Saturday, December 29, 2012

StoneWurx - Ground Effects Landscapes THANK YOU!

In September I had the opportunity to participate at the StoneWurx 2012 International Dry Stone Walling Festival. Hosted by Ground Effects Landscapes in Hanover Ontario Canada. A once in a lifetime opportunity to work alone side some of the best wallers of my time and a historical landmark - a Stone Stable 40 feet long x 20 feet wide and 7.5 feet high. Topped with a green roof made up of small succulents called sedum.

On December 24th I received a care package including a personal "Dear Mark" thank you letter,  StoneWurx signed t-shirt by all the Key Wallers at the event, a beautiful book with images from start to finish-media images of all the wallers - event - workshop - setting the roof and a card with the sketch and finished structure . 

51 pages of images and copy start to finished - printed by blurb - created by Brydges Landscape Architecture inc.
How could this experience get any better then what I experienced?!  The warm welcome, lunch and dinner meals serviced on site cooked by Donna, lodging, a hat with the Canadian flag, true team work while building the structure.... I could go on and on. 

A-  THANK YOU Care package - I would have come back again just because I loved the welcoming hospitality and everything else about this festival had to offer. 

Tim and Donna Kraemer owners of Ground Effects Landscapes took this event very seriously as seen in this photo. (image staged - otherwise you'd never see them without a smile) They had their work cut out for them. But you won't know it! The event went like clock work. With there professional team handled every aspect needed. Everything went as planned. Keyword planned! I have been to a few stone events in the last couple years nothing could compare to this one. Even the wallers from Great Britain commented on how incredible this event was. Lord knows they see many more stone walling events then we do in North America. 

Tim and Donna Kraemer - GET IT! When I say that I mean they treated everyone like a professional business would. 

The thank you package was just another example of why a business like this will only continue to succeed! The words Thank You - go a very long way.

Have you said it?

Thank you!
Tim - Donna
Dean, US wallers, UK wallers, Canadian wallers, spectators, hosts..... everyone who gave a hand in one way or another. THANK YOU......job well done!

Mark Jurus

Related Blogs:

StoneWURX Festival Sept 2012

Copyright 2012 Mark Jurus, Rockin Walls. 

Friday, December 21, 2012

Equipment - "Dingo" Walk Behind Mini Skid Steer

2012 I found my self busy with building walls in residential neighbors. With limited space on a few of the job sites I wondered how handy a small walk behind skid steer would be? I had seen two other dry laid masons, Russ Beardsley and Dean McLellan who used this type of machine all the time. I had talked to both and they loved them!

Having a skid steer I never even gave it any thought. I had used a mini walk behind once for installing fence posts with a auger. I honestly thought the machine was a JOKE! Until the logistics of minimal space for a large machine on the job site came into play. 

I began doing my homework about a year earlier. I had read great things about the Ditch Witch, Toro and Bobcat. From what I understand Toro was the creator of the concept. Of course you can find pro's and con's on just about any thing made by man. I decide to look at the Toro for couple reasons - easy to get parts locally. Many of the rental shops in my area used them which says something right there- the love them. Affordability! You can find a nice machine with low hours and in a price any one could justify. I didn't want to spend over $7000. 

So I began my search! I had my eyes on a Toro with tires - the price seemed right ($6500, 400 hours with 2 buckets and set of forks add $400 +/- per attachment). After returning from a summer vacation I followed up with the one I had my eye on - only to find out it had been sold.  

In no time I found another one with tracks for $5500 with 800 hours. I was surprised since most track machines normally run in the $8000-$15000 range used. Heck that's nothing if you think thats a lot!  Price out a new one!! Ya this is why I own a skid loader. Who in their right mind would spend that kind of money when a skid steer really gets the job done? Those who work in tight areas. You can't fit skid loader throw a gateway. 

I called the fellow selling a Dingo TX 420 on a holiday Sunday. He said sure I'm not doing anything I can meet you and show you the machine - Heck ya now what I didn't tell you was I had cash in hand when I was coming back from my vacation I stopped at my bank - so I could buy the tire machine. Funny how things work life. Road trip with the dump truck and trailer. After a little loud exhaust leak. I figured I this would be a smart investment. So I bought it. 
For the next several months it sat at my buddies shop waiting in line for service. Only to need a front wheel replacement $300 and a exhaust weld. $500 later I was cleared for take off.

