As a professional tradesman or tradeswomen, bricklaying is serious hard work. Laying bricks requires skills and years of practice to master. Bricklayers are so important historically that there are even secret societies around masonry with legendary secrets! The other part of the equation is bricklaying tools – in our guide below we review the best bricklayers level and tools you can buy to ensure your tools match your skills and experience so that your jobs are done right the first time, and potentially earn you more work and “cement” your reputation as having skill in brick work!
While you can purchase the level and tools individually (we list all of these popular bricklayer tools below), we recommend saving time and purchasing a set (also recommended below) which will normally also include a carrying case so you save money and need not buy that separately. We list some of the best sets below as well based on our opinion as well as testimonials from others to provide an unbiased suggestion.
If you are a professional bricklayer, we strongly recommend you purchase the best quality you can find. You don’t want to be at a job and have one of the tools break, putting you in a bad situation where you need to spend time borrowing or finding another tool.
Mason and brick laying tools are more available but mostly due to cheap alternatives which might be alright for a homeowner with a job here or there, but they will not stand up to daily professional use – plus if you are in a union, you may get laughed at for cheap tools!
Some of the popular tools include: brick hammer, brick trowel, pointing trowel, tape measure, line pins, gauge rod, spirit levels to name a few.
These recommended bricklaying levels and tools are not normally included in a bricklayer job description but are vital to be a successful one!
Best Bricklayer Level & Tool Sets
If you rather buy a set of bricklaying tools we have listed the most popular ones that we feel are durable enough to last you a long time and offer value and convenience rather than buying each tool piece by piece. A bricklayers kit or set commonly includes a carrying case or bag as well to keep your tools organized and clean regardless of the site of weather conditions. Plus the set will make sure you have the basics all covered!
Goldblatt 8-Piece Masonry Hand Tool Set
This 8-piece Goldblatt tool provides a nice set of bricklaying and masonry tools at a reasonable price, plus it includes a convenient carrying case. The set includes two trowels (a finishing trowel and gauging trowel), two floats (an extruded magnesium float, a wood float), a groover, an edger, and a wire twister.
Goldblatt has been in business since 1885 and offers a great warranty (make sure you save your purchase receipts). The set has favorable reviews with few issues although hard core professionals may opt to for other brands used professionally.
If you’re looking to purchase a beginner set, or a backup set we think these offer great value for the price and will save you time for purchasing tools individually. You will need a tool for cutting bricks though such as a club hammer – see that below.
|✅ Includes 8 popular tools for a beginner at a reasonable price
|❌ May not include all the tools you need
|✅ Goldblatt is a reasonably good brand and has been in
business since 1885!
|❌Tools may not be as durable as some of the more professional lines
|✅ Includes a durable carrying case
|✅ Has received good reviews
|✅ Free lifetime limited warranty
Marshalltown Masons 9 Piece Tool Kit
Bricklaying and mason tool manufactures have often been in the business for decades, and Marshalltown is one of them! Marshalltown tools are trusted by contractors and professionals worldwide. Even archeologists use the trowels! Marshalltown tools became popular after World War I as they supplied US soldiers working in Europe during the reconstruction efforts.
This tool set is not as cheap as the Goldblatt set above but offers a higher degree of quality and includes tools that may be useful if you are also doing concrete work. Tools included are brick, margin and pointing trowels; a brick jointer, wood line blocks, mason’s line winder with 250 feet of orange line, a masonry brush and joint raker. You will need a tool for cutting bricks though such as a club hammer – see that below.
If bricklaying is your line of work and you perform jobs often, we recommend this set for its durability and comfort features.
|✅ Includes 9 professional grade tools
|❌ May not include all the tools you need
|✅ Made in the USA
|❌The carrying case is flimsy according to some reviewers
|✅ Marshalltown has been developing tools since 1890!
And is especially known for its quality trowels that are even used by archeologists!
|✅ Emphasis on comfort with DuraSoft handles and built-in finger guards
for the trowels that prevent calluses, heat and cold. DuraSoft reduces
fatigue and provides a soft feel
|✅ Trowels are forged from one piece of high carbon steel for unrivaled strength
|✅ Great warranty
Best Bricklaying Book for Reference
New to the industry? Or just trying to skill up for a home project or side gig? We recommend these books on bricklaying to help you have something to refer to for tips and tricks.
Brickwork and Bricklaying: A DIY Guide
Considered a must-own by many professionals who got started in brickwork, this guide provides a holistic reference of everything you need to know about bricklaying. Tools, supplies, materials, methods and skills are covered in a simple to understand manner. Also covered are how to identify faulty brick work and how to fix it. A number of owners of this book commented it made a great reference after an in-person training or class to refer back to for ideas and tips.
