More in Outdoors
Now that the stone treads have been set, you can finish your platform. One design option is to use five different pieces of multiple brownstone, cut to different sizes for a distinctive look. Of course, you can use whatever design you'd like.
When you're laying down multiple brownstone, be sure to lay down the front pieces (farthest from the front door) first. Then work back towards the door. That way, if you end up having to cut any of your pieces of stone (which is very likely,) then they'll be hidden in the back.
Lay down your mortar base, then put down the stone pieces. Use a rubber mallet to tap the pieces flat. If you do end up having to cut, you can use your 4-1/2 inch masonry grinder, the same as with the stone treads.
After you've put down the pieces of stone multiples for your platform, then the final step is to joint the pieces. Use a jointer to fill in the joints, then smooth them out with a paintbrush.
Now you're ready to set the stone veneer on the risers and sides of the stair unit. For each row, start with the corner pieces first. Also, bear in mind that the cement at the top of your platform may be a little uneven since you knocked the lip off at the beginning of this project. Be sure to put down a lot of mortar to get enough grip for the veneer.
You can mix up thin veneer stones for color and size variety. Center the top riser with a chunky square-shaped stone, and then put down two longer stones to either side. For the lower riser, put a longer stone in the middle, and two shorter stones on either side. The result is a more pleasing design for your steps.
Use a jointer and some stiffer mortar to fill in the all of the joints between the stones. You want to make sure that there are no places where water can get into. Be sure to get all of the joints going across and down, and then smooth them out with a paintbrush.
Your final task for the steps is to lay down the last stone tread. Lay down a thick layer of mortar, same as with the previous treads, then place the stone tread down. Give it some good whacks with the rubber mallet to get it in place, then check to make sure that it's pitching forward, and level from right to left. Once the stone is set, then your steps are complete, and it's time to move on to the walkway.