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a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

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  • a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

    I have been mortaring my soldier course in place and I stopped about halfway through to make sure everything was coming out correctly, and i realized that there will be about a 1 inch gap between the inside face of two of the bricks...the rest of it looks fine. my question is this: is there any harm in filling the 1 inch gap completely with mortar and thus avoid any tricky brick cutting? I'm using a dry premix of Heatstop 50...just in case there are any issues about the materials i am using.

  • #2
    Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

    I was just wondering about this because the instructions advocated leaving no gaps for mortar along the inside face of the bricks. I couldn't figure out if this was an important detail that will affect things later on down the road, so I just wanted peace of mind before i continue.

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    • #3
      Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

      One inch of mortar is a bit much. You will most likley get shrinkage cracks. Cut some brick shims or extend the mortar 2:1 with mortar sand.

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      • #4
        Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

        As a rule, it is better to cut 2 bricks rather than make one small piece. That is, if you will end up with a one inch gap, cut 2 bricks to equal 1 brick plus 1". If the gap is in the middle of the course, remove one brick and do the same.

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        • #5
          Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

          So this is what i'm working with. the first picture is how big the gap is going to be, and the second picture is the shim i cut to fit...it doesn't look like it fits, but it does lol. so what i was thinking of doing was to take the other half of the brick that i cut to make this wedge and mortar it behind the wedge so that the bricks will be roughly the same thickness as the other soldiers. with the type of saw that i have, i can't taper the front of the brick like i want to, so i had to cut it like this. Neil, is this what you were talking about when you mentioned brick shims...sorta? do you think it will work anyway?
          Attached Files

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          • #6
            Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

            Matt - seems to me, that with the amount of brick you have to work with on the ring, you would just need to space them maybe 1/16 inch further apart to make that up space without a shim. It also looks like you have some of them mortared so that may not be an option for you.

            Les...
            Check out my pictures here:
            http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/les-build-4207.html

            If at first you don't succeed... Skydiving isn't for you.

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            • #7
              Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

              Mortar and brick have two different properties. Cut wherever you can and keep the mortar thickness to a minimum to avoid issues with shrinkage.
              My Photo Album
              http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/memb...adventure.html

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              • #8
                Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                Keep going and then cut the last two instead of the last one. they will be tucked away and will never be seen. The utting of two is better than one smallone.
                Good luck

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                • #9
                  Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                  You will find that you need to cut one to fit on every course, and you really won't know how big or small it needs to be until you are ready to cut it. Just keep those keystones for each course tucked away near the entry arch and no one will ever see them.

                  Joe
                  Joe

                  Member WFOAMBA Wood Fired Oven Amatueur Masons Builders America

                  My thread: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/j...oven-8181.html

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                  • #10
                    Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                    thanks everybody for the replies. I followed the advice and made a custom piece...two actually...to fit in the gap. Not only that but i was able to almost finish the vent arch. i would be done by now but i ran out of Heatstop 50 and the place i buy it from won't be open until tomorrow. I did find something from a company called IMPERIAL at Lowe's. it was a stove and fireplace mortar, but it only came in 8 oz containers. i didn't know if it was even the right material so i just decided to wait...oh well. here are some pictures of what i have done yesterday...keep in mind, this is my first time mortaring or even working with bricks. it's not perfect, but i'm proud of it!
                    Attached Files

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                    • #11
                      Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                      That's what it's supposed to look like. Keep at it.

                      Joe
                      Joe

                      Member WFOAMBA Wood Fired Oven Amatueur Masons Builders America

                      My thread: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/j...oven-8181.html

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                      • #12
                        Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                        well, I'm almost done. all I have left to do is the dome. the problem that I am encountering right now has to do with the heatstop 50 that I am using. I've checked some of the posts here and it seems as if I'm paying an obscene amount of money for the heatstop 50. The place that I found it at charges about $150 for a 50 lb bagI'm seeing that some people have bought it for less than half that price. I need to buy another bag this weekend, but I don't know if a 50 lb bag will be able to finish off the dome...i can probably suck it up and buy one bag, but if i need more, i may not have the funds to do so. Can anyone tell me how much mortar is needed approximately to do the dome of a 42 inch oven

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                        • #13
                          Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                          The problem with HS 50 is that it comes from New York. Shipping is very expensive. I believe you can get it for less than that directly from the manufacturer. I did, but I'm not quite as far west as you are. If I had been closer to James, I would have bought the FB mortar. You might want to check into it. Although I did not change mortar mid-stream, I know others have without reporting any ill effects.

                          The amount you use depends a lot on your approach. If you are cutting every brick to fit on all four sides, you will use a lot less mortar than if if use mortar to fill in the gaps on the outside, as I did. And then if you slather more on the outside, you will obviously use even more. I used 250 pounds of the stuff. At $150/bag, I would have found another way. I know the FB would have been much less than that, even with shipping.

                          Joe
                          Joe

                          Member WFOAMBA Wood Fired Oven Amatueur Masons Builders America

                          My thread: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/j...oven-8181.html

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                          • #14
                            Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                            What Joe said! $150 is really high! Call fornobravo because sometimes their online shipping calculator is not accurate (it quotes too high a price).

                            Drake
                            My Oven Thread:
                            http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...-oven-633.html

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                            • #15
                              Re: a quick question about refractory mortar and the soldier course

                              I tapered all my bricks for smaller mortar joints and will end-up using five 50lb bags of HeatStop 50 for my 42". The price in Connecticut was $48.00/bag...
                              My Oven Progress: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/p...uild-7155.html

                              If you fail to plan, you plan to fail!

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