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Old 09-04-2011, 11:31 PM   #1
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Working with cinder block


if I want to build a house with cinder block (8x8x16), and I want to fill in the cinder block with concrete, do I put in rebar #6 in the voids? I read somewhere it takes ten 80 pound bags of concrete to fill one cinder block. That sounds crazy to me. So for the basement foundation, I get that the width has to be thirteen inches wider than the house and the foundation has to be 8 inches thick with concrete on top of 8 inches of flattened gravel. I am building this house in metro Atlanta. So my question is, do I have to mortar the blocks together, or can I just stack them, put the rebar in between the voids and then fill. I plan to have a professional mixer come and fill the voids for me. And other suggestions on this let me know, PLEASE!!!! I want a two story house out of cinder block with an 8 foot basement, so I already calculated 5000 cinder blocks.

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Old 09-05-2011, 02:02 AM   #2
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First, you will need an architect draw up plans, they will also know how to engineer the structure, so that it does not fall down, and also, determine stuff like setbacks, soil density, etc. You will have to work with city hall to pull various permits, and work with the inspection department for various things along the way.

Just reading your post, a bunch of big red flags jumped out, because looking over it, you are way out of your league on this. Building a house, is not like opening a box of Lego's, and especially in a place like Atlanta, you can't just throw one up and hide it from City hall. I would interview contractors, especially general contractors that are familiar in this building practice, and one that is reputable. There are a lot of "minority" companies in your area. Those are companies that are owned by females, parties of other ethnicity, but at the most, they can save you money, because they do not have the over head, as a large corporation builder would have.

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Old 09-05-2011, 08:35 AM   #3
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Working with cinder block


Tarie -

I second the thought of getting a professional. You will get a better structure and possibly cheaper.

He will probably come up with a basement wall sitting on a strip footing. For all of the masonry, he will probably come up with a partially reinforced wall with the necessary amount of reinforcement necessary (either for loads or prescriptive amounts if necessary for code compliance). You fill only the cavities/voids the are reinforced and require the use of grout (wet with 8-11" slump for ease of filling) and definitely NOT concrete since it will not fill properly.

Dick
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Old 09-05-2011, 10:26 AM   #4
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I am not moving the blocks myself :-) I confess I am currently dreaming out loud (with a strong desire to turn dream into reality next year) I want to know what I am getting into. If I frame it with wood, that (since I have worked with wood A LOT), I would consider doing myself after reading all of these books about framing. And visiting framed houses. And I know how to use a framing square and a wall level and all of that

But I see cinder block homes when I visit my family in Florida and they look so strong. A hurricane can rip apart a wood-framed house or that would be my first choice. Wood is forgiving if you are a 1/4 inch off, wood is fairly easy to erect. and you can glue, screw and nail the whole thing in. But I would use 2x6, not 2x4 to frame the house. I see wood frame structures in Atlanta ALL the time, even for apartment complexes (AMAZING?!!! ) but I am afraid wood won't last over time.
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Old 09-05-2011, 10:41 AM   #5
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They may look strong, but for the most, majority of those homes have corners cut, when they were built. The best built structures, are those that the military had built on their bases down in Florida and all along the Gulf Coast. When building a structure in places like the Hurricane & Tornado belts, there is a easy way, and wrong way. If you build along the guidelines to withstand a EF5 or better Tornado, it will cost more, than building to withstand a o greater than a EF2.
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Old 09-05-2011, 11:19 AM   #6
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So, what would you recommend? Wood or cinder block? If I frame with wood, everything is getting glued and screwed down, not just nailed. Liquid Nail, Gorilla Glue, 4 inch screws and nails. Not building this for a fast buck, but to spend the rest of my life in. And raise a family.
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Old 09-05-2011, 11:49 AM   #7
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Florida, Cinder block if it fits into the neighborhood. Otherwise, Wood structure on top of a cinder or poured foundation, properly strengthened to withstand hurricanes and Tornado's. Keep in mind, costs and money available, determine what you can afford to put into the building of the structure. If anything, most buildings anymore are only built to last maybe 25 to 30 years. My house is over 70 years old, and still very structurally sound.
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Old 09-05-2011, 02:54 PM   #8
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OK, I was thinking of using 2x6 pressure treated lumber for the walls and 2x12 for the floor joists and 1 inch thick plywood for the sides and two 3/4 inch panels for the floor (lay one down length parallel to the trusses and then another width parallel to the trusses on top of it and glue the boards to the trusses and then fasten them down with 6 inch screws with one 3/4 inch thick plywood for the roof on 2x8 trusses.
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Old 09-05-2011, 03:47 PM   #9
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I'm sorry, but it is abundantly clear that you have no clue about how to build a house of any kind. PT lumber for walls? You've got to be kidding. And the rest of your ideas are just as insane. If you're so worried about hurricanes, move somewhere else.

