Welcome to MasonryforLife.com.
AMG mission statement, board of directors, directors and staff.
Register to join the Arizona Masonry Guild.
AMG member list with company names,  addresses,  contact information and link to website.
Information on careers in masonry and where to begin.
Detailed information on masonry products and alternative masonry products & systems.
Links to the websites of state, regional and national masonry organizations.
Masonry information specifically for consumers.
Building with masonry offers a number of benefits for the homeowner including protection, low maintenance living, savings and value.
Masonry homes are energy efficient...learn how to evaluate the efficiency of various building material options.
Answers to questions regarding cost, home builders, insulation, R-value, pest resistance and sound-proofing qualities.
A List of Arizona Home Builders that Specialize in Masonry Design & Construction
The tools needed for masonry projects and how to use them.
Three terrific projects you can do to add to the beauty of your home.
Discover masonry within your community.
AMG and Habitat for Humanity team up to build earth friendly homes for families in need.
Winning projects of competitions that showcase the beauty and quality of masonry construction.
Building methods and materials that are ecologically responsible.
AMG meetings, seminar and conferences and community events regarding masonry.
Masonry industry news.
A publication designed to keep AMG members informed and up to date.
A monthly publication from Israel Torres, director of the  Arizona Registrar of Contractors.
Masonry projects in Arizona that are featured in High Profiles Arizona, a cover-to-cover development business news publication.
Excellence in Masonry Architectural Awards & Masonry: It Makes a Village Winners.
News on  masonry events.
AMG phone numbers, email address, mailing address and location.

Masonry Product Guide
Thanks to masonry construction, homeowners don't have to sacrifice the strength, durability, natural beauty and many other benefits of masonry, when building their home. Masonry block is available in many shapes and colors and a masonry home can be customized with a wide variety of exterior surfaces.

The following is a guide to masonry products and where these products are available in the state of Arizona. See below for a brief description of each product.

Gray Concrete Block
Gray block, typically 8x8x16 in size, is used in a wide range of applications wherever solid, dependable and Gray Concrete Blockeconomical walls are required. As with all concrete masonry units (CMU), gray block is strong and weather resistant. It does not rust, nor warp, nor does it provide a cellulose food for mold or insects. With thermal mass, it’s energy efficient, fire resistant, termite resistant with great sound dampening qualities - perfect for today’s residential and industrial building needs.

Gray block like all CMU's are GREEN building materials and can contribute to LEED building points. They are available in a multitude of shapes, sizes, strengths, and weights.
Exposed Aggregate Block
Exemplifying yet another example of masonry's visual versatility, exposed aggregate block Exposed Aggregate Blockis also known as sand blasted block, though many different manufacturing methods exist. Cured block of a variety of shapes are additionally processed to reveal a mildly textured surface exposing both the natural aggregates as well as the fine matrix. A relatively straight two dimensional finish without deep shadows is achieved.

Interlocking Pavers
Interlocking pavers, often called patio pavers, provide many options for beauty, value and long-term performance to any outdoor project. Design flexibility allows for a wide range of possibilities. Pavers blend well with the natural environment, providing modern, classic or rustic styles. Their ability to withstand heavy loads enables them to weather many years of traffic. Interlocking pavers feature a wide range of colors, textures, shapes and finishes.

Interlocking pavers are available in a standard or durablend mix design. Pavers normally are available in 60mm and 80mm thickness. Many pavers are available in a variety of stock colors and color blends. For large projects, custom colors can be ordered.
Landscape Masonry (Dry Stack/Garden)
Dry Stck Garden WallLandscape masonry has many specialized categories such as retaining wall block and their accessories, pavers, patio stepping pavers, outdoor barbeques, architectural castings, rock and stone, etc. Many retaining wall blocks are colorful split face units utilizing mortarless methods. Pavers are increasing in their presence in the American landscape. Because of their intimate relationship with the earth, ground preparation and proper overall design is part of successful outdoor enrichment and property value enhancement.

Expanding infill land usage, exercise and sports courts, patio development, pet areas, terraces, streetscapes, ponds, beautifying and stabilizing land contours, bird and wildlife sanctuaries, waterfalls, and hanging gardens are but a few of the breathtaking uses of this extraordinary category. Yet another example of GREEN building materials they can be designed to encourage ground water recharge by absorbing storm water run-off, thus adding LEED points in both residential and commercial applications. The supplier and local building officials are often glad to give assistance regarding design guidance of these products.
Slump Block
The spirit of the Southwest is unmistakable with Slump Block. This block maintains the same basic standard dimensions as regular units. To give slump block is character, the mix "slumps" when removed from its mold. Because of the unpredictable roll in texture when removing the block from the mold, units take the appearance of hand made adobe.

