Ask TOH | Walkway, Mead, Wiring
Coming up on this week's episode of ASK This Old House
Roger rips up an old, dangerous walkway to replace it with bluestone. Scott explains the best wire nuts to use for each project. Kevin gets a lesson on making mead.
How to Build a Bluestone Walkway
Roger replaces an old fieldstone walkway with bluestone.
Where to find it?
Roger used natural cleft bluestone cut from a quarry to lay down for the walkway, which can be purchased from a stone supplier.
To remove the flagstone and concrete, Roger used an electric rotary hammer, which can be rented form a home center.
To collect the waste, he used a Bagster collapsible dumpster from Waste Management, which can be purchased at a home center and hauled away once full.
As a future chase for wiring or irrigation lines, Roger placed a PVC pipe horizontally across the walkway.
For the base material, Roger used a mix of stone dust and ¾-inch stone, which can be purchased from a landscape supplier. To ensure a solid base, he used a gas powered plate compacter to compact it a few inches at a time. A machine like this can be rented from a home center or tool rental company.
To level the uneven surface of the bluestone, Roger used a mix of stone dust and Portland cement (in a 12:1 ratio) and used a rubber hammer to ensure that mix filled all of the voids under the stone. These materials are also available at a landscape supplier.
How to Choose Wire Nuts for Your Projects
Scott explains how to choose which wires nuts are right for every project.
Where to find it?
Scott explained the color and size of wire nuts are very important. Each color and size can handle a different amount of wires and gauge size. In this instance, Scott used wire nuts from Ideal Industries.
Scott said the packaging on wire nuts typically shows which wire nuts work best which what gauge wires and the amount of connections it can handle.
Scott showed Kevin how to splice two wires by twisting them together with lineman pliers, cut off the tip, then cover them with a wire nut and ensure no copper is showing.
All of the materials in this demonstration, including wire nuts, Lineman pliers, and electrical wiring can be found at your local home center.
How to Make Mead at Home
Kevin learns the centuries-old art of making mead.
Kevin worked with Dan Clapp of 1634 Meadery to learn how to make mead at home.
Dan recommended using 71B 1122 yeast, which is manufactured by Lallemand Inc. He also suggests using honey from a local apiary.
All of the materials for this project, including a glass gallon jug, siphoning tube, air lock cap, and wine-maker’s yeast can be purchased from home brewing supply companies.