#21  
Old 06-24-2010, 06:11 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

Thanks, John!

Glad to have that part behind me as I find forming and finishing concrete pretty mundane and was dreading that particular part of the project. (I am looking forward to forming and finishing the counter tops, but since I plan to pour them in place I think the challenge of the forms and such will be a bit more fun...)

CB
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  #22  
Old 06-27-2010, 05:46 AM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

I could stand it no longer, so late yesterday I uncovered the concrete pad to take a look at it. Will keep it wet through noon today to complete three days of curing, but it looks pretty good...

Due to the challenges of pouring in high heat by myself without a long enough screed to reach across the pad, I knew I would not get it perfectly level, so there are a few high/low spots, but nothing else on the patio is level and that gives it 'character!' Still, the imprinting I did came out better than expected and after some acid staining and sealing, I expect everything to look pretty good.

Midweek I hope to get the stucco on the shop wall and start dry stacking blocks... We'll see how it all works out.

Pics follow. I included a pic of the stamp/mold I used to press the stone pattern into the concrete. Was a bit of an experiment, but since the stamp was borrowed and I didn't have to pay hundreds of bucks for a professional set, I can't complain.... I just let the cement set up until firm enough to walk on then used a home made tamp and my weight to progressively mark the whole pad. A few mistakes, but not bad for a first timer with nothing more than internet reading and the wrong tools for the project.

CB
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  #23  
Old 06-29-2010, 02:21 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

Made some headway today!! Went to a local builders store and ordered a truck load of stuff that is supposed to be delivered tomorrow... Cement block, mortar, cement mix, rebar, etc...

Brought the stucco, tar paper and chicken wire home with me and we got started on stuccoing the wall of the shop. Not too difficult and the supplies are going longer than I thought, but will need a second scratch coat as the chicken wire, though nailed in a TON of places, still stands proud in a few spots. We got chased by an incoming thunderstorm, but the rain is blowing away from that wall, so hoping we don't get hurt too badly...

Thursday is my next day off, so I plan to finish the stucco as well as dry stack and core fill the base of the structure for the oven and a couple counters.

Very excited!!

CB
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  #24  
Old 06-30-2010, 07:43 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

Much more done after work today with a full day off tomorrow!

Finished the base coat of stucco on most of the wall with the corners still to do, but may not do them until I am ready to feather around the corner of the building and keep going... I can apply a finish coat tomorrow and prep for paint when we get to that point in the project.

Moved a pallet and half of cement block from the drive into the work area, then laid out, leveled and mortared the first coarse in. Tomorrow my boys and I can dry stack and core fill the oven and one counter wall. Then if all goes well we may be able to frame and pour the oven slab...

Pics tomorrow.

CB
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  #25  
Old 06-30-2010, 07:59 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

Well done - sounds like solid progress!
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  #26  
Old 07-01-2010, 04:54 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

Tired... Late in the work day I was wiped out and having trouble thinking/concentrating... By the end of the day I was wandering around moving stuff and getting nothing done. That's when I knew it was time to stop!

I am very happy with the day's results as evidenced by the pics below... A few small glitches, but overall we rocked. (Pun intended... )

Still have some work to do on the forms and a few things to think through to make sure I get the best result my amateur hands are capable of, but should be able to pour the oven slab and the counter tops on Saturday if I don't get called in to work.

The first couple pics are 'in progress' and the last couple are the 'end of day' pics. Helpers in the are pic for scale only... (Actually, they are a lot of help, though not strong enough to move bags of cement or pick blocks up to the third/fourth course. So, dad got a big workout!)
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Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0357sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0359sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0360sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0362sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0363sm.jpg  


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  #27  
Old 07-03-2010, 04:45 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

'Nother big day on what is quickly becoming an outdoor kitchen... Wifey is glad... Maybe the hard work will pay dividends..

Worked until after noon trying to finish the forms to have a continuous pour for both counters and the oven hearth slab. Nearly pulled it off, but more on that in a minute.

Wife picked up a small stainless sink yesterday, so I had to think through the reverse form to make the lip for bolting it down, etc.. Also decided to add a hole/indentation for a cutting board next to the sink.

Caught a clue from someone on this forum about an 'accident' using plastic edging creating a nice bull nose, so decided to try using some for the form on the front of my counter tops. I screwed it securely to the lower form with about 3" spacing, then used a 2x4 at an angle to present a rigid edge just under the round lip at the top of the edge material. It left a nice bulge on the front for the length of each counter... We'll see how it turns out after the forms come off...

I also used a strip of a blue 55 gal. drum to form the front of the hearth support area in a nice round shelf. (The pic shows a warped barrel, but after we got it in place the sun warmed it up nicely and then we used a couple screws and sticks to pull it into a very nice looking arc...)

