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Thread: Builders advice pretty please

  1. #51
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob153 View Post
    Just had a conversation with him and he reckons that only part of the chimney has been removed below loft level but won't commit to anything else- Questioned him about the frame around the breast, one minute its supporting the whole lot then changed his tune to its only helping stabilize it. He's now coming round tomorrow or Wednesday to go through it all. Got a funny feeling i'm getting buls';tted to...
    Regardless of the changing story, building control should have been informed prior to any works (they would want evidence of structural calcs.). It will not be a problem getting them involved now - just let them know the builder advised it was not needed. Interestingly I got fairly friendly with one of our building control guys during our big refurb and he often used to tell stories about different builders in the area - some were trusted to crack on, others needed watching closely.

    Best of luck getting sorted.
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_in_the_UK View Post
    Regardless of the changing story, building control should have been informed prior to any works (they would want evidence of structural calcs.). It will not be a problem getting them involved now - just let them know the builder advised it was not needed. Interestingly I got fairly friendly with one of our building control guys during our big refurb and he often used to tell stories about different builders in the area - some were trusted to crack on, others needed watching closely.

    Best of luck getting sorted.
    This is spot on...

    For my sins Iím a senior structural technician (old school draughtsman) with about 30 years behind me. My immediate advice is to get a local structural engineer out to asses exactly what is there and whatís not there and put a plan in action. Building Control will ask you to get an engineer on board anyway so that would be my first port of call. I would then instruct the builder to implement the structural requirements as specified by the Structural Engineer written instructions.

    You may need to move out (I would), as others have previously stated. Nothing worse than a builder whoís been doing things wrong for years thinking they know all the answers it really is frightening.

    The good news is that itís still standing, this can be just pure luck at times and itís just a matter of time before it fails.

    A set of calcs should be around £250 and retro building notice from building control is £120.. here in N.Ireland.

    You can also build a false chimney, the Glass reinforced plastic type if you are worried about appearances and aesthetics which will drastically reduce loading in your attic, but it still requires support.

    Good luck.

  3. #53
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    I would suggest your builder installs some acrow props underneath the remaining chimney to buy you some time until either the rest of the chimney is taken down or a permanent support solution designed and installed.
    This will not be pretty as the acrows will need to be founded on something solid but at least will provide the necessary temporary support and keep things safe and stable in the short term.
    Your builder should be capable of doing this if not get another builder to provide.
    It will buy you the time you need, if done properly.
    Good luck

  4. #54
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    Thanks everyone again- scary haw Blaise he was/is- spoken to a couple of friends ( not associated with the builder) been put in touch with a structural Engineer whoíll come and inspect. At least then Iíll have a plan of action so to speak.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob153 View Post
    Iíve just had the chimney removed from the living room and a small portion from one of the bedrooms- Only part left is in the loft, builder couldnít use Gallows brackets as stack was in the centre of the loft. I was away for a few days whilst the work was carried out and came back to this-



    Iíve googled it but nothing definitive, any experienced builders shed any light whether this is correct? My my untrained eye it looks like a complete bodge, any help would be greatly appreciated.
    Was any additional supports/lintels added in the living room to support the stack above??

  6. #56
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    You can see.from the pictures that the chimney continues below the framework.

    It looks like the framework is bracing part of the chimney and if done correctly will take some of the load into the framework.

    What we need to see is where the chimney has been removed, how it has been done, that may answer a few questions.

    Main ways to remove chimneys
    1. Remove the complete stack and make good the roof.
    2. Gallow brackets
    3. Steel RSJs resting on padstones on the original brickwork.

    Any more pics OP?



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  7. #57
    Grand Master hogthrob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Estoril-5 View Post
    1. Remove the complete stack and make good the roof.
    2. Gallow brackets
    3. Steel RSJs resting on padstones on the original brickwork.
    I believe the OP has already established that none of those have been done.

