is not made to sit on a floor at all, which is why I am afraid of it eventually sliding. The other part that I wanted to do is to find a way to put some barrier between the frame and floor since it's a hard edge to the bottom and if i can atleast secure the mirror so it doesn't move, i can add felt pads or whatever to the bottom so that it won't damage the floors over the years.

I guess I'd use straps at the top and 3 or 4 of these things near the back edge on the bottom:

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-1-in-Heavy-Duty-Anti-Skid-Surface-Pads-4-Pack-49644/203661092

 

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If it’s sitting on the floor then all you need is to add a couple brackets/ties/whatever attached the top outermost studs and a couple spacers w ties/ screws /etc to the baseboard on each side . Adding cushions/bumpers/rubber feet is only needed if it’s a smooth floor. 

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We bought a bookcase a few months back to put in my son's bedroom.   It was 7' tall, and to secure it to the wall all it came with was a couple of d-ring hanger's like you might use on the back of a picture and a zip-tie.   Find the stud... mark back of bookcase with tape... screw one hanger in, then screw the other into the stud so the rings line up just above the bookcase and zip-tie them together.

When you think about it... it's setting on the floor, totally supported.   All you want to do is keep it in place.   It doesn't take much, you just want to keep it from shifting.

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi everyone! It took me a while, but I finally finished securing it.

I took your suggestions and used a combination of a french cleat and brackets.

the top part is used a metal french cleat (because it was 22 bucks and an easy way to get exact alignment)

I ran into 1 minor issue and that was the fact that the wood piece of top has a 5 degree cant.

607299774_1_originaloffset.thumb.jpg.224b33e1bc7df476a8766437b99c2dba.jpg

Initially i thought to anneal the edges of the cleat and widen it by 5 degrees but i was worried it would mess w/ the integrity of it, so after chatting and bouncing ideas off a neighbor, i realized I could do a sort of overlay made of wood that has that 5 degree cant built into it so the clean will not have to deal with any structural damage.

this was the finished overlay piece.

Top View

1527728816_2_overlaytop.thumb.jpg.5e7cf868f7126b3f31908354680177d1.jpg

Side View to show the 5 degree cant

1975625883_3_overlayside.thumb.jpg.c9bb622d663075189364fded11b0b447.jpg

I took a 2x3 stud, trim the edges and then combined them into a bigger piece to build the overlay that fits over the original wood piece and after I stained and sealed it with shellac, I mounted it. took some effort for find the right studs and secure it properly but it worked out.

This is with the cleat installed and mounted to the original piece

2130264921_4_overlaywithcleat.thumb.jpg.7102a111835427ee79d314e722b4ae63.jpg

474579940_5_wallsidecleat.thumb.jpg.9fc3d1b4953b86caadf33e04c83b9094.jpg

 

Then at the same time I wanted to make sure that whatever weight is put on it (ie a kid who decides they want to start mirror climbing....) it will hold, so I took a spare piece of wood from an older project and cut it down to 40" wide so it's hidden behind the mirror but if someone looks there, it won't look like scrap wood.  I beveled the edges in case someone, somehow ends up hitting the edge by some crazy act of freak accidents. 

Here are the pics of the wood after I finished it.

354598240_6_studholdertop.thumb.jpg.ca9e820b198ee79566dd87f79ba1e1a0.jpg2064500730_7_studholderedge1.thumb.jpg.eb9d14773d7e1ee0d4bf9bb483d715df.jpg1740860698_8_studholderedge2.thumb.jpg.38fd6afbde9d5e709f8a1e926feb609f.jpg

Installed it onto the wall (found 4 studs so i screwed x2 3.5" wood screws per stud) and mounted the brackets on it.

Here's the piece installed and followed up by the bracket (which took a lot of finagling to make sure it fits in exactly

1742291498_9_studholderinstalled.thumb.jpg.d6e2392ef91614a59bc75085af301686.jpg1980769029_10_studholderwithbracket.thumb.jpg.d09608ba104b1ff89915ff8d08697c01.jpg

819174058_11_closeupofbracket.thumb.jpg.87c785a68620a82b598121321d38af74.jpg77033041_12_installedbracket.thumb.jpg.c2c5d74e44ba9143b42ff88cf8449abf.jpg

 

 

This project took me about 6 days to complete (spending about 2-3hrs a day on average). The part that took the longest was the planning, then followed by the staining and sealing. the installation itself took about 2 hours.

Here's the overall look of the mirror now that it's secured:

Original pieces pre installation (with the overlay moved off to the side to show how it fits

1704462702_13_originalreference.thumb.jpg.83c529f1846e2b085e330985b6de9e29.jpg

close up of the clean (you can see the x3 2.5" screws I drilled through the overlay to hold the original piece to the new piece)

651283763_14_cleathookedon.thumb.jpg.d711777cd5156d28f14b119dcc08582c.jpg

If you look all the way down, you can see all 3 points where it is secured to the wall. 

75429417_15_overallview.thumb.jpg.b28c81d8da234e3391fc3785c69a5ce3.jpg

 

 

 

All in all,

Thank you very much everyone for giving me all sorts of great ideas for me to formulate and put together!! My wife is very happy about this and I am happy this project is successful and should be inconspicuous!

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