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Seeking info re masonry property walls

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On 7/26/2018 at 9:25 AM, MNmx said:

Good morning.  I need to build a 46m property wall. It seems that 3.5m high is somewhat standard here.  Is block better than brick? Is a permit required? Are there contractors who specialize is this type of work?  In advice, personal experience stories and/or recommendations appreciated. 

If you are looking for a less expensive wall consider Panel Wall with concrete foundation and brick post with rebar post. I have some close to me that I watched being built 21 years ago. The are stucco finished and the bricks left natural. They look fine and were much less expensive than my brick walls. The look the same after 20 years. They will have to be kept painted every 4-5 years.

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22 hours ago, Ferret said:

I agree to a certain extent mudgirl. However, your statement only applies if the bricks are going to be covered over. If you're going to be seeing the bricks then you will want a skilled brick layer. It's too late tonight to post photos but I'll post tomorrow 1) of the brick work done in my atrium by JP Home Services and 2) the house next door. There is a dramatic difference depending on what you want the end result to look like... and dare I say functionality?

You're right, there. I guess I wasn't thinking about just asking any old Joe Blow with a trowel and a hod to build a brick wall. I would always want to see someone's work before hiring them. The guy who built the messy one you pictured, though, probably could have done a better job, he just didn't care or the person he was building for was being a cheapskate as far as labor and didn't care either.

Your wall looks really nice. But they still use too thick a mortar joint for my taste. I like the look of the bricks closer together, but you hardly ever see that in Mexico. They all seem to want to make these 1" thick mortar joints.

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I have a number of brick walls in my little twenty year old house that are done the same way... kinda like accent, statement walls and I wanted the same look. It may have been done differently if I hadn't been so specific. I like JP Home Services here because they listen to me, ask my opinion and never talk down to me. Just like I loved working with Beto Ramos Balcazar of Bucerias when he built our house in San Pancho. Exceptional crew, exceptional standards and exceptional knowledge.

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Nice brickwork can be interesting to look at but bricks can crumble. I had a brick house north of Bucerias where part of the exterior wall started to crumble. Nothing could be done but to chip it all out and replace the bricks with new ones. 

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17 minutes ago, Ferret said:

Bricks only crumble when they aren't made properly.

But how is one to know when they aren't made properly especially when you buy an existing house. Buy the more expensive bricks?

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A good contractor knows who to buy from, why and when. We weren't going to start the San Pancho build until the middle of October 2004 but the bricks were all bought, paid for and stored in August on Beto's recommendation.

Buying an existing house is a crapshoot unless you know who the builder is and his/her reputation in the community. I am constantly amused by the signs on houses which state only the Architect's name. I don't care who designed it, I want to know who built it and if they stand behind their work. Sort of like restaurants. Any cook can get it right some of the time but a reputation and customer loyalty is built on consistency.

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Interesting why August?  I buy bricks at the end of the rainy season or rather I order them for the beginning of the dry season but since they are always in need of money at the end of the rainy season , I get a special discount if I give them a deposit..

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20 hours ago, cedros said:

But how is one to know when they aren't made properly especially when you buy an existing house. Buy the more expensive bricks?

The saying that you get what you pay for is generally true. But you can tell a well-made brick or block from a poorly-made one. Just scrape it with a rock, or throw it- the poorly made stuff crumbles easily, the strong ones have a harder surface. When I built my house, I paid a peso or two more per block from a local block-making yard becuase he uses more cement in his blocks than he ones I could have bought from elsewhere that were cheaper. The difference was evident when the guys throw them to each other or are stacking them when they come off the truck- the ones that hit the ground or a rock didn't break, the few cheaper ones I had instantly chipped or broke on whatever side they hit something.

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Actually the brick quality comes from the clay the sand they are made of.. in Chiapas they use manure as well in the mixture and the way and temperature at which they are fired. You can hear by knocking on them if they are properly fired.  We make kiln so we test them for refraction and that varies widely according to the region they come from . The most refractory we have found so far are in Chiapas in a small town called Teopisca.The remain intact until 1300 degrees and they only cost 2.5 pesos. They are way better than many of the expensive ones..

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