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So you see our social networking apps on the side of our website and notice one you’ve never seen before.
You click it and see it’s Buechel Stone’s new app, StoneCalc. StoneCalc is a custom built app that you can use to calculate not only the stone you will need for a landscaping or masonry project, but also many of the ancillary items you need such as mortar, wall ties, or gravel. You’re now wondering if there is any reason you would need this app. Well, if you need to estimate materials needed on a masonry or landscape project, and you want quick access to all the projects you are working on, this piece of technology just became your best friend. Let me show you what it can all do…
First, download StoneCalc to your iPhone or Android phone:
When you download the app, the following screen opens up. StoneCalc allows you to create a new project, select an existing project, or go right to Buechel Stone’s product selector to view products. It also lets you enter in your company information. So if you are a salesperson, architect, mason, general contractor, designer, or landscaper, you can make the estimate with your business information.
ENTER YOUR COMPANY INFORMATION
Let me show you how and where to enter your information. Tap on the line “tap to change settings”. This will take you into the area where you can enter your own company’s information. Enter your company’s business info here. This information will show up later on when you want to e-mail an estimate.
At the end of the “My info” section you can add a personal logo to the estimate. Tap on the “edit logo file” and enter a photo from your camera roll. Now that you have this part done, hit update and you will go back to the home screen.
ENTERING A NEW PROJECT
Let’s enter a new estimate. On the home screen tap the heading on the left side called “New Project”. It will take you to a screen like the picture below. Here you will enter the this project’s information.
First, enter what type of project it is – masonry or landscape. After that, scroll down and enter your customer’s specifics. When you get to the end it will give you a button to create a new project. Tap on that button and it will save the information and bring you back to the home screen.
When you get to the home screen, now tap on the middle button labeled “Select Project” .
It will show you all the saved projects you are working on. You can have as many saved projects as you want. If at some point you want to delete a project, just slid your finger from left to right and it will show a Delete button. When the Delete button is showing, tap on it and the project will disappear. One note – once it’s gone – it’s gone.
CALCULATING A LANDSCAPING PROJECT
Now for the important stuff – the calculations. Select the project you are working on. You already have selected if it is a masonry or landscaping project. Now select the type. In the first example, we will do a landscape project. You can do either a retaining wall or a patio. For this example we will specifically work on a retaining wall. For retaining walls, it will then ask for the type – either wall stone or outcroppings.
Next it will ask if you are going to dryset (no mortar) the wall or mortarset the wall. You will also need to enter if you need to calculate a gravel base, a washed gravel for behind the wall, or drain tile behind the wall.
Once you select these options, it will give you the option to select the retaining wall stone you are going to use. These options are pulled directly from our web site.
When the stone selection is picked, you will then need to enter the dimensions for the project to calculate the amount of material needed, including if you want to figure extra material as a waste factor. If there are multiple areas you can enter more than one area by selecting the “Add” button. This will give you another set of Length and Height boxes to enter your next wall. When you are finished tap the “Estimate” button.
The estimate will give you how much of each material is needed. For wall stone, it gives you the different tonnages for different cuts of stone along with a basic, un-engineered maximum height that would be recommended for that type of wall.
If you scroll through the information after the estimate, it will give you three options: “Back” “Save” and “Email”. If want to change something, select “Back”. If you want to save the estimate for later use, select “Save”, and if you want to e-mail the estimate, select “Email”. If you e-mail the document, it will appear as a standard e-mail.
CALCULATING A MASONRY PROJECT
Now, let’s change gears and try a masonry project.
When estimating masonry, StoneCalc will give you the option for full veneer, thin veneer, or you can select both if the project requires both.
StoneCalc will then request several options to help with your estimate. Select each option that applies to your specific project. These are things like the type of backup wall, mortar type (premixed is similar to an 80 pound bag of Quikrete or SpecMix where the Portland cement, lime, and sand are in one bag. Bagged is a standard mortar normally in a 70 pound bag, that needs to have the sand mixed in separately).
Once you have the project information started, you will be able to select the type of stone on the project.
Now you get into the project’s specifics. You will enter the Length and Height of each area that includes stone. It gives you the option after you enter the first area to enter as many areas as you need. Just tap the “Add” button and another set of Length and Height entry cells will appear.
If you are entering a project that required thin veneer, it will also ask for the lineal feet of corners you will need for the project. This information will result in a deduction in the amount of flats you will need. It also will give an option to remove the areas for windows and doors. Add up all these areas and enter it in square inches (example if you have 4 – 48” x 36” windows enter 6,912 for the area to remove). When you get to the end it will give you the option to estimate the material needed and will create an estimate with all the materials needed for the project.
So there you have it! You can calculate your projects and feel confident you are not forgetting something along the way. The key to remember is this is a guide – you should always get a final confirmation on the job site as situations, installation techniques, and how one person figures what they need for a project can vary. Also – if there is something about the project you are worried about, such as soil conditions with a retaining wall, we recommend you have an engineer review the site.
Thanks again and happy calc’ing
V.P. of Operations and Marketing