So I got some good advice on wood selection for the mantle, and it will be fir. I am heading up to the saw mill to get my beam that will be planed and hand sanded. For staining it, what stain would you recommend I use on it, and should I finish with a polyurethane? I want to see the grain of the wood after staining, or should I look at just using a varathane on it? Any suggestions? Thanks.