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The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

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Re: The builder's are coming - cellar work

Postby Rod » 07 Jun 2018, 10:45

That’s a bit frightening.
Like Bob, I’ve always tried to use MK fittings.

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Re: The builder's are coming - cellar work

Postby RogerS » 07 Jun 2018, 11:53

9fingers wrote:Oh Dear Roger, I hope it is not another case of form over function? :lol:

I must admit to being an MK or Crabtree fan when buying lx fittings.

Bob


Normally I am but Chief Designer doesn't like red markings on the switches (I happen to agree with her here).
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Re: The builder's are coming - cellar work

Postby TrimTheKing » 07 Jun 2018, 12:58

Tipp-Ex them out!! Surely safety is more important than a small red square...
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby RogerS » 02 Oct 2018, 17:47

Fireplace fixing

Been neglectful of the main thread. So without further ado, time to fit the fireplace surround. It's Carrara marble. The moulding is a bolection.

First off, need to get the slate hearth in place. 44kg and concerned not to snap it and so ideally like to keep it supported or handle it keeping it upright. Hard to do when you're on your tod.

Drag it from where it's been kept all these months by leap-frogging Kingspan sheets and a slow drag from one to the next.

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Now I need to get it vertical and against the wall so that I can put down tile cement on the concrete found and then lower the slate down forwards and into position. Trouble is that Kingspan is about 4" thick and so I didn't want to run the risk of dropping it on a corner.

So cut some Kingspan ramps and cover with duck tape to aid sliding and minimise bits of Kingspan fluff everywhere.

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Slowly slide the slate down the ramps, lift into the vertical, remove ramps and Kingspan et voila.

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Apply cement and tilt forward into position, checking for level. First part's done.

Next day, place and line-up the two upstands.

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Check the LH upstand…this side looks good.

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On the other side, the bottom’s not too bad

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Bit of a gap at the top but that can be filled with fire cement

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And the other side …?

Looking good

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And a similar gap at the top which again can be filled with fire cement

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Let’s take a look on the opposite edge

Doesn’t look to good

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And at the top it’s even worse :(

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Putting a level n the uprights suggests that they are both vertical and coplanar. But equally the wall looks vertical as well. So not sure what’s going on here .. :eusa-think:

I don’t really want to start angle-grinding the edge of the internal firebrick sides since we’re habiting this room.
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby Mike G » 02 Oct 2018, 18:10

I'd probably go with the wall, Roger. I can't see that would cause any issues, and it's not like you can eye the side pieces up against anything and see they're out of vertical. I'd also have a little check of your spirit level...... ;)
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby RogerS » 04 Oct 2018, 16:24

Thanks for the suggestion, Mike, as it reassures me on the direction I'd thought of taking. I played around pushing the upright back against the wall and resting a level side on across the two to see how much rocking there was. Pretty minimal and easily taken up by the cement.

For the record, the fireplace didn't come with any form of fixings and soI've had to come up with my own ideas. I've screwed in a couple of stainless steel building ties at either end. One had to be cut down ...builders tolerances !

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They will rest in the join between the uprights and mantel and I researched the right type of Araldite. A liberal dollop of solvent-free adhesive will also go all the way up between upright and wall. On porous surfaces I find the solvent free stuff to be much better than solvent based.

The mantel has four mirror fixings, bent then Araldited in place.

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I can then screw through these and up into wood spanning the fireplace opening to give some additional mechanical support to the mantel in addition to adhesive etc. Any exposed wood will then be sealed in fire-cements and fireproof boards.

The one outstanding thing that I am mithering about is what to seal the marble with. So many conflicting websites. It certainly needs something as smoke will discolour it with use. Not helped by my builder not appreciating how to build the insides of fireplaces to encourage the smoke to go up the chimney as opposed to into the room :evil:

As an aside, I didn't realise that Carrara marble has iron in it and as marble is porous you must seal it when used in a shower for obvious reasons ! Trouble is I didn't ...so is water in there already ? Do I seal over the top ? :eusa-think:
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby Rod » 04 Oct 2018, 19:38

I went off marble when I installed some in our kitchen a few years ago. Two different liquids to seal it then a top coat to finish it.
Did you leave the marble in a wet place?
If so I’d let it dry out for a time before applying any sealers.

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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby RogerS » 06 Oct 2018, 11:56

The carrara marble tiles are already fitted to the shower which is in daily use!

Anyway, fireplace now fitted - first phase

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Turned out to be very tricky matching up the mouldings. I'd give myself 8/10. Might have helped if I'd done a dry run first :oops:

My mate Richard came to help me with the mantelpiece and was very interested in seeing the short work my Fein made of trimming some plasterboard.

"I must get one of those". Another Fein convert :lol:
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby Malc2098 » 06 Oct 2018, 12:08

Looking nice.
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby RogerS » 07 Oct 2018, 18:57

Finding a suitable sealant tricky. We bought a lot of tiles from Mandarin Stone including some marble with a similar finish. They recommended some stuff from Fila (Hydrorep and Fob) and I had some small tins. They claim 'not to change the colour' and then a few lines down suggest trying on a small area to check that the colour doesn't alter !

