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From the Editor

Like always, we've got quite a few interesting articles for our readers this month that I can't wait to share with you all.

Jamie Farny, program manager for Masonry & Special Products of the Portland Cement Association, has kindly joined us to discuss recent advances in grouting technology and changes to codes and specifications (see page 30). He has written several articles for our magazine over the years, and I can't thank him enough for always providing such informative articles for Masonry and our readers.

We also have an interesting feature article that discusses the various techniques and equipment advice of industry experts for cleaning masonry walls (see page 36).

This month, we have the Kentuckiana Masonry Institute's Annual Architectural Awards (see page 42) and the Arizona Masonry Guild's "Masonry: It Makes a Village" competition (see page 44). All local, state, regional and national masonry organizations are encouraged to provide information and images of their competitions for the magazine, so keep them coming!

Finally, every year I look forward to our annual masons' tools feature article. For an industry that supposedly rarely changes, there seems to be no shortage to the number of new and fascinating gadgets out there that make masonry easier, faster and cheaper! While big machinery, like telehandlers or mixers, really make the job fly, a lot of times these little inventions and tweaks of the everyday hand tools can really make all the difference in the world.

Taking this idea one step further, there are other "tools" that can make a world of difference in your masonry business. For instance, becoming a member of the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) is like having an all-in-one tool for almost any business- and industry-related situation. For those of you who are members of the MCAA, no matter what engineering, governmental, OSHA, safety, training, legal or other business matters that you come across, you've got the MCAA tools to help you deal with it. However, being a mason contractor and not being a member of MCAA is much like showing up at the job site empty handed.

An MCAA membership application is available on page 7. Just as you wouldn't send a mason out to a job empty handed, take a moment out of your day and prepare your business with the tools to help you succeed.



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