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Not Every Bricklayer is a Mason

Concrete and Masonry
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The title of bricklayer and mason are often used interchangeably. While these two professions do share considerable overlap in duties and requirements, the truth is that not every bricklayer can be called a mason. The difference, largely, comes down to skill level. Though there are no specific distinctions for the terms, it is generally agreed that masons have learned advanced bricklaying techniques that set them apart from the traditional bricklayer.

Bricklaying Job Duties

Bricklayers work in the construction industry. They lay bricks to build walls, chimneys, decorative home features and other structures. Their tasks are generally relegated to spreading mortar onto the sides of each brick, and then cementing the stones together in an even row. To ensure level bricklaying, the individual checks his work against a guide line, which is a piece of string or twine that has been pulled tight across the work area.

Mason Job Duties

Masons perform all the job duties required of bricklayers. However, their superior skill and experience also allows them to complete advanced brickwork. Examples of this include wall restorations, fireplace repair and assembling curved wall structures. Any construction task that requires skilled cutting of brick might be considered the job of a mason. Additionally, masons work with a variety of materials, not just brick. Other common materials used by masons include marble, granite, limestone and tile. Masons who work primarily with stone are called stonemasons.

Other Jobs Related to Bricklaying

Bricklayers and masons are just two types of professionals who work on construction sites. Job titles that work closely with bricklayers include hod carriers, plasterers and scaffolders. Hod carriers perform much of the prep work related to laying bricks, including mixing the mortar and transporting materials to the job site.

Plasterers are tradesmen who use plastering techniques to cover interior walls of buildings. As such, plasterers may come in after a bricklayer has built a wall to finish it with plaster.

Scaffolders are construction workers who build scaffolding. Scaffolding is used by bricklayers and masons to work on higher levels of wall structures. Scaffolds are built of metal piping and wood. They are temporary structures designed to support the weight of both a bricklayer and his materials.

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