Slump Block WallSlump block is available in a variety of colors and in some cases, colors can be customized for larger orders (construction of homes or commercial buildings). Slump block is a normal weight hollow load bearing concrete unit. Units are commonly available in 4", 6", 8" and 12" widths with 4" (most common), 6" and 8" heights.
Ground Face Masonry
Ground Face masonry units are integrally colored concrete blocks with one or more faces finely ground to expose the colors of the natural aggregates and matrix. Integral moisture/efflorescent additives as well as clear/satin topical factory applications may be included to accentuate each burnished face while providing highly durable moisture resistance. This block is most often used in commercial buildings.

Fence block
Concrete masonry fences are very popular throughout theFence Block Southwest. In residential applications, a fence made with block is attractive, durable and virtually maintenance free. Today’s block fences offer a variety of colors and finishes, resulting in an aesthetically pleasing design and finished project. As with all construction, please contact your local building inspector for design requirements.
Glass block
Glass products display a multifaceted character beginning with the transparent, translucent sparkling beauty of glass. A variety of sizes and shapes, patterns and thickness are available, including curved tops for caps. Glass block can be used in both interior and exterior applications. Commonly, glass block is used in bathroom applications, Glass Blockincluding exterior windows to allow light in from the outside, yet providing the desired privacy. Glass blocks have also been used for side windows along entry doors in both residential and commercial buildings. Architects enjoy the versatility offered by glass and frequently call for their design application in media walls, partition walls and in closets to allow natural light in from the outside.

Glass blocks are available in square, rectangular, hollow, solid, corner, angle, finish and pave blocks to suit every design application. For assistance with technical advice, design assistance, and plan review, please contact your local glass block specialist.
Split Face Concrete Block
Splitface block incorporates the characteristics of hewn stone. Split Face units are molded with two units attached face to face, cured, then mechanically split. This leaves each opposing split face with a rough 3-dimensional texture incurring shadows and similar to natural stone. Due to the nature of processing, no two units are the same, just like Mother Nature.

Split face Concrete Block In the hard-split process, the aggregates used in making the product are exposed, so different aggregates will give different appearances.

Splitface blocks are available in 4", 6", 8", 10" and 12" widths, usually by 4" or 8" high. Often they are available with integral color and/or integral water repellent.
Brick - A Variety of Colors, Shapes, Styles
Clay products are very popular to enhance the beauty and character of a home. Clay or brick products are also consumer’s choice for building materials in garden walls, patios, walkways and now driveways. Brick and clay products provide warmth and charm to a home, especially when used to dress up a fireplace or interior wall. Brick products come in a variety of sizes, shapes and colors. Most commonRed Brick for brick walkways, patio pavers and landscape materials is the 2" thick brick. For wall construction, the standard 4" thick brick or the block-style brick materials are more commonly used. The block-style clay product typically is 8" wide and 16" long, with a vertical height of approximately 3". A very popular brick is the "old world" products, tumbled in mixers during the manufacturing process to round of the edges and provide a distressed or weathered look. These bricks typically are multi-colored in red and white, or red, white and green, to provide more warmth and an aged looked.

A number of clay or brick products are also available in square and octagon shapes with center openings for decorative walls and fencing applications, or to serve as drainage in the base of masonry fencing or garden walls. Similar shapes and sizes are available in solid units (no center openings) for patio or walkway pavers.
Natural Stone
Walls made from natural or cut stone provide a look of timeless tradition. Unlike mortar walls, stone walls require no concrete footings. Generally, there are three basic types of stone, often referred to as cut stone, boulders and field stone.

Cut stone is characterized by its flat, smooth surfaces for easy stacking, cut stone utilizes both large and small cuts, some wider than others, to create an non-uniformed look.

Boulders are large, uncut rocks, usually round in shape, best describe boulders. If placing boulders into a hillside, no back fill material is required. Simply dig Natural Stoneout the area where you want to place the boulder and roll or slide them into place. Boulders can weight between 25 lbs. to several hundred pounds. Obviously, when building a garden wall, small boulders will be the easiest to work.

