Use a well-sharpened pencil to make cut marks for your shop projects. A blunt pencil, held vertical to the rule, will make a line too far away from the edge. Angle the pencil about 45 degrees to keep the line at the edge of the rule. For greater precision, make your cut marks with a utility knife using a sharp blade.
Following a violent storm, earthquake, flood or lightning strike, have your chimney inspected for damage, inside and out. This includes checking for cracks and fallen bricks.