After purchasing my new/used machine and it sat in the shop, I had the opportunity in September 2012 to see Dean McLellan in action in Canada with his Bobcat MT55 at StoneWURX.  We worked that machine around the jobsite like he was the incredible hulk. Moving piles of stone from one side of the building to the other. 

Some great benefits of these types of machines are:
- Lifting on average is 500 pounds with some that can lift as much as 1000 but you'll be paying the $$$ for one of those. 
- Easy to store on the job-site
- Easy to move from job-site to job-site with just about any kind of truck. One average they weigh about 2000+ pounds
- Attachments. - galore...!
- Gas or Diesel engines
- Tire or track choice - Wide or Narrow? YES choices. 
- An employee without the payroll or workman's comp. I say this because truly what you would pay to have a employee in a year doing the work this machine can do - YOU CAN BUY A NEW ONE! Yes it pays for itself in one year! 
-  Gate size widths on average 34 inch wide some with tracks that can move in and out. Other machines have wide tracks.
- Great material mover such as aggregate-loose dirt - mulch

- You can step away from the machine and make adjustments - for example if you need to lift a stone to make adjustments with a strap or forks you can. If you had a full size skid loader you'd have to unbuckle the seat belt get out of a cab - O wait you don't want to crawl under the boom-no no no safety first. With a mini you just walk around and can easily make adjustments from the side of the machine without all the extra hassles. The controls are easy to reach without a great deal of complications.

- Does OK with digging dirt and stone - but not like a skid loader will - but hey what would you expect its just a smaller machine. 
- The cost to buy a Mini Skid Steer is about the same as a full size machine?!
- Not great for excavating / dirt grading with the bucket like a skid loader can but will get the job done in little more time.
- Can't lift as much as skid loader can - requiring a little more time moving material.
- Not as fast as a skid loader. Some units will move faster than others average speed is about 4.5 mph (safe speed) some can move as fast as 7 mph ( Yes increased productivity of course at what cost? One wrong move and you're going to feel like a rag doll - not to mention try standing and moving 7 mph all day - yes you will feel like you went to the gym - sore! Or just think about those days on rollerskates once you taken them off you still feel like your roller skating? You decide what works the best for you) 

Cliff notes - a motorized wheelbarrow!

I wouldn't changed anything about my buying choices. A full size skid loader first and a mini if I needed it! Now I need it. This little machine rocks. Every day I use it I learn that much more as to what I can do. 

The Toro TX-420 is a gas machine with a Kohler® Command Pro® Series 20 hp engine. Looking at the market place you have a lot of choices. 

If you need a machine like this be sure you have a local dealer. That the machine fits your day to day needs, then your budget. I've seen the TX-420 selling from $4000- $10000. If you're looking to spend the higher amount try some machines before you buy. Such as having a demo brought to your job site or just rent one or two.

Some might ask why not rent? For me renting never makes sense for a couple reasons. I work part time with stone. To pay for a rental would cost me more then owning. The time picking up and returning the machine is billable labor you can't bill and wasted time. My machine rented locally would cost me $230 a day. 

$6200 -:- $230 = 27 days. YOU DO THE MATH. 


Product links:


Looking for a used machine. Check with your local rental shop first, dealer, Machine Trader, Rock and Dirt, Ebay, Craigslist.... etc.... happy hunting

Every Man needs his machines! I just like my back...

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Machinery - Big Stone Mover

Now many of you know how to move stones the old fashion way. As Dan P say's with out the smell of diesal fuel. I'm hooked on my little Komatsu mini excavator pc 27. I think Dan hasn't had the chance to enjoy the quality smell from the tail pipe of Komatsu Mini. Using a Geith hydraulic thumb with a 20" Geith bucket - I couldn't be happier! Any chance I have to jump in any of my machines I feel are an extension of my ability to create. Things I can't do by myself. Like any tool - they all have a place and a time. 

Not like these young spunks that can push anything around. Us old timers need something a little more to help keep our backs and knees from giving out on us. Normally 3 ibuprofen at the end of a hard day helps me. 

The pro's: Allows me to move stone quickly - put them in place, make adjustments and pick them back up if needed. Time is everything to me. Doing stone work part time - I need every moment of time to make things happen quickly. In addition the mini X helps me do all my digging and heavy lifting of materials on site. This machine is so quitet I have to idle up the machine just to shut out my brain.

The con's: the thumb can easily drop a stone (total bummer when this happens) Thumb can leave marks on stones. Takes a trailer to move to the job site. Cost money to insure. Cost money to repair and maintain. 

