How Lime Mortar Traditionally Got it’s Color and How We Can Replicate this Today – FAQ

Seven factors that can affect the color of lime mortar in no particular order of significance, Lime, aggregate, pigment, water content, rate of absorption, original surface texture and erosion. By its self, the color spectrum of lime can vary from bright white, light grey, slight pink or ochre colors. This color is dependent on a […]

Sandblasting Historic Buildings FAQ Friday

Q: Someone wants to sandblast my house. Should I let him sandblast? A: Invasive cleaning methods such as sandblasting or high-pressure washing should be a questionable intervention upon historic fabric of any kind and should be considered carefully. Quartzite sand should never be the medium used on historic brick whose frail “fired skin” will be […]

Using Natural Hydraulic Lime in cold weather, FAQ Friday

Q: As fall encroaches upon us with its cold weather, a question that is going to be popping up with more frequency is… Is it too cold to start or finish my project with NHL? A: This may be one of the most difficult questions to answer, where the wrong answer can result in a […]

Wet Basements and Masonry… FAQ Friday

Basements are notorious for moisture problems. Mold can spread quickly and cause serious health problems throughout a home. Here is another frequently asked question from Randy Ruth about basement moisture and masonry. Q: I am having moisture issues in my old stone farmhouse, especially in the basement and I’ve noticed a few places where mold […]

Burning Lime, The Traditional Way

This is an incredible video that really shows the difficulties of burning limestone the old way. Stacking wood, limestone and coal in an old kiln these men go through the process using traditional methods to turn regular limestone into caustic burnt lime. Uploaded on Nov 27, 2010 This is from the Edwardian Farm series – […]

Deteriorating Brownstones – FAQ

Q: I have an old brownstone house and some of the stone have been falling off, what can I do to prevent further damage and fix the damage that has already occurred? A:  When you have brownstone deterioration or any form of stone deterioration and want it to stop, you have to first identify the root cause. Sometimes it’s as […]

One quick question on Natural Hydraulic Lime, FAQ Friday

Fall has arrived, this morning it was in the 40s! Randy has quick answer today in his FAQ entry… Q: Does your Ecologic mortar product contain just sand and lime pre-mixed (what are the major contents) with no cement and all I would need to do is to add water? A: Ecologic™ Mortar is a […]

Techniques for Plastering a Wall, FAQ Friday

Q: I have painted drywall in my home and would like a lime plaster finish. How can I achieve this? A: There are many ways to achieve a lime plaster finish over painted drywall. The first issue to address is who is going to do the work? If you hire a good plasterer then they […]

Differences Between Repointing with Natural Hydraulic Lime (NHL) Mortars vs. Cement Based Mortars FAQ

Q: Is pointing with lime different from pointing with cement? I’ve done work with cement but I want to know what the differences are for application and general use for repointing my old house. Can you help? A: When you refer to pointing, I am thinking you are referring to repointing mortar joints. As with any masonry […]