Browse
Categories

Creating a Custom Chimney and Fireplace

Reference Number: KB-00058 Last Updated: 02-12-2014 09:28 AM

The information in this article applies to:

Chief Architect Premier or Chief Architect Interiors or Chief Architect Lite

QUESTION

I would like to create a custom fireplace with an insert, ­hearth and ­mantel. How can I do this?



ANSWER

Creative combinations of different objects such as fixtures, soffits, walls and wall openings allow you to create a wide variety of fireplace and chimney designs.


To build a chase for a fireplace insert

  1. Select Build> Wall> Interior Wall  from the menu and draw three walls to form the chase for your fireplace and chimney. Do not worry about the exact placement of the walls right now, they can be moved into position accurately in a moment.


  2. Select CAD> Dimension Lines> Interior Dimension from the menu and drag an Interior Dimension line across the room, beginning at one wall and dragging straight through the side walls of the chase.


  3. Click on the left side wall of the chase to select it, then click on the dimension that displays between it and the wall to the left.

     
    • In Chief Architect X2 and newer versions, in the Move Object Using Dimension in line text box, specify the desired distance between these two walls, then press the Enter key on your keyboard.




    • In Chief Architect X1 and prior, the Move Object Using Dimension function uses a dialog, where you can type in the correct value, then click OK.


    •  
  4. Repeat this process with the wall on the right side of the chase and the wall forming the front of the chase.




  5. Adjust the lower wall to set the desired depth of the chase.


To place an insert into the chase

  1. Select Build> Window> Window  from the menu and click on the front wall of your chase to place a window at that location. This window will be used to create a wall opening in which an insert can be modeled in.

  2. Note:  The window should snap to the center of the wall as long as Midpoint snaps are enabled.  Verify that these snaps are enabled by clicking Edit> Snap Settings, otherwise the window can be manually centered by selecting the window and using the Center Object edit button to center it to the chase room.




     
  3. With the window still selected, click the Open Object  edit button. In the Window Specification dialog:
     
    • On the General panel, click the Window Type drop-down arrow and select Fixed Glass from the list. If you already know the size and height you want the opening to be, you can specify it here.

    • On the Casing panel, uncheck the option beside Use Interior Casing and Use Exterior Casing.

    • On the Sill panel, uncheck the option beside Use Interior Sill and Use Exterior Sill.

    • On the Sash & Frame panels, specify any widths desired.

    • On the Materials panel, click on Glass, click the Library Material... button, then browse and select a Fire material from the Materials library. You can choose the other materials now if you like or wait until later. They can, of course, be changed at any time.

    • Click OK to close the Select Library Object dialog and apply your changes. Click OK again to close the Window Specification dialog.

    •  
  4. Select View> Library Browser  from the menu to open the Library Browser window.  Use the Search feature or browse to Chief Architect Core Catalogs> Interiors> Accessories> Fireplace Accessories.
     



     
    • Select the fireplace screen you wish to place, then click once directly in front of your window in your floor plan to place the selected screen in your plan.

    •  
  5. If necessary, use the Select Objects  tool and select the fireplace screen, click the Move  edit handle and drag the screen so that it is directly in front of the window forming the insert opening.

         

      • Select 3D> Create Orthographic View> Cross Section/Elevation , click in front of the fireplace and drag a camera view in the direction of the window and screen, keeping the camera arrow perpendicular to the front wall.
         
          In Chief Architect X1 and prior, select 3D> Create Vector View Cross Section/Elevation


      • In this ­cross section view:
         
        • If the screen is not visible, in the main menu click on Tools> Layer Settings> Display Options , and ensure that the Furniture, Interiors layer is checked to display.

        • If necessary, select the window and resize the opening as desired using the edit handles that display.

        • Click on the fireplace screen to select it, move and resize it using the edit handles so that it fits inside the frame of the window.  Hold Ctrl on your keyboard if the screen is snapping to undesirable locations.
         
        • When you are satisfied with the appearance of the frame and screen, close the camera view and return to floor plan view.
        •  

      • In floor plan view, select Window> Zoom  from the menu, then click and drag a rectangular marquee around the fireplace insert chase, including the screen in the selection.


      • Click on the fireplace screen to select it, hold down the Ctrl key on your keyboard and drag the screen into the window using the Move  edit handle, then click the Center Object  edit button and click inside the chase 'room' area to center it within the Window.

         
        • If the screen snaps to the outside edge of the window opening, click the Open Object edit button and increase the Depth, or thickness, of the screen to 6 inches, click OK, and try again.

        •  

      Note: If you have trouble selecting the fireplace screen, selecting nearby objects such as the wall or window instead, click the Select Next Object edit button or press the Tab key on your keyboard until the screen is selected. 


      To add a hearth

      Many custom objects can be designed using the ­Soffit tool, which is a child of the Cabinet Tools.

      1. Select Build> Cabinet> Soffit from the menu, then click once in the plan to create a soffit.


      2. Select the soffit and use its edit handles to move the soffit into position in front of the fireplace and resize it as needed.

         

      3. With the soffit still selected, click the Open Object edit button.In the Soffit Specification dialog:

         
        • On the General panel, specify the desired Height of the hearth, which should be near the bottom of the insert opening.

        • Specify the Floor to Bottom distance as 0, since this hearth should rest on the floor.

