I'm sure nothing is perfect - but - I'm curious how bad these obvious
(after the fact) mistakes are in laying mortar & sandstone on a concrete
Here are some bubbles that come up for a few minutes after spraying the
newly laid stone with water:
And, this crack developed overnight against the foundation wall:
And, this stone was laid with almost zero distance to the foundation wall:
I realize not much can be done for these three errors ... but ... since I
have 20 more stones to go ... what SHOULD I have done to not make these
mistakes in the first place?
this isn't fixable. if water gets into that bubble and freezes, it will
expand and crack something else. fix it then.
generally, since the concrete will move and shrink, it's likely
impossible to avoid this.
the solution for the previous one and this one is to use the product
that's meant to prevent this. it's a bendy board, sometimes made out of
a tarred cardboard or some such material it's flexible, and lasts for years.
they sell a product in a tube, used like bathroom caulk, to fix these
types of errors. in the same section as where you bought the bagged
concrete in HD.
Cement/mortar/concrete cracks. The crack in your picture looks too small to
get in more mortar. Be sure to pack in the grout. You might want to smooth
it a bit more too (as you go, not after the fact).
On Mon, 6 Feb 2012 19:51:59 +0000 (UTC), Chuck Banshee
Mix too wet. You can't pour mortar.
You can patch it later if it troubles you.
Mix too sandy.
Try to keep the joints at least 1/2" wide.
Always use spacers where it looks tight.
You might need to chisel it out later for repair.
Use measuring pails to get a consistent mix.
Don't try to eyeball it.
Don't mix more than you can use in about 45 minutes or less.
On Mon, 06 Feb 2012 16:50:28 -0600, Vic Smith wrote:
Well, I tried doing one bag at a time (about 3 stones) - but it drove me
crazy over the range of 20 stones!
So, in the end, I did three bags at a time:
On Tue, 07 Feb 2012 12:44:34 -0800, email@example.com wrote:
At first, I TRIED (I really did) to just do one bag of mortar at a time
as shown here:
But, after a couple of hours of THAT, I gave up and just did the rest of
the stones en masse in the same wet glop of concrete & mortar (I had to
add concrete because I ran out of mortar).
BTW, I'm not sure what you mean by the 'curing' phase.
Do you mean the first hour or the first few days (I thought curing was
what takes place over the next three days)?
If you mean the first hour, the answer is yes.
But, what happened is more complicated than just keeping it wet. To give
you an idea, it took 7 hours from the placement of the first stone to the
20th stone ... so I had to keep the ENTIRE set wet during that time.
One trick I tried was pulling the stones up and spraying below them ...
but of course, that obliterated my all-important chalk line ... so I gave
up on that.
Then, I tried wetting with a garden water container - but that just dug
holes in the mortar and washed the cement & lime away from the concrete -
so I gave up on that.
Finally, I resorted to lifting the stones out and soaking them in a tub
of water as shown here:
A couple of times I pulled the stone out of the tub and inserted it
backward, so I started to learn to MARK the ends of the stones (I had
markings on the top which disappeared during the construction process).
It's what happens during the chemical reaction
over a long period until the
concrete reaches it's final hardness. It's one
of those decaying exponential curve things where
it reaches like 80% or something of final hardness in
the first few days. So the period when it's most
important to keep it wet is during the first few
days. Worst case is if it's hot, sunny, etc and
you don't keep it wet. Then it dries out instead
of curing and it falls apart. Drying out is going
to be worse when you have small joints instead
of a slab.
As someone else told you, I would
recommend placing the stones farther apart
giving you 3/4" or more between them. I
saw one pic where you had cracking in an
area smaller than a pencil right next to existing
concrete. That kind of spot I'd never put mortar
in. I'd use a caulk type product that has some
give, perhaps one of the caulks that looks like
Should be easy to do with a light mist from a nozzle.
Pulling them up? WTF?
OMG. I hope you're kidding, but I fear you're not.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.