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RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - meackerman - 11-06-2019

I've had the propane guy out at my place to do a number of smallish jobs. He's just thankful I haven't had another job where he has to crawl under the house.


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - Admiral - 11-06-2019

(11-06-2019, 12:09 PM)meackerman Wrote: The Boilermaker Story....

My cousin told me a true story, he's an oil furnace guy and worked in North Jersey for years for an old plumber who had a lot of steam heat customers, so he learned a lot about steam.  He since got another job, but a buddy who had an issue in a pre-war, fancy Co-Op apartment building in Manhattan that was heated by steam where the big $$ mucky muck who owned this 2500 sq ft apartment was not getting heat and was a raving lunatic.  The buddy was there all day, no joy, knew that there must have been a blocked steam trap somewhere but he couldn't find it and was not about to start making holes in walls looking for it.  In desperation he called my cousin, who said he wasn't schlepping into NYC for less than $1500 cash.  His buddy said aw, c'mon, so they made a deal -  if my cousin came and couldn't find the trap, no charge, but told the buddy to go and get the cash.  The guy jumped on it.  So my cuz goes, 60 minute ride each way, and 10 minutes after sizing up the situation, points to a place in the wall and says "there it is, open the wall."  Indeed, the trap was there and blocked, he collected his $1500.  He tells me this story after a few drinks at every wedding we go to!


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - geek2me - 11-06-2019

(11-06-2019, 12:01 PM)mound Wrote: 3'x3' chimney with chipping/cracking crown.  Of the 6 contractors I called for estimates, only one called me back..  Quoted to "stage roof, remove chimney cap. install bonding agent with 2500lb concrete cap, tapered brush finish"

Two guys, in and out in just under an hour and a half.. 1200 bucks..  I'm in the wrong profession!

How do they do all that in 90 minutes? Setting up the staging alone would be half that time.


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - mound - 11-06-2019

(11-06-2019, 07:44 PM)geek2me Wrote: How do they do all that in 90 minutes? Setting up the staging alone would be half that time.

very good question.. I don't know what "setup and staging" actually involved.. seemed they were up there with a bucket and a drop-cloth.

he followed up with pics he took before during and after.. looks like a fine enough job..
then again, to bust out the old, mix up some mortar (with fiberglass mixed in) and build up the new crown, how long could that take.

I rarely hire contractors.. sure I "could have" done this, but I really don't like ladders and roofs!


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - EricU - 11-06-2019

on my chimney, I had to build forms because there is an overhang.  I guess I have seen chimneys with no overhangs. I can't see how it would take less than a day, maybe 2. Probably would have paid $1500 if anyone had bothered to call me.

I'm not a big fan of heights, but it wasn't bad, i built a platform that sat on the roof and was kept from sliding by the chimney.

A more recent fine homebuilding had an article about how to build a lead cap.  That was pretty interesting, and I thought about it.  But if I go to that much work, I'm going to take the thing down.  They are an energy sink, it's a lot easier to heat a house without a chimney.


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - mike4244 - 11-06-2019

(11-06-2019, 07:44 PM)geek2me Wrote: How do they do all that in 90 minutes? Setting up the staging alone would be half that time.

I have not done the chimney work but have done the staging platforms . Friend I went to high school was a mason and asked me to set up platforms and remove them when done. Because I have done this about 10 times I had a method that worked well for me. Two story house with the chimney at roof edge took about 2 hours with 2 men. 45 minutes to an hour to remove.
One story with chimney on roof edge 1-1/2 hours.  Add about 20 minutes to each if the chimney was centered in the roof. Handrails and toe boards were also installed.
I had platforms that were already made up and the supports were hinged to fit any pitch. Every part was bolted not nailed so removal was easy. 
First thing was to tarp the roof with 8'-0" wide by 16'-0" tarp . 4" x 8'-0" steel pipe was fastened to the bottom of tarp on each side to keep wind from blowing tarp around. 
The prep work was at least 20 minutes on a low roof, 35 minutes or more on 2 story home. 
If the crown was the only job , we stayed around til it was done and removed the staging.
I recall 7 jobs that the platforms were up for several days. Sometimes the entire chimney above the roof was replaced. 
Apparently the contractor either was a lot faster than me or he did not take same precautions. Carl ,the mason was pleased with our work as he always felt safe on the roofs we staged.

mike


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - WxMan - 11-07-2019

(11-06-2019, 09:30 PM)mound Wrote: ...I rarely hire contractors..  sure I "could have" done this, but I really don't like ladders and roofs!

I'm like you.  I can, but even to save $1000, it's likely not worth it.

As I've aged, my balance simply isn't what it used to be.  I've become much more cautious since 2012 when my next door neighbor fell off a ladder from 6' and ended up in intensive care for a couple days for the severe concussion he suffered.  He still has after effects from that fall today, and it will continue for life.  All to save the cost of getting somebody else out to trim that tree.


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - Snipe Hunter - 11-07-2019

(11-06-2019, 12:09 PM)meackerman Wrote: The Boilermaker Story....


There is an old story of a boilermaker who was hired to fix a huge steamship boiler system that was not working well.
After listening to the engineer’s description of the problems and asking a few questions, he went to the boiler room. He looked at the maze of twisting pipes, listened to the thump of the boiler and the hiss of the escaping steam for a few minutes, and felt some pipes with his hands. Then he hummed softly to himself, reached into his overalls and took out a small hammer, and tapped a bright red valve one time. Immediately, the entire system began working perfectly, and the boilermaker went home.
When the steamship owner received a bill for one thousand dollars, he became outraged and complained that the boilermaker had only been in the engine room for fifteen minutes and requested an itemized bill. So the boilermaker sent him a bill that reads as follows:
For tapping the valve: $.50
For knowing where to tap: $999.50
TOTAL: $1,000.00”

I tell people that they aren't just paying for the job, They're paying for the years of practice it to to be able to do the job right and to their satisfaction..


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - WoodCzech - 11-07-2019

Went through this about 8 years ago for our roughly 50" x 50" cap.  Called two companies with same type of good reviews.  First came out with a $4,300 estimate and the second with $1,100.  The work description was pretty much the same except the more expensive one had a the word "custom" in it a whole bunch of times.  Also the more expensive one wanted me to remove a trellis that is next to the chimney so they can build a scaffolding.  The other company had no issues with it being there.  Then a few days later the less expensive company called that they have a free day the next day and if I want have the work done, they'll do it for $1,000 so I went with that.  As far as I can tell, they took about 6-7 hours, did a fine job, didn't destroy anything and didn't leave any mess.

Recently I had a similar situation with roofing companies.  Both similar reputation, same materials, same description of work except, you guessed it, the more expensive used the word "custom" a lot.  So apparently having that word in an estimate makes it more expensive.


RE: chimey mortor crown repair.. wowza - EricU - 11-09-2019

not too many standard chimneys, I wouldn't think.