Building Screen-block Walls

A screen-block wall should not span more than 3m without intermediate pillar supports. You cannot cut screen blocks nor the pilasters, so check the exact dimensions when planning. Blocks normally measure 300 x 300 x 90mm thick, and pilasters 195 X 195 x 200mm high including joints. Foundations For a low wall, foundations should consist … Read more

Painting Technique Essentials

Always prepare ceilings first, then the walls and finally any woodwork or metal (window frames). See section dealing with metalwork. Preparing ceilings and walls In new houses or extensions, plastered walls and ceilings can be painted within a few weeks. Old ceilings should be washed with sugar soap or household detergent, then rinsed with plenty … Read more

Building A Brick Wall

To bond bricks together, spread the mortar over the foundation with a bricklayer’s trowel, and lay a brick on top, the frog (hollowed-out part) uppermost. Many amateurs and, indeed, some tradesmen prefer to lay with the frog downwards because, they say, the mortar will squeeze into the hollow part and obviate the risk of tilting. … Read more

Installing Timber Stud Partitions

If you own an older property, it is quite possible some rooms may be too large for present day needs — and very expensive to heat. One answer is to install a simple timber stud partition, which consists of a sturdy timber framework covered on each side with wallboards. Tapered edge plasterboard is normally used … Read more

Photographic Wall And Door Panels

If you want to produce particularly dramatic effects on walls or doors, you can hang photo murals. These come in a whole range of designs, each creatin a different atmosphere. The murals are easily fitted in any room in the home. The popularity of photowall or photographic mural decoration is growing steadily. The designs (which … Read more

DIY Home Surveying

If you really are reluctant to do household repairs, it’s obvious that you should buy a house that doesn’t need them. The right house would be one that has recently been decorated to your taste, has all the built-in storage you require and all the plumbing, electrics and roofing in working order. This will then … Read more

Tools For The Decoration And Maintenance Of Your Walls

The main work done to walls is: painting, wallpapering, tiling or perhaps minor repairs of plaster-work. The tools for these would be: Painting A series of suitable brushes and, of course, supplies of brush-cleaning material. For rubbing down the surfaces in preparation for painting you will need sandpaper. A useful tool for this is the … Read more

Openings in walls

The inherent stability of an opening depends upon the means of spanning over the opening. Lintels, short beams of timber, reinforced concrete or steel are stable because the loading at the supports is vertical. Arches and wedge arches are inherently unstable and may only be used safely if they are adequately buttressed by the walling … Read more

Self Build Structural factors

Not all building materials are able to resist compressive and tensional forces equally. Brickwork, concrete and masonry are very strong under compression but have little ability to resist tensional stress. This means that they are very useful at supporting dead loads, provided the line of action of the force does not pass outside the column … Read more