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  1. #1
    julie's Avatar
    julie is offline Established Member
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    what does concrete do?

    I have a few questions about building masonry retaining walls, masonry stairs and pavers. Can you please answer one or more of them?

    1) What does concrete do? Do you set things in concrete like do you put concrete down for pavers and before it sets you put pavers in it - this is for paving patio. If not, how do you stick pavers to concrete?

    2) Do you set stone for retainer walls into concrete before it sets?

    3) Is concrete also used as a retainer itself? Why do you put concrete behind a 1 metre retainer wall that's made of stone and uses weight to retain earth?

    3) Do you know why you need a drainage system for masonry steps? And do you possible know where you put it? The internet is great for DIY stuff but I can't find this after a week of searching.

    Wood retainers have drainage and use concrete to set wood. Decks has special material for drainage, and wooden stairs don't need drainage but masonry is very different. BTW, if wooden stairs need drainage please let me know.
    Ignorance is the Oppressor, Vigilance the Liberator.

  2. #2
    Percy's Avatar
    Percy is online now Knackered old Knight
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    This is secret men's business.

    When in need of a drink to Refresh the soul
    Drop into the Knight & Drummer Free House.
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    Always leave a Comment as a tip.


    Cum dilectione hominum et odio vitiorum
    Love the Sinner but not the Sin.
    (St. Augustine)

    For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against Principalities, against Powers,
    against the Rulers of the Darkness of this world, against Spiritual Wickedness in high places. “
    (and within ourselves)


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    Go your Own Way, offer kindness but keep your sword drawn.





  3. #3
    KellyMac's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Quote Quote from Percy View Post
    This is secret men's business.

    LOL then a member of the secret men's union will show up to take care of it?

    I offered to make my best male friend one of his favorite apple pies if he would crawl under my house and figure out what's wrong with the dryer vent. For some reason, he didn't take me up on it.

  4. #4
    julie's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Quote Quote from KellyMac View Post
    LOL then a member of the secret men's union will show up to take care of it?

    I offered to make my best male friend one of his favorite apple pies if he would crawl under my house and figure out what's wrong with the dryer vent. For some reason, he didn't take me up on it.
    You don't seem to know how to play the victim well, lol. I see plenty of men buying into that,.

    But hey, I get lots of the treatment you describe but then I also get everything I need from men.

    Life is: If you want it go and get it. Why don't you start a single parent group in your area? You have no idea of the power you possess when you are a founder.
    Ignorance is the Oppressor, Vigilance the Liberator.

  5. #5
    KellyMac's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Quote Quote from julie View Post
    You don't seem to know how to play the victim well, lol. I see plenty of men buying into that,.

    But hey, I get lots of the treatment you describe but then I also get everything I need from men.

    Life is: If you want it go and get it. Why don't you start a single parent group in your area? You have no idea of the power you possess when you are a founder.
    LOL I think it's mostly because I have a 15 year old son, and they expect him to do it. Which he will - for a price!!

    Do you mean like a support group? How unique would that be here? I could welcome single fathers...

    Have to go to work now. Can we talk about it later, Julie?

  6. #6
    nivek's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    1)What does concrete do? Do you set things in concrete like do you put concrete down for pavers and before it sets you put pavers in it - this is for paving patio. If not, how do you stick pavers to concrete?
    Concrete is basically a structural material, if used as a base for slabs the concrete is left to set and the slabs/pavers should be laid on a bed of cement on top although I would only do this if the concrete was there prior to planning the patio and removing the concrete did not make sense i.e if the concrete is sound, it presents a major logistical nightmare to move and does not lift the patio’s final height above the damp proof course (if close to a building) I’d probably build on top of it, the way I’ve always laid a patio is to remove the soil to a depth of 4” (for light foot traffic) 6” (for heavier traffic or deeper depending on how heavy) and backfill with compacted hardcore, mot, shale or whatever its called round your neck of the woods, compact with a whacker plate and level by pouring on water to find the bumps and hollows and filling or whacking as necessary then lay the slabs/pavers on a bed of nice cement mixed at a ratio of about 5 to 1 soft sand to cement mixed to the consistency of clotted cream ……. Yummy.


    2) Do you set stone for retainer walls into concrete before it sets?
    usually the concrete is used as a foundation and the wall is then laid on top of the hard leveled concrete.

