11 votes

How to put a clean hole in concrete block?

To make a clean, precise hole in concrete, use a diamond core bit. Your small, cheap drill probably does not have sufficient torque and runs too fast for a core bit this large. But you can rent a ...
MTA's user avatar
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8 votes
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How can I remove this concrete wall anchor?

These don't come out easily, sometimes they can be pushed back into the wall and dissappear, this is often the case if the person installing it was thinking ahead and drilled the hole deeper than ...
Jasen's user avatar
  • 20.9k
6 votes

How to create nice corners when building a wall with these concrete blocks?

You purchase corner blocks. Those are stretcher blocks for the middle of the wall, not corner blocks. A masonry supplier will have a variety of different shapes for particular purposes, one of which ...
Ecnerwal's user avatar
  • 215k
6 votes

How can I pour a 20' x 20 ' slab on a slope?

Assuming you're planning to DIY, be ready for it to be a lot of work. The primary method to place concrete on a slope without having it all end up on the bottom is to use "low-slump" ...
Ecnerwal's user avatar
  • 215k
5 votes

How to put a clean hole in concrete block?

MTA gave the right answer about the bit. Make sure you get diamond (see his answer for what it looks like) and not tungsten carbide (pictured below). Also make sure the bit fits on the drill, and ...
bobflux's user avatar
  • 9,708
5 votes

How to attach this wooden beam to concrete blocks

I wouldn’t - that block could come loose with the pull of a load of wet washing. I would sink a tube or the wooden post further into the ground.
Solar Mike's user avatar
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5 votes
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Can you substitute one 3/8" rebar by three 1/4" rebars?

Your reasoning is sound. Spread them out evenly, though. Don't bundle them together in a blob. The rebar's bending strength is assumed to be zero for reinforced concrete design, so the bar diameters ...
popham's user avatar
  • 10.4k
4 votes

How do I build a fence with zero experience?

Does the fence need to be solid for privacy? If not, consider a chain-link fence. You set the poles, unroll the fencing along and attach it to the poles with wire clips, then if you want to avoid ...
JRaef's user avatar
  • 15k
4 votes

Concrete retaining wall with lean and crack, looking for input

This site prefers not to provide 'call a professional' answers and I might receive some less positive reception for this answer, but this is a case where I think that it is appropriate. My suggestion ...
Ack's user avatar
  • 5,729
4 votes
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Why do many concrete blocks have this strange shape on either end?

As with most building materials, there is a balance between strength, weight, cost and other attributes. Solid concrete blocks would weigh roughly twice as much as these blocks and cost twice as much ...
manassehkatz-Moving 2 Codidact's user avatar
4 votes
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How to create nice corners when building a wall with these concrete blocks?

Here are a couple of pictures from the garage I had built, showing the blocks Ecneral referenced.
SteveSh's user avatar
  • 6,892
4 votes

How can I pour a 20' x 20 ' slab on a slope?

You want a decent bedding below that slab anyway. Dig and fill that so it's level. Build the retaining form you'll pour the concrete into so it's at least close to level, perhaps with a slight slope ...
keshlam's user avatar
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4 votes
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How to Remove Concrete Blocks

Either direct impact to the side of the blocks (possibly spread with a bit of 2x8 if you want the blocks intact) to apply a shearing force to the floor-to-block bond, or a wide (4 inch/100mm or wider) ...
Ecnerwal's user avatar
  • 215k
3 votes
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Maximum retaining wall height

This is about load bearing and claims. The pressure associated with 2 ft of dirt is probably well within the load bearing specification of the blocks in question. 3 feet may not cause any issue, but ...
Ben Welborn's user avatar
  • 6,212
3 votes

What causes air voids in concrete?

When concrete is mixed it has air trapped in the mix. When pouring walls we use vibrators to get the air out. With smaller pours hitting the forms with a hammer helps.
Ed Beal's user avatar
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3 votes
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Can I skim coat a painted interior concrete block wall? If so, with what & how?

