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Cinder block chimney with furring strips that has cedar siding over it, about 30' tall. It's about 30years old and the siding is starting to warp pretty bad, getting birds, bats, etc living behind it.

Want to rip it off and would eventually like to have a river-rock look (like what's pictured below):



Had no real idea what cultured stone costs but found this site (http://www.wardhamilton.com/cultured_stone_calculator.htm) that lists it as $25 / sq ft. That's way more than I want to spend.

This is probably a super stupid question but ..... can I scrounge river rocks, cut them in half and mortar them onto the chimney? I have a Stihl power saw at work with diamond blades so that's no problem. We're planning on staying in the house for the long term, so time's not a problem either (can pick away at it slowly, etc).

Thanks!
 

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Cinder block chimney with furring strips that has cedar siding over it, about 30' tall. It's about 30years old and the siding is starting to warp pretty bad, getting birds, bats, etc living behind it.

Want to rip it off and would eventually like to have a river-rock look (like what's pictured below):



Had no real idea what cultured stone costs but found this site (http://www.wardhamilton.com/cultured_stone_calculator.htm) that lists it as $25 / sq ft. That's way more than I want to spend.

This is probably a super stupid question but ..... can I scrounge river rocks, cut them in half and mortar them onto the chimney? I have a Stihl power saw at work with diamond blades so that's no problem. We're planning on staying in the house for the long term, so time's not a problem either (can pick away at it slowly, etc).

Thanks!

I'd be looking at other sites,or better yet local because shipping would kill the deal,and no i don't think your plan would work,too much weight involved.
 

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Concrete & Masonry
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THe $25/ sq. foot must include the labor to install it, as there's actually some decent River Rock material I can get just around $5 per sq. foot, and 90% of the cultured stone shapes can be had for less than $9 a sq. foot.

What you're thinking of doing is done regularily, it called natural thin veneer. The difference is that it's done with huge saw set-ups that minimize the human labor element and power through the stone much, much faster than a hand held gas saw. Not to mention, most river rock will probably be of the granite variety, which is extremely hard to saw and will saw slow & eat up blades relatively quickly...............
 
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