Thursday, April 14, 2011

Completed Student Project

Hi John, I finally finished my wall at home. I started mid-September and just finished last weekend (April) . I didn't have that much time to work on it because I was organizing a conference for October, went to China for 3 weeks in November (climbed the Great Wall - awesome experience) and given Vancouver rains there were weeks that I didn't touch it at all. I have attached a few pictures. The first attachment, the Word doc, is a before and after compilation. Then there are a few of the wall from different angles. I can send more if you like, lots more of progress along the wall.
The wall is 40' across the front and 40' up the driveway. Most of the stone was free or cheap. I got some from Craig's List when people were tearing down walls to build with Allen Block, some from building demolitions (including the 300' of granite capstones which I also used for the stairs), and even from the side of the road. I collected stone for 1 1/2 years before I started the project and in the end still had to buy maybe 1/4 of what I needed. I would guess that there is about 40+ tons of stone in there.
I learned a lot, but it was your course at Northwest about 2 years ago that gave me the confidence to tackle the project. I have already had job offers to build for neighbours! Maybe after I retire.

Brian Thom


  1. Our neighbours love it. While I was working on it people stopped constantly to chat, it was hard to get anything done sometimes. Almost everyone walking by commented and all comments were positive. I met so many people and some keep coming back to follow the progress. People of all ages and from all walks of life stopped. Surly looking teenagers became friendly and curious, retired couples out for exercise were always stopping, even the local bus driver pulled over a couple of times. My two favourite comments were:
    • “Aye laddie, you’re making me homesick” – from an Irish senior citizen
    • “My husband is a stone mason and he has been watching. He loves what you’re doing.” – from an older Scottish lady
    I am now almost 65 and arthritis is hitting some joints so even though I have the will and energy about 4 hrs is the max. I can do in a day because my elbows and shoulders start to hurt. It sure is fun though. Can’t wait to do another!

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    Student Project

  3. Now there is, Nago. See below. Thanks for your comments.