Bricks are a hardened clay product used for over 5,000 years. The Bible story about Moses and the Egyptian Pharaoh discusses the making of bricks by the Israelite slaves. The ancient brick size was a length to width to depth ratio of 4:2:1, which is still common today.
Modern brick are typically manufactured in one of the following processes: soft mud, dry press or wire cut. In the soft mud process, the clay and sand are mixed with water, and often lime or ash, to a soft, mud-like consistency then pressed into steel molds by hydraulic presses. The bricks then are fired in ovens to increase strength. This process tends to be the lowest cost..
The dry press process seems similar to the soft mud process, except the process uses a thicker, drier clay mix and more hydraulic power to push the mix into the molds. The dry press process achieves more defined edges and consequently costs a bit more.Brick color comes from the heat of the firing and changes with various added minerals. Sample brick panels are often laid on construction projects to show the variation of brick colors (and mortar colors and type of joint), so the final product on the building matches the approved sample.
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