In this country there is no legal standard for the size of bricks, and the dimensions vary with the maker and also with the locality. In the New England States the common brick averages about 7¾x3¾x2¼ inches. In most of the Western States common bricks measure about 8½x4 1/8x2½ inches, and the thickness of the walls measures about 9, 13, 18 and 22 inches for thicknesses of 1, 1½, 2 and 2½ bricks. The size of all common bricks varies considerably in each lot, according to the degree to which they are burnt; the hard bricks being from 1/8 to 3/16 of an inch smaller than the salmon bricks.
Pressed brick or face brick are more uniform in size, as most of the manufacturers use the same size of mould. The prevailing size for pressed brick is 8 3/8x4 1/8x2 3/8 inches. Pressed bricks are also made 1½ inches thick and 12x4x1½ inches, the latter size being generally termed Roman brick, or tile.
Pressed bricks should be made of such size that two headers and a joint will equal one stretcher, and it is also desirable that the length of a brick should be equal to three courses of bricks when laid. The National Brickmakers' Association in 1887 and the National Traders' and Builders' Association in 1889 adopted 8¼x4x2¼ inches as the standard size for common bricks, and 8 3/8x4 1/8x2¼ for face bricks.
As all bricks shrink more or less in burning, it is generally necessary to assort even pressed bricks into piles of different thicknesses in order to get first-class work.
The weight of bricks varies considerably with the quality of the clay from which they are made, and also of course with their size. Common bricks average about 4½ pounds each, and pressed bricks vary from 5 to 5½ pounds each.