Field stone is usually known for its irregular shapes and rough finish. Field stone is available at sand-and-gravel companies or retail suppliers specializing in masonry products. When building a fence or garden wall with field stone into a slope, field stone does not need backfill or a concrete footing. However, if you are creating a wall on flat ground, it is recommended to pour a concrete footing. You can either place a layer of mortar between each row or stack against the backfill.
Sonora & Fluted Block
These blocks achieve their look with custom-designed molds. Many of the ribbed and fluted blocks are designed so that the vertical flutes and ribs will appear in the finished wall as unwavering straight lines. Sonora and Fluted units are molded with two units attached faced-to-face, then mechanically split leaving the split faceFlute Block with a rough texture, similar to natural stone. Because of the nature of the aggregate used in the manufacturing process and the splitting process itself, no two units look exactly the same, creating a look of natural stone. The subtle difference between the Sonora and Fluted units provides the designer the ability to create different looks. Sonora block and Fluted block are available as both medium weight hollow load bearing masonry units and normal weight hollow load bearing masonry units.

Sonora and Fluted blocks products are available in 4", 6", 8" and 12" (normal) widths by 4" and 8" (normal) heights. Gray units are available in most sizes and shapes. Custom colors and integral water repellent can be ordered.
Glazed Masonry
Glazed units are light-weight concrete block with a thermosetting glazing compound permanently molded to one or more faces of masonry products. This glazed facing is formed in individual molds to assure dimensional uniformity regardless of minor variations in the raw block. After heat-treating in gas-fired tunnel kilns, the facing becomes an integral part of the masonry units. The units are easy to clean including the removal of magic marker, spray paint and grease. Glazed masonry units are low maintenance. The satin finish will last a lifetime, eliminating the need to repaint or refinish. Most glazed masonry units can be used outside as they are weather resistant. Built-in ductility reduces the possibility of cracking or crazing in adverse conditions. Glazed units are available of colors, shapes and scoring patterns.
Interlocking Fence Block
Interlocking Fence Block are designed so that there is no mortar used at the vertical joints, making it easier for the do-it-yourselfer to construct a block fence orInterlocking Fence Block garden wall. The block interlock with each other in a tongue and grove fashion, allowing for quicker installation while maintaining the highest quality. Pilaster block are designed to vertically reinforce the interlocking fence block at specified intervals. Interlocking Fence Block is available in a variety of architectural textures and colors to give virtually unlimited design possibilities. As with all construction, please check with your local building inspector for design requirements.

Interlocking Fence Block is available as a medium weight hollow non load bearing masonry unit. Interlocking Fence Block units are available in 4", 6" and 8" (normal) widths by 8" height. Colors generally come in gray, beige, brown, rose, buff and purple haze.

Alternative Masonry Proudcts & Systems

Omni Block
Omni Block is a superior insulated masonry system that offers a number of advantages and value to builders and consumers. The block system integrates gray block with a foam cavity system. Omni Block is available Omni Blockin two basic systems: traditional mortared block or a dry-stack interlocking block. Omni Block has created a block design where foam insulation is custom-fit to fill the cavity. The foam is installed easily by hand (no tools required) as each row of block is laid. Omni Block provides superior thermal performance for energy efficiency, fire safety, termite and pest resistant qualities, sound reduction (sound proofing), structural strength – all with minimum maintenance. Omni Block is also an earth-friendly product, and plays a role in "green build" concepts.

The Omni Block dry-stack system includes a surface bonding process with a concrete/plaster product that makes the wall as solid and durable as poured concrete.
Integra® Wall System
The Integra® Wall System was developed to be energy efficient, security minded and environmentally friendly. Made from sand and stone, the versatile block system is engineered to be used either as a bearing or non-bearing wall in both commercial and residential applications. This wall system uses a post-tensioned reinforcing system which eliminates the need for grout, making it easy for any contractor to install while reducing labor costs associated with building masonry wall systems. Integra® uses post-Integra Wall Systemtensioned rods that vertically go from the bottom to the top of the wall, providing reinforcement without grout.

To make the wall system more energy efficient, the block has been modified in the manufacturing process to use polyurethane material in the cavity of the block, resulting in optimum thermal performance.
Dur-O-Wal™ includes a group of joint reinforcements, anchors, ties, moisture control systems, bracing, post tension systems and accessories for masonry construction and design. They are designed to provide an easy-to-use combination of continuous joint reinforcement with adjustable wall ties for composite and cavity walls. A common application for the use of Dur-O-Wal™ system is when a brick facing is adhered to masonry block, especially when the parallel walls do not course out level with each other, or in the case when two parallel walls are built, one schedule ahead of the other to close the building/structure or avoid construction delays.

Metal finishes include mill or hot dip galvanized, or stainless steel (application and local building code dependent). A complete line of flashing, weep holes, and cell vents are also available.

Return to the Main Member Page
For Contractors, Suppliers, Architects and AMG Members

“ To improve the quality of life for all people through the creation and development of timeless and environmentally friendly masonry structures.”