Over the past few months, we have undertaken two moderate size masonry projects. The first, a chimney on the Southside of Providence – on a slate roof with entricate design details. Second, an old stone and brick foundation that was on the verge of collapse.
The chimney was featured before in our article on complicated roof flashings but we barely mentioned the masonry or staging work involved.
The existing chimney was crumbling, with the entire back having been broken off. The chimney was rebuilt by Jared and Kurtis – with help from the ground by a myriad of employees. The area surrounding the chimney had to be completely staged, and the entire project took about a week and a half. The chimney was rebuilt with a mixture of the original bricks and a new brick created to have a weathered look. The mortar was hand-mixed lime, sand, and white Portland cement mix, with a touch of dye to darken the bright white.
This design featured several details that needed to be recorded before deconstruction. We used these field drawings as a road map to reconstruct the crown exactly as it was before.
The scaffold setup was very challenging because of the delicate slate surface, extreme weight of the deconstructed chimney, and safe working concerns.
The existing foundation suffered greatly from heavy erosion due to a lack of adequate gutters on the rear of the house. On one half of the rear of the house, both the bricks on top and the stone on the bottom were on the verge of collapse. The house was supported with temporary posts, then the stone was removed and the bricks were salvaged to be reused. In place of stone, concrete was poured and brick was then laid on top to complete the foundation. All brick used was salvaged brick, most from the foundation itself. Also added was a new bulkhead door.