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20 Bricklaying

For Finns, bricklaying is a pioneering category at international level. Finland has been competing in bricklaying since 1989 when the Finnish team first took part in international competitions. Bricklaying has also been one of the country's most successful categories, Finnish competitors taking home three medals over the years. Janne Rantala won Gold in Taiwan in 1993, Sami Ojanen got Silver in France in 1995 and Petri Vastamäki achieved Bronze in Holland in 1991. Other young Finnish bricklayers have also been successful. In 1993, Juha Vainikainen finished in 9th place with a Diploma in St. Gallen, Switzerland.

The Bricklaying category is divided into four modules, each of which is assessed separately. The tasks involve demanding decorative bricklaying and special patters which require very accurate measuring and cutting and extremely tidy finishing. Over the last few years the tasks have also included plastering, ashlar masonry and stonelaying. The tasks should be finished on time despite a tight schedule. The assessment criteria include the level of completeness, accuracy of measurements, horizontal and vertical accuracy, squares, cutting, level measurements and joining. Accurate measurements count 75% towards the final mark. Overall impression and tidy finish count 24%. Over the last few years the competition tasks have been sent to competitors around three months before the event. At the event, the tasks will be changed by around 30%.

Competition success requires endurance, concentration, planning and scheduling, varied hands-on skills, competent bricklaying, an eye for detail, and tidiness. In Finland, training for the competition includes, as a minimum, the Dressed Masonry module of the Construction study programme.

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Updated 8.3.2005  © 2004 Skills Finland ry

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