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Full house build.

Discussion in 'Your Projects' started by Curlewhouse, 22 Oct 2016.

  1. cjard

    cjard

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    Using a tool like that is not so vital for the perps as it is the beds; you may find it more convenient to forget the tool for the perps and instead wipe a triangle of mortar onto the end of the last block you laid rather than onto the loose block you're laying. Blocking is one of hose jobs where it's hard to do quickly enough to make it worth DIY (depending how you value your time), but if you have the time the first thousand can be quite therapeutic

    Couple of mortar tips, not that you necessarily need em; your mortar looks pretty good- it's long debated which should be added to mixer first, but one thing is certain; it's sensible to put the admix into a quantity of water first especially if it's concentrated. If using concentrate, follow the instructions and dosing given; it may seem impossible that just 5 ml is needed for an entire bag of cement but it's true, and if you use more, you'll just end up with brown foamy scum all over site and a mix that's a bit weird. You're best off bucket measuring the ingredients rather than counting shovels, if you're after true consistency. Any cement that has got damp and gone hard, save it for concreting something unimportant. When it comes to adding water to the mix, right after you've loaded the mixer and it's been turning for a minute you should have only added enough water to make it clump together and look a bit like big apple crumble topping. Remember that after heavy rain the sand may contain nearly enough water to make the mix, without additional so go easy on adding water. Can't stress enough that most inexperienced labourers ruin a mix by adding too much water. They look in the mixer, see it looks like apple crumble, and add another half bucket of water. By the time they bring it you in the barrow it will look like sand soup, or a wet beach (you know where you step your foot on the sand and the water squeezes out eier side of your foot). It should look and feel more like angel delight, fluffy and with no trace of surface water. If you stroke a finger hrough it, the hole should remain and not collapse or fill with water. Apple crumble mix at the first minute will turn into angel delight after ten minutes rolling round the mixer, no water added.

    Getting it out of the barrow, take a scoop sideways with your trowel, turn it 90 degrees on its side and plop it back in the barrow, repeat twice more and you end up with a fairly neat cuboid of gear, each sideways cut having formed a side to the cuboid. Lay your brick tool out and then with your cuboid of mortar, by simultaneously laying it and flinging it along the wall.. you'll find with practise that it elongates but stays fairly consistent. This is why the day in day out guys don't use a brick tool; their technique allows them to get nearly all the way to the benefits it offers without much effort. No shame in using one though; for the newcomer a great deal of time can be saved and quality improved by having the right tools for the job. I bought a set of profiles when I was learning to lay, father wasn't too impressed, couldn't see what they offered over building a corner and using a string wrapped round a brick like he wanted me to, but in no time at all my work was as neat as his (I.e. Not too horrendous), and I was quicker. It was then he produced something he'd made years ago; an equivalent of the very profile he'd just scorned me for buying. Knob :)
     
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  3. Curlewhouse

    Curlewhouse

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    Hi, I've seen criticism of those tools on YouTube with guys saying they'd be laughed off their building site at work if they took one, completely missing the point that they are not meant for proper bricklayers of course, but rather guys like me who aren't. For the first layer off the base it's not much use of course, but definitely helped in getting a feel for the right depth, and by the end of the day I was doing some freehand and not doing too badly. Some good tips there about the mortar thanks. I've watched quite a few videos and got a feel for the consistency to aim for, but that finger test is interesting. I started to find the process quite enjoyable, but we'll see if I still feel that way by the 1000th block! :)

    I've got a little more to do then the DPC membrane has to go in before I can continue so I'll need the BR guy in before to view that before I can really get going (though I have seen discussion as to whether BR is really needed for a garage, or below a certain size - but I know when I ask them the answer will be "yes" of course), and I doubt he's going to be all that pleased to travel up to where we are just for the garage... we shall see!

    On a similar note, I overheard an interesting story from a builder the other day while I was in the builders merchants. A customer of theirs had used a private BR firm who were based way down South (we are in Northumberland) .... the firm didn't want to travel so asked the guy to take some photos on his phone and send them - and passed the work based on the photographs!

    I looked at the wall profiles as the same guy who makes the bricky tool markets some, but TBH it looked a bit involved, screwing them into the wall and so on, and I don't imagine me ever building anything like this again (we plan to stay in this new house forever) so not sure if worth the cost to me....
     
  4. Tin Soldier

    Tin Soldier

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    Curlewhouse,

    How's it going?
     
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  5. DIYnot Local

    DIYnot Local

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