Buff mortar with Flagstone coping/Milsap veneers?

FlowerMoundAggieApril 14, 2011

I'm currently building a pool,cabana/fire pit and we are quickly getting to the point of installing the coping around the pool. The cabana tv wall/grill station, firepit and spa will have a chopped Milsap veneer. The coping around the pool and the end caps for the fire pit and spa will have Oklahoma flagstone. My question is what is the proper mortar color for Milsap and Oklahoma flagstone. On my house, I have used a buff mortar with the dark red bricks and the Lueder stone with a good effect. I would like to use buff mortar for the coping and Milsap veneers but I'm getting some push back from my PB. It seems like grey is the default color to use.

Has anyone used buff mortar and either liked it or not? Anyone with regrets about the grey mortar on Oklahoma flagstone or chopped Milsap?

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I am currently building a pool in the San Antonio area. We used Oklahoma flagstone for coping and Oklahoma chopped for the raised bond beam. I looked at using grey mortar but we ended up with Texas buff. Nothing wrong with grey, but we wanted something elese. Texas buff to my eye had more red than the yellow of standard buff. These are Lambert colors added to the grey type s cement and masonary sand. I reduced the recommended amount of colorant to about 2/3 to get the look we wanted.

The pushback is that the mason will have to mix colorant consistently to achieve a uniform look. Thats harder than throwing a bag or couple of shovels in the mixer. The colorant was 5 lb boxes for about $25 dollars. I think I used 2.5 boxes.

The other thing to remember is that Oklahoma varies in color from black grey to red orange.

Hope that helps.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2011 at 3:13PM
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Thanks martmo,

The grey that I saw was pretty dark and it really changed the look of the Milsap. Since then I've looked at other pools online and it seems like they used a light grey that looks good. I'm just a little nervous about putting something so expensive and permanent in my yard and not being satisfied with the results.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2011 at 9:45PM
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I live north of McKinney and we have a buff morter between our flagstone coping and on all of our Millsap walls. We also have it on our house brick. Our PB never flinched when we suggested buff morter. There was no upcharge either.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 8:21AM
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Request a sample or ask to go see finished rock work with the proposed mortar We made samples. Make sure you wait a couple days for the mortar to dry, the color changes as it drys. It would be a MAJOR project to change later and the stone will likely be damaged.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 8:50AM
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Do you have any posted pictures of your pool?

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 9:08AM
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Talked to my PB again. He showed me some of his prior work with Oklahoma flagstone and Milsap using the grey mortar and it was a lot lighter than I thought it would be. It looked very nice and complementary with the stone so I'm going to stick with the grey. He also said that he would switch it out if that's what I wanted but he felt that grey would look the best.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 5:30PM
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Here are two pictures of my pool under construction. I think I need to take some newer pictures. I have never posted pictures, so some help would be appreciated.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 11:16AM
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Love your pictures dfwtex!!! That is exactly the color of flagstone we are looking for. Is it Oklahoma flagstone? We also are using blue waterline tile, but in a 1x1 multi blue color. Want a multicolor lightish stone for the coping and stacked stone around spa and back ledge. We went to look at stone today and will go back later this week when they return from Oklahoma with more.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 6:44PM
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Yes, it's Oklahoma flagstone. We wanted the darker colored stones, so we stood out there when they were installing it and made sure they were putting the darker colors down. They had to make a couple of extra trips to get more stone because we didn't want them all light colored. We did miss some, though. Once the stone is acid washed, the darker color comes out more.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2011 at 5:24PM
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