Hello. Have you ever wanted to speak like a highly skilled tradesperson but could never quite find the right words? Conversational Tradespeak 101 will help you talk-the-talk with no trades experience necessary. Each week we will look at some common, and not so common, trade terms. We will define the term before putting it to use in everyday conversation. We will also misuse the term for no particular reason other than a mild form of entertainment.
Definition: A very fluid form of mortar used to fill gaps. It is used in construction to seal empty areas and fill joints like the areas between tiles. It is a mix of water, cement, sand, and usually, a colour tint is added to match the masonry unit.
Proper Usage: “Nothing fills the void like grout!”
Improper Usage: “The best time to catch a nice grout is just after dark and a few meters from the shore. With a little lemon, cooked over an open fire, grout makes a tasty meal. Catfish are