capping concrete steps with brick and bluestone


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Old 05-12-09, 12:19 PM
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capping concrete steps with brick and bluestone

Hi,

I am redoing my concrete steps. They are in good condition and I have enough room to cap them so I will be capping with brick (risers and sides) and bluestone (treads and platform).

My plan is to dig and pour a concrete footing around the existing steps. About 12" wide and 24" deep. I am on Long Island and this should be below our frost line.

The next day, Im assuming the footing will be dry enough to begin capping - right?

But here are a number of questions:
1) Do I need to keep the footing moist by covering it or misting it once or twice. I remember I was told to do this years ago when I had some sidewalk slabs replaced.

Also, I need to chop up some of my existing walk in order to dig part of the footing. If I break it up into small enough chunks, can I bury some of the chopped up concrete in my footing to save on volume of concrete and help dispose of it?

2) My relevent experience is in tiling kitchens and bathrooms, where you use mortor/thinset and then grout as a seperate steps. But, with brickwork, as I cap the sides and risers, I use the mortor mix as the grout all in one step, then just make it concave with a special tool or the trowel point- right?

3) After the capping is done, do I need to mist or cover the stoop (as with the sidewalk)?

4) When laying the bluestone treads, Im assuming I simply spread mortar about 1/2 thick over my existing treads and lay the stone on top. I guess I pitch it about 1/4" down but is that all? There will be about a 2.5" overhang in the front. The mortar will hold it? Its not going to act like a loose plank where if you step on the front, it will lift in the back, will it? Its probably too heavy for that anyway but just want to make sure.

5) When laying bluestone flags in the field portion of the platform... Is this is the only area that I actually need to fill in the spaces between the stones as if I were grouting... after the stones have been laid on mortar?
 

Last edited by rmathome; 05-12-09 at 01:55 PM.
  #2  
Old 05-13-09, 11:46 AM
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one more question...

after pouring the footing, do I need to let it cure for 3-7 days before I can build the brick and stair treads on it?

Or is a day or so fine?
 
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Old 05-13-09, 12:44 PM
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and, what I think is a final question...
when tiling a wall or floor, you can use spacers to make sure your lines are straight.

I cant find anything about spacers for bricks (this is for bricks for a stoop, not the one with spaces built in).

Is it ok to make my own spacers and embed them in the mortar?

For example, lets say I want 3/8 inch grout lines. Could I lay a row of brick, make sure it is level, and then put mortar on top for the next row, but push small 1"x1"x3/8" pieces of plywood (or some other material) in this mortar? Then, my next layer of brick will be certain of being a striaght, easy, line.
 
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Old 05-14-09, 05:56 AM
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Do my questions have the cooties?
 
 

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