- Standard design for bricklaying
- Round-nose for fire bricks or small areas
- Pointing trowels for performing restore work, hole filling
Standard Trowel: Kraft W. Rose RO1416-12 12″ Narrow London Brick Trowel
This 12 inch standard brick trowel named W. Rose after its inventor, William Rose is a great for bricklaying – it is actually a narrow version of a standard trowel for easy handling with brickwork. It is well rated by users worldwide and is created by Kraft, a well known brand.
These trowels are still made in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the United States and are famous for their history of being used to build America and have been used by soldiers for decades. This a high quality tool and is often on back order so do not delay in purchasing if you need one.
Round-Nose Trowel: Marshalltown 7 inch Round / Gauging Trowel
This 7 inch round-nose trowel from Marshalltown, a well known professional brand manufacturing tools 1890 is well known for its durability. This trowel will help you work in tight spaces and fire bricks. It is well rated, well-made with a tempered blade and is polished and fully ground. It features a hardwood handle for durability.
- An unleveled job can mean a big difference at the end – levels make sure you foundation is level to avoid cracks and uneven surfaces, or to add uneven surfaces for drainage in other projects
Cool tidbit: Measures and levels include those little liquid filled tubes that show you how level something is. Those little tubes are actually called a spirit level and they get that name due to the mineral spirit solution that’s used within them.
Goldblatt 3 piece Torpedo Spirit Level Set
This 3 piece “torpedo” level set from Goldblatt is a great value for reasonably good quality. Made of aircraft grade aluminum, these levels should last for quite some time and feature unique features such as lights and the ability to read leveling degrees from the sides if working in a tight space and other usability enhancements to make working easier – see a complete list below.
In this set you receive a 9 inch , a 24 inch and 48 inch torpedo levels for all uses.
|✅ Includes 3 levels
|❌ Only the 9 inch torpedo level is magnetic
|✅ Made of durable aluminum for durability and accuracy
|❌ Only the 9 inch torpedo level has side measurements at the edges
|✅ UV protection finish for color fading protection
|❌ A few users commented that one level had not been as accurate
|✅ Verti.Site allows for easier measurement reading at 3 angles
|✅ Good price for good quality tools that will always be needed
|✅ Free lifetime limited warranty
Stabila Professional 48296 3 Piece Torpedo Level Mason Kit
This Stabila three piece torpedo leveling kit is similar to the Goldblatt immediately above. You might ask, why pay more for these than the Goldblatt set or other brands? Simply put – these are designed for true professionals.
They are able withstand abuse for a great deal of time whereas other brands will fail while still being lightweight. The 48″ and 24″ levels have built-in strike zone shields to allow them to withstand being hit with a trowel. They are guaranteed for life to be accurate and the warranty offers replacement except for obvious damage not due to manufacturer negligence.
Three torpedos are included: 48inch, 24inch and a smaller die-cast torpedo for jobs in smaller space. All features easy to read vials on multiple ends with one vertical vial location on one end and the other vertical vial located near the center of the level. A horizontal centered vial rounds out the three.
|✅ Includes 3 levels
|❌ Expensive – if you want the quality it will cost you
|✅ Made of professional grade aluminum for extreme durability and
accuracy – reviewers comment these are the only ones that last!
|✅ Solid acrylic vials for precision and longevity, make it easy to read
on any course
|✅ You will not need to buy another level for quite some time
|✅ Free lifetime warranty with exchange directly through Stabila
|✅ A carrying case is included
- A brick hammer is a must-have tool for every DIYer or professional as they are a necessity for hitting masonry.
- Club and lump hammers are used with chisels to break apart old masonry or to install line pins.
- A traditional claw hammer is useful for nailing or remove nails of course. Don’t make the mistake of using a claw hammer with masonry chisels (you’ll be sorry!)
- Brick Hammers are used to quickly cut bricks often with restoration jobs, they are also helpful for trimming bricks to smaller pieces.
Alltrade 648332 2.5Lb Club Hammer
We find this well made club brick hammer by Alltrade to be a good value for its quality and high ratings. It’s a 2.5 pound club hammer that is made with hardened steel which makes it perfect to cut bricks or breaking apart old bricks or to install line pins. The comfortable non-slip handle is designed to help absorb impact to minimize fatigue and damage to your hands (you should be wear vibration gloves if you do this work often or if you use power tools!).
WORKPRO W041091A Claw Hammer, 20 Oz, One-piece Forged
A hammer is just a hammer right? Wrong! Hammers come with all types of designs and features. There is different weights that help provide more stability but then are more work to carry and use (the heavier they are, they harder they hit, but require more strength to manage)!