    3) Is concrete also used as a retainer itself? Why do you put concrete behind a 1 metre retainer wall that's made of stone and uses weight to retain earth?
    There are many methods used to build retainers, whatever method used must be adequate to hold the many years of constant pressure from the earth behind it (but the earth will always win eventually) a shuttered concrete wall can be used and facings or tile can be added afterwards to “nice it up a bit”


    3) Do you know why you need a drainage system for masonry steps? And do you possible know where you put it? The internet is great for DIY stuff but I can't find this after a week of searching.
    This depends on circumstance and its probably as well to check local building regs to be sure, usually when building a outdoor step or patio, shed base ect you will give it a slight lean ie not build it perfectly level but build so that water will drain in one direction (the lean is not visible to the naked eye). When building on a more pronounced slope (like laying a sloping driveway) a gully should be installed to divert rainwater away from any buildings.

    Added after 56 minutes:

    Wood retainers have drainage and use concrete to set wood. Decks has special material for drainage, and wooden stairs don't need drainage but masonry is very different. BTW, if wooden stairs need drainage please let me know.
    wood retainers are nice and easy to build just dig a trench set your timber (railway sleepers are very good for this, fence posts or poles are also good) level in the trench and pour the concrete round them like you would when setting a fence post, height does not matter as they can be cut once the concrete has set. you can also use the bags of pre-mixed "postcrete" which you pour in dry and then add the water afterwards by pouring from a watering can or hose, this method is less labour intensive but slightly more expensive.

    The grooves on deck-boards are more an anti-slip feature than for drainage (if that's what you meant) deck-boards are reversible and can be used smooth side up or grooves up.

    Where drainage is concerned, anything that may be exposed to rain water will usually be built with a slight slope to allow for this, steps will lean slightly forward, a patio will slope away from your house (again this is a matter of a few degrees and is not obvious to the naked eye) this also works indoors eg place a spirit level on your kitchen worktop, it should not be level from front to back, if the fitter was a "good un" it should have a very slight slope towards you this stops water from pooling at the back near your tiles and sealant. Go outside look at the guttering on your fascia board, its not level, if it was the water would not run efficiently towards your down pipe.

    Water travels down hill.

    As i said above if a slope is unavoidable or more pronounced and water runs towards a structure, house, shed garage or a wall then a gully is fitted to catch it before the structure and channel it away.
    Last edited by nivek; 11th-October-2011 at 08:47 PM. Reason: content auto merged
    Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber. ~Plato

  7. #7
    julie's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Nivek, thank you very much for your answer. I noticed this thread came up on the first page when I googled something for concrete and construction and I'm pleased a good comment like yours is present. How I wish I had of asked this question and some more a week ago because I could have done with your assistance.

    My son had to do an assignment that was handed in today - make plans (x sections) for a wooden retainer wall, a masonry retainer wall, wooden steps, masonry steps, a deck and paving. The six parts had to have their own plans with materials and an explanation on how to build each step by step.

    Then everything had to be put together on a plan and a methodology written for the whole project from excavation to wood treatment, drainage materials ect and construction - even how long it would take.

    Gosh, you just don't realise how hard it is until you attempt it. I think things were left out though we got allot from DIY men on the net. Others having to do the same are going to appreciate what you have offered, (as I have).

    Added after 6 minutes:

    Quote Quote from KellyMac View Post
    Do you mean like a support group? How unique would that be here? I could welcome single fathers...
    Yep, I do mean this.

    Have to go to work now. Can we talk about it later, Julie?
    We sure can talk about this. I'd love to.
    Last edited by julie; 12th-October-2011 at 05:54 AM. Reason: content auto merged
    Ignorance is the Oppressor, Vigilance the Liberator.

  8. #8
    Transhuman's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Quote Quote from julie View Post
    You don't seem to know how to play the victim well, lol. I see plenty of men buying into that,.

    But hey, I get lots of the treatment you describe but then I also get everything I need from men.

    Life is: If you want it go and get it. Why don't you start a single parent group in your area? You have no idea of the power you possess when you are a founder.
    I will consider your "playing the victim" is a joke, as I'm sure you know women who feign helplessness gain no respect from capable men. Part of anti-misandry is teaching boys not to fall for the white knight stereotype; women don't need to be rescued, they need to have opportunities to demonstrate they really are as capable as men.

    Mensheds is an organisation in Australia that does various types of home improvement work for their communities, as well as provides a place men and boys can gather to learn skills that women do not know or cannot pass on effectively. You don't need to manipulate them to have them help out, just approach them with a request. I'm sure there are similar groups in other countries.

