Learn to work with Brick, Stone and Concrete
This course will develop your understanding of different types of materials and techniques used to create buildings, interior and exterior building features and landscape features. It is of value to anyone who is involved with property management, maintenance or construction. It relates to commercial and residential construction and to landscape construction as well.
There are 9 lessons in this course:
Scope and Nature of Masonry
Cement and Concrete
Construction Method and Structural Considerations
Working with Brick
Working with Stone
Construction for Fire -Fireplaces, bbq’s, kilns, ovens and fire pits
Landscape Applications & Hybrid construction
Repair and Miscellaneous Work
Building Applications -houses, garden, farm or commercial buildings
Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.
Describe the materials, tools and equipment used for masonry construction, and the nature and scope of work that might be undertaken by those skilled in the use of those tools and materials.
Explain how to use cement as a mortar or in concrete appropriate to the circumstances of construction
Explain how to construct with brick stone or concrete in a way which is structurally sound and appropriate to the circumstances.
Explain how to work with different types of bricks for different construction purposes
Explain how to build different things with different types of stone.
Explain how to build fireplaces and other structures that will be exposed to fire.
Explain the use of masonry in the landscape
Explain how stone, brick or concrete should be maintained and repaired when damaged
Explain the construction of a house and other type of building with brick, stone and concrete.
What Do You Need To Know?
Masonry work involves joining individual pieces of brick or stone together to create walls or other structures.
The strength and durability of any construction will depend upon the way the different components are joined.
Typically, they are stuck together with cement; but not always.
Cement may be applied in different ways to the gaps between bricks or stones.
- The quantity of cement used can vary
- Reinforcing materials (usually metal), may be embedded in the concrete to strengthen the wall by tying the bricks or stones together.
- Utilities (eg. water or gas pipe, electric wiring) may be embedded in a wall during construction
- A waterproof barrier may be embedded in a wall
- Joins (joints) between two bricks or stones may be treated various ways to create different affects; eg. cement can be raked to create a recessed surface, may be scraped so it is flush with the surface (or bricks) or may be allowed to spill out beyond the surface of stones or bricks. There are many different ways to rake cement in a wall
Learning More About Cement is Fundamental
Cement is a powder made by heating up raw materials containing calcium in a kiln to create dark pellets called clinkers; which are then mixed with gypsum to create a fine grey coloured powder.
The raw materials may be various combinations of limestone, sea shells, chalk, clay and other materials including and, shale and iron. These are ground into small pieces up to 2cm diameter; before heating to temperatures as high as 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
The final product commonly contains a mix of calcium, silicon, aluminum, and iron and is called Portland cement or type 1 cement.
Cement can become useless if it gets wet before use, do bags should be stored as follows:
- in dry water proof areas
- where humidity is low
- where there is a dry floor
- stack in a header footer fashion
- stack on raised boards
- use oldest bags first
Different types of cement can have different characteristics. Physical requirements that may be variable between different cements include strength, heat of hydration, setting time, air content, expansion and fineness.
To undertake any new masonry work; or repair anything old, it is fundamental that you learn about the materials you are working with. That starts with cement, but there is so much more to learn in the course, both about cement, and everything else.
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