Stonemasonry adds to the outdoors a feel of antiquity, a sense of comfort and stability.
Types of Masonry Fences
Depending on their purpose, masonry fences can be constructed with a different height/thickness. Shorter fences often have a more decorative function, but are a wonderful solution for various gated communities or private and public buildings. High stone walls in the traditional old Bulgarian houses are an expression of the philosophy ‘my home-my castle.’
Stonemasons compare constructing with stones to solving jigsaw puzzle – you need to find the right spot for every stone.
Valmarg stone offers special masonry stones – regularly – shaped hewn stones with a length of 20 cm and width of 20 cm. They are stable and sturdy, so that once the fence is created, it is practically eternal. They are also the easiest to arrange.
Foundation of Masonry Constructions
For greater strength and stability of the massive masonry constructions, the foundation should be held with a concrete solution with a depth of about 40-50 cm.
Another option is for the creation of drainage, with rocks underneath the fence.
Terrace-Like Masonry Constructions
During the building of terrace-like constructions, the natural stones revetment wall is most commonly constructed through dry stone masonry. The creation of those constructions is recommended at a particularly not-so-high inclination of the area, since they can balance earth pressure with just their weight.
NB: Thin walls succumb to various factors in the course of time and collapse. That’s why stone walls should have a thickness of between 50-70 cm.
At inclined locations, where the wall acts as a retaining wall, a tilt should be constructed on the outside of the wall against the slope. ( a trapeze-like shape forms)
A good quality masonry retaining wall has a huge advantage because it performs a drainage function too– it holds the dust while allowing the water to be drained; this prevents water retaining or sliding of the soil.
Stonemasonry for Fences
For a thick wall – for about 70cm of the construction stones should be layed on both sides with a crushed stone placed in the middle, held by grout solution and an armature network.
Another option features the building of an armature network first. Then a natural stone wall should be constructed around it, held with mortar. Finally, in the middle, a concrete solution with a thickness of about 20 cm should be poured.
Binding Solutions for Masonry Constructions
In masonry various connecting solutions can be applied:
- lime solution
- hydraulic lime solution
- lime-cement solution
Completing Masonry Constructions
In order for any fence made of natural stones to be preserved, it should be protected from water penetration and moisture. This is a must, especially if the fence is not constructed through dry stone masonry.
The most common solution is the construction of a visor, covered with tiles. In that manner, the fences of Bulgarian houses have been preserved over the years to the present day.
Important Rules for Natural Stone Masonry:
- No wider joints than 30 cm should appear
- The biggest stones should be placed at each corner
- Vertical joints should not pass through more than 2 lines – the joints should be misaligned at a distance of at least 10 cm
- Longitudinal and interconnecting lines should alternate.
- Layers of concrete , brick or wood should be placed at the foundation of bigger walls for greater resistance