cement for wall

Found 5th Aug 2017
Building a small wall can i use just cement and sand and water or should i need gravel as well
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Assuming you are building a brick wall, not a load bearing wall, them a sand and cement mortar is the norm. However if you are building a nuclear fall-out shelter you may find this inadequate!
Seriously though gravel, usually called ballast, is only normally mixed in mortar when mixing concrete for paths and roads etc. I know people will start listing exceptions to this, that's the nature of this site, but check with a builder next time you pass one working in the street.
Original Poster
Yes small garden wall which already is 3 high but adding another 2 layers and a post for a small gate
4 parts builders sand to 1 part cement and a couple of glugs of mortar plasticiser to make it more workable or a little squirt of washing up liquid instead
i heard not sure though.washing up liquid weakens the mix.
I've heard of plasterers using washing up liquid on large cellings as it slows the drying time so is easier to skim. For walls I've always worked on a 4/1 ratio as above
Bricklaying is a skill learnt through practice.

If you're asking if you need to put gravel in mortar I think it is safe to assume that you've not attempted this before. Watch some videos on youtube first.

First ensure the top of the wall is clean - no moss!

Mix up just a small amount of mortar (4 parts building sand:1 part cement as said earlier) first as you will be a lot slower than you expect.

Aim for 10mm mortar thickness below and between each brick, use a spirit level on EVERY brick - ensuring all dimensions are perfectly horizontal/vertical before starting the next brick. Clean off an splatters (snots) of mortar whilst they are still wet with a trowel (moving in a direction not to scrape the mortar against the wall). Finish off the joints when the mortar has begun to harden - fill in any gaps and run a small piece of hosepipe (or something similar) along the joint to get a neat finish.

Have a practice laying 3-4 bricks on a piece of hardboard or something first just to get a feel for it - as I said it is much harder than a skilled bricklayer makes it look!
Original Poster
thanks guys will give it a go
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