ASTM Meets in Washington, D.C.
The American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) held its semi-annual December Committee meetings in Washington D.C. from December 6-10, 2004. There were many different committee, subcommittee and task group meetings held, but there were a few that were particularly of interest to mason contractors. The following is a synopsis of some of these topics.
C12 - Mortars for Unit Masonry
Committee C12 met and discussed a few items of interests. First, the committee updated its strategic plan. A few key changes were discussed and implemented in the 2005 version of the Strategic plan. Along with this, the Executive Committee decided to survey design professionals about which ASTM Standards they are currently utilizing. An administrative ballot was administered for the Rebound hammer test in July. After much discussion by many, and the leadership of Colin Munro, the development of this Standard for this proprietary product was stopped. As a result, the Committee developed (with the help of Committee C-15) a new C12 Masonry Standards Development Form. This form helps to evaluate the need for new standards and should eliminate standards developed for proprietary products.
C15.03.07 - Finish and Appearance of Concrete Masonry Units
After discussion of the negatives received from the ballot, the committee ran out of time. Further work will be done between meetings to clear up the confusing wording in section 7 of ASTM C90.
C15.05.07 - Masonry Workmanship
Many of the negatives received from the balloted Standard Practice disagreed with the principle of even developing such a Standard. Therefore, the task group chairman, Jerry Painter took the opportunity to discuss the validity of this Standard. While there were many people on both sides of the issue, many felt that the Standard was needed and would be a good thing for the industry.
JOIN ASTM NOW for $75
For only $75 a year, you can join ASTM and affect the changes in Standards. For your membership, you receive a 400-page ASTM book full of all the updated Standards for masonry. You can visit their website at www.astm.com. In the coming year, the MCAA technical committee will begin to have quarterly conference calls to discuss ASTM ballot items. If you wish to join this committee, please contact the MCAA's Director of Engineering, Rashod R. Johnson at email@example.com.
MCAA's presence is gaining more strength as time passes. Many topics try to get into the Standards and are blocked by MCAA and other contractors. YOUR participation is needed to ensure that the contractors have the same power and influence as the suppliers and designers.
About the Author
Rashod R. Johnson, P.E., is president of The Roderick Group in Chicago. He is the former Director of Engineering for the Mason Contractors Association of America and currently serves as a technical consultant to the association.