A huge job, a tight schedule, and a constricted site presented the Veazey Corp., Houston, with a problem: how to keep 50 masons supplied with mortar without using hoists, cranes, or elevators to transfer mortar tubs to scaffolds. Don Bush, Veazey's chief estimator and project manager, and Tom Sweet, general foreman for the project, came up with an unusual solution-pumping mortar from mixers on the ground to the working levels above. The project was the Harris County Jail in downtown Houston. SCOPE OF THE PROJECT The 650,000-square-foot, 4,000-bed facility is the largest full- service jail in the United States. Total materials used were 850,000 face brick; 820,000 lightweight concrete block; 4,000 glazed block for the kitchen area; and about 2,000 pieces of precast stone. The project required 5,000 cubic yards of grout and 2,300 cubic yards of mortar. SETUP TO PUMP The job required three mortar mixers and three grout pumps. Each mixer had a 12-cubic-yard capacity. All pumps were designed for grout with up to 3/8-inch aggregate. Mortar was pumped as high as 90 feet and as far as 120 feet. MORTAR AND GROUT USED Specifications called for Type S portland cement-lime mortar (1 bag portland cement, 1/2 bag lime, 4 1/2 cubic feet of sand: 1800 psi) to be used on the whole job. Typically, about 5 gallons of water would be added to this mix. Pumped mortar, however, needs to be fairly wet to go through the machine. Veazey recommends adding about a gallon more water than usual to each batch.