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4th November - The first Hot Lime mixes

The lime arrives...

At the beginning of November we decided to kick things off and get started on the lime works. We'd had approval from Conservation for works to part of the exterior, so thought we'd order the lime, and start on test patches and test walls for the next round of approvals. Several pallets of Hot Lime - ML 90 from Singleton Birch were ordered, and they duly arrived, in pouring rain. Now anyone who knows lime will realise that this is a bit of a dodgy issue. And it was.. Nicely covered with plastic - but the plastic went over the top and down the side. Then the sides were shrink wrapped. Which meant that all the water went off the top and down the sides, inside, behind the shrink wrap. And the bags got wet - and VERY hot. So pallet loads of smoking volcanic lime sat on the driveway in the rain. I happened to be on site that morning, and we got the crew organised to handball the bags into one of the containers where they made the container nice and warm. All was well in the end, and we only lost a handful of bags, that have been used anyway.. 


The first hot lime mix...

Chris and the lads started raking out the Garden Walls, and we decided to do some test patches of pointing with different lime and sand mixes to see what looked best, and what compared most closely to the original. If there was an original - every joint around the property is different, but we've got a good blend of what's there - so made a copule of mixes to trial them.

I invited our Conservation Officer and her Case Officer to come over and see the mixes being made - and have a go at pointing in hot lime. A very enthusiastic team gathered on the morning and Chris put a hot mix on the boil. Its a bit like watching a volcanic eruption really - quite amazing to see damp sand and lime powder suddenly erupt into a boiling, seething, popping mass, with clouds of steam pouring into the cold morning air. After a while the eruption calms down, and we are left with a lovely warm lime mortar, quite thick and like plasticene.. This is then trowelled into the prepared joints in the wall.

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