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The consistency of your mortar is all important. Mortar that is too stiff will not spread evenly, it will leave voids as you spread it out making it more difficult to tool the joints, and mortar that is too loose will not hold up your blocks, and result is wasting and mortar smear over your brick or block.
When you are placing mud on the block, start at the bottom of the block, by the hilt of the trowel then go up the block pulling the trowel toward you, then at the top of the stroke, curl your trowel slightly to seal the mud to the block, this will keep the mud from falling off the block. If you only use half the mud off your trowel with the first stroke pulling toward you, then you can use the other half to finish the block, starting at the tip of the trowel shoving it toward the block with an upward motion. "you have to do that with a fairly quick motion or the mud will fall off your block. This does take a little practice, but is very efficient once the technique is acquired.
Mudding the end of the block that has already been placed insures that you don't leave any bee holes which will slow down the hod tender on tooling joints.
When placing down your bed joint remember to travel down the block at a consistent speed leaning your trowel slightly, then again mortar slump plays an important role. Spreading mud on the front edge can be a little fatiguing to your wrist, so if you flip your trowel over and bounce the mud on the back of your trowel and spreading it out in a similar fashion it keeps you from twisting your wrist, lightening your fatigue by the end of the day.
As you watch the video, note these methods of where to tap the block to get it to go the way you want. When you are setting the block in place, "especially with 12 inch block" hold the weight of the block up with your hand until you have tapped it a few times, this allows the mortar to settle under the block holding it up, if you just let it go, it will most likely fall below your string line, tap it a little at a time keeping the block going down consistently. I very seldom will tap the block without my hand holding up a good portion of the weight. If the block starts to move too close to the string line, use your hand to slightly pull it into position while tapping the top middle of the block by the line, not too fast or it will fall and watch the line, trowels get a tid bit sharp after use. Keep the block flush with the block below it and about a 1/16 to an 1/8 away from the line.
If one mason is doing it 1/16 and another is working toward him doing an 1/8, there will be a slight difference when they meet, but this is ticky. If the bottom of the block is too far under the line and the top is a little high to the line tap the block in the middle, not very hard and twist your wrist slightly to pull the block back in while tapping. This applies to whatever direction you need the block to go. Remember to take a fair amount of the weight of the block while doing this it will keep it from dropping.
Bricklaying and Masonry tips can be valuable to getting the edge on your skills and show your boss you mean business at the speed in which you learn, go to masonry videos to watch more Bricklaying and Masonry being done.
Go to Construction Estimating Products from Bricklaying and Masonry Come again, masonryworktools.com is putting together some more Bricklaying and Masonry tips and videos to help you not only choose the right tools for the job, but also improve your masonry knowledge a notch.
Bricklaying and masonry tip. Have you ever wondered why when you drive past a wall and you can see blocks jolting in and out of the wall like somebody just threw the wall up without a care in the world? If the mason will pay closer attention to keeping the block he is setting flush with the block below, both the bottom and the sides and to the string line the proper distance away from the block, this will greatly reduce the jolting in and out of the block or brick. Keep the block the same distance from the string line for every block that is set. Do keep in mind that block and brick do vary a bit in width and length, but this tip will surprise you at how it will improve the look of your wall, it will appear more flat and even, looking more professional. Keep your Bricklaying and Masonry top notch and people will call you as you develop a good name.