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Some Basic Tools for Masonry

Mortar pans and mortar boards: These allow masons to move, carry, and access mortar with ease. Some of these are a board style, while others resemble more like a bucket. Regardless of the exact make or model, this item is ideal to keep mortar in one place without it getting on other work. Cleanup becomes easier and the job can go by quickly. Many of these pans and boards boast helping masons maintain full motion and ease of carrying or cleanup.

Chisels: These are often used when removing stone, mortar, concrete, and other materials. Hammers are often used for especially difficult material. Beveled chisels are often used for corners since they feature an undercut blade. Chisels with a rectangular cross-section are often used for the tougher jobs. Paring chisels are long and thin, which are useful in places like housing joints and cleanup work. Chisels made of certain materials will cause less damage to brick and concrete, so always do your research to make sure all your tools are the appropriate material for the job at hand.

Pneumatic chisels: These are amazingly useful due to the decrease of manual labor required. Like other pneumatic devices, air is used to pressurize the device and when released, high power is achieved with next to no human strength requirements.

Jointing tools: Jointing concrete is an important step in masonry. This controls the locations of cracks caused by the shrinking during the drying process or temperature fluctuations. Various tools are available to complete this task including: bullhorns, convex brick and barrel jointers, groovers, dowels, etc.

Split Head hammer: Unlike other mallets and hammers, these allow the user to remove the face to replace it with other heads and faces which may be more appropriate for different jobs. Hammers and mallets are most often used in accompaniment with chisels. Many mallets and hammers are made from buffalo rawhide or other non-marring material to decrease damage on other tools or the materials being used. Some non-marring materials also decrease the chances of sparks that often occur when metal strikes metal.

Brick trowels: This is used for leveling, spreading, and shaping various materials used in masonry such as mortar and concrete. The type of trowel most used in masonry has a pointed noise capable of spreading material in a “buttering” fashion. This allows for precise movements and placement of mortar or concrete. Other styles of trowels include: bucket, concrete finishing, corner, gauging, margin, pointing, round, step, tile setter, and tuck pointer.

Fairly recently, many of these tools have featured handles made of leather. This is a vast improvement over wood since wood can expand, crack, and damage easily due to increased and decreased moisture. Leather prevents sweat or water from cleaning from damaging the handle, prolonging the life of the tool. Leather is also more comfortable for the human hand to hold.