    Naturally feminists view their gatherings with deep suspicion but so far the Mensheds have held out.
    Every revolution carries within it the seeds of its own destruction.
    - Frank Herbert

    Never send a feminist to do an egalitarian's job.

    The approval of women is over rated.

  9. #9
    MikeT's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: what does concrete do?

    Hey Julie,
    Just be very careful here and take Kev's advice about checking with your local council.
    As far as I'm aware, the building regulations here in NZ require that a retaining wall, be designed by a structural engineer, (depending of course upon what it's going to be holding back).

    You need to be aware of the types and sizes of forces that will be acting on this wall, a few years back a retaining wall that was about a metre high, fell over (due to a number of inadequacies in it's construction), pinning an apprentice painter that was coating it with textured coating at the time, he lost the lower section of both of his legs.

    Personally, concrete is one of my least favoured building materials, I gave my brother in law a hand to pour and float his driveway last year, never again, the day was as hot as hell and the concrete was drying pretty quick.
    Using multiple wheel barrows from the concrete truck is a real PITA, it took us 9 hours, but we came away with a pretty good result.
    That was until (as per normal) their cat walked all over the drying concrete and left his paw prints in it.
    Cats seem to be attracted to wet concrete.

    I will add that pouring concrete is very hard yakka and not a task for the un-initiated, you can end up with cement burns if you aren't careful.

    Kev,
    Brilliant post mate, you've pretty much said it all.

  10. #10
    nivek's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Cheers Mike.

    And yes you're spot on to re-stress the point about local building regs, and the need to consult with a structural engineer when planning a retainer is a very important point. good catch.

    P.S.

    Well played the All Blacks this morning and good luck for the final
    Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber. ~Plato

  11. #11
    MikeT's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    All good Kev,
    One thing needs to be remembered here, concrete has a mass all it's own, if it is not re-inforced correctly, it will fail because of torsional forces on a vertical slab.
    This is why you need a structural engineer to do the calculations pertaining to such a build.
    Getting this wrong will end in tears and I am not making that statement up.
    Common soil has a lateral (sideways) loading of around 2 tonne per cubic metre, this is also known as "slump".
    If you have a lot of rain before the concrete has cured on your retaining wall, it adds weight to the soil and will blow out a retaining wall as simple as.

    Yeah,
    It was an interesting game to watch.
    Piri Weepu, had a very good game, even though he isn't known as a kicker.
    Richie McCaw did his work like the tradesman he is.
    I must say there was a LOT of blood lost on the field.
    I think the biggest downer was Sonny Bill Williams, he gets on the field, off the bench and goes in with the big shoulder, he's in the sin-bin for what is left of the game.
    IMO, the shoulder was pretty cheap, but you have to ask yourself, is he really All Blacks material?
    The better side of me says no, he is leaving the AB's after the World Cup, to be a boxer.

  12. #12
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Quote Quote from KellyMac View Post
    LOL then a member of the secret men's union will show up to take care of it?

    I offered to make my best male friend one of his favorite apple pies if he would crawl under my house and figure out what's wrong with the dryer vent. For some reason, he didn't take me up on it.
    Maybe he doesn't like your apple pie as much as you think?

    Almost

  13. #13
    KellyMac's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Quote Quote from Popadibs View Post
    Maybe he doesn't like your apple pie as much as you think?
    He actually does, but thanks for taking it to the gutter, Popadibs. Mostly he has a life and his own house to take care of, which I don't blame him for at all.

  14. #14
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Quote Quote from KellyMac View Post
    He actually does, but thanks for taking it to the gutter, Popadibs. Mostly he has a life and his own house to take care of, which I don't blame him for at all.
    I was kidding anyways but whatever.
    Almost

  15. #15
    nivek's Avatar
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    Re: what does concrete do?

    Piri Weepu, had a very good game, even though he isn't known as a kicker.
    I thought they might struggle for a kicker after Carter got injured but Weepu has been superb in taking on a role that can often be a poison chalice, loved it when the crowd gave him a standing ovation when he got a well deserved rest towards the end, and then minuets later he had to trot back on as a blood replacement for Ellis, that made me chuckle.

    apple pie

    Mrs niveks apple pie could actually be used to make a pretty robust retaining wall
    Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber. ~Plato


 

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