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  #21  
Old 06-03-2011, 09:21 AM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

Gene,

Sounds like you are on your way and staying ahead of the weather!

I have never rented a saw, but be aware that rental yards make their money on blade 'wear', which they measure, not you. In every case I have heard of, the charges for the amount of wear you incur are excessive and can almost pay for a brand new blade.

John
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  #22  
Old 06-09-2011, 08:12 AM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

I have pulled the forms from the hearth and am fiddling around with the dome-to-arch transition, cutting the bricks ahead of time. I am hesitant to make too many cuts on the dry run before actually setting the bricks with mortar, as the gaps will most likely increase with the addition of mortar and render the dry run cuts inaccurate.
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28" Pompeii-noforms1.jpg   28" Pompeii-cutting_bricks_arch1.jpg  
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  #23  
Old 06-09-2011, 10:23 AM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

Gene,

Nice-looking start to your inner arch. Love the angled bricks! The toughest part will be maintaining the inside arc to the arch while keeping the outside (flat) brick faces plumb and flush. This is where patience is a virtue. I recommend cutting your center arch brick first (match this brick's inside face to your dome template) and then scribe a circular line (indispensible tool) down the top of this brick to your outer-most arch brick. This will give you the inside arc you need.

John
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  #24  
Old 06-09-2011, 01:12 PM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

Thanks John; sounds good. I'll likely begin the mortaring tomorrow. I have to get some sort of cover to protect the build from the elements and tree pitch until I get a roof over it.
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  #25  
Old 06-20-2011, 03:35 PM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

Today I set the hearth insulation and cut and set the floor bricks. The floor was a little trickier than I imagined, as the fireclay mortar sets up pretty quickly. If you have to adjust the layout once you begin you basically have to pull the affected bricks and re-butter them, as the insulation wicks the moisture away from the mortar rather quickly. I guess it took me about an hour, and I ended up with a few edge joints a little wider than I would have liked. A little sand should take care of that.

Tomorrow I will try to set the first course of oven dome bricks. Question for those who've been there/done that: do you fireclay-mortar the bricks to the hearth insulation and refractory-mortar them to each other (the sides I mean)? Or do you just set the dome bricks right on the insulation and call it good? My insulation seemed a bit uneven from the manufacturing process, so I thought a bed of fireclay might even things out, but that would mean two different mortars going at the same time

By the way, my 28" pompeii has grown to a 32" pompeii...must be all of the rain
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28" Pompeii-combing_clay1.jpg   28" Pompeii-hearth_insulation1.jpg   28" Pompeii-floor_layout1.jpg   28" Pompeii-floor1.jpg  
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  #26  
Old 06-22-2011, 08:13 AM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

You can use sand to level the insulation, if it worries you. Just throw a small layer on top and level it out.

No need to mortar down your soldier course, but you do want to mortar them together.

I hope this helps.
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:15 AM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

And! Good looking build so far!

Good luck to you!
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  #28  
Old 06-22-2011, 10:28 AM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

Thanks asudavew,

I wound up fire-clay mortaring the insulation down and just setting the soldiers on the insulation - no mortar.

On another note, I am trying a bag of the FB50 refractory. Have you used this product? Is doesn't seem to be very "sticky"...how wet should it be mixed? I am concerned with it bonding strength as I have mixed it (though perhaps improperly), because as I set it between two bricks, it seems to be already too dry to bond, and that is with the bricks being fully hydrated. Perhaps refractory mortar should be mixed much wetter than normal thinset? I am thinking I might need to pull up my soldiers and try some homebrew, as others have had good success with it.

Some advice please...
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  #29  
Old 06-28-2011, 04:12 PM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

Gene,

I had the same non-sticky problems mortaring my soldiers - so much so I abandoned that design and went with all-horizontal courses. I found that the brick weight of each successive course made for a better bond, but you don't have to do this. With the homebrew I merely made the mortar wetter (but not soupy) and my bricks have bonded together like super-glue. Sure, it takes a week or two for the bond to fully set, but I bet your FB mortar works the same. Can you do a test?
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  #30  
Old 06-28-2011, 04:54 PM
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Default Re: 28" Pompeii

Hi John,

I too placed my soldiers flat (so I guess they are not really soldiers?) and mortared them to each other. This was about a week ago and the bond is very strong. I mortared two scrap bricks together as a test piece to play around with, and, even with a reasonably forceful attempt, cannot break the bond (in tension, not torsion). So I am happy with the result; it is the workability that I dislike - similar to wet sand; no flow or "squishyness" to help uniformly distribute the mortar when the bricks are presses together, as one finds with regular mortar. I was thinking of adding some fireclay to the mix to aid the workability, but I have no idea how that will affect the behavioral characteristics of the cured mortar. Any thoughts?
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