Standard specification and work procedure for brickwork in
masonry construction provides guidelines about quality of bricks, mortar, soaking
of bricks, laying of bricks, curing, scaffolding etc. The construction of
brickwork in substructure and superstructure requires quality control on
various aspects of material and construction procedure.
Work Procedure of Brickwork in Masonry Construction
1. Materials for Brickwork
The quality of bricks to be used in masonry construction
should be of standard specifications made of good brick earth thoroughly burnt
and should be of deep cherry red or copper color. Bricks should be regular in
shape and their edges should be sharp. Bricks should emit clear ringing sound
on being struck and should be free from cracks, chips, flaws and lumps of any
Bricks should not absorb water more than one-sixth of their
weight after one hour soaking by immersing in water. Standard bricks should
have crushing strength of 105 kg/sq.cm or 1500 lbs/sq.in.
Mortar should be of specified grade and materials used for
mortar should of standard specifications.
For cement mortar, cement should be fresh Portland cement or
pozzolana Portland cement of standard specifications. Sand should sharp, clean
and free from organic and foreign matters. Coarse or medium sands should be used
for rich mortar and for weak mortar, local fine sand may be used.
Proportion of cement sand for mortar can be 1:3 to 1:6 or as
specified. Materials of mortar should be measured to have required proportion
with measuring box. Cement and sand should first be mixed dry to have a uniform
color on a clean masonry platform and then mixed by adding clean water slowly
and gradually to have workable consistency and mixed thoroughly by turning at
least three times.
Fresh mixed mortar should be used, old and stale mortar
should not be used. Mortar for one hour’s work should only be mixed with water
so that they can be used before setting starts.
2. Soaking of Bricks
Bricks should be fully soaked in clean water by submerging
in a tank for a period of 12 hours immediately before use. Soaking should be
continued till air bubbling is ceased.
3. Laying of Bricks
Bricks should be laid in English bond unless specified and
should be well bonded. Every course should be truly horizontal, and wall should
be truly in plumb. Vertical joints of consecutive course should not come
directly over one another, vertical joints in alternate course should come
directly over one-another.
No damaged or broken bricks should be sued. Closers should
be of clean-cut bricks and should be placed near the ends of walls but not at
the other edge. Selected best shaped brick should be used for face work.
Mortar joints should not exceed 6 mm (1/4 inch) in thickness
and joints should be fully filled with mortar. Bricks should be laid with frogs
upward except in the top course where frogs should be placed downwards.
Brickwork should be carried out not more than 1 m or 3 feet
in height at a time. When one part of the wall has to be delayed, stepping
should be left an angle of 45 degrees. Corbelling or projections where made
should not be more than ¼ brick projections in one course. All joints should be
raked and faces of wall cleaned at the end of each day’s work.
4. Curing of Brickwork
The brickwork should be kept wet for a period of at least 20 days after laying. At the end of day’s work, the tops of walls should be flooded with water by making small weak mortar edging to contain at least 2.5cm or 1 inch deep water.
5. Protection for Brickwork
The brickwork should be protected from effect of sun, rain,
frost etc. during the construction and until such time it is green and likely
to be damaged.
6. Scaffolding for Brickwork
Necessary and suitable scaffolding should be provided to facilitate
the construction of brick wall. Scaffolding should be sound and strong and
supports and members sufficiently strong to withstand all loads likely to come
7. Measurement of Brickwork
Brickwork should be measured in cubic meter of cubic feet. Different kinds of brickwork with different mortar should be taken under separate items. The thickness of wall should be taken as multiple of half brick as 10cm, one brick as 20cm, 1.5 bricks as 30 cm and so on. The rate should include cost of complete work including scaffolding and all tools and plants.