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Initial Rate of Absorption in Masonry



Masonry mortar must bond well to the masonry units in the wall. Brick absorption, including initial rate of absorption (IRA), is an important property affecting the bond. IRA also is a property for which a standard test method exists.

IRA and Bond
As hydration takes place and the mortar cures, chemical bonds form between mortar and brick. The brick must suck enough water and cement from the mortar to form these chemical bonds within its pores, while leaving enough water to allow cement hydration in the joint itself. IRA (expressed in grams of water per minute per 30 square inches of surface area) is a measure of this suction.


Water Retentivity
Water retentivity is a physical property of mortar, a measure of its ability to retain its mixing water under suction.


Methods to Enhance Compatibility
Masons can adjust their methods in various ways to minimize compatibility problems. With highly absorptive brick, the main concern is to prevent the mortar from drying out, so follow procedures recommended for hot-weather work. One way to reduce the absorptiveness of high IRA brick is to wet it before it is laid. IRA is only one of many factors that affect masonry performance. But matching mortar properties to the brick's absorption rate can contribute to strong, complete bond.

Caulking | Restoration | Arlington Heights | Illinois | Sealant | Replacement | Coating | Caulking | Tuckpoitning | Masonry | Chicago | Illinois | Wisconsin | Indiana | Balcony | Repair | OSHA | Contractor | Indianapolis | Safety |
Caulking | Restoration | Arlington Heights | Illinois | Sealant | Replacement | Coating | Caulking | Tuckpoitning | Masonry | Chicago | Illinois | Wisconsin | Indiana | Balcony | Repair | OSHA | Contractor | Indianapolis | Safety |
Caulking | Restoration | Arlington Heights | Illinois | Sealant | Replacement | Coating | Caulking | Tuckpoitning | Masonry | Chicago | Illinois | Wisconsin | Indiana | Balcony | Repair | OSHA | Contractor | Indianapolis | Safety |

J.S. Goray Inc Completes Project At OSHA

J.S. Goray Inc Completes Sealant Replacement on OSHA Directorate of Training and Education

At J.S. Goray Inc, we pride ourselves in our attention to detail for workplace safety. Our firm has been active in the Associated Builders and Contractors’ Safety Training Evaluation Process (STEP) for over two decades; and has received multiple Platinum and Diamond level awards.

Recipients of Platinum and/or Diamond level awards are 330 and 770 percent safer than the average company. So when a client asked us to take on a project at the OSHA Directorate of Training and Education, we were well prepared for the challenge. In addition to the OSHA Directorate, this building houses an OSHA Training Center, with classrooms on all 3 floors.

Scheduling work around on going safety and training seminars was a exceptionally challenging, yet handled wonderfully by our technicians. OSHA was holding "Fed Week" during a portion of our project; a week with over 200 intergovernmental guests working onsite. Working with the Property Management and OSHA's personnel, we were able to complete the project with minimum disruption, and provide a fantastic repair to the building envelope.

This project entailed replacing all 100% of sealants on a 3 story precast building that houses the OSHA Directorate of Training and Education. The Material specified for the project was DOW Corning 790 Silicone Building Sealant. The sealant was applied and finished using tools from Albion Dispensing Solution.  Access for the work was provided via a pair of articulating boom lifts, in addition to step ladders for ground level work. All technicians working in the Aerial Work Platform (AWP) we outfitted with the latest fall protection systems. Our technicians are set up with Miller Fall Protection Self retracting lifelines, and 3M Self-Rescue Devices. These safety devices are in addition to ANSI approve safety harnesses, and all required PPE.

What Is The Right Price?

The Right Price

The pricing of building restoration work is more of an art than a science. An accurate estimate and proposal  is critical to both the contractor and owner. Under bidding of projects will result in a very low Bid - Hit ratio. This would seem to work to the owners advantage but unfortunately the opposite result is more likely.

  • In the short term the under bidding contractor might start to cut corners, realizing the project is unprofitable. Unless the owner has engaged a building facade professional to perform regular inspections of the work, it is up to the integrity of the contractor to perform the proper repairs.
  • In the long term, under bidding contractors have a tendency of going out of business. Any warranties on the work will most likely be useless at that point in time. Material manufacturer warranties will also be effected, over 90% of material failure are due to application problems (the contractor)

Bid-Hit Ratio

A contractor that experiences a very high Bid-Hit ratio is bidding very high number of projects and landing very few. Most often this contractor maintains a large rotating stable of salespersons and a large advertising budget. This contractor will prey on the uninformed and overcharge the owner.

"When asked what they think a good bid-hit ratio is, contactors cite everything from one to one (one contract awarded for every bid) to 35 to one (one contract awarded for every 35 bids submitted). In fact, according to industry reports, the average ratio for general contractors pursuing public works projects falls between six to one and 10 to one. For private bid work, the actual ratio is about five to one, and for negotiated work is about three to one." ENR 2010.

J.S. Goray, Inc. is very diligent in our pricing and tracking our Bid - Hit ratio, our projects are a blend of both negotiated and bid private projects.

Year   Bid - Hit

  • 2012  -  4.4 : 1
  • 2013  -  4.4 : 1
  • 2014  -  3.3 : 1
  • 2015  -  4.0 : 1
  • 2016  -  3.5 - 1

Our pricing is right on the mark. We believe the J.S Goray, Inc. has the proper systems and methods in place to provide our clients with value driven quality solutions.