I love my mini and my back. I don't care how much it cost's.

Image shown above on Beechdale Road, Dry Stone Project

Related Blogs:

Tool - BIG Stone Rollers

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tool - BIG Stone Rollers

How does he move large stones with out fancy machinery? TJ Mora from Vermont moves all his large stones the old fashion way. His tools are  his grandfathers 8 foot pinch bar, some wood - then some more wood, 4 inch PVC pipes and 5 gallon bucket filled with stone. 

TJ starts by building up his wood planks (skid) along with 6x6 blocks (cribbing) for his roller path. Next uses the pinch bar to move each step little by little into a place. He can then lift the stone by pivoting off 6x6 with the pinch bar then placing the 4" PVC pipes under the step. How can he take his hands off the pinch bar? MAGIC.......

The picture above has his extra helping hand called the 5 gallon bucket filled with stone. With the bucket hanging at the end of the bar this lets him step away and place each PVC pipe under as needed. 

Each one of these fabricated step stones weigh in at around 1000 pounds.
Showen in the photo TJ is building up his cribbing up under the planks as he moves the step stones up hill. "Slow and easy"... he tells me.

TJ finds the larger 4" PVC pipe makes it easier for him to roll the stone opposed to smaller size PVC pipes. So far he has a 0% failure rate of collapsed pipes. One other benefit he finds the large pipes rolls over uneven surfaces much better then some of the smaller pipes. 

To keep from having a run away stone he places objects like sticks  or stones (ha ha I added the stone part couldn't help it!) to keep the rollers from getting to carried away with their payload. Man can you imagine if TJ had a run away stone. Then he'd have to hire one of those other VT masons with big machines to come put the stone back into the right place. Or find a genie and rub a bottle to grant him that wish. I do know with the Vermont crew a 6 pack of bottles and a simple can you help me only brings you the best genies to the rescue. (This only works in Vermont - so don't try this at home! You won't get the out come you were hoping for - but you may think you did.)

TJ had these steps delivered to his job site and placed in a spot which helps him be smarter with his build. Job-site to job-site may vary forcing other choices to be made to move stone of this size. In the picture above you can see pallets used as a platform to help moves each stone from its home across the cribbed planks (skid) to were it will rest. 

He finishes off with each stone the same way he started. One 6x6 with his pinch bar under the stone and the 5 gallon bucket to now remove his PVC pipes. Look no hands!! 

TJ has made this building practice common to him. He has mastered this method which in turn helps him move stone just as fast as a team of men with less hassle and more $$$ in his pocket. No smoke breaks, late to work, call in sick or mechanical failures. 

We can all learn a trick or two from one another. MY favorite was the 5 gallon bucket trick and the stick under the PVC pipe. I was wondering how he did it. So I asked. For some reason TJ seems to take on jobs others consider to be a logistical nightmare. To him its just another day at the office under the Vermont sky. We can all learn a lesson or two from this smart stone mason. Like my wife says work smarter not harder. She  keeps telling me this because she says she's lazy! YA RIGHT! I'm not stupid, I just don't lesson as well as I should. Or maybe I'd be wealthy by now.

Special thanks again to TJ Mora for all his photos and time sharing this with me to share with you. 

TJ Mora
4427 Route 100
South Londonderry
Vermont   05155

Other suggested reading by TJ:
FM 5-125Rigging Techniques, Procedures, and Applications. By the Department of the Army

If you liked what TJ had to share please take a moment to check out his website and drop him a Thank you at

Side notes: No Ibuprofen was taken to write this blog.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Tool - small Stone Rollers

When I have large stones such as cap or step stones I use 3/4" concrete form steel stakes.  The stakes allow me to move stones into the right place. Saving a great deal of extra labor. The only down side is some times they role so well the stones can get away from you.

Normally these steel stakes are used to help build forms for concrete. You can find them at any home improvement store. They have several holes for nails to go through.

Shown in this picture are some large stones for steps. Once I get the stone into the desired location. I'll use a 4x4 board with a pry bar to lift the stone on one corner in order to pull the stake out from underneath. When you work alone this can be a little challenging to get the right angle to lift of the stone then find a way to pull the stake. 

When I was in Canada working on the stone stable they said the roof would be set on the structure with ice blocks. The ice blocks would be placed on the top of the structure between the roof and the building. This way the straps could be removed and the roof would slowly settle on its own. This makes good sense to me. I'm sure a line item for ice blocks on a customer's invoice might raise a couple questions. Can't wait to try that on one of my builds. 

