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Posted on February 8, 2007 by SteveP
Category: Questions & Answers Tags: Flagstone
USE A SHARP SAND AS A FOUNDATION(3INCH)
But them a drink. Chat a while. Ask them come back to your place for coffee…………………
I wish I had knowledge, The price I have been quoted to do half my garden means I am goning to have to do it myself!
dig a deepish hole put a bit of sand in the bottom and fill it with cement then prop the post up with somthin heavey untill it sets
Take them out for a nice meal,keep topping up the old wine glass drop in a few compliments take them back to your place for a nightcap and you may just get lucky.
Put down some hard core and stamp it down (or compact it using a machine. Then put spots of cement where each of the corners should go and a bit in the middle, allowing space for it to spread. Then put the flagstone down on the cemnet and use a rubber mallet to level it (this is why you need to leave space for the cement to spread).
You must start with a firm base of compacted stone or rubble. Then spread a couple of inches of dry sand and cement mix (6:1 ratio) over the area and place the flagstones on it – level carefully with a baulk of timber or rubber mallet. Don’t spot the corners and middle with wet cement – the hollows left between the spots will allow movement and cracked flagstones will result.
It does depend a bit on your ground. Ideally you should put a polythene sheet down to stop weeds growing through. If you are on fairly level and hard ground then sharp sand will do as a base – use a minimum of 3 inches. Level the flags nicely with a spirit level don’t hammer them hard with anything as they’ll crack remarkably easily. If on the other hand the site is sloping or soft you will need hardcore and some concrete.
Good solid foundation made from sharp sand, and rolled flat if possible. Previously you may have dug a three foot hole and filled with stones as a drainage sink under the base area.
Place a splodge of cement mix underneath the flags on all 4 corners, and 1 in the middle. Place in position and press down until level with your horizontal string guide. Tamp down with a wooden mallet, using a spirit level to check flatness.
Ensure your flags are at a slight decline(away from the house) to aid drainage. Some will mix lime with the sharp sand to detour weeds.
The direction you bed the flags in varies, but I usually start from the exposed area and work towards the house. Then, odd sizes can be cut to fit the house elevation.
Dig out the area you want to flag about six inch deep put in a bed of sharp/river sand tamp it down to give you a solid base , mix three parts sand one part cement add water but keep the mix fairly stiff , put five spots down on your base lay your flag onto this and using a spirit level tap the flag down until level repeat with each flag , if you are paving a big area use a long wood straight edge to help you make sure your flags are level with each other, hope that helps you.
If its just for a patio…After you have dug out the part that you want to flag just fill it with sand and then use a straight edge to level the sand at the height you want . Just lay the flags on the sand.
If there is gonna be heavy weight on it you will need to use hardcore and just a very little bit of sand on top.
Level all the sand before you start and then its just a matter of laying them flat .As you go stand on the one you have just laid.
Don’t leave a joint between each flag..lay them tight together.
Using cement takes a lot longer and does not do a good job.
Both methods work, either a sand base with the flags laid on top , and tamped down, or the mortar mix 5 spot. I prefer the 5 spot method,
Make sure though that the sand base cannot be washed away.
An alternative method is a 5 to 1 dry mortar mix, lay flags on it and tamp it down, when finished spray water over the flags, and leave mortar base to dry before walking on it.
There are other methods, but I haven’t used them myself.
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Nicholas Trimble / Nick Trimble
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