Is the wall dry? is the paint in good condition? If it is dry you could use joint compound. If the paint is pealing it would need to be scraped first. I like using mortar on block walls because it ...
Ed Beal's user avatar
  • 103k
3 votes
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Lard as release agent?

The lard will work fine. The laminated wood would give you smoother sides and bottom.
JACK's user avatar
  • 80.5k
3 votes
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Leveling first row of CMUs on uneven slab

Starting at the highest corner or spot, and level from there. It can be done a few ways, first you could set the first 2" block far enough from the high side so that it is level with a thin setting ...
Jack's user avatar
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3 votes
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How to cut a concrete block without expensive tools?

A mason's chisel is the traditional hand-tool approach. You might be able to find a "grit-edge" (tungsten carbide abrasive) blade for your sabre saw. You might get away with a tungsten ...
Ecnerwal's user avatar
  • 215k
3 votes

How to cut a concrete block without expensive tools?

OK, so you don't want to spend a lot of money. Get a 1/8" or 3/16" masonry bit and drill a series of holes along your cut line. Drill as deep and straight as possible. Have some water near ...
JACK's user avatar
  • 80.5k
3 votes
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Should the high side of a concrete block retaining wall be sealed?

I think both the issues of (1) water penetrating the wall and causing problems from behind for your stucco and (2) hydrostatic pressure behind the wall physically damaging it perhaps to the point of ...
Armand's user avatar
  • 4,428
3 votes

How to put a clean hole in concrete block?

MTA's answer is the best plan if you care what it looks like. If the hole will be covered, a series of 1/4" or 3/8" holes drilled with a common masonry bit in a ring will allow you to punch ...
isherwood's user avatar
  • 138k
3 votes

Resources for extreme DIY'er to build brick garage

Concrete block garages (and homes!) are quite common in the Southwest. You can go smooth, or get a facing to provide any look you desire. Your foundation is absolute key here. If you haven't done ...
Bee Kay's user avatar
  • 329
3 votes

Best permanent female-thread anchor in block construction?

I used the lead sleeve anchors that have 1/4-20 female threads. They are reusable and I've had them in for 30 years and have never had one pull out and i install my shutters every year... living in ...
JACK's user avatar
  • 80.5k
3 votes
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Is there any benefit to building framed walls inside concrete block walls?

Don't worry about the holes. It is more of a pain, particularly for lighter things where with drywall you can use a picture hanger or a very small anchor but with brick/block/concrete everything is a ...
manassehkatz-Moving 2 Codidact's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

Should I tie cinderblock wall into existing poured foundation?

Where filling an opening with block in a non-structural situation it's usually sufficient to simply mortar the block to the existing block or concrete. This is common when eliminating windows, for ...
isherwood's user avatar
  • 138k
2 votes

How to lay concrete block without squishing all the mortar?

Brick laying is an art form. It takes a lot of time to get the technique down. Professional masons make the process look much easier than it really is. One thing that can help is to buy a pre-mixed ...
Jason Hutchinson's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Layout method using concrete retaining wall block for angled wall

When it comes to cutting block, you don't need to cut it (but cutting a score can be helpful). Using a rock hammer (and perhaps a chisel) to break the rock is the way it's done. The method for ...
Ben Welborn's user avatar
  • 6,212
2 votes
Accepted

Mounting TV on Thick Drywall + 1" Stud + Concrete blocks

I don't think it's safe to assume the firing strips (what you are calling studs) were installed in such a way to properly hang a TV. Unless you know for certain otherwise, you shouldn't mount the TV ...
longneck's user avatar
  • 21.3k
2 votes

Building a thick concrete pad

That's rather an overkill approach, to say the least. Expensive and not getting you much benefit for the expense. Huge solid blocks like that are good for a punch press or artillery piece, they don't ...
Ecnerwal's user avatar
  • 215k

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