lockdown rebuilding aberdeenshire rubble dyke

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lockdown rebuilding aberdeenshire rubble dyke

Postby christhescott » Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:45 pm

Hello! I have read through this forum and found it helpful but thought I would sound out my plans and see if they made sense to those more experienced wallers.

This is my dyke, too my mind its a bit run down and occasionally big stones will fall off onto the grass. I've looked at various wall styles on the conservation handbook website and i'm not sure if this is a single dyke or a double dyke? The wallhead/t section in pic 2 is definitely a double dyke but there doesn't seem to be enough stone on the front section for it to be a double dyke.
wall 1.jpg
wall 1.jpg (158.14 KiB) Viewed 457 times

wall head.jpg
wall head.jpg (173.47 KiB) Viewed 457 times

I was planning on rebuilding/tidying it up from the T section pictured to the first tree at first which is about 3 meters, I was going to remove the loose stones and take it back to hard packed stones/foundations and start from there, once i'm down to the foundation level would I be able to tell by the width whether this is a single or double? I would prefer to rebuild it as a low double or a Galloway style with double at the bottom and large boulders at the top, there is a pile of field stones close by so I should be able to get stones both large and small easily enough. I was going to measure batter of the existing wall head and use that to form the batter of my rebuilt wall, does that make sense?
Couple of other questions, would it be bad form to replace a single dyke with a double for conservation reasons? And also, for the hearting I have some breeze blocks I would like to get rid of so it would be good to smash these up and put them use where they can't be seen, I know its not ideal but is there anything wrong with doing this?

Chris
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Re: lockdown rebuilding aberdeenshire rubble dyke

Postby bloop » Mon Apr 06, 2020 8:37 am

Hello Chris,

Interesting dyke you have - please don't be tempted to modernise it and lose its historical character. Try and keep the basic dimensions and overall shape, a flattish truncated triangle, with no more than two courses and a row of copestones/toppers to finish. If I was rebuilding this wall for you here is the plan. Find the biggest stone and set it upright in the ground to mark the boundary between you and your neighbour - you can then work away from it. Now dig out all the stones to leave a shallow trench - no deeper than 4" 100mm removing any roots - then walk up and down the trench to consolidate the soil.

Now comes the fun bit. Build two parallel courses within the trench using the larger stones - it doesn't matter if front touches back but spread the larger ones about along the length of the wall. Similarly it doesn't matter if the stones are of differing heights you will be able to level off with the next course. Fill the middle of the wall as you go with stones, breeze blocks broken into fist sized bits are fine but don't use anything like gravel, sand or soil - as hearting they offer no support to the stones and will wash out when it rains. Your second course should be set in from the the first and bring the wall up level(ish) again hearting as you go. Finally a single row of stones as toppers to complete the wall - again symmetry is not important as its all adds to the character of this type of wall.

Hope this helps and remember to dress to the laird.

Happy dyking!
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Re: lockdown rebuilding aberdeenshire rubble dyke

Postby christhescott » Mon Apr 06, 2020 2:38 pm

Thank you for your reply bloop. That sounds like the kind of plan I can follow. Where the trees have grown into the dyke, would I be Ok to just have a single width of stone there? I might try and bridge the roots if they aren't too big

Thanks again,
Chris
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Re: lockdown rebuilding aberdeenshire rubble dyke

Postby bloop » Tue Apr 07, 2020 6:16 pm

Hello,

No problem with bridging over a tree root - if the tree is still growing and likely to move in a strong wind make sure there is an inch or so clearance between the root and the bridging stone. If at that point the topstone adds to weight of the bridging stone so much the better.
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