Yipes !Help w Flagstone.

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by aced76, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. aced76

    aced76 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 38

    Man did I do it now. We put in a flag patio last summer. I had to have surgery and as a result the emps I had work for me did a shoddy job. As I want to make good on this mess even at the great expense it will cost. I need some advice.
    When stones were set, many were not cleaned or grout smoothed. Grey matter everywhere now. There are areas of pretty thick stuff to clean. I heard today that sandblasting will clean up things pretty well. Any thoughts?
    Secondly, is there any resource to learn an economical way to cut flagstone to fit tightly w smaller joints? Are there templates? What do you guys do to get stone to cut and fit nice and tight? Just need to get some tips to be a better installer. Really need help here thanks!!!
     
  2. amscapes03

    amscapes03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 398

    What are you using to cut the flagstone now?
     
  3. FLCthes4:11-12

    FLCthes4:11-12 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 284

    you can scrub with acid and that will help. Will sand blasting not damage the flag? I use a regular diamond blade gas demo saw but only to cut edges or step treds. just take a good cold chisel and a rock hammer and patience I like to figure nearly 20% waste on my flag jobs.it also helps if you can put the rock in a sand bank while hammering.
     
  4. vtscaper

    vtscaper LawnSite Member
    Posts: 159

    tough one.

    try using a acid based masonry cleaner. i would NOT suggest sandblasting unless you/client is okay with a very different look than what it should have been.

    setting flagging tight really just takes skill and patience. one trick that you can try is overlaying stones and then cutting thru both. this will leave a tight joint that can then be worked up with a chisel to give a more natural look.
     
  5. Murphy's Law

    Murphy's Law LawnSite Member
    from NH
    Posts: 174

    I would use muriatic acid to start but plan on replacing the grass along the patio. If that doesn't work, dry ice blasting might be a good solution. There is no mess like sandblasting. If it's a small-ish job you might be able to get your dry ice guy to piggy back your job with another job which will save you some cash. Around here dry ice is bought in a minimum quantity.
     
  6. Bill S

    Bill S LawnSite Member
    Posts: 184

    Before trying all the acids I would try a pressure washer, the bigger, the better. Plan on taking your time moving slowly to really let the water do the trick. Mortar on top of flagstone shouldn't be that hard to blast off but it will take a little time.

    Use acid as a last resort. If they have any furniture, grills, stainless steel etc that can't be moved make sure you cover them well before using acid.
     
  7. indplstim

    indplstim LawnSite Member
    Posts: 69

    An easy tip on piecing together flagstone, if available buy the really large sheets, stand it up on end and let it fall, if it doesn't break enough u can always use a few bricks/stones underneath b4 u drop it, or a black of wood and a sledge, obviously it makes a perfect fit, I always like pea gravel or matching very small stone in between, but that doesn't always work for every application
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  8. vtscaper

    vtscaper LawnSite Member
    Posts: 159

    seems to me it would just look like a broken piece of flagging.. no color or texture variation from one piece to the next.
     
  9. indplstim

    indplstim LawnSite Member
    Posts: 69

    The op asked a way to get a really tight neat fit, this is one easy method, obviously you would break it on the side and grout or fill in as desired, it doesn't fit every application, if the customer wants a single color....there ya go, a lot of the pieces have large 90 degree angles as well, so it looks super clean,just another idea to consider, seems to me
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  10. cecilmac

    cecilmac LawnSite Member
    from nj
    Posts: 49

    How bout a cinder brush ,honestly if the mortars been sitting that long I doubt the acid will take it off..
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