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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have to start a project soon and temperatures have been dipping below freezing at night here. Not late enough for a hard freeze yet, but I don't want my mud to freeze each night.

I am going to buy a couple of bucket heaters for making warm mud and want a good quality blanket or two for draping over my work each night and plugging in.

I see Northern has the powerblanket brand, anyone have a suggestion on a good quality blanket that will last awhile.
 

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Personally I would just use an insulated tarp.If the material is warm and the mud is warm you shouldn't need a heated b;lanket. The mortar will put out heat once the reaction has begun so you just need to keep that heat in to keep it going
 

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I use a cheapo from walmart and nail through it and treat it badly. But if its new construction I will use a box heater with canvas tarps until I tent the job in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Ok, I have used those before.

I did some calling around and located some insulated tarps and water bucket heaters at a supply house nearby.

It is supposed to get back up in the 40's and 50's through next week so things should go smooth as long as I keep the heat on at night.

I am booked right through the next 4-5 weeks and I usually am not this time of year. My deer hunting time is gonna take a huge hit, but I can't say no to the cash. Can't find any help though, which sucks, everyone wants to go to camp.

I need to dig out the good chisels, I haven't got to do real stone in forever, should be a fun change of pace provided the quarry snaps them nice.
 

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If the winter works keeps up for you, these are a good inexpensive type heater. I can heat down to -15c/5F depending on the area for $40 per day., $15 worth of Kero during the day and $25 of diesel for the night (the kero burns a lot cleaner than the diesel)
http://compare.ebay.ca/like/2711473...r&_lwgsi=y&cbt=y&lpid=33&item_id=271147305537These have a thermostat and if your in a sunny spot they often only come on a couple times a day. I'll often turn them off while working and blast them during break. The one probklem they do hae is that there is a composite rotor in the back that draws in the fuel from the tank and then blows it into atomizer. If a brick or stone drops on the back of it, it's broken until you replace the rotor which can be hard to find

Propane heaters are better burning but legally you're supposed to have a propane licence to heat with them here (salamanders, not the sunflower type that CJ paosted). Also they don't come on an off so they burn constant, loud and often way too hot. The electric construction heaters are nice too, quiet and powerful but they require 220v so unless you have an oven or dryer plug close by or an electrician to hardwire it to the panel they are difficult
 

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And remember, when bidding winter work, you have to add in some time for tarping and heating...it's a fine line between making money and charging so much they want to wait til spring. I work in the winter but I often only make 1/2-2/3\s what I do in the other seasons. But at least money is coming in...not out
 

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they sell large radiant heaters as well. kerosene based I love the radiant heaters now. we used salamander heaters for years. they are way to noisy and dry dry dry heat. the radiant are really compact and make no noise. the heat is gentle but very warm. As for the whole blanket thing. insulated tarps at the end of the day wrapped up nice and tight.
 

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The place where we lose most of our money is in the mornings getting set up. Heating the sand, heating the bricks. If you can maintain the heat overnight you can stock the staging and just show up and mix up in the morning (use the box heaters in the "fire barrel" with a couple tarps on it). You have 0 downtime and almost all of your on site hours are productive. The cost of kero overnight doesnt matter, you make it back in the first 30 minutes when you show up.
 

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If you can get a few pails or sacks of sand in the enclosure overnight you don't even have to heat the sand in the morning, i mean heat it but there's no waiting (an insulated tarp on the sand and a fire before you leave helps huge too)

The worst thing I find is the mixer freezing, that can add a whole lot of hours to the day, and of course it's a really cold day when you're already losing money on heat and other bull
 

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The place where we lose most of our money is in the mornings getting set up. Heating the sand, heating the bricks. If you can maintain the heat overnight you can stock the staging and just show up and mix up in the morning (use the box heaters in the "fire barrel" with a couple tarps on it). You have 0 downtime and almost all of your on site hours are productive. The cost of kero overnight doesnt matter, you make it back in the first 30 minutes when you show up.


JBM; This will get you going a tad quicker in the morning.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Volcano-Rod...llon-Drum-Heater-Masonry-Heater-/350520966917
 

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A friend of mine has one, it is decent and makes the water very warm which keeps the sand nice as well. I set the little box heater on over ride and let it run all night. Someday ill evolve and get a volcano rod gizmo.
 

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wow, that sucks. I remember seeing a mixer (not new but only 10 years old maybe) beside an abandoned house for maybe 6 mos. Then one day work started on the house, some brick got put up and a few weeks later the mixer was gone.

On the other hand...a friend of a friend left his mixer on a job, he removed the tow bar so no one could steal it so they came and stole the motor (honda 12hp...nice motor). You never can tell
 
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