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Calculate Brickwork Gauge, Bond and Quantities See also: Masonry Arch Header Calculator with Full Scale Cutting Template

Brick Gauge
Total Height
Brick Height
?
Enter the Optimal Bed Joint.
The Actual bed joint is calculated nearest to Optimal that fits evenly into the Total Height.
Drag Bed Joint slider to see options.
Bed Joint
Brick Length
Enter Total Height and optimal Bed Joint, then drag Bed Joint slider to see all bed joint size and Gauge options that fit evenly into the height.

Wall Heights that work full bricks with 10 mm Bed Joints

Total Height
Bed Joint Thick
Scale



Gauge Adjusted to fit Height with mm Joints:


Standard Gauge with mm Joints:


Possible Opening Heights that suit Adjusted Gauge:


Hit Diagrams to PDF to create and print a PDF (at 100% scale). Fold and use to mark out your gauge rod or profile, 3 courses at a time.
Every 3rd course is red, so you can check progress occasionally to make sure you're not creeping up or down as you mark out.
This Gauge Chart uses adjusted Bed Joint sizes to suit Total Height and Courses as calculated above.




Brick Bond with End Closure Cuts and All Cutting + Fit Options

Enter Wall Length, and if there's closures, select Adjust Perps to Fit Full Bricks to see perp joint sizes that will fit with full bricks and halves.

Brick Bond
Wall Length
Brick Length
Brick Height
Perp Thickness
Wall Lengths that work Full Bricks with 10 mm perps

Adjust Perps to Fit Full Bricks


Wall Length
Perp Thickness
Courses
Scale

?
Closures (cuts) and half bricks
counted as full bricks
Running Bond - mm Perps:


Possible Opening Widths that suit Bond:



Check your bond (with 10 mm perps) to see what you'll get at the end of the 1st course? (set out)
Measure from the end of the last full stretcher you've laid to the end of the wall, and enter into Last Gap to calculate the bond fit at the end.
If you get cuts, but are within plus or minus 10 mm of fitting full bricks (or a half), it will tell you how much to open or close to remove the cuts and get full bricks. If measuring total wall length, add 10 to actual Wall Length then enter into Last Gap. (allows for first perp)

Last Gap
Brick Length

Last Gap



In Real Life Construction, at the pointy end (where it's actually constructed), sometimes what the uninitiated would consider the most trivial of 'calculations' can be the most complex. A classic example of this is brickwork Gauge and Bond. Bricks are manufactured to specific dimensions, that fit standard Gauge (vertical spacing) and Bond (horizontal spacing) which is easily calculated.

In Australia, standard bricks are 230mm long and 76mm high, with mortar joints of 10mm for both bed (horizontal) and perp (perpendicular) joints. So 10 courses (rows) of bricks high at 86mm per course (76 brick + 10 bed) is obviously 860mm high. And 10 bricks long (1 course) at 240mm per brick (230 long + 10 perp) is 2400mm - Easy. But it's NOT. Each end of the wall does not have a mortar perp, so you loose 1 perp (10mm) in a course. So 10 bricks long is actually 2390. No big deal - that's easy enough to allow for.


But what if (as unfortunately is nearly always the case) the wall isn't a length that exactly fits all stretchers (full length bricks). What if you get to the end and there's a gap of, say, 40mm. A 40mm cut is not going to look very good, and the wall is weaker with the small cut right on the end. So we need to do some 'calculations'. First off, if the wall is, say, 40 bricks long, we could open each perp by 1mm (to 11mm - hardly noticeable) and the 40mm gap at the end disappears.

But we've already layed 40 bricks. We'd have to go back and re-lay them all at the slightly larger (or maybe smaller) perp size. And what if the wall is only 20 bricks long - not enough bricks to spread the extra 40mm - the perps would be too large. Well in this case, we'd just remove the last brick layed, lay a half brick (bat) at the end, then measure and lay a closure (cut brick) between the last stretcher and the end bat.

But hang on, depending on the total wall length and brick length, this closure might be just a little larger than the end bat (half brick) So at the end of the wall, all the perp joints would be very close together horizontally. This won't do - looks bad and weakens the wall. In this case, and it happens a lot (Murphy's Law) we'd remove another stretcher before the end bat, measure the now larger gap, divide by 2, deduct 3 perps and cut 2 closures. Wallah - now it works and looks OK.

But wouldn't it be great if we knew all this, all the options and sizes of perps and end cuts, before we started to lay the 1st course? That's why we call our calculators 'Real Life' - because that's EXACTLY what they do - With 'to scale' animated diagrams, and all possible available options BEFORE you start to lay the bricks. Enter Brick Length and Joint Thickness, and you get a 'to scale' diagram of all the bricks in the course, with the perp sizes and end cut sizes to fit perfectly - with running measurements to check how you're going as you lay the bricks along the wall. You also get all possible options to adjust joint sizes that might fit with full stretchers (select one to re-calculate and re-draw the diagram) This all happens live. Drag sliders to adjust perp sizes, wall length etc and the calculations are instant, with the diagrams re-drawn instantly so they animate. You can SEE the results live as you adjust things.

This may just increase your efficiency, decrease wastage and increase quality (and also save a bit of swearing) Give it a go - it can even be fun.



A Course is a single row of bricks.

Gauge is the vertical spacing of each course.

Bond (in this context) is the horizontal spacing of bricks in each course.

Bed Joints are the horizontal mortar joints, and determine Gauge. They are normally 10 mm, but can sometimes be slightly adjusted to fit whole courses into a given height.

Perp Joints are the perpendicular mortar joints, and determine Bond. They are normally 10 mm, but can sometimes be slightly adjusted to fit whole bricks into a given length.

A Stretcher is a full length brick.

A Bat is a Half Brick. Half bricks are the Width of the brick, and are calculated at 1/2 Stretcher Length - 1/2 standard 10 mm joint width.
This is a general standard, and means when you have a returning corner, the END of the brick becomes the half at the corner.
Also piers and header bond will work correctly, with 10 mm perps.
Half brick sizes If you adjust the perp sizes slightly to fit a given wall or panel length, the half brick will stay the same as for a standard 10 mm joint.
This will slightly alter the joint widths at the wall end halves or corners.

A Closure is a cut brick to fit the last gap/s where a Stretcher will not fit.

If a closure is less then 40 mm longer than a bat, the perp joints at closure and bat would be too close together, so an extra closure is added to increase the horizontal separation of the perps.




DON'T BREATH THE DUST If you're cutting blocks, concrete, stone or ANYTHING and there's DUST - DON'T TAKE THE RISK
Don't cut it, or cut it wet so there's NO DUST - Silicosis Sucks
And if you're cutting wet, wear a mask - theres dust in the spray mist too!

How should we spell it?



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