#11  
Old 03-31-2007, 02:08 AM
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Default Re: Ready to Role Up My Sleeves

The range of professional expertise we have in the group is excellent and the contribution is so valuable.
Thanks all for these,
James
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  #12  
Old 03-31-2007, 05:47 AM
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Default Re: Ready to Role Up My Sleeves

And remember with a little forsight you can stick hex bolts upside down in the wet concrete and solve the whole problem.
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  #13  
Old 03-31-2007, 05:49 AM
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Default Re: Ready to Role Up My Sleeves

Sharon,

The ground has been well covered in this thread. I'd just like to add a vote for Tapcon concrete screws. We use them all the time in construction; they're very reliable and hold well. I, too, would go for the hex heads, rather than the Phillps heads (star shaped). If you buy a box, it will come with the correct drill bit. A hammer drill is best for the holes, and a portable drill with the right sized bit is the way to go for driving the screws.

Jim
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  #14  
Old 03-31-2007, 07:46 AM
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Default Re: Ready to Role Up My Sleeves

It seems like some of this should end up in building plans -- some of it in the hearth section, and some in the enclosure section.
James
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  #15  
Old 05-28-2007, 08:42 PM
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Default Re: Ready to Role Up My Sleeves

Significant progress has been made! After the snow melted, I conceded that 6 yards of concrete was more than I could handled and hired a crew to take care of it for me. It took almost 3 weeks of begging, pleading and promising to prep the sight to get them so squeeze me in to their packed schedule. But I finally had the site ready to go including a gas line for my future grill and water line and dry well drain for the sink. Thanks to my husband for helping me dig trenches for two weekends.

I added a couple of extra days to the Memorial weekend and got under way. Of course everything took longer than I thought it would, but I am well under way. It took me almost two full days to just get all of the supplies gathered. Then I spent the better part of a day putting post anchors into the slab for a future pergola that will cover the entire kitchen project. The block stacked easily and bright and early Sunday morning I was ready to mix concrete. My sister's "Red Lion" was a life saver. I managed to mix and pour 500 lbs. concrete all by myself in just under three hours. Is was remarkably like mixing cake batter and resulted in a great sense of accomplishment.

Framing in the hearth took the remainder of the day. After redoing it twice, I decided that being a 1/4 inch out of square was a problem I was willing to deal with at a later date. At the end of my very long fourth day, I stood back to admire my work and realized I had a very big problem. At 5'2", there was no way I was going to be able to reach the middle to the stand to trowel the concrete. It was amazing how much larger it looked in person than it did while I was drawing over the last several months!
I swallowed my pride (I was determined to build the oven completely on my own!) and asked my husband (6'3", yes we look like Mutt and Jeff) for his help. He graciously agreed but only after a morning of golf. We got under way at about 2:00 this afternoon and had the structural layer done by 4:30. All and all I think I made a pretty good start!

My husband agreed to help me with the insulating layer tomorrow night. I am tied up with work for the remainder of the week but plan to dive right into fire brick first thing Saturday morning.

Looking forward, I do have one question. I am planning to enclose with HardiBacker and stucco. Will the stucco stick directly to the HardiBacker or will I need to use wire mesh?

Thank you all for your support and suggestions. This is an incredibly exciting project and I know I wouldn't be feeling any where near as confident with out all of you out there for advice.

I've been taking photos as I go, but need to figure out how to get them posted. I will update more next weekend.

Sharon
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  #16  
Old 05-29-2007, 05:10 AM
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Default Re: Ready to Role Up My Sleeves

Way to go Sharon,

You are a great role model. Posting photos is easy. In the Options section under Post New Thread, there is Attachment Management. You just browse to find the file you want to post, and click Upload. The only thing to worry about is that the photos have to be less than 100K each. You can use just about any photo application to save them to a smaller size if they are too large.

On the Hardibaker -- my experience is that you can stucco directly on it, and that there is a paint on product that will help the stucco adhere.

What do our masonry experts have to say on that?

James
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  #17  
Old 05-29-2007, 01:57 PM
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Default Re: Ready to Role Up My Sleeves

Quote:
Originally Posted by swripley View Post
Looking forward, I do have one question. I am planning to enclose with HardiBacker and stucco. Will the stucco stick directly to the HardiBacker or will I need to use wire mesh?

Sharon
I also used concrete board and stucco - it will stick directly to the concrete board, but if I were doing it again I think I would have used a wire mesh. I'm sure it depends on the stucco product you use (most use a commercial product, I used a scratch coat of cement, lime and sand, then a finish coat of white sand and lime), but getting my scratch coat to stick was a bit of a pain.

Congratulations on your progress
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  #18  
Old 05-29-2007, 05:44 PM
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Default Consider wetting the HardiBacker & add Acrylic Bonder

(M) In addition to the wire that maver suggested, consider spraying the HardiBacker with water just before stucco-ing so the backer board doesn't draw too much water out of your stucco. As added insurance consider using and Ad-Mix (liquid acrylic bonder - fortifier). It will make your mix even stickier.

(M) Good luck.

Ciao,

Marcel;
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