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Pier Built from Bricks?


kirkster501
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Zakalwe, is that an inch of concrete at the top of your pier into which the plat mounting bolts are set?  How far vertically down into the brickwork do your plate bolts go please or are they just set into the concrete at the top?

There is no rebar at all on this then and it's just built directly on the concrete block below the ground?  A few more piccies of it please?

No rebar needed. You only put rebar into concrete because concrete is flexible, and the rebar is to stop it flexing tto far and cracking, and if it does crack to limit the catastrophic failure... really not needed in something of this size.

The top is actually standard mortar, I just built some wooden shuttering, sealed it around the top with bathroom sealant, poured in some mortar and then pressed the bolts in (the bolts were in the top disc so they were aligned).

The disc is laser cut/drilled aluminium, I got a guy in Scotland to cut them for me.

It's also not on a concrete block at the bottom, it's just a (very stable) paving slab... just keep it simple :)

If you live in a heavy frost area then you would need better footing than a slab so frost doesn't move it, but this has worked down to -10 c so far without moving.

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As I don't leave the mount out the top nuts are just finger tight. If you are building it inside an obsy then I'd use concrete instead of mortar for the top as you say... I tend to use two spanners in opposite directions if I am tightening nuts anyway.

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I guess you're all right regarding the bricks. Clearly they do work despite my non-builder's anxieties and I'm the first to agree on the 'piers and Woo-Woo' thing, having been arguing for years that ten foot deep holes full of twenty tons of concrete are a piece of internet lunacy seving no purpose whatever.

I withdraw all objections to brick piers! They do look good, for sure. (Well, they do if you can lay bricks... :grin: )

Olly

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I'm the first to agree on the 'piers and Woo-Woo' thing, having been arguing for years that ten foot deep holes full of twenty tons of concrete are a piece of internet lunacy seving no purpose whatever.

Olly

I really don't know why you bother arguing with them Olly. 

Reading the threads that advocate these ridiculous quantities of reinforced concrete one quickly realises that the people doing it have absolutely mo idea on how to dampen vibration. Not understanding that reinforced concrete isn't the solution they are after. They continue to suggest an even greater quantity is required for the vibrations that their massed concrete failed to dampen. :D

All rather amusing if you ask me.

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If only the three little pigs did obsy's and piers... :evil::grin:

Mine obsy sits on top of about 10 foot depth of made up ground...  it was the "tip" end of the kitchen garden from the big house so I wasn't taking any chances... The outdoor one sits in a bell shaped hole with a couple of back of postcrete around it...

Peter...

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At B and Q they do curved edging bricks for paved driveways.  Four of these arranged in a square makes a very good pier and could be strengthened with a piece of rebar in the central core.  Each layer adds four inches in height, so, say 4.75 inches with mortar.  So using these would need 10-12 or so courses.  Gets quite pricey at £1.67 per brick.  I have seen similar ones from builder's merchant for £1 or so though.   Still equals £60 - £70 plus the mounting plates, M12 rod, nuts etc.

Wonder how the mortar would stick to these types of brick....

post-16295-0-14780700-1428344120_thumb.j

post-16295-0-77140400-1428344131_thumb.j

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Personally, I'd use ordinary engineering bricks, as used in RogertheDodger's pier for a number of reasons.

They will give a physically bigger pier.

The bricks have holes to allow the mortar to "squish" into them which will key the brick to the mortar bed. The edging bricks will not do this and you will be relying on the mortard to "stick" to the brick (which it won't).

You can lay them in alternate rows, so they will naturally be more solid. Stack the edging bricks up to your intended pier height and see just how wobbly they will be. now try it with engineering bricks and the difference will be blindingly obvious.

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Thanks Zakalwe for your input.  So, cheap and cheerful bricks then is the way?  Not sure what you mean by "engineering bricks"?

Couple of other points.  Is it worth putting membrane down into the hole before pouring the concrete block?  And should the first couple of courses be blue bricks to prevent damp rising up the pier column?

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Thanks Zakalwe for your input.  So, cheap and cheerful bricks then is the way?  Not sure what you mean by "engineering bricks"?

Couple of other points.  Is it worth putting membrane down into the hole before pouring the concrete block?  And should the first couple of courses be blue bricks to prevent damp rising up the pier column?

Engineering bricks are ordinary building bricks:

http://www.wickes.co.uk/Products/Building-Materials/Bricks,-Blocks+Lintels/Bricks/Engineering-Bricks/c/1001107

I personally wouldn't bother with a membrane for a pier. I didn't use one and I have no damp, despite the ground being boggy as heck.  Damp won't rise up the column.

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Don't like those B and Q jobs for this purpose. Bricks are laid to overlap each other but you'd just have four unconnected columns with the B and Qs and, as above, there is no indentation for the mortar.

When I bought our house the previous owner had built a 2 storey breeze block pigeon-breeding building beside the pkace but had not interlocked the blocks at the corners.  :eek:  Demolising it was so easy that it was amazing it hadn't come down in a breeze. We just pushed the walls over with our shoulders once the roof was off. Scary.

Olly

Edited by ollypenrice
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Don't like those B and Q jobs for this purpose. Bricks are laid to overlap each other but you'd just have four unconnected columns with the B and Qs and, as above, there is no indentation for the mortar.

When I bought our house the previous owner had built a 2 storey breeze block pigeon-breeding building beside the pkace but had not interlocked the blocks at the corners.  :eek:  Demolising it was so easy that it was amazing it hadn't come down in a breeze. We just pushed the walls over with our shoulders once the roof was off. Scary.

Olly

I hope the pigeons were not  still in there......

Edited by Tinker1947
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If you want to build a brick pier I'd go with something like this;

post-26321-0-26749900-1428395393.jpg

That overlaps the bricks which helps provide strength but the central void would allow you to put some rebar down the middle. Demolition of the bricks would be easy enough then leaving just a central pillar which could be felled with a small angle grinder. If you do want to leave no trace then you will have to go deeper than 15cm for the foundation. 15cm of top soil over concrete will be very obvious as a dead patch in a garden.

Of course if you accept that an angle grinder might be needed to remove it then you might as well go with perforated engineering bricks which would at least give you a narrower pier

Edited by jnb
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If you are going to go to the extent of a pier like that, with a solid concrete core and rebar, then you might as well do away with the bricks and just cast a concrete pier. The idea of using brick was to get away from a cast pier!

Honestly guys, you are over thinking and overcomplicating a very simple project. A pier holding an EQ5/6 isn't going to withstand much in the way of forces.

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