Ultimately ran about 8-10 bags short and have a bit left to pour on the hearth slab. I formed a ring around the outside with a low spot in the middle for vermicrete. As it turns out the edges all around need to be filled to finish the job, so in one respect, the hearth will almost wind up as a floating hearth if the second pour doesn't adhere really well to the first... Guessing no harm, but at first was a little concerned.

Now some pics of mid day progress. Next post with end of day progress.

Questions, comments, thoughts, recommendations welcome!

Thanks,

CB
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  #28  
Old 07-03-2010, 04:46 PM
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More pics... end of day.

CB
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  #29  
Old 07-05-2010, 05:18 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

SURPRISE!!!

Didn't think I would get to do any more work until tomorrow, my normal day off... Well, yesterday afternoon late I was told that today would be a paid holiday as long as no immediate work came in (I work in a funeral home...).

So, I started early today hoping to not get 'the call.' Ultimately, I worked hard early, then piddled much of the afternoon in tying up loose ends and getting ready for the next step.

Tomorrow I am off, so going to buy brick and vermiculite. Plan to have the vermicrete pad poured by the end of the day and have my brick hearth cut and laid out!!

Pics follow. I pulled the forms for the edges of the counters and for the sink. Both look good. I will continue to keep them wet for the next few days. Notice the rounded/bullnose edge of the counter!! Turned out pretty good! Needs a few minor touchups, but over all I am very happy with how $8 of wallyworld plastic edging made a nice edge. Once polished, stained and sealed, I think the counters will look nice!!

Also, I stuck a pic in of the corner where we laid a few block for the foundation of the fireplace... Still debating some details on that side, but the fireplace itself is set in stone... so to speak...

CB
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Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0371sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0372sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0373sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0374sm.jpg   Countryboy build in SC, US-dscf0375sm.jpg  

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  #30  
Old 07-06-2010, 06:50 PM
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Default Re: Countryboy build in SC, US

Got more done today...

Felt like I spent all day hunting down supplies. The real difficulty was finding some vermiculite.

The first pool place was ZERO help. The even acted like he had no idea what it was... The next place was little help until they realized that I wasn't trying a pool repair on my own but was building a WFO.

Still, they didn't have any on hand and said it would be hours before they could get a delivery truck to bring some by the store. I explained I was 50 miles from home and they were generous enough to start making calls for me... Long story short, it was still two hours and 40 miles of driving before I had the goods, but at $13/bag premixed with cement, it was hard to beat. Bought four bags and the job took three.

Loaded the brick at a brickyard and asked for Heat Stop 50 or similar refractory mortar... The guy looked at me like I was crazy. I explained what I'm doing and he claimed that local contractors working in wfo ovens in local restaurants (I know of only two... ) and in kiln work use mortar and fireclay in a 2:1 ratio. He called a sales rep that covers this region and the claim was confirmed.

So, question for you guys: I purchased one bag of fireclay at $18 and have mortar mix on hand... Do I go with that (I know the Pompeii v2 manual offers that as a 'cheaper option'), and what is the difference in life expectancy of the mortar/oven? OR, do I stop the progress and look harder/order some from the other side of the planet, er.., country?

[Makes me wonder, what did they use for mortar 150 or 1500 years ago? Hmmmm..... How long have some of those ovens survived?]

Can you tell I am leaning toward moving forward, but want clear direction if that is ill advised...

Once home, my eldest and I mixed the vermicrete and put it in place. Seemed soupy, but followed the FBF lead...

Next we stalled on the oven by removing concrete forms and watering all concrete again. Have left the under oven stand support in place for at least two or three more days.

Then we started laying out the floor and cutting brick. I have a metal chop saw that I decided to use instead of a wet/masonry saw. I did spring for a blade that is worth more than the saw.. I paid about $130 for the blade. Just as we were getting set up it dawned on me ( light bulb over head smilie) that we have a small two gallon sprayer for weeds/bugs, etc... A couple years ago we started to avoid all chemicals on the property and have since used it to spray salt water on weeds, etc... (So, it is clean...)

Anyway, I told my son to fill it with water, pump the pressure up and use it to wet the bricks where I was cutting. Worked like a charm! I gave careful instruction to him to be sure no overspray hit the motor on the saw, but the size of the blade and relatively sealed housing was insurance enough.

We cut the hearth bricks and then, with the vermicrete starting to firm up, decided to set them onto the surface of the 5" thick insulating pad. Wet down the rest of the concrete, sat and enjoyed a Corona, then had dinner.

Long productive day... Happy.

Pics...

CB
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