This WORKPRO claw hammer is 20oz. and is made from one piece of forged steel for high durability. What we like about it chiefly is its air cushion handle grip! It’s very comfortable with a specially designed surface to absorb vibration. If you use hammers often, this is an important feature as over time vibration in your hands from tools can cause damage.
It also has a magnetic nail start so you avoid injuries and to allow the easy setting of nails.
KEILEOHO 12 inch 32 oz Matte Brick Rock Pick Hammer With Skid Handle
This rock picking brick hammer is affordable yet built from one piece of forged steel for unmatched strength and durability. We also like the very comfortable handle – its made of rubber so it doesn’t easily come out of your hands and helps reduce fatigue. Especially useful if you are doing brick work all day.
The pointed tip is sharp to aid in hitting masonry and cracking brick of masonry materials and the square side is listed as being highly precise. While this tool is mainly used as a brick hammer it has many uses beyond bricklaying and is a great addition to any toolset!
- Another vital tool, useful for trimming bricks, general masonry during all types of work
- Bolster Chisel: Helps cut bricks and remove old mortar beds more quickly than traditional chisels
- Plugging Chisel: Helps clean out old joints while safely avoiding the brick itself to avoid chips
Mayhew – MA35202 Select 35202 4-by-7-Inch Brick Set Chisel
This mason chisel is great for many uses and especially for cutting, sizing and scoring brick and other materials. It is tough, made with a protective coating to prevent rust and its made in the USA by Mayhew, a manufacturer of tools since 1856!
In case you didn’t know Mayhew Steel Products is the oldest punch and chisel manufacturer in the United States. Because of their long standing reputation they are trusted by brick workers and professionals for decades.
Bon Tool 11-385 English Plugging Chisel
Bon Tools is a relative newcomer to the tools scene compared to Mayhew but they have been in business for over sixty years and also create quality chisels. This English plugging chisel is great for precision work where you need to clean out joints while not damaging surrounding areas. This tool will last you many years and is well rated online by existing purchasers.
- S Bend Jointer: Used on perpendicular joints for cinder blocks or for bricks with a half round joint
- Sled Runner: Used for bed joints on blocks or bricks, ensure the joint is straight
- Flat Tuck Pointer: Helps fill holes and smooth joints after raking on brick work.
Kraft Tool BL161 1/2″x 5/8″ Ultra Hard “S” Jointer
Another fine tool from Kraft Tools, this S bend jointer is used on perpendicular joints such as cinder blocks or brick work where they is a half-round joint. It’s a must have tool in your are a professional bricklayer as you will eventually run into the need for this.
This S bend jointer is made in the United States. As mentioned above Kraft Tools were part of W. Rose Masonry tools which traces its tools back as early as 1798!
Bon 11-333 14-Inch by 5/8-Inch Half Round Sledrunner with Wood Handle
This sledrunner helps ensure the joint is straight on bed joints or blocks or bricks. This tool is rated well in reviews by existing owners and is made in the United States like other tools from Bon. The wooden handle is made of genuine wood and the metal is forged from one piece of steel.
Masonry Tuck Pointer 6 3/4 X 1
This Marshalltown tuck pointer is a testament to Marshalltown’s reputation for tool construction. Many reviewers comment they have had some of these tools passed from their parents or family members. Some claim the tool will even outlast a person with good care!
Tuck pointers help fill holes and smooth joints after raking on brick projects, making this another must-have tool. Marshalltown sells several different sizes for all needs as well.
Some owners claim the quality of this tool far surpasses what you can buy in big-box stores which are normally made out of soft stamped steel whereas this is made of harden steel.
- Standard tape measure: an fairly obvious tool you will use for general measuring of distances
- Folding rule: Needed as the standard tape measure ceases to stop working right once moisture gets in (and gets rusty!)
- Sliding Bevel: A classic tool that helps you with setting angels on bricks
- Square: helps mark corners and keeping masonry items squared
- Builders pencils: helps make marks or tag measurements
Stanley Hand Tools 33-725 1-1/4″ X 25′ FatMax Tape Measure
There are cheaper tape measure but this tape measure from Stanley has ample length (25 feet) for just about any project. It is made with high quality constructions and features BladeArmor to help prolong the life of the tape measure from heavy use.
Because of its heavier construction, of the tape, it doesn’t crumble easily like cheaper tape measures do which makes it easier to use on projects where you are measuring longer things.
Many owners comment that they go thru tape measures quickly and this is the only one that lasts so if you’re seeking quality this is your best bet.