Related Blogs: I Like Big Steps (And I Cannot Lie...) Clark Kent Creations

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Storm Sandy Clean Up 10/30/12

Today was a day to clean up after Hurricane Sandy. I'm grateful to have the equipment we have when things like this happen. I even took the appropriate steps to list every machine I own and make a list for the local fire depts. "Emergence Equipment Assistance" A thumb like this on a mini excavator really does come in handy for those odd size trees. Pulling the one out of the stream was a breeze.

We weathered the storm well. Taking the steps to plan ahead - to be prepared is key. You can never under estimate mother nature.

We wish others a safe and productive recovery.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

How To - Set Flat Cap / Cope Stones

Let me start by stating I'm no pro at what I do. I just enjoy sharing how I do it. My methods may not be considered correct or they could be!? I'm just going to tell you how I do it. 

First things first. When your working with natural stone from bulk or a pallet you need to gather all the largest stones and put them aside early on. If you don't you will be un-happy later. This image show all my cap stones I been stockpiling. 

This wall is 20" high to the top. So what I'm doing is build to about 16" +/- . The reason for this is because with the natural stone caps I'm using they very from 2-6" in thickness. By building the wall to a point below my top string line this gives me the room I need to work backwards. What I mean by this is that you find the cap stone you plan on using. I'll set it on the wall then measure down from the string line or my top of wall mark. (a 8' level is being used in the photo) Next you must fill the void between the wall and the cap stone. Looking at this photo I can now measure the space then find the correct stones to get me to my height. Some times to keep it easy I'll just set the stones on top the cap to see if I now touch my string line.

 I also keep a pile of small plates at hand. Some times plates can be hard to come by depending on the kind of stone your using. The plate stones I use to get my height. I always keep my plates close to my wall frames making them easy to find when I'm ready for them. 

You can see different sizes of my caps stones in this photo. You can also see how I use small stones as I'm moving down the wall to get to the right height. As I call it working backwards. Your no longer building up the wall. Your now building backwards. You will also see a bit more then the 1 over 2 or 2 over 1 rule. You can see a 4 over 1 running joint. But little hard to void this sometimes. All rules are meant to be broken with the large cap next to a small cap. Do I have much of a choice. - Not really just need to run with it. 

This photo I'm running two lines one to keep my wall level the next for my caps stones which run up hill. I'm building up to a place where I then find my cap. Then work backwards to find the right stones to fill the space under the caps.

In this photo I have placed three stones on the corner I want to use. Setting caps are like doing flat work you still need to make sure they match well next to one another. 

As I'm moving down my wall I some times use a brick with string to my rebar. This wall has a level top. I'll place several cap stones to the string line then move my brick and keep on building.

Brick with string line wrapped around it. By moving the brick down the wall this will limit the chance of having a hi-spot in a stone which causes your line to be out of level. 

Just look at those cap's now look below them to see what stones I used to work backwards. 

Wall-la - flat cap stones.

Wall shown in photo current build 10/12 Roland Park, Baltimore Maryland. Stone used on this job. Western Maryland stone mixed with PA Blue stone. Color of stones brown, tan, red, cream and blue - mat colors. 

Related content:

MC Coping #2 Winter 2008 NEW 11/21

Monday, October 15, 2012

Dry Stone Resource- Updates

If you have not seen my other Blog please check it out! 
You will find a great deal of technical documents on this site. 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Beechdale Road, Dry Stone Project Story 8/2012

Finished construction September 2012

First of the year 2012 I was contacted by Diane and Gail in Roland Park MD. They had a large 100 year old Beech tree which had up rooted their old steps. As seen below. The tree just lifted the wall and steps right up out of the earth. 

Taking the time to do my homework - my biggest concerns was the existing carport structure. After contacting many of my stone experts along with other experts in construction. I got the thumbs up. If any damage was done it would have already be showing. 

The build would replace just about everything the way it was with a few changes. 1) move the wall out  away from carport. 2) larger steps both in length and with a smaller easier step. ( the old wall had 7 steps 2' wide with a 7" rise = height of each step) New steps will be a total of 8 with a 6"rise and 14" tread. Build the wall with out mortar. 

The owner had spent a great deal of time reaching there options and found me from the web. 

The replaced structure used Butler stone with PA Blue stone and steps. All old the stone was then put back into the new build.

