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Thread: Brick stoop - sort of

  1. #1
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    Nov 2006
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    Brick stoop - sort of

    Oh, yeah, I said brick. Sorry guys.

    I'll try to post a picture later as I don't currently have one. I'm renting a house and have volunteered to fix some things as I tend to be somewhat capable. But, there's an eyesore of a project that was started and not finished. What? That's never happened before?

    Anyway, There's an exterior entrance into the kitchen which is right at 16" above grade. The previous tenant had started to replace the rotted stoop floor with brick. Currently, there are two courses of bricks defining the perimeter of the stoop/steps/porch/whatchamacallit. The interior of that defined space is very irregular with extra concrete and brick pieces tossed in. The level at which the second course ends still leaves to much of a rise to the door threshold to be comfortable.

    So, my question is, does anyone have any brilliant ideas on how to go about completing this particular job? Masonry is NOT my favorite cup of tea to say the least. Uggh, I still have nightmares over tuckpointing my last house.

    Any thoughts are much appreciated!!

    Thanks,

    Matt
    Last edited by Matt Warfield; 08-02-2007 at 01:48 PM. Reason: Added pictures

  2. #2
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    Some pics would be helpful....

    Thanks.

  3. #3
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    Hey Steve,

    Good to see you again too. As you know, I've disappeared for awhile to deal with the still pending marriage dissolution. Please, no sympathy guys...it just means more shop time and fewer naggings and overall more happy times....for me anyway.

    I'll get some pics up...sorry to take this off topic even if I brought up the original topic. lol

    Matt

  4. #4
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    I'm not sure I follow Matt (nice to see you again!!) and a pic would be great, but I was thinking that just pouring concrete into the hole to make a level bit would work, but if you don't like that, then how about sand?

    Here in Tokyo, the sidewalks are all built from bricks, they are laid on a sand bed about 1" deep, then the bricks are placed and then sand is swept over them. When they have to do some pipe work etc, they just lift up the bricks, and stack them to the side, do the work, and replace the bricks.

    Could you make a somewhat level spot, then level it with sand, to one brick below the level of the two rows of bricks, then fill with bricks and sweep the sand in?

    No mortar involved!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  5. #5
    I know you said not to feel sorry for you, but you aren't going to get off that easy with this woodworker. I have been divorced myself and know first hand the trials and tribulations such a change in lifes venue causes. Lets just say I feel for you. As the saying goes...Been there, done that, and it sure aint fun!!

    Glad to see you are keeping your chin up, you carasss in the shop and maintaining your sanity through it all.

    As for the stoop, sorry I can't help you there. My brick laying abilities are really, really bad.
    I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Warfield View Post
    ...There's an exterior entrance into the kitchen which is right at 16" above grade. The previous tenant had started to replace the rotted stoop floor with brick. Currently, there are two courses of bricks defining the perimeter of the stoop/steps/porch/whatchamacallit. The interior of that defined space is very irregular with extra concrete and brick pieces tossed in. The level at which the second course ends still leaves to much of a rise to the door threshold to be comfortable....
    Matt
    A couple points that may be helpful, but no real expertise...

    First, height. Important that steps be even - you should not have a 9 inch and a 7 inch to get up the 16 inch total. A useful rule of thumb is that twice the height plus the depth of the step should be about 25 inches. On a ladder where you step up 12 inches, you only have to go forward one inch, but if you have one of those stupid 3 inch high steps, it should be close to 20 inches deep. So if you are going up 16 inches in two steps, they should be 8 inches each, and the step should be about 9 inches deep. Before you try to fill it in, get a good lip around the edge at the final height.

    Second, if you are going to use sand or something squishy as the filler, you need to have an even foundation. If you have brick scraps and rocks, the sand won't work well... get a bag of mortar mix or cement mix, add water, mix, and slop in. Flatten with a board, leaving a slight slope so water doesn't accumulate. Make sure it drys slowly (cover it if it is in the hot sun), and you will be good to go for more years than you probably need to worry about. Cement work experts can give you better advice on refining the finish, but simple will still be functional.
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

  7. #7
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    Pictures are added. It's more of a mess than I remembered. If it's of any use, the door faces north and has a roof overhanging the entire stoop area. If I had my druthers, I'd rip it all out and put in a nice little deck. But, then I'm not footing the bill.

    Thanks for all the input so far!!

  8. #8
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    Why not just run one more row of bricks, and then mix up a wheelbarrow or two of concrete and fill it in?

    Put some of that mesh stuff in there to hold it all together and you are done......?
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  9. #9
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    Sounds too easy. Not that I would mind easy for that project.

  10. #10
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    My original thought parallels Stu's. One thing to think about. Where the landing joins the house on the side other than the door, how will you work that? Shedding water away from the area should be something to consider. I don't think it will be a major item, especially since there is a roof covering it, but it needs to be able to drain. Jim.
    Coolmeadow Setters...
    Exclusively Irish!
    Home of Irish Setter Rescue of North Texas
    When Irish Eyes are smiling, they're usually up to something!!
    At a minimum, I'm Pentatoxic...but most likely, I'm a Pentaholic. There seems to be no known cure. Pentatonix, winners of The Sing Off, season 3


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