Mortar is a workable mixture that is used as a bonding agent to bind masonry, such as brick or stone, to other masonry or other surfaces. Common mortar is usually made of a mixture of lime, sand, and water. It is troweled and applied into gaps between the stones or bricks. As the mortar dries and hardens, it locks the stones into place. Residual mortar is quickly cleaned away, and with some applications the joint is shaped. To prepare small amounts of mortar for home projects follow a few simple tips.
Things You'll Need
- Mortar (in bags) Water Five-gallon bucket Eye, mouth, and hand protection One-inch by two-inch stick about three feet long Power drill Mixing bar for power drill Plastic mortar tray Sheet plastic
Buy the appropriate mortar mix for your specific application. Lumber yard personnel will direct you to the correct product for your job.
Read the instructions on the bag of your mortar mix. This will tell you the ratio of water to mortar mix. Adhere to this ratio.
Pour the water portion of your ratio into your bucket. Wearing protective gear, use your stir stick to mix in the mortar as you add it to the water. Add the correct ratio of dry powder to your bucket.
Attach the mixing bar to your power drill and mix the mortar thoroughly. Remove your mixing bar and place it on plastic sheeting.
Pour the mortar into the mortar tray. Make sure it is mixed uniformly.
Clean your mixing bar, bucket, and stick immediately, or the cement will harden on them, and they will be useless.
Tips & Warnings
- Concrete (lime) mixtures are caustic, and it is important not to handle them with your bare hands. Mixing the powder puts potentially hazardous dust into the air, so wear a face mask and eye protection. It is also a good idea to wear long sleeve clothing and long pants to prevent splatter on your skin.
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How to Apply Mortar
Applying mortar while building a garden path or flower bed is easy. Just follow these steps.
- How to Make Lime Mortar
- How to Mix Mortar for Blocks
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