I started gather all my stone. First the PA Blue stone slabs to make into the steps using feather and wedges. Notice my supervisor sitting on the job? (on the fork lift) Can't find any good help these days

Related Blogs:

How To - Wedge and Feathers Voodoo Magic

I was able to make 8 steps ranging from 4' - 6' long with slabs ranging from 3"-5" thick. The benefit of the 3"-5" allowed for me to help build my steps up to 6" as needed. As seen later. 

All stone was gathered taken to the jobsite, stacked and protected by safety cones. The best part of this build was the ability to stock pile all the material on site. Most homes in Roland Park don't have any driveway. The down side to the job was working over a bank with out any way to get any of my equipment to the lower section. 

Once all the material was on site I set off to start removing the old wall. The protruding wall with steps was mortared. The jack hammer was pulled out to solve this problem. The section by the carport surprisingly was all dry laid. What you might not be able to see unless you really look - notice the YELLOW FLAGS coming up to the retaining wall. GAS LINE - yes of course as you know this is where I tell you "Call be for you Dig" 811 miss utility. If this section of wall was built with mortar I might have been a little stressed out if I had to use the jack hammer any where close to that section of wall. Good news being dry laid - I just had to lift each stone up with my hands move them to existing piles and keep going. 


With all my old wall stone I set up 2 piles. The one to the left would be away from the free standing wall but close. The other pile I set on a plastic mat to keep the plants from taking over as I was building. The key was to have the piles close but not to close to be in the middle of my rebuild. You want your material to be close if you plan to reuse it. You do not want it in your walk path or your build area. If you have to move it more then twice your wasting time.

I set string lines up to help give me a guide in order to see my build. Check and double check to make sure I was on target. Now would be the time to change any plans. Notice safety first - plastic caps on rebar. You will also see I have not started to rip out the retaining wall yet! Next photo shows all the stone taken out. The stone left I would build around.

Next I started building my protruding foundation. I started in the bottom center and over in the corner by the column. 

This image above really helps to show the stepped foundation. You can also see the stone from the old wall off to the side out of the way but close at hand when I need them for the rebuild. I feel that each and every stone that comes out of the old wall should go back into the new one. 

Blue marker paint just helps me make sure I'm on target with my plans for the structures. Having a visual helps me see the bigger picture at times. 

This image shows me building my frames. I used soap stone to make marks on the ground. Then the square helps me determine at what height I need to come in "x" inches at the top to have the correct batter. (this wall was built with a 1:6 batter) I might be a little over the top but I prefer to work to the fullest level of accuracy natural stone or not. One job I was on the landscape contractor kept saying its natural stone. It might be natural but that doesn't give you a license to do work at subpar levels of the craft?! And these people have work and are taking you hard earned cash to leave you with something many skilled craftsmen will be fixing in no time. SAD and frustrating that home owners don't know any better - in order to spot crappy work. 

Now I'm setting up my frames off the garage uprights. I'm using this carport to square off from. I set my frames closest to the building. Then I set string lines to measure out from. You will also notice the 3/4/5 square to square up and set my markings for the next group of frames. The zip level helps me determine were my first steps will need to sit. I'm checking right now with the zip level how far below my master line I'm at. 

Related blogs:
Tool - 3' x 4' x 5' / 90° Folding Layout A Square

Challenges of setting frames can be when you have to keep them all in line. The other is when you need to put frames at a upper levels - then the angles change (notice smallest frame to far right). It might be a little hard to see but by the driveway this wood frame that goes horizontal is my MASTER mark. This is where the top step will go to match the driveway.

Some of my wood frames I keep open on the inside. Such as the frames to the left for the retaining wall I don't need a inside frame like those on the right for the freestanding wall. Since the frames are all based off the same 1:6 batter the only thing I need to do in order to set them up is set a level on the top to set the frame at the correct angle.

The down side with so many frames are you can easily get lost in them, you can't see our build as well and your bound to trip over one or two at some point. I use rebar to keep them in place. Some I build with legs out and set stones on them. The 3rd frame to the right (on retaining wall) in would be such an example. If you blow the photo up you will see this. Images below also show  a better angle.

I spent 2 days building my frames along with setting them. I wanted to be 100% on target with my build any error now could cost me a complete rebuild. Yup that's right I don't want to move the stone more then twice.

Once I determined how far I was below my master line for example 54" below. I then was able to start my build for my first step. When I started building my wall I started at the back garage pole then around to the spot for the first step. Everything depends on the correct placement of the first step. The will set the full build in motion. If this is off the project is bust!!