  8. #58
    Master Man of Kent's Avatar
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    I reckon that frame in the loft is just providing lateral support. I'm sure you'll find something below the stack holding it up. If not, then it's time to move out, particularly in this windy weather.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Man of Kent View Post
    I reckon that frame in the loft is just providing lateral support. I'm sure you'll find something below the stack holding it up. If not, then it's time to move out, particularly in this windy weather.
    Agreed. There must be some form of support under the bottom of the old chimney structure. Many misinterpreted the first picture at first. But now that is clear, the remainder of the chimney at th elowest point is the cricitcal area to study.

  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by hogthrob View Post
    I believe the OP has already established that none of those have been done.
    Yes none of the these have been done.

  11. #61
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    Heís coming around tonight so time for some answers

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob153 View Post
    Yes none of the these have been done.
    Do you have any pics of where the actual chimney breast has been removed?

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  13. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob153 View Post
    Heís coming around tonight so time for some answers
    I hope you get some good answers out of him, mostly that he will put it right.

  14. #64
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    Quick update-

    Builder came around tonight and we had a long chat and cleared up a few things.

    He did actually get all the work done by one his guys, he should have but did not inspect the final work himself. Lower half of the chimney had been completely removed, loft section apparently sits on a structural wall so the frame was there only to balance it. In his own words, the frame was not fitted as per instructions and should of been a triple rather than double construction and stretched the length of the loft rather than just being screwed into the joists.

    In his defence he has had a few personal issues over the course of the year, no excuse but probably a mitigating factor in all the cock ups. Heís unfortunately relied on someone to do a job and come a cropper. As soon as he saw the state of the job in person he put his hands up straight away and was very apologetic, no trying weasel out of it just was very direct.

    Long and the short of it heís agreed to remove the rest of the chimney and make good the roof. Heís also agreed for another builder ( not to do with him) to inspect the work and have building control involved.

    Thanks again guys, appreciate all the replies and help.

    Rob

  15. #65
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Nice one Rob - decent outcome.
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  16. #66
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    Glad to hear he sounds like he has integrity.

    All the best Rob.

  17. #67
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    Good news

  18. #68
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    Good result. And sounds like friendship intact.

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  19. #69
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    It's good he came by owned up to the mistakes by his workers and is willing to finish it at no cost to you. Builders are the same worldwide they are either honest or dishonest this guy is doing what an honest contractor would do and making it right.

    I know this because I work in the construction business and there seem to be more dishonest than honest at times.

  20. #70
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    Good news! Hopefully, he sticks to his word in a timely manner.

  21. #71
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    TBH- I didn't know how the conversation was going to go, I've known him a long time but he still could of 'washed his hands of it' so to speak, no BS he just came clean- Mistakes do happen, its inevitable in any business, just how you deal with it hat counts.

  22. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob153 View Post
    Quick update-

    Builder came around tonight and we had a long chat and cleared up a few things.

    He did actually get all the work done by one his guys, he should have but did not inspect the final work himself. Lower half of the chimney had been completely removed, loft section apparently sits on a structural wall so the frame was there only to balance it. In his own words, the frame was not fitted as per instructions and should of been a triple rather than double construction and stretched the length of the loft rather than just being screwed into the joists.

    In his defence he has had a few personal issues over the course of the year, no excuse but probably a mitigating factor in all the cock ups. He’s unfortunately relied on someone to do a job and come a cropper. As soon as he saw the state of the job in person he put his hands up straight away and was very apologetic, no trying weasel out of it just was very direct.

    Long and the short of it he’s agreed to remove the rest of the chimney and make good the roof. He’s also agreed for another builder ( not to do with him) to inspect the work and have building control involved.

    Thanks again guys, appreciate all the replies and help.

    Rob

    Regardless of his contrition his new solution still needs to be proved to be suitable by a suitably qualified engineer and approved by local Building control department.
    In order for the cart not to get in front of the horse Engineer,approval then execution here.

  23. #73
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    Good news indeed.

  24. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by MCFastybloke View Post
    Regardless of his contrition his new solution still needs to be proved to be suitable by a suitably qualified engineer and approved by local Building control department.
    In order for the cart not to get in front of the horse Engineer,approval then execution here.
    Noted- thanks.

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