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Old 12-17-2006, 01:33 AM   #1
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Radomness of brick


Okay, here's another silly question.

Am I being too picky if I tell the builder that I'm not happy with the randomness of the brick coloring on my house? I've attched two photos. One is of the model home, which uses the same brick that I ordered, and the second is the back of my home, which is currently under construction.

Also, when the brick work is complete do you normally have to pressure wash the finished brick to remove dirt and other impurities?
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Radomness of brick-image_1.jpg   Radomness of brick-image_2.jpg  

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Old 12-17-2006, 01:56 AM   #2
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Radomness of brick


I followed you over. I also have a little more leeway here. Where were we?

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Old 12-17-2006, 02:09 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Teetorbilt View Post
I followed you over. I also have a little more leeway here. Where were we?
Thanks Teetorbilt. We're still trying to decide whether I should question this or not. I too feel it looks a little mosaic. Quite frankly I'm surprised at the lack of detail when it comes to this kind of stuff.

A few years ago I had two brothers that were third generation masons put cultured stone on my house and all I can say is it looks like REAL stone. The reason for this is two-fold. First, they made sure that they randomized the stone color so that one area wasn't all one color, which is the problem I have now, and second, they put the mortar below the stone surface, which makes it look a lot more natural.

It's almost like people today don't care about the quality of their work, which really pisses me off.
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Old 12-17-2006, 08:36 AM   #4
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Radomness of brick


Let me explain how brick are manufactured, and that will answer your question about the brick on your home.

The brick are extruded in a long plug while the clay is still plastic. At that time, any surface colors or textures are added to the plug, which is then cut into individual bricks. These brick are then stacked on to kiln carts, which is the first randomizing step. They are then fed into a dryer, then the kiln.

They proceed down the kiln at a very slow pace, gradually heating up to firing temperature then cooling down. It can take from three days to over a week for this process. While they are in the kiln, there is a heat differential among the brick stacked on the carts. The brick in the center of the cart will not reach the same temperature as the brick on the outer edges each stack. This causes differences in color and is the second ramdomizing step.

After they come out of the kiln, they are cubed, either by hand or with a machine. In both cases, it is done in such a way that the brick are further randomized.

Even with those 4 steps of randomizing , there will still be large differences among cubes of the same brick, and among the brick of a single cube.

On the jobsite, the mason is supposed to use a specific method to further randomize the brick over the jobsite. It goes by various names, but around here is known as "boxing" the cubes as you stock the job. What it entails is breaking out multiple cubes and removing brick from each in a specfic way as you stock each masons station.

When done, you get a job like the model home, when it is not, you get the job done on your home.

Last edited by Tscarborough; 12-17-2006 at 08:39 AM.
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Old 12-17-2006, 09:55 AM   #5
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It would have been easier to answer you in the 1st forum,but I guess rules are rules.Anyhoots...what they said.I'd complain.

Though I'll pressure wash after a job,it shouldn't be neccessary and shouldn't be counted on to clean mortar stains.

Last edited by tkle; 12-17-2006 at 09:59 AM.
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Old 12-17-2006, 10:13 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Tscarborough View Post
Let me explain how brick are manufactured, and that will answer your question about the brick on your home.

The brick are extruded in a long plug while the clay is still plastic. At that time, any surface colors or textures are added to the plug, which is then cut into individual bricks. These brick are then stacked on to kiln carts, which is the first randomizing step. They are then fed into a dryer, then the kiln.

They proceed down the kiln at a very slow pace, gradually heating up to firing temperature then cooling down. It can take from three days to over a week for this process. While they are in the kiln, there is a heat differential among the brick stacked on the carts. The brick in the center of the cart will not reach the same temperature as the brick on the outer edges each stack. This causes differences in color and is the second ramdomizing step.

After they come out of the kiln, they are cubed, either by hand or with a machine. In both cases, it is done in such a way that the brick are further randomized.

Even with those 4 steps of randomizing , there will still be large differences among cubes of the same brick, and among the brick of a single cube.

On the jobsite, the mason is supposed to use a specific method to further randomize the brick over the jobsite. It goes by various names, but around here is known as "boxing" the cubes as you stock the job. What it entails is breaking out multiple cubes and removing brick from each in a specfic way as you stock each masons station.

When done, you get a job like the model home, when it is not, you get the job done on your home.
Excellent explanation! Thanks for taking the time to educate me.
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Old 12-17-2006, 10:32 AM   #7
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Radomness of brick


Ask if there is a stain that could be used to break it up. Sounds like the simplest solution at this point.
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Old 12-17-2006, 10:40 AM   #8
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Ask if there is a stain that could be used to break it up. Sounds like the simplest solution at this point.
I agree.

I really don't want to be a jerk about this and I don't expect perfection, but I do want the work done right. However, if I refuse to budge on this issue perhaps it'll set a quality precedence. The funny thing is that I specifically told them I have high expectations when it comes to workmanship, but clearly they weren't listening.
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Old 12-17-2006, 10:57 AM   #9
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..or they didn't care.Unfortunatly that's the disadvantage to prebuying a house.Your complaints will also go unheard.When you finally get sick of the whole mess and decide to sell,you'll probably walk away with about twice the profit as compared to a house that you had bought elsewhere.
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Old 12-17-2006, 11:35 AM   #10
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When you finally get sick of the whole mess and decide to sell,you'll probably walk away with about twice the profit as compared to a house that you had bought elsewhere.
Yes, that is true. I haven't even moved in yet and the price has already increased by nearly $40K, but most of that was because I was getting pre-construction pricing.
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Old 12-17-2006, 12:07 PM   #11
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Hi all I also followed this question over here. My question would be how long after the work was done did you take the pictures? The reason I ask is if it was recently layed the mortar joints and the brick will hold moisture.You might want to give it a few days to dry out and it might take on a different appearance.
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Old 12-17-2006, 12:31 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Bigbricklayer View Post
Hi all I also followed this question over here. My question would be how long after the work was done did you take the pictures? The reason I ask is if it was recently layed the mortar joints and the brick will hold moisture.You might want to give it a few days to dry out and it might take on a different appearance.
I really don't know. I live about 2 hours from the new home site so I only get down there about once a month. Everything seemed really dry though. I wonder if it would make sense to ask Nash Brick about this.
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Old 12-17-2006, 04:25 PM   #13
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Radomness of brick


The brick manufacturer will tell you exactly what I did. Some manufacturers even put the boxing instructions on the labels of the cubes. They will take no responsability, nor should they. That said, it will not be noticed by 90% of the people that look at the house anyway.
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Old 12-17-2006, 05:00 PM   #14
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When done, you get a job like the model home, when it is not, you get the job done on your home.
So based on your response this is clearly an error on the brick mason's behalf? How difficult would it be to have them rip out the back part of the house and re-brick it properly? Can this be done without damaging the foundation?
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Old 12-17-2006, 05:03 PM   #15
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Radomness of brick


It is not an error, it is poor training. If you were to take it to court, you would lose.

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