2 storey protected red brick town house on Dublin’s Historic Pearse Square
Gently cleaned bricks using low pressure steam
Raddle coated bricks
Raked out all mortar joints
Re-pointed facade in lime mortar in traditional Bastard Tuck pointing
Minor repairs to bricks
Reinstated window reveals to original featheredge
Assessing the task at hand
Our initial task was to assess the facade and structure of same. We carried out diagnostic works with the assistance of the Conservation architects and Main contractor. The front facade of the building consists of red brick and many of them required mortar repairs. Previous repairs had been carried out using sand and cement mortar, accelerating the deterioration of the brickwork.
Façade cleaning and repairs
Our first task was to clean down the entire façade for diagnostic purpose. This allowed us to carry out a full survey of all stone and brickwork. We identified over 75 bricks on the front façade alone that needed replacement. We carefully removed damaged bricks from the front elevation and used a colour matched repair mortar.
The original limestone door and window reveals had been repaired in the past using sand and cement. We removed all mortar reveals and re built to the original traditional featheredge reveals using lime mortar.
Brickwork Repointing works
Once all bricks were re instated and restored we set about raking out all mortar joints. All mortar was carefully removed by the restoration team by hand. We then repointed the front facade in the original Bastard Tuck pointing technique. We created a hybrid lime mortar mix to fill the joints, this is the only example, we are aware of, where you will find hybrid mixes used in restoring pointing.
We dedicated a lot of time and effort replicating the hybrid mixes, as we were passionate about retaining the integrity of the building and conserving the original craftsmanship. The lime hybrid mix allows the facade to breathe through the joints thus preventing trapped moisture causing any future deterioration to the facade. Hardness tends to creep up in lime mortar over time, which is why we used the hybrid mix to prevent this happening.
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