Replica, reproduction and false ceiling beams that look like the real thing

by gordon_mullan

Replica reproduction beams Slight diversion from the usual marketing advice, but I wanted to give an unprompted plug to an absolute genius artist called William (Bill) Bradley of Oakcast. (And before you wonder, no, I don’t get anything for recommending them – I just think they’re brilliant and deserve a wider audience).

We’re having our house renovated at the moment, and needed a false ceiling beam to act as an RSJ (rolled steel joist) casing.  After some searching on t’Internet, we came across Oakcast Reproduction Beams.

The pictures on the website looked fantastic but, ever the sceptic, I rang up and asked for them to send me a sample.  A couple of days later, a decent sized sample of a reproduction oak beam turned up, and it looked great!

I rang, and got a quote to cover the RSJ, which turned out to be a very reasonable price.  After some suggestions from our carpenter, we ended up ordering three false ceiling beams – one to cover the RSJ, one to cover some unsightly wood beams under the head of the stairs, and one to balance everything up against a wall, and cover a large and uneven gap.

So, how did it turn out?

Well, judge for yourself: Photo gallery of our replica / reproduction beams

 Something that’s not made clear from their website is that each beam is individually hand made, carved with a small pointy trowel.  It is NOT moulded in plastic resin from a cast of a wooden beam – each one is absolutely unique.

Bill and his wife Denise have been doing this for about 24 years so far, and can produce beams of any dimension, including weird combinations of depth, width, etc.  You’re not restricted to standard sets of dimensions, which was an essential requirement for us, and they’ll stain it a range of shades.

What made it even more special was the unexpected finishing touches Bill also produces – nuts, bolts, straps, dowel ends, and other associated ‘dressing’.  The straps, nuts, bolts, etc. are all made from resin, but the surface is impregnated with iron oxide – in other words, they look, and feel, like genuine, rusty fixings (see this photo for an example).

Bill does a huge range of other stuff as well – false / cast stone, brick, wall plaques.  He is, no word of a lie, an absolute genius with this stuff!  If you’re not sure about how many, or what type, of beams to have, Bill can advise you on that too because he’s spent a lot of time learning about timber frame buildings, and how they should be.

On top of it all, Bill and Denise are wonderful, straightforward, Notherners and care about every single job they do.  Each item is handmade, either on site or in their workshop, and they come and fit them themselves.  There is no mass-produced, “knock ’em out” mentality here.

OK, I’ve raved enough 🙂 so let me sum up.  If you want reproduction / replica beams, or anything else similar, contact Bill at Oakcast and tell him Gordon Mullan recommended him to you.

We are absolutely, totally, over the moon with ours, and we’re sure you will be too.

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