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Your Masonry Tool Kit

  • It's Green
  • It's Affordable
  • It's Flexible & Attractive
  • It's Safe

To learn more about each of these bullet points - CLICK HERE

 Abbreviated Presentations 
 Masonry Calculators: For your configuring needs
 Masonry IQ Videos and Information 
 Masonry Detailing Technical Information

CLICK HERE for an extensive collection of illustrative construction details and diagrams produced by International Masonry Institute (IMI) for architects and engineers to use as a design resource. 

 Masonry Minute Videos

These videos are a resource in masonry design.
We kept them short for your viewing purposes, if you would like a more in depth explanation and/or presentation please reach out to Amanda at Upstate Masonry Institute. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 518.640.2530 

View our video library here 







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Masonry and Its Impact

Masonry and Its Impact

Upstate Masonry Institute is a member driven organization, established by Union Mason Contractors who are dedicated to building the future and preserving the past of New York State and surrounding areas.  

  • We are comprised of 216 Union Mason Contractors
  • Who employ 1,000 skilled craft workers
  • With nearly $7.5 million dollars invested into training over the last 10 years 

Mason Contractors are responsible and active corporate citizens. Our member companies are vital as employers and as tax resources, adding to property and school tax bases across the state. 

Upstate Masonry Institute is comprised of nearly all family-owned and operated companies. For generations, these family businesses have committed to investing in New York State and handing down the business to their sons and daughters so they may continue to grow and thrive while always maintaining family values: respect, honesty and hard work.

Our members provide an enjoyable, safe, respectful and engaging work environment. From our largest to our smallest member, the owner is seen on construction sites and in hallways of their respective businesses. Owners take the time to have a physical presence and are accessible.

Family values run deep in our member companies and that’s why employees stay. They are respected, appreciated and provided with solid wage earning and benefit-providing employment. Employees are known by name.

Masonry Contractors do not just provide jobs, they provide careers.

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Building Information Modeling – Masonry

Building Information Modeling – Masonry 

Check out the BIM-M YouTube channel here. 

BIM is an acronym that stands for an object, a "building information model" and also a process for creating and using that object, "building information modeling". The BIM model provides a digital representation of the building, so that the modeling and analysis tools used by architects, engineers, constructors, managers and owners can read from and write to the same information source. 

BIM is expanding quickly within the construction industry worldwide. However, the masonry industry is not well represented. Therefore, there is a need to develop BIM tools for masonry to maintain market share. With that intent, an Initiative was formed in 2012 specifically to advance BIM for masonry.

The initiative BIM-M (Building Information Modeling for Masonry) includes support from various sponsors with an Executive Committee of its primary funding sponsors listed alphabetically: 

  • Brick Industry Association (BIA)
  • International Masonry Institute (IMI)
  • International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers (IUBAC)
  • Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA)
  • National Concrete Masonry Association (NCMA)
  • The Masonry Society (TMS)
  • Western States Clay Products Association (WSCPA) 

Representing the masonry industries of the United States and portions of Canada, the Initiative has adopted the following mission statement: 

To unify the masonry industry and all supporting industries through encouraging the development and implementation of BIM for masonry software to facilitate smoother workflows and collaboration across all disciplines from owner, architect, engineer, manufacturer, mason, contractor, construction manager, and maintenance professionals. 

The Initiative retained the services of The Digital Building Laboratory (DBL) at the Georgia Institute of Technology to develop the roadmap that analyzes the state of BIM in the masonry industry and outlines the steps that are needed to achieve BIM functionality within the masonry industry. Masonry working groups of stakeholders including material suppliers, architects, engineers, masons, contractors. and construction managers provided the input on industry needs. 

BIM-M has also taken steps to being the masonry representative to the National Institute of Building Sciences, buildingSMART alliance. The alliance is responsible for developing the U.S. National BIM Standards. 



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Wall Systems

Wall Systems

Block vs. Steel Comparison

  • Extremely durable, long lasting wall system
  • Minimal long term maintenance
  • Great design flexibility; use different colors, bond patterns, brick sizes amd surface textures
  • Concrete block backup acts as the structure, with vertical and horizontal reinforcement grouted into place.
  • Excellent insulating value and heat capacity
  • Fire proof with gs up to 4 hours
  • Naturally absorbs sound
  • One trade erects both the structural and skin layers of the wall 
  • Steel studs flex more than masonry veneer– can lead to cracks developing in the masonry unless studs are designed to strict deflection tolerances
  • Volatility of steel prices makes it difficult to predict final project costs
  • Multiple trades involved– making jobsite coordination difficult
  • Steel studs can corrode if water penetrates past the drainage cavity or due to condensation
  • Interior surfaces (drywall) prone to damage and repair 

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