Decking advice

24 Jan 2007
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United Kingdom
Hi all,

My back garden is an abomination. It was laid to concrete many years ago (decades) and it would seem that the previous owners employed the services of some dodgy itinerant driveway refurbishment people who charged them an arm and a leg to slap down a layer of tarmac straight onto the concrete, with the result that the tarmac is now coming away from the concrete.

I am going to deck the back garden to hide the cowboy work underneath and I have a few questions:

1) Should I remove as much as possible of the tarmac layer first, taking it down to the original concrete? I am inclined to do this and then fill any cracks in the concrete before putting down the decking.

2) The garden is on a variable slope (it's about a 1 in 10) and so I plan to deck on two levels. The gradient of the slope is wierd - it doesn't slope in one direction only and so I will need to mark out a contour that follows the line of mid-height (i.e. the contour that sits between the lowest and highest points of the garden), and make the split-level roughly along that contour. I can easily work it out using a few measurements, Euclidean geometry and a bit of basic mathematics, however I wonder what the best way is to ensure that all my supporting posts for the decking framework are at the correct height? I will be bolting metal feet into the concrete to put the posts into - I am thinking that I need to cut them as accurately as possible and then use wedges to get them perfect.

Any advice much appreciated :)


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I wonder what the best way is to ensure that all my supporting posts for the decking framework are at the correct height?

Leave the posts over size and cut them down when the joists are fitted.
With regard to your first question. Unless clearing makes it easier to install the decking this sounds like a lot of unnecessary work. As it's going to be covered in decking and won't be seen I would leave it down.
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bera it straight on the hard surface. You dont need to bolt the legs down, the weight will hold them in place.

Build the outside of the frame first and put in a leg at each corner, higher than you will need it. Get the frame levelled up and then cut the excess off. After that the frame is now at the correct height and you can put all the legs in at the right height.

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