So I tried some on some tile offcuts and while the colour doesn't change there is a noticeable difference between unsealed and sealed. There's some stuff from the US called Stonetech Bulletproof which is a tad pricey as I have to buy in quarts and I can't get smaller quantities. Tricky.

Changing the subject, some of you may recall all the grief that I had with the sash windows. I'd never got round to fitting the pocket pieces as I knew that the supplied weights were wrong. They'd dropped off some makeweights for me...just never got round to fitting them. Having a 'rain stopped play' situation, I decided to see about finishing one of the sash windows. It soon became apparent that the makeweights were nowhere near heavy enough. Plus I thought 'Why am I mucking about with this?'...shouldn't the supplier be sorting it out?

So I called them and even though it's nearly a year ago, we had an amicable discussion, the upshoot of it being that the Director who looks after fitting windows was up in my area and would call in. They had a sneaky suspicion that their scales were faulty. Bottom line ? Sash window weight...11.4 kg. Supplied weights 7 kg :o I was vindicated...they'll be coming along sometime to take out all the sashes, put in the correct weights, record them, fit the pocket pieces etc. I'm also going to suggest that a nice bottle of single malt wouldn't go amiss. :obscene-drinkingcheers:
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby RogerS » 09 Oct 2018, 15:18

Interesting. I took another look at my trial piece of marble several days after application and to my pleasant surprise found that all the original shade differences, overall darkening etc have all faded away to virtually nothing. Clearly the drying process is a lot longer than at first sight.

So as result of this, these sealants are showing promise and so I decided to experiment with smoke. I can't light the fire for obvious reasons so used a couple of candles and encouraged them to create smoke. OK...not the same as wood smoke but close enough, I guess. Turned the marble round to get soot on all different sealants for comparison.

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I let the marble cool down and any soot solidify then gave a wipe with a kitchen towel.

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Clearly some residue left. Next I got some of those general wipes from Everbuild, made several passes and finished with a dry kitchen towel.

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A is original and unsealed...looks darker to my eyes from the smoke

B is the best I think and is FilaFOB

C is FilaHydroRep that you're supposed to put on the tile first before applying FilaFOB. To my eyes, after applying this and before the soot/smoke test, it still had a darker tinge from the original.

D is Fila MP/90 which isn't really intended for this type of marble finish and again, after cleaning, still seems a bit darker than in B.

I do have one more finish to try.
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby StevieB » 10 Oct 2018, 08:34

As a scientist - I applaud your experimental approach!

Isn't the arrow A in the wrong place though, compared to the 4 smoke marks in the previous pictures?
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby RogerS » 10 Oct 2018, 09:08

StevieB wrote:As a scientist - I applaud your experimental approach!

Isn't the arrow A in the wrong place though, compared to the 4 smoke marks in the previous pictures?


Thank you!

No, the arrow is in the right place..there is a very thin DMZ between C and B/D. Also a small square in the middle between B and D.
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Re: The builder's are coming - fireplace fixing

Postby RogerS » 25 Nov 2018, 13:48

In the end I went for DRAI from an Italian company called Ilpa. Also bought some Marseille soap. However even cleaning the marble weekly there is a small hint of discolouration. I've removed one row of firebricks at the back to open up the flue. I intend to carry out experimenting with the height if the basket but that's for the future.

Moving on ....and having been sidetracked by the Orangerie, little has taken place indoors. However, LOML is getting fidgety about progress (or her perceived lack of) and keeps banging on about getting someone in to help. I try to explain why that isn't a sensible option - other than finding a competent tiler (stop sniggering at the back there) - but it falls on deaf ears. So some compromise needed and over the last couple of days laid the floor in her study.

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The floorboards are engineered - 240mm wide - oak faced. The machining is very good but the oak leaves a lot to be desired. I am wasting a lot of time sorting through the boards as some have significant defects.

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In hindsight I really should have rejected a lot of them but other things got in the way of progressing that.

Other defects are where the edges of the oak are below the 'mean' and so not sanded/finished. See the red arrow.

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Other boards have a lot of light sapwood showing.

Nowt much I can do but press on. Pile up boards, sort, pile, resort....

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And we're done...

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I use Tongue-Tite screws. An offcut and hammer to encourage the boards to have a tight fit and sometimes a block screwed into the chipboard and a crowbar to encourage closure of any recalcitrant boards.

One or two boards 'sprung' a split and so I've heated up some West Hyde epoxy to get it really runny, then encouraged it to flow into and underneath any splits to try and stabilise them. Other holes are filled with some Brummer stopping, others will have different shades of wax sticks.

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It is a balancing act because the open pores of the oak will take up the epoxy and stopping meaning that one has to sand down a bit more than one would like as if you go to heavy-handed then you run the risk of uncovering more splits.

