Granite front steps

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by TerraVenture, Oct 15, 2004.

  1. TerraVenture

    TerraVenture LawnSite Member
    Posts: 144

    ?I am working on a design which includes a brick or concret paver walkway to the front door. There currently is a set of precast concrete steps that I will remove. I want to use thermal finish granite steps to replace the precast concrete steps. Has anyone done this before. I was planning to pour a slab below the frost line and then pour concrete walls on top of the slab and fill the cavity with compacted crushed gravel. The steps and landing would then be mortored to the concrete walls. I havent decided whether to use the same pavers on the walk to face the exposed sides of the walls or field stone. Any info would be appreciated.
     
  2. activelandscaping

    activelandscaping LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    I'm trying to get a mental picture of what you want to do, but I keep ending up with granite steps going down into compacted base.
    I am guessing that you intend to use a slab with 42" footings then form and pour walls, to the entrance hight ?

    What shape is the porch?

    Regards,
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  3. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,749

    Terra,

    I think you might be trying a little too hard on this one. If you are putting granite slab steps, you really don't need to mortar them or have them sit on a total footing. A well compacted gravel base should be adequate.

    But, if you are afraid of a lot of settling, you could use post hole diggers and set four sono tubes down to below the frost line and and up to the bottom of the slab you want to pour. Then you could pour a monolith that includes the four columns into the ground and the slab. Don't forget to put rebar in the columns and throughout the slab if you do it this way
     
  4. MarcusLndscp

    MarcusLndscp LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 634

    I agree you are over engineering this and making it more of a job then it needs to be. As stated a compacted gravel base is more than appropriate. As far as the sides go I wouldn't face them with either, it just won't look all that clean. I'm guessing you are going up a few steps.??? If so, they make kits that are all granite. You would set your first step then there are pieces that go from the back of the step to the building. You would then fill the void with more compacted gravel and continue up. Eventually you end up with just one piece as your step. Do you kind of follow what I'm saying?
     
  5. activelandscaping

    activelandscaping LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    I agree with the above posts, sounds like your putting on the belt and suspenders. I would try to steer clear of using footing's, unless it's necessary. Most require that you pull a permit, as it's then considered a " permanent structure " you also would need to provide for settling differences between the house and the footing, unless you used the aforementioned " sono tubes ".
    That's a lot of extra work for something you don't really need.

    Best of luck,
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  6. TerraVenture

    TerraVenture LawnSite Member
    Posts: 144

    I understand what all of you are saying but I am trying to make the steps look like old farm house steps. They were done as you have all mentioned and I would nomally just put them on a compacted gravel base but I wanted to use the concrete to attach the fieldstone on brick to. My family's 150 year old farmhouse front steps are two massive granite slabs sitting on a rubble base. The area under the second step is mortored fieldstone. The house that I am working on is a reproduction colonial.
     
  7. activelandscaping

    activelandscaping LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    To do the steps, presumably in a field stone veneer, you would: pour a footing with re-bar, lay cinder block (with brick ties) to form the walls and stringers.
    I would not recommend doing this yourself. For one thing, veneer will not give you the same look as " solid field stone " that was used on your family home. You would almost certainly need to pull a permit, which would require a builders license or talking the homeowner into pulling one. You would need to be familiar with laying block and reinforced footings. If you were to make a mistake it could be extremely difficult to repair, without tearing everything apart and starting from scratch.

    Best of luck,
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