I begin to build up with small stone for under the PA Blue Stone step. With the first step it must be in the correct place. If this stone is not in the right place the hole build could be compromised since this step sets the stage for the build. 

I used my new/used mini excavator with a new Geith Thumb to set my stones. After last year building the Warren Road wall with floating steps I realized how much this machine would do the work of 4 men and then some. With just me operating it. Setting large steps, stones or excavating a the job site. First step will be 3' long with the 8th (top) step 4' and act as a platform.

Second step into the wall. Now I begin to build up the out side free standing wall. With this build I build backwards with each upper step. (headed towards the driveway)

The start of the cheek end /wall head at end of free standing wall.

3rd step now in place. I build back level behind each step as I place them. Then I build up once again to get the desired rise (height) which is 6". My tread (width) is 14" 

Little by little I make it to the top of the build. You can now see the Master line ie the horizontal wood board by the driveway. This marks the top of wall at last step, level to driveway.

Notice left side wall - retaining wall corner with inter locking stones like dovetail construction in wood work such as furniture ( look in side of any good drawer). Or like taking your two hands and inter locking your fingers. Makes for a very tight lock. I continue to build up on the full project but mainly the steps. One at a time.

5th step up.

6th step up.

One day when I was working in the rain I realized the rain was coming right into my wall. (best thing about working with dry laid stone-can't do that with mortar!) One thing I had never looked at was up. I didn't realize that no gutter was on the carport. Don't know why I didn't think of this. I believe I was so focused on the integrity of the structure as I took the old wall out. I never gave a thought. 


Easy fix - make a rain gutter on the back side of the wall. (more water you can keep away the longer the life of the structure) The carport can't have a rain gutter installed due to the slate roof and small flashing. I re-use the old stone that was inside the carport before. 12"x12" PA Blue stone squares. I was sure to pitch the stones down, add a few steps in the flow and make sure the last stone over hangs a little past the wall. Keeping the flow going out and away. This part of the build was not planned nor did I bill for the change order. It was simply a matter of - 

Why not? Because I can! 

Rain gutter being built. I used small Butler stone as the edging closest to the car port.

I begin to put the cap stones on. You can see at the end of the rain gutter the cap goes over. I use PA Blue stone to loosely finish off the back side with the cap stones by the gutter. The cap stones at the outer upright pillar are -10" below the Master line. I build my caps level all the way around to steps. The free standing wall also has one level cap. After the level caps on both sides of the wall they head up hill toward the driveway.

1 Potato 2 potato 3 potato - sorry just caps stones one by one I work to the sting line to make sure they are headed up hill in the same directions. You'll notice the wall on the far side is not built all the way up. The reason for this is as I work back I can find the stones I need to get to the needed height to set my caps at the correct level and angle.

Remembering you still need to build level as you go up hill. Only stepping the stones to get the angle you need. Tricky tricky tricky. But saving all those small flat stones will now come in handy. 

Looking out from the carport

7th step now goes in. I will now have to remove all my frames to finish the build. I have enough of the wall built to know where my I need to go. I will have to finish the last part of the build all with my eyes and believe in my instincts.

I find it easy some times to fall into the trap of relying on tools like a tape measure to second guess my brain. When you take the time to believe in yourself and follow your nose - I mean your brain you will find the answer quicker then you may have walking around with the tape measure. But this is very difficult for two reasons. Trusting yourself instincts and turning off your brain. As I call it letting my hair down. Go with the flow. Ya good luck with that one!

Last step goes into place. 

Finished wall with rain gutter. You'll notice the top of the cap stones come into the top step. This will keep any one pushing snow with snow plow from pushing the cap stones off the wall. They will have to take out the top step to take out the wall. But hey if that happens - I know a great waller!  Since the wall is dry laid stone I can put them all back with out any problems. Might just take a little time remember where each one goes. Good thing I numbered each stone. I love walling by numbers. 

I replaced all the small stones the home owner used to use to step out of their car. With a 5'.4"x20" PA Blue Stone tread / second. The stone had a small chip so I saved the home owner a considerable amount of $$.  The stone due to the size was only set on earth and set parallel to the carport blacktop. Now the chances of weeds coming back are minimized by such a large stone. I had to bring this to the job site in the back of my Kia Soul. When my truck was out of commission.

Related Blog: 


Finished Blog Photo's:

Beechdale Road, Roland Park MD, Finished Project, Dry Laid Construction

Thank you for taking the time to follow my blog and my joy for stone walling. If you made it this far you've read the longest blog to date.