French cleat for fireplace mantel shelf?
Ok, so, I’m new at this. I am building a mantel for my fireplace. It is just a shelf with two corbels for support…so, no wood travelling all the way down the sides of the fireplace opening…it’s just the shelf with corbels. I am thinking about fastening the corbels to the fireplace brickwork using a french cleat for each corbel. My mantel shelf is about 5ft long and 7 inches deep, and 2 inches thick. The corbels are about 4inches deep (two 2inch pieces attached together for the depth) and 5inches wide and perhaps 6 inches high. I am going to attach it to the red clay brick of the fireplace, which are full bricks (not a decorative facade) I’m thinking that I would drill the wall part of the cleat to the brick using tapcon screws into the mortar. The part of the cleat on the corbels I want to kind of hide inside of the corbel (not sure how I’m going to do that yet).
Now, I’ve read a bit on french cleats, it looks like I could use 3/4 inch stock and cut either 45 degrees or 30/60 kind of thing. My problem is that the context in which I read about french cleats is almost always with cabinets rather than shelves…or in my case these corbels. It feels like if I do this, that the shelf (and corbels) will tip forward out of the cleat because it doesn’t have the kind of height that a cabinet has for leverage.
Also, I’ve read about rabbited or “straight” cleats where rather than cut an angle, use sort of intersecting “L”s…which seems to be a good solution for uneven walls…although the brick of my fireplace…even though it’s not flat…does look to be quite straight as far as that goes.
Any thoughts or insight for me on this? Before I start cutting…will the angled french cleats work for me? Thanks.