Caulking | Restoration | Elmhurst, IL | Deck Coating | Coating | Caulking | Tuckpoitning | Masonry | Chicago | Illinois | Wisconsin | Indiana | Award
Caulking | Restoration | Elmhurst, IL | Deck Coating | Coating | Caulking | Tuckpoitning | Masonry | Chicago | Illinois | Wisconsin | Indiana | Award

Unique Sealant Failures

It's not every day that we see both an adhesive and cohesive joint failure at the same location:

Improper joint design, poor material mixing, incorrect material selection, sub-par preparation; all leading causes to premature sealant failure. The example shown below is a very uncommon example of sealant failure. The main failure on this joint was a adhesive failure, meaning the sealant lost adhesive to the substrate. But in one lone area, there was a cohesion failure, which is highly unlikely to occur. Generally, an adhesion failure will continue throughout an entire joint due to improper preparation and installation. In this case it looks like one specific spot was prepared correctly but the caulk was installed too thin. Regardless of the cause of failure, this building is certainly in need of 100% sealant replacement. 

Orland Park Illinois Tuckpointing Caulking Coatings Balcony Repair Commercial Industrial
Elk Grove Caulking Painting Tuckpointing Coating Balcony Commercial Industrial Condominium Illinois Chicago

J.S. Goray Inc. Earns Another EIC Award!

J.S. Goray Inc. Earns Another EIC Award!

Excellence in Construction Award 2016

J.S. Goray Inc. recently returned from the Associated Builder and Contractors Illinois (ABC-IL) Members Awards Ceremony with another Excellence in Construction (EIC) Award. The Excellence in Construction Award is the top award given out by ABC in the Awards of Excellence Program. Entries are judged by a third party panel of judges from different fields within the construction industry. This year's awards ceremony was attended by Illinois Lientenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti in addition to Governor Bruce Rauner. Bob and Tyler From our office and the great pleasure of meeting with both officials.

About the Prjoect

Our 2016 EIC award was for a large balcony restoration project in Elmhurst, IL. Situated on the sides of a mid-rise condominium building, the project was to restore approximately 72 cast in place balconies. Our team was tasked with identifying failed concrete on the balconies. Once removed, we replaced the failed concrete and re-enforcement with specialized patching material. Following a thorough cleaning, a proper coating was applied to all exposed surfaces.  A pedestrian traffic coating system for the top side of the balconies, and a breathable acrylic coating on the bottom. Additionally, all sealants were replaced prior to coating giving the balconies a superior new waterproofing system. We accessed the balconies with a combination of 2 swing stages and 4 boom lifts. All materials were specified BASF - Master Builders Solutions, and were provided by the team at Glenrock Company in Elmhurst, IL.

The J.S. Goray Inc. team worked very closely with the the condominium board on every step of the project and from what we are told, the residents are all very pleased with the refreshed balconies our firm was able to provide for them.

We would like to thank everyone involved in the project, especially our teams that were onsite day in and day out.

J.S. Goray Inc. Attends World of Cocnrete 2017

Report from World of Concrete 2017!

J.S. Goray Inc recently returned from a week long trip to Las Vegas for World of Concrete 2017. Seven representatives from our firm were in attendance, including both field and management personnel.

In the classroom

Our goal of the 2017 convention was to focus on education and improve our firm’s production and management through proven techniques. Our Crew went through a combined 66 hours of educational seminars while in Las Vegas. The seminars ranged from leadership development to skills techniques. Some of the seminars our crews attended included: foreman leadership development, customer relations development, implementing systems, silica dust training, and many others others. Our Operations Manager, Josh Goray, went through "Train the Trainer" seminars and is now able to provide training and certification for both aerial lift work platforms and fall arrest systems. 

At the Show

Outside of the classroom we had a great time catching up  with the industry vendors and manufactures. Our crew spent quite a lot of time in the outdoor exhibits trying out the new tools that Bosch , Dewalt, and Hilti brought out to showcase. We were all very impressed with the Bosch Dust Collection Systems that Bosch developed over the previous year.

Skillsaw was another manufacturer that impressed us. They have developed a new concrete cutting tool called Medusaw. With a notable portion of our yearly work load consisting of large balcony repair projects, having the advantage of the Medusaw's ability to effortlessly square cut repairs will greatly increase our productivity.

Beyond the reach of power tools, we had some great conversations with representatives from Albion Dispensing Solutions. Two of their new products really stood out to our technicians attending the show. Both the Backer Rod Rover and the Barrel Sleeve are great solutions for needs within the caulking industry. We also had some great interactions with Exaktime, BASF, QuikreteNewborn, The Blue Book, and 3M.


All in all, we had a very productive and successful convention in 2017, and we are already implementing new policies and procedures withing our firm that stem directly from what we brought back from Las Vegas. We are looking forward to attending again in 2018 and continue developing our personnel and improving the service we provide to our clients.




World of Concrete, held annually in Las Vegas, is the construction industry's premiere trade show. This show provides the perfect environment to to meet with industry vendors and learn about new developments in materials, tools, technology, and all other facets our our field. In addition to the trade show, there is a vast catalog of educational seminars and classes to attend.  


J.S. Goray Inc.

951 N. Old Rand Rd., Suite 112

Wauconda, IL 60084

(800) 516-3074