How do dry stone walls fall down?

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How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby Dr Nimul » Thu Apr 16, 2009 8:16 pm

My wife and I were out walking in Derbyshire and we :? noticed that many of the dry stone walls were damaged. Why is this? Is it livestock perhaps? Even in our wildest parts of the UK we surely don't have winds sufficiently powerful to lift big stones do we (though the "sail area" of a wall must be large)? Anybody have a difinitive answer?
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Re: How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby Andyman » Fri Apr 17, 2009 6:51 am

Frost in/under/behind the face freezing and thawing pushing out the walling stones is one.

Horses and cows like to "rub" on them.

Sheep are very adept at climbing upon them.

Alot has been stolen by people for their garden!

Some walls are used as fillings for other walls that the darmer has and he loses one to save many also saving a bundle on quarry fees.

Vibrations of heavy machinary does not help like mini earth quakes!

But they can last hundreds of years more so than a mortared wall that needs repointing every 20 years :P
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Re: How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby johnthedyker » Fri Apr 17, 2009 7:42 am

Like the NHS a lot goes wrong through a lack of investment.
Sometimes like some people they are of feeble build and do not lend them selves to longevity
Mostly though they suffer from heart failure, as they get older they tend to be prone to getting a little wider on the footings which can cause water retention which can freeze and widen even more causing the hearting stones to head South (again old age) leaving just a rickle of bones (hollow wall syndrome) which has no imunity against driving winds marauding beasts settlement/land movement etc.......
The answer is to keep a healthy wall, get regular check ups.

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Re: How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby stonedyker@talk21.com » Fri Apr 17, 2009 7:27 pm

The main reasons for failure of walls are kids, cars and cattle, and bad construction, especially the foundations.
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Re: How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby Andyman » Fri Apr 17, 2009 10:07 pm

Kids! i can deffinatly get on board with that, i was gapping 4 meters the other day went for lunch and a group of kids playing in a derelict barn decided to make it 7 meters! the little %^&%^&#$#$% the police went round and found 2 severely injured lambs in the same barn the next day... satanic little buggers
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Re: How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby david perry » Sat Apr 18, 2009 6:28 pm

Lifestock is one reason already listed.
People are probably the other big offenders. People just clamber over them in search of a shortcut dislodge a few stones and thats that!! Then the stock find the gap and it goes even quicker.
I just like stone!!

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Re: How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby jerryg » Sat Apr 25, 2009 9:34 pm

same reason mountains fall down, a mixture of weather, erosion, and gravity.
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Re: How do dry stone walls fall down?

Postby Steaming North » Sun Apr 26, 2009 8:36 pm

Throughs that are too thin and the weight of the wall above cracks them in half and everything tries to visit australia.

Filler turns to sand making gaps in the centre.

Rabbits etc. get into holes in the wall (older walls) and generally make bigger holes.
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