Bon Tool 11-498 Poly 6-Feet Oversized Folding Brick Rule
These are great to have when doing work outdoors when it is rainy. Rain will destroy standard tape measures over time as the moisture will get inside and start to rust even good quality tape measures. This fiberglass folding brick rule helps avoid that and offers cease free measuring. We like this model by Bon Tools as its oversized. Over 90% of owners rated this highly.
Swanson 9 Inch Sliding T-Bevel Brass Bound Hardwood Handle with Metric Marks
This classic sliding bevel ruler is made with hardwood and brass and features precision etched black text so you can read it easily. A large tensioning knob lets you make easy adjustments and the locking black allows for multiple measurements while holding them easily.
The blade is made of stainless steel and offers measurements in inches and metric format with gradations on both sides of the blade. Very few commented that the bevel was not accurate so we decided to list this as our recommendation as it receives good reviews from most owners.
SWANSON Tool Co S0101 7 Inch Speed Square, Blue
If there is one tool that is most revered among masons and brick workers it is the square measuring tool. Swanson created their own segment with their unique design so this one is called the Speed Square. It’s been in production since 1925 and its made in America.
This has multiple uses including as a protractor, tri square, miter square, cutting guide and for scribing. At 7 inches it fits easily within your tool bag. The slot along the scales accommodates an adjustable locking pin for repetitive cuts.
GRAPHITE Hard Lead Carpenter Pencil #2 Lumber Pencil (72) PCS
Builders pencils are a must have for many projects beyond woodworking. They help write measurements on bricks or concrete marking. Available in many different color so you do not lose them, this package represents one of the best values you can find. One side is a broad #2 pencil style and the other side features a fine print for detailed drawings.
They are made of natural wood and lined with high-quality lacquer and work on wood, concrete, unfinished lumber, stucco, plaster, bricks, moldings, and drill points.
- Builders line: Ensures you are laying bricks straight and inline with the design pattern
- Line pins: Helps pin a line to brick or block work
- Line blocks: Assists with attaching a line to the 90 degree angles of masonry (corners) or to profiles
W. Rose RO689 Super Tough Professional Bonded Braided Nylon Mason’s Line
A must-have for any project where you are laying bricks and want them to be in a straight line. This brand of line is rated to be 35% stronger than regular mason’s line. It also includes more line than other sets we found and have one of the highest ratings online. Purchasers have commented that it does not tangle and is good for all uses except chalk line. The line is very resistant to lacerations and fraying. Other purchasers frequently comment its the best line you can buy – need we say more?
Bon Tool 11-139 Line Pins (Package of Six)
Another necessity are line pins to hold a line to bricks or blocks of work. There are more expensive brands but we think this set of six from Bon Tools is the best combination of quality for price. They are made of hardened steel, have tapered ends and since they are made by Bon Tools we are sure they will serve you well.
Masonry Line Block 3 3/4″ Wood Line Blocks | Pair
This is another must-have to help with attaching a line to the 90 degree angles of corners bricks or blocks, or to profiles. These are made in the United States and of high quality wood by Marshalltown tools.
- Soft brush: Helps remove barbs or excess mortar after jointing for cleaner appearance
- Scrub brush: Assists with cleaning up your tools, that last thing you want to do is have dried mortar on your tools, or dirt etc.
Bon Tool 22-311 Block Brush – Soft Horsehair 12 inch
This soft brush is made with genuine horsehair which works better to clean dust and other particles. You can find cheaper brushes with with plastic but the bristles are not as fine hence this brush is more expensive than its plastic based counterparts.
Kraft Tool BL427 13″ Soft Horsehair Bricklayer’s Brush
A smaller horsehair bricklayer brush but just as useful in case you need a smaller size. This one is especially well rated online and is secured by a genuine wooden handle. Like in the previous brush listing, we recommend horsehair. Some reviews do comment that some bristles fall out occasionally, which might be due to horsehair’s very thin threads.
The Importance Of A Quality Level & Tools
Laying bricks or brick work is a centuries old art and requires several different types of tools and levels to accomplish the several ways bricklayers work. Bricklaying tools involve many different types but commonly include a brick trowel, a pointing trowel, tape measure, line pins, soft brush, gauge rod, spirit levels, and others. You can buy these tools in several ways, but we recommend starting with a bricklayers kit which will include most of the tools you will need to do basic work. Bricklaying tools can be expensive but your investment will pay back itself when using quality tools and handy tool to cut bricks.
We also listed several tools individually if you’re seeking to replace an old one or build your own set. Let us know if we missed any popular tools or if you have any recommendations!
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