I just laid the main part of a 4x25' curving brick walkway. Now comes the
part where I need to fill in all the little angled and odd pieces. I have
rented a brick saw for the weekend but I am looking for tips & tricks to
accurately measure the angles and holes I have to fill. I plan on using a
tape measure and marking on the brick then cutting, but could use some
advice if anyone has any.
I know a stone mason who cuts up a huge pile of tar paper squares
as large as his largest stones.
They are super simple to cut and try in the location. Once the
tar paper fits, he uses it as a pattern.
Keep the whole world singing. . . .
Maybe it doesn't work in your situation, but there is a standard technique.
You would like to place the brick to be cut in the hole at the end of the
row where you want it to fit, and then draw a cutting line on it... But
that's awkward at best. So, you use a whole brick up against the end of
the row that covers the next to the last brick in the row. Scribe that,
remove it, cut it, and replace with a new whole brick. Now, the piece you
cut exactly fits at the end of the row.
<< tricks to accurately measure the angles >>
You'll need an angle transfer tool commonly called a sliding T-bevel or T wood
bevel. Usual price around $12-15. Stanley #46-813 and perhaps others. Makes
those angle cuts dead accurate with no fuss. Of course you could easily cobble
together something with two slats nailed together at one end.
Choose your method of transferring the pattern..
Biggest thing to remember this can be a wet and messy project. Use lots of
fresh water, clean in the saw. Go slowly. They probably will measure the
thickness and the diameter of the blade when you return it. They charge by
the inch as well as the day. Diamond blades ARE expensive. Ask lots of
questions before you sign on the dotted line.
Brick is pretty soft compared with other types of stone and tile. Just let
the saw do the work and you will minimiumize the wear on the blade.
And there are good $30 dry-cut diamond blades that will go in a 7 1/4
skil-saw & might last a lifetime for a homeowner.
Except for the dust these will work fine for brick or tile & are
workable with block & stone. [I minimize the dust by duct-taping my
shop vac to the saw]
As a data point I have used a single blade to cut a dozen or so 8x12
solid blocks-- turning them over & cutting both sides 2.5 inches deep
before splitting them; 10 more of the 3" cap blocks, cutting 1.5
inches deep on both sides; maybe 2-300 pavers; 50' of 2" concrete to
install a drain in my basement. . . and it is showing no signs of
I buy all my blades for cutting at Harbor Freight. I have 2 for the skill
saw, and 4 for my mini tile saw. I have done 2 home with the tile saw and as
long as there is clean water the blade keeps trucking. I keep the others as
spares. Price is right and the average homeowner will not care about the
price of HF blades.
After all this guy is renting a machine.
I just finished cutting ceramic tile with a grinding disc on my hand saw. I
imagine it would work just as well on bricks or any other masonry.
It works fine but raises immense amounts of dust. Wear a mask and, if
possible, work outside.
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