Entry To Our Kingdom
The construction of this project was started in September of 2008. The preparation started almost a year earlier.
While on a totally unrelated Web search, I stumbled across the web site of a Richard Gambino, a stone mason. His passion for rock creations inspired me. His preferred method of rock construction is called random rubble. This method, uses only field stone and mortar (no concrete). This is a style typical in the construction of many old Scottish castles. Castles that have been standing for hundreds of years. The term random sounded easy enough, and might be within my ability level. I bought a book, exchanged a few e-mails, and started collecting and stockpiling rock. Searching the oversize pile at the local gravel pit, for blocky, flat faced and corner friendly rock. As the summer of 2008 wound down, I felt that I had accumulated enough rock, and spare time, I got started. The cost of material was the smallest part of this project. Time and labor is the main ingredient. To protect my own sanity, I stopped keeping track of the hours after a several hundred. It wasn't even half way complete! All exposed surface rocks were hand- picked. The rock was cheap, but it sometimes took more than 2 hours to select a half ton load. Most of the infill rocks came from a pile that had grown as I cleared the property. Each work session started with one 5 gallon bucket of sand and the measured amounts of cement and lime, mixed in a wheelbarrow. After 2-3 hours of labor applied the result would be a 6 inch rise to a single column. Then there is the hidden work. Two 10ft x 26 in.x10in. footing (which will never be seen) are also built of stone and mortar. The pieces of this stone puzzle came together without a picture to follow, without any drawn up plans. Just a crazy idea. This was supposed to be my practice project, before I started the real one. There are many imperfections. Hopefully they are just cosmetic! Perfect imperfection is an attainable goal. Remember the name, Random Rubble.
10 tons of rock, 1000 pounds of cement, 12 bags of lime, 3 pairs of work gloves, a box of rubber liner gloves, two finger tips,(that was before the rubber liners gloves) It's finished!