Speaking as someone who has, literally, built his own house by hand, you have no idea what's involved or how to do it.

Last edited by md2lgyk; 09-05-2011 at 03:52 PM.
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Old 09-05-2011, 04:08 PM   #10
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All of that makes little sense. You can do everything you said and it could still collapse in the right storm. Materials are just a small part of the building equation. The little pig that built his house of straw could have had a nicer structure than the third pig with the bricks. Proven methods of construction are more valuable than incorrectly used expensive materials.
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Old 09-05-2011, 04:41 PM   #11
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Working with cinder block


Quote:
Originally Posted by md2lgyk View Post
I'm sorry, but it is abundantly clear that you have no clue about how to build a house of any kind. PT lumber for walls? You've got to be kidding. And the rest of your ideas are just as insane. If you're so worried about hurricanes, move somewhere else.

Speaking as someone who has, literally, built his own house by hand, you have no idea what's involved or how to do it.

Umm...that is not exactly correct. Some building codes call out PT for framing and not just wall framing.
It really depends on the area one is building in. A flood hazard zone of 'x' (if I remember correctly) may have to be built of PT entirely depending upon the construction or it may have to be built 1 foot above the possible flood height.

Many factors go into planning and building a house anywhere in the good ol' US of A.

Talk to a pro before you start building, even if you are in an area that does not require permits.

Andy.
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Old 09-05-2011, 08:38 PM   #12
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md2lgyk, who said I was worried about hurricanes? Living in Atlanta, hurricanes are a rather rare phenomenon. Being originally from Florida, yes, I like the look of a cinder block home. And buildings downtown Tampa made of cinder block seem to last forever. Storm after storm is no problem. Why? And also, why are my ideas so ridiculous? Many homes built in the 18th and 19th century from wood are actually still standing? Is current lumber inferior nowadays? Since pressure treated lumber is regular dimension lumber treated to inhibit rot, termites, and other forms of decay that regular wood can see, why is my use of pressure treated lumber so laughable to you. If I misspeak, I welcome correction, as this is how one learns, but please do not treat me as a senile bird.
One of the things I have noticed about construction here in Atlanta, is everything is rapidly thrown together with 2x4, a few nails and bracket pieces and chip board. When I visited my sister in Illinois it was the same. How can chipboard last longer than exterior A-C plywood? My grandparents house on Long Island, NY had floors made from 2x6 planks (my mental calculation, it HAS been over twenty years since I have seen the house). Do I expect to do all the work myself. No. but after reading many books on the subject from various authors and Habitat for Humanities, as well as watching my grandfather, this is not an insurmountable task. I'll probably help. I WANT HOWEVER, to know enough to be more than an anonymous ATM for this job. If I am going to spend $200K on a freshly built house, I would rather build a labor of love than a quick, slapped together house that I may honestly outlive.

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Old 09-06-2011, 09:53 AM   #13
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Working with cinder block


Hi there Tarie, sounds like you want to build a house DIY style. This may be hard to do in Metro Anywhere where you need 6 structural engineers and 7 lawyers to design a swing set that requires 10 permits and 14 inspections by the city / county / state / federal building departments. In any event if you choose to proceed you might want to search the net for dry stack block construction. One of several types of blocks designed for DIY construction is: http://www.vobb.com/ Please be aware that building a house is a monumental task with hundreds of interrelated components that must each be properly constructed so that the whole house will be safe for its occupants, this type of construction is often better left to the professionals. Good luck and don't let the naysayers get you down - it must be the hot weather but there are some REALLY rude responders on this (and other) forums who could make their hopefully helpful/valid points in a more civilized manner.
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Old 09-06-2011, 10:10 AM   #14
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I built this house from the dirt to the shingles BY MYSELF, so yes, it can be done and yes, it IS a very hard job planning everything out. Even the 'timing' of what goes in when is vitally important. But if you have the common sense to figure it out and ask questions from our members here willing to help when you cannot, you should have few problems.

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Old 09-06-2011, 10:27 PM   #15
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I appreciate this about the VOBB blocks. They look perfect......Can I build a two story house with these blocks? And the grout to fill it with.....what exactly is it. I thought cinder blocks were filled with rebar and concrete but it appears I am mistaken. So what is the correct way to fill the stacked blocks?

How do you attach the floor to the blocks. I have seen the wood process, but I read attach a ledger board to the cinder block wall, install joist hangers on the ledger board and lay the joists down. The other way is a form with styrofoam grooves in it for the joists to recess that is filled with concrete.

Look, I appreciate everyone with constructive criticism. I don't know how to do this front to back; that's why I am here asking questions. It's not like I want to build a 5,000 sq ft. home with popsicle sticks and papier mache :-D

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