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Thread: Attic Vent and stucco?

  1. #1
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    Attic Vent and stucco?

    Howdy folks!

    I've come to the conclusion that installing a fan in the attic above my shop is a Good Thing (tm). Nevermind the lowest priced one I can find is 5x the fan needed for my space (less than 300sq ft).

    But my trouble is that the outside of my shop is covered in stucco. I need to make the hole for the vent without completely destroying the surrounding stucco. I have never sawn into the stuff before and I really don't want to break chunks off that i'd have to unsuccessfully patch.

    So far, the best idea i've come up with to mitigate the risk of really goofing it up is to draw the perimeter of the opening i need (probably a rectangle) with my wonder marker (sharpie). Then, with a borrowed hammer drill, drill holes like crazy around that perimeter. Say 1/4" holes every 1/4" or so - tedius, but i'm willing to work to ensure success.

    Sawing into the stuff ... after the holes were drilled, I'd planned on using my jigsaw with a special masonry blade (if one exists?). I've also been pondering using my 7 1/4" circular saw with a concrete blade...

    Is the drilling obnoxious overkill? Will sawing be fine? Do they make jigsaw blades that'd do the job?

    Oh the questions! :P
    Jason Beam
    Sacramento, CA

  2. #2
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    Jason,

    On my house in Tampa I had one repair. The stucco was approximately 2" thick. Not sure a jigsaw blade would of worked. They used a hand held concrete saw to cut it out. Beware of lots of dust.

    Randy

  3. #3
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    Jason, have you looked at roof mounted attic vents? You can find them in a wide range of CFM's.
    "I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a
    friend...if you have one."
    --George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill

    "Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second..if there is
    one."
    --Winston Churchill, in response




  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Page View Post
    Jason, have you looked at roof mounted attic vents? You can find them in a wide range of CFM's.
    Bruce,

    I have given them a bit of a glance, but I've kinda ruled the idea out. The idea of cutting into the roof is not something I'm comfortable doing given my skills and tool collection. If $50 bucks buys me 5x the fan, i'm okay with that price and if it makes the attic cool that much faster, I'm alright with that, too :P

    I like the idea of a ridge vent instead of a gable one, it's just a tougher challenge than I'd feel comfortable tackling.

    Thanks
    Jason Beam
    Sacramento, CA

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by randy street View Post
    Jason,

    On my house in Tampa I had one repair. The stucco was approximately 2" thick. Not sure a jigsaw blade would of worked. They used a hand held concrete saw to cut it out. Beware of lots of dust.

    Randy
    Thankfully, mine's probably less than 3/4" thick. The jigsaw idea scares me just because of all that vibrating, too. So far, I'm leaning more towards the idea of putting a diamond/concrete blade on my circular saw and then finding a way to tackle the corners instead.

    If i go the concrete blade on my PC circular saw, should I be worried about the concrete dust hurting the saw in any way? It's only one hole, so it's not like a long-term thing ... hopefully not!
    Jason Beam
    Sacramento, CA

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Beam View Post
    Thankfully, mine's probably less than 3/4" thick. The jigsaw idea scares me just because of all that vibrating, too. So far, I'm leaning more towards the idea of putting a diamond/concrete blade on my circular saw and then finding a way to tackle the corners instead.

    If i go the concrete blade on my PC circular saw, should I be worried about the concrete dust hurting the saw in any way? It's only one hole, so it's not like a long-term thing ... hopefully not!
    I've used an abrasive cut-off wheel in a Skil saw. (Probably not recommended by the manufacturer, but I wore face, hand and arm protection.) I was using it to cut up scrap metal pipe, since I didn't have an angle grinder with a cut-off wheel at the time. I'm pretty sure it would work on stucco (but I could stand corrected), and for a single opening I don't think the dust would be too much for the saw to take.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

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  7. #7
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    Yes there are abrasive blades for circular saws that are for cutting masonry, they create a TON of dust, but they do work.

    I'd put a temp base on your circular saw, just to stop the saw from getting scratched up.

    This should work, it will be hot messy work. The corners you can attack with the masonry drill bit, and a chisel.......................carefully!

    Good luck.............take pics!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  8. #8
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    Jason, when one of the guys was cutting some concrete blocks on my well house, he used a masonry blade in his circular saw, but he took a piece of that thin green foam filter material that goes around the paper filter on some lawnmower air filters, and used Duct tape to tape it on his saw so the foam covered the air inlets on his saw to keep the abrasive dust out of the motor, and it seemed to work ok.

  9. #9
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    Livermore CA (SF Bay Area)
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    A friend of mine has done this quite a bit. He uses a right angle grinder with a 4" diamond blade. It really works well.

    Warren

  10. #10
    Go to HD or Arts Rental and tell them what you want to do. Pack your credit card with you and rent the appropriate tool for the job...when you do, it will seem as if it wasn't that big of a problem after all. but it most time comes down to the right t+-ool for the job.

    I used to try to figure a way to do stuff with what I had available , too. but My son made a believer out of me. Industry considers labor more expensive than the tool costs so getting the right tool is the answer. Climb off your wallet and rent the correct tool and make the job a simple task.

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