Brick Glossary

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Term Definition
Brick And Brick

A method of laying brick so that units touch each other with only enough mortar to fill surface irregularities.

Brick Grade

Designation for durability of the unit expressed as SW for severe weathering, MW for moderate weathering, or NW for negligible weathering. See ASTM Specifications C 216, C 62 and C 652.

Brick Type

Designation for facing brick which controls tolerance, chippage and distortion. Expressed as FBS, FBX and FBA for solid brick, and HBS, HBX, HBA and HBB for hollow brick. See ASTM Specifications C 216 and C 652.


Placing mortar on a masonry unit with a trowel.

C/B Ratio

The ratio of the weight of water absorbed by a masonry unit during immersion in cold water to weight absorbed during immersion in boiling water. An indication of the probable resistance of brick to freezing and thawing. Also called saturation coefficient. See ASTM Specification C 67.

Capacity Insulation

The ability of masonry to store heat as a result of its mass, density and specific heat.


Temporary formwork for the support of masonry arches or lintels during construction. Also called center(s).


COLOR GLAZE An opaque colored glaze of satin or gloss finish obtained by spraying the clay body with a compound of metallic oxides, chemicals and clays. It is burned at high temperatures, fusing glaze to body making them inseparable. See ASTM Specification C 126.


A continuous recess built into a wall to receive pipes, ducts, etc


A natural, mineral aggregate consisting essentially of hydrous aluminum silicate; it is plastic when sufficiently wetted, rigid when dried and vitrified when fired to a sufficiently high temperature.

Clay Mortar-Mix

Finely ground clay used as a plasticizer for masonry mortars.

Clear Ceramic Glaze

Same as Ceramic Color Glaze except that it is translucent or slightly tinted, with a gloss finish.


A portion of a brick cut to length.


The last masonry unit laid in a course. It may be whole or a portion of a unit.


Supplementary or short length units used at corners or jambs to maintain bond patterns.

Collar Joint

The vertical, longitudinal joint between wythes of masonry.


A vertical member whose horizontal dimension measured at right angles to the thickness does not exceed three times its thickness.


The material or masonry units forming a cap or finish on top of a wall, pier, pilaster, chimney, etc. It protects masonry below from penetration of water from above.


A shelf or ledge formed by projecting successive courses of masonry out from the face of the wall.


One of the continuous horizontal layers of units, bonded with mortar in masonry.