Mortar or No Mortar

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by manfromearth, Apr 18, 2007.

  1. manfromearth

    manfromearth LawnSite Member
    Posts: 68

    I'm about to build two 60' long by 3.5' tall stone walls. I'm using 3" - 5" thick brown rubble. The included picture is of another wall I did using the same stone. The hieght of the wall in the picture is only about 2' at the heighest. My question is: Do you think I can I get away with making this a dry stack wall? The stone I'm using will be anywhere from 10" to 20" deep and 10" to 20" long, in addition to the 3"-5" thick. I will backfill with 1/2" gravel six inches behind the wall and will also baffle the wall about 1"-2" for every foot of height. For the stones at the top of the wall, I always select larger stones that will hold up to foot traffic should there be any. If I don't dry stack, I'll have a 4"-5" cement footing and butter up the back 1/3 of the stone. What do you guys think? Any thoughts will be appreciated.

    Ford Pictures 002a.jpg
     
  2. Lewi927

    Lewi927 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 7

    I think that a good gravel/stone dust base would be more than sufficient for a 2' wall. But that's just my two sense. The one in the pic looks great. Do you concrete the capstones to make sure that they stay down should people walk on it?
     
  3. chris638

    chris638 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 149

    None of the stone in the picture look 10-20" deep. And I think you mean batter the wall 1" per one foot in rise. If indeed you are using 10-20" deep stone for the wall that is to be 3.5' tall then you would be ok. But the stone doesn't look 10-20" deep. We only use cut stone to reduce to waste. When we have to build a wall over 30" tall using dry stack natural stone, we use a piece of stone the opposite way every so often like a dead man. If that makes sence.
     
  4. bigviclbi

    bigviclbi LawnSite Senior Member
    from nj
    Posts: 894

    Will it be a raised planting bed or a retaing wall cut into a hill? Raised planter should be fine with no mortar if you bury about 5" of it and set it on a base with gravel backfill. I have built 3' tall walls with no mortar out of stacking stone and they have held up nicely. I don't think you would want to go much higher than 3.5' though.
     
  5. manfromearth

    manfromearth LawnSite Member
    Posts: 68

    I finally built this wall last November and thought I'd send a picture of it. Thanks to those that gave me input. This mortar-less wall is holding up well and should be there for a long, long time.

    Chen wall close-up.jpg

    Chen wall upper right side view.jpg
     
  6. bigviclbi

    bigviclbi LawnSite Senior Member
    from nj
    Posts: 894

  7. manfromearth

    manfromearth LawnSite Member
    Posts: 68

    I used a lot of gravel behind the wall and for the footing as well. To top it off, many of the stone extend into the embankment 18+ inches, acting as short dead men.
     

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