How to Add Strength and Stability to Posts or Pillars

Adding Stability to Posts How-to Sheet number
one forty. The courtyard collection lets you build a variety of walls and posts as you
plan and design your taller wall projects remember posts must always be built on a good
foundation. Use one of these reinforcement options. When you have softer soils or require
taller posts see how to see number one forty for more information. In this example we show
you how to add stability to taller posts by installing a concrete pile with a sonotube.
To do this, you will need an eight inch sonotube, a post hole digger, ready-mix concrete and
rebar. Begin by placing the base course of corner blocks where the post will be located.
mark the location with a shovel, then remove the blocks and dig a hole for the foundation
pad, twenty-four inches square by four inches deep. Mark the location for the sonotube in
the center of the foundation pad and use the post hole digger to dig a hole eight inches
in diameter approximately three feet deep. Determine the length of the sonotube you will
need by adding the height of the finished post, not including the top one or two courses
and approximately one foot of sonotube that will be buried in the ground below the post.
Mark the location of brace boards that will provide one foot of buried sonotube. Attach
the two bottom braces that hold the sonotube in place then insert it into the hole and
check for level. Next attach vertical braces form three directions and check for level.
Pour the concrete mixture into the sonotube. Rebar can be added while the concrete is wet.
Now that the concrete is set, lets build the foundation pad around the sonotube. First
remove all the bracing and fill the excavated area with four inches of crushed rock. Then
compact the rock with a hand tamper. Level the foundation in both directions and make
adjustments as necessary. Now you can build your post around the sonotube. To begin place
four corner blocks on the foundation pad. Corner blocks have a long side and a short
side, the long sides are always placed to the outside of the post. Once the blocks are
in place, level and align them with a square. Make adjustments as necessary. On the second
course, place the corner blocks so that they overlap the two blocks beneath them. This
pattern will offset the vertical seams. Continue stacking courses to the top of your post alternating
the pattern on every other course. now you can finish with Post Caps. Using masonry adhesive
to secure the blocks and caps in place will increase the strength of the post. Place the
adhesive around the outer edge of the top course of corner blocks and place the Post
Caps on top. this creates a solid post and prevents the caps from being moved out of
position. Another option for adding stability on walls over five courses high, is to interlock
the walls and posts together. See How-to Sheet number two thirty for more information. The
versatile Courtyard Collection gives you many options for adding stability to your posts.
Now you can choose the option that compliments the design and style of your project. For
a complete library of Courtyard How-to Sheets, visit us at

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