        • On the Materials panel, click on the word Soffit, then click the Library Material button and browse the Materials library to find an appropriate material for the hearth.Remember that this material can be changed at any time.

        • Click OK to close the dialog and apply your changes.


        •  
      4. You can create a cap for your hearth using a second, thinner soffit placed on top of the first if you so desire.

         

      To add a mantel with columns

      Because cabinets feature front items such as drawers, doors and panels, the Full Height Cabinet tool, which is another child of the Cabinet Tools, can be used to create customized mantels and square columns beneath.

      1. Select Build> Cabinet> Full Height Cabinet  from the menu, then click to create a full height cabinet in front of the fireplace.


      2. Click on the full height cabinet to select it then click the Open Object  edit button.In the Full Height Cabinet Specification dialog:

         
        • On the General panel, specify the Depth of your mantel.


        • The Height, Width, and Floor to Bottom distance can be set here, or by using the edit handles in a Cross Section/Elevation view.

         
        • On the Front panel, click on the bottom door of the cabinet in the preview image and click on the Delete button to remove this face item. Repeat this process on the Opening that was left behind, to remove it as well. Then click on the remaining door and specify it as a Door Panel in the Item Type drop-down list.

        •  



         
        • On the Door/Drawer panel, select None from the Door Handle and Drawer Handle drop-down lists.

        •  
        • Click OK to close the dialog and apply your changes.


        •  
      3. With the full height cabinet still selected, use the Move edit handle to move it into position over the hearth.

         
          If you encounter any move restrictions while moving the mantel into place, press and hold the Ctrl key on your keyboard to override these restrictions. 


      4. Using the same process, follow steps 1-3 to create pillars to fill the gap between the hearth and mantel and to create the mantel itself.

         
        • Once your first pillar is in place, select CAD> Lines> Draw Line and draw a line down the center of the mantel/hearth.

        • Click to select the line, then click the Center Object  edit button and click inside the chase 'room' area to center it.

        • Click the Select Object  tool, select the pillar and click Copy Object  tool, then Reflect About Object , and click on the line to create a copy of the pillar on the other side of the mantel.

        • Select and delete the CAD Line.


        •  
      5. Create a cross section view of your mantel to view your progress, and make any necessary adjustments. 3D> Create Orthographic View> Cross Section/Elevation  from the menu and click and drag a camera view in the direction of the fireplace.

         
        • Use the edit handles to adjust the size and position of the mantel and columns as needed.

        •  


      To create a chimney

      1. Select Build> Cabinet> Soffit  from the menu, then click once in the plan to create a soffit.


      2. Select the soffit to display its edit handles and use those handles to move the soffit into position inside the chimney chase and then resize it so that it fills the interior space of the chase 'room'.


      3. To extend the soffit through the exterior wall so that it displays on the exterior of your plan, press the Ctrl key on your keyboard and then use the Move  edit handle to move the soffit through the exterior wall at the back of the chase 'room'.You may need to adjust the size again afterward.


      4. With the soffit still selected, click Open Object edit button.On the General panel of the the Soffit Specification dialog:

         
        • Specify a Height that will place the chimney top at an appropriate height above the roof.

        • Specify the Floor to Bottom distance at -18 so that the soffit reaches through the ­floor platform to the ground level outside.

        • Click OK to close the dialog and apply your changes.


        •  
      5. In Chief Architect X2 and newer versions, select 3D> Create Perspective View> Full Overview from the menu to create a bird's-eye view of the exterior of your plan, including the chimney.

         



           
            Notice that the chimney displays a beige ­sheetrock material.We can select a more appropriate material for the chimney using the Material Painter.


        To apply materials to the chase walls and fireplace surround


        To create the appearance of a ­masonry chimney, you can apply a stone, block or brick material to the chase that you created using Interior Walls  in the walls' specification dialog. If you want to use a second material to surround the fireplace opening, use the Soffit tool.

        1. Click on the wall that defines the front of the chimney chase 'room' to select it, and then click the Open Object  edit button.


        2. On the Materials panel of the the Wall Specification dialog, click on the words Exterior Surface, then click the Select Material button and browse the Materials library to find the material you prefer.


        3. If you would like to, repeat this process with the walls defining sides of the chase 'room.'


        4. To create a surround for the fireplace opening, begin by placing a Soffit  in your plan.


        5. With the soffit selected, use the edit handles to reduce its width to one inch or so, depending on the material you would like to use for your surround. Use the Move  edit handle to position the soffit directly against the front wall of the chase.


        6. Select 3D> Create Orthographic View> Cross Section/Elevation  from the menu and drag a camera view in the direction of the window and screen, keeping the camera arrow perpendicular to the front wall. In this cross section view:


        7. In this cross section view:

           
          • Click on the soffit to select it and click the Copy/Paste  edit button. Click the Sticky Mode  edit button, then click once in an empty area of the front wall of the chase to create a copy of the soffit and click again in another empty area to create a second copy.

          • Click the Select Objects  arrow tool and edit the size, shape and location of each soffit so that they form a complete surround for the fireplace opening. 

          • Select 3D> Materials> Material Painter  from the menu and apply the desired material to the soffits forming your fireplace surround.



        To view your custom fireplace and chimney:

        1. Select 3D> Create Perspective View>Floor Overview from the menu to see the entire floor, including the chimney, but without the ceiling or roof planes.