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OK so here is the deal..I mainly have to work with sand mix or some type of mortar from time to time..I replace a lot of trash chute doors that have been cemented in so to speak..In replacing the buck frame(door frames) they get beat out, the new one is leveled in and i have been using sand mix to do the finish work.I usually leave it just behind the plaster and then use plaster to do the final finish work.Ive done this about 15 times in the last year.

About 3 times ive had to crawl into brick trash chutes to fix holes from other works like ac lines etc etc.A few have had the motor loosen up and fall out..So ive just replaced it with block and brick to cover the holes.

Thats the extent that we can do without a building permit from the city.And its about all i want to do.

But since money is tight and im free on weekends im think of trying to do some smallish repairs to steps and whatnot.Damn near every brownstone in the city has steps and many are pretty rotted or damaged..

I dont have much experence with concrete other than the above jobs so im not trying to take on anything major.Im thinking step repairs, parking lot bumpers or stops(whatever you call them).later on to try to get into walkways and whatnot..

Am i on the right track here and what should i look for towards tools..I have just a small set of masons tools that i use now and a hammer drill, a dewalt grinder with some masonary wheels.
 

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Steps porches cracks in concrete spalling concrete worn concrete.
Ive poured a few concrete steps and sidewalks and have great confidence when doing so.

What I dont have confidence in is repairing steps and spalling concrete. My own porch is an ugly mess with cracks, improper slope, worn down to the aggregrate after 30 years in spots. Its as ugly as sin, and I am researching trying to find the best alternative to fix this.

From what I have been hearing, there is no top coating you can put on that will last. (10 years) Just patching the spots looks like ****e in itself, so a top coat is what is truly needed. There is huge money to be made but I am very hesitant to do a job where I feel it could come apart in a couple years.

Topping my porch with flagstone is the only permenent solution I can come up with.

If anybody has had long term success with a certain product, please share... There is enough F*&ked up concrete out there to keep everybody busy.
 

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Gerald preaty much summed up my opinion on patching exterior work in hard feeze-thaw areas. It's fairly hit or miss on longevity.

BTW GeraldS, the flagstone is a good alternative, as well as 1 1/4" split pavers, if availabe to you & if they aren't too thick.
 
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