Replacing brick support with concrete

Old 03-20-20, 10:09 AM
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Replacing brick support with concrete

Good day everyone.
I am considering how to replace the support for a long concrete border, which is currently sitting on a layer of crumbling bricks, which are sitting on a concrete block wall. It's been about 20 years since it was built and I think water has seeped into the area. Freezing and thawing has probably weakened the structure as well. The attached picture shows the situation. The gap is about 3.5 in and I was originally thinking of clearing out all the old broken bricks (and parging that covered them) and inserting narrow concrete blocks (like the one standing on the stairs). This is Plan A. However, there is considerable mortar (and/or concrete layer) the farther in I go, such that the narrow concrete block won't fit. I tried a hammer and chisel and even a crowbar to clear the excess but I can't get reach deep into the 3.5in gap to remove all of it. There is a flashlight sitting on a wood block showing what's inside (if you zoom on the photo). I tried jacking up concrete border and it does rise but still there is not enough clearance. I loathe scraping down the concrete blocks to fit. For plan B I am thinking about inserting a few screw jacks in place and then putting a 2x4 studs in front of them as a facade to cover the gap. I don't know where i am going to find screw jacks which I saw on google images (attached). Let me know what you think I can do about Plan A or B. I prefer Plan A but if there is another idea I am open. Thank you for your advice.
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Old 03-20-20, 10:33 AM
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I don't see what the problem is. Get a brick saw and cut standard sized blocks down to the height needed. You dont need jacks if you just cut a few blocks 7/8" shorter than the space. Set them on a bed of mortar, then tuck point the top. Wait for them to set up.

Once the mortar on those those blocks has set, chisel out the rest of the concrete with a rotary hammer.

Instead of cutting the blocks you could also just use 8x16 solids that are the right height to fit. They come in a variety of thicknesses. 1 5/8, 2 1/4, 2 5/8, 3 5/8... any ready mix concrete plant should have them.

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