Brickmasons & Blockmasons
Also called: Block Layer, Brick and Block Mason, Bricklayer, Mason
Produced by CareerOneStop
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Building with materials that are both beautiful and sturdy, masonry workers create structures that last. Masonry workers, also known as masons, use weatherproof bricks, stones, and concrete to build new homes and buildings, and to maintain the historic structures we want to preserve. Masons specialize in different materials and structures: Brickmasons and blockmasons build and repair walls, chimneys, and other structures. Some specialize in brickwork for industrial facilities that can tolerate intensely high temperatures. Cement masons and concrete finishers lay walls and sidewalks, and form the pieces that make up heavily-used roads and buildings. Segmental pavers install interlocking brick walkways, patios, and walls. Stonemasons carefully cut and select stone to create patterns as they build walls, unique fireplaces, and building exteriors. Terrazzo workers add fine marble chips into the finish of cement or resin to create decorative walkways and floors. Masonry work is fast paced and strenuous. It includes heavy lifting, using sharp tools, and working from scaffolds. In addition to strength and stamina, masons need the ability to see subtle color variations and envision how stones will fit together to build attractive and stable structures. Work hours are generally full time, with some overtime to meet deadlines. Cold or rainy weather can stop work. After completing a high school education, most masons learn on the job or through a 3- to 4-year apprenticeship.
What they do:Lay and bind building materials, such as brick, structural tile, concrete block, cinder block, glass block, and terra-cotta block, with mortar and other substances, to construct or repair walls, partitions, arches, sewers, and other structures.
On the job, you would:
- Measure distance from reference points and mark guidelines to lay out work, using plumb bobs and levels.
- Construct corners by fastening in plumb position a corner pole or building a corner pyramid of bricks, and filling in between the corners using a line from corner to corner to guide each course, or layer, of brick.
- Apply and smooth mortar or other mixture over work surface.
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People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
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