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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks,

My home's original owner opened a hole through the block foundation for walk-in access to the crawlspace. He didn't support the brick above which spans 28 inches. Fortunately, it hasn't moved, but I'd like to recondition the opening, to restore a smooth, plumb surface, and install a lintel under the bricks.

I'd like to avoid removing any bricks, since they are irreplaceable. To get angle iron in there, I'd need to chisel the block out. I'd like to make this right with as little collateral damage as possible.

Is there another option for lintels that could slide in with minimal cutting, such as half-inch steel plate?

A.
662433
 

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JUSTA MEMBER
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Hi folks,

My home's original owner opened a hole through the block foundation for walk-in access to the crawlspace. He didn't support the brick above which spans 28 inches. Fortunately, it hasn't moved, but I'd like to recondition the opening, to restore a smooth, plumb surface, and install a lintel under the bricks.

I'd like to avoid removing any bricks, since they are irreplaceable. To get angle iron in there, I'd need to chisel the block out. I'd like to make this right with as little collateral damage as possible.

Is there another option for lintels that could slide in with minimal cutting, such as half-inch steel plate?

A.
View attachment 662433
Absolutely.

You need to remove just enough mortar, and block material, to have about 4" of span into each side of the opening.

This plate would need to be as wide as the wall is, the thickness that you decide on, and as long as the opening is wide, plus the amount of removed mortar / block material.

Easiest way is to use an angle grinder with a diamond cutoff blade.

carefully, maneuver it flat against the top, and against the edge you want to cut out.

Drop down 1/8 inch to allow the blade to freely spin, and gently slice the mortar / block out.

Wear safety gear, as things will be flying, and do not bind the blade up, can you say BROKEN ARM.

Above all else be safe while doing this, dust will fly, and vision will be blocked, as well as the exposed blade can bind and snap your arm.


ED
 

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Make sure you don't allow thick steel to rust, or it can expand up to 4 Times it's thickness and damage the brickwork.
Had to remove some on a job and replace with concrete lintels.
If you are having a timber door frame you don't need a lintel. A lot of houses here had the brickwork built on top of timber windows. It was only when replaced with plastic that they had problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Absolutely.

You need to remove just enough mortar, and block material, to have about 4" of span into each side of the opening.

This plate would need to be as wide as the wall is, the thickness that you decide on, and as long as the opening is wide, plus the amount of removed mortar / block material.

Easiest way is to use an angle grinder with a diamond cutoff blade.

carefully, maneuver it flat against the top, and against the edge you want to cut out.

Drop down 1/8 inch to allow the blade to freely spin, and gently slice the mortar / block out.

Wear safety gear, as things will be flying, and do not bind the blade up, can you say BROKEN ARM.

Above all else be safe while doing this, dust will fly, and vision will be blocked, as well as the exposed blade can bind and snap your arm.


ED
Here's an update on the project. I found a best practices guide that listed 3x3x1/4 angle iron as being usable up to 4-1/2 feet of span. My span will be 30 inches, so I bought a 38" piece of 3x3x1/4 stainless angle and cut the opening back to sound material with a concrete saw and my angle grinder.

Is there any need to use flashing with stainless? I'd be inclined to think it's not required.
 

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Flashing has a purpose, it directs any water away from the opening, to prevent it from seeping in anywhere near the opening.

I would use it, but it is your project, suit yourself.

ED
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Flashing has a purpose, it directs any water away from the opening, to prevent it from seeping in anywhere near the opening.

I would use it, but it is your project, suit yourself.

ED
You make a good point. Is 6-mil poly an appropriate material?
 
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