The manufacturers hole filling is horribly uniform. I looked hard after the event at their website but saw no reference to quality of oak :( and so I've only got myself to blame.

So two rooms done Only another 170 sq m to go in all the other rooms :o
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby RogerS » 25 Nov 2018, 13:54

Also pleased to say that all the sash windows have been sorted by the supplier. I started having a go myself (after all 'twas what I used to earn a crust with) but soon realised that the makeweights they'd given me last year were nowhere near heavy enough. Started looking at weighing them and organising the lead from Mighton when I thought ...'Bu**er it...why am I doing this ?'. Rang up the supplier and they sent out a couple of guys and a lot of lead. They reckon that the person who cut up the lead weights used a set of faulty scales in the factory :shock:

So, one day later, all sashes recorded, correct weights, pocket pieces installed, staff beads fitted properly and jobs a good'un. I just supplied the tea :D
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby Malc2098 » 25 Nov 2018, 17:55

Coming along.
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Re: The builder's are coming - cellar work

Postby billybuntus » 03 Dec 2018, 23:26

RogerS wrote:Couple of photos

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Image


In my last house I had the same setup for a cellar. Battled with it for a while with ventilation (big extractor). Airflow actually increased humidty.

In the end I blocked up the extractor and fitted a small dehumidifier with a condensate pump which did a perfect job. Condensate pumps have a good lift on them to pump up to an external or internal drain.
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby Mike G » 04 Dec 2018, 09:13

So Roger, having used some epoxy in repairing the floor, does that mean you are going to be using the same stuff to finish it?
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby RogerS » 04 Dec 2018, 09:34

Mike G wrote:So Roger, having used some epoxy in repairing the floor, does that mean you are going to be using the same stuff to finish it?


Not a chance ! Microcrystalline wax from Chestnut. It's about the best wax based product I've found that doesn't affect the original colouring of the oak very much. I'd usually go for water based stuff to avoid any yellowing and I found Blanchon very good but Chief Designer preferred the Chestnut finish in this instance. There is, of course, also Aquacoat SP which I recommended to you a while back.
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby Mike G » 04 Dec 2018, 12:09

Are you not afraid that the patches of epoxy will show through?

I love the Aquacoat SP, and am using a similar product (half the price) for virtually everything I make now.
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby Rod » 04 Dec 2018, 12:17

What half price product is that Mike?

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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby RogerS » 04 Dec 2018, 12:48

Mike G wrote:Are you not afraid that the patches of epoxy will show through?


A good point but, no, as they were sanded right back.

Mike G wrote:I love the Aquacoat SP, and am using a similar product (half the price) for virtually everything I make now.


Which one is that ?
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby RogerS » 04 Dec 2018, 13:07

billybuntus wrote:.....

In my last house I had the same setup for a cellar. Battled with it for a while with ventilation (big extractor). Airflow actually increased humidty.

In the end I blocked up the extractor and fitted a small dehumidifier with a condensate pump which did a perfect job. Condensate pumps have a good lift on them to pump up to an external or internal drain.


Nice idea but in my case I'd need an industrial dehumidifier running 365/24/7. What I didn't mention is that I also have a well in the cellar

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Urgent need of some TLC. The pressure vessel has sprung a leak. On the very long TUIT list.

Plus running water now routed down drainage channels at the side of the floor.
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The muppets who renovated the house in 1975, as well as never using a spirit level, managed to use perforated land drainage pipe instead of a proper underground soil pipe to take away the water from the house rooves.

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Also when the water treatment plant backwashes, the water from that (grey pipe left of frame) goes down the same drain.

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Also needing some TLC :oops:

Thanks to using the perforated pipe, the water very quickly runs down through the soil/fissures/whatever and exits in a jet out of a fissure in the stones at the bottom of the cellar steps.

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but not at the moment !

Plus, of course, water from the general water table. All the damp patches on the steps

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So you see that the only option I really have is to channel the water away - which is working very well now.

Yet again, the muppets in 1975 did put in some small perforated pipes which over the years clagged up completely with silt. At least, my open grating drainage channels can be easily excavated to keep the water running freely.
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby Mike G » 04 Dec 2018, 18:20

RogerS wrote:
Mike G wrote:I love the Aquacoat SP, and am using a similar product (half the price) for virtually everything I make now.


Which one is that ?


A water based lacquer from Ingilby Paints, Glemsford, which they sell for £8.00 per litre. I can't remember its name. I'll check on the container tomorrow, when I next use it.
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Re: The builder's are coming - floorboard laying

Postby Mike G » 05 Dec 2018, 09:08

It's called Seacoat Lacquer (Clear). It is supplied as "gloss" but they can add a matting agent to give an eggshell or even matt appearance, or can supply that separately. I bought a 5 litre bucket for only a little more than 1 litre of the Aquacoat SP, which cost £32 for 1 litre including the postage.

Both of them are a little disconcerting when you first use them, as they are white in the container, and when first applied to the wood, but they quite quickly turn clear. The results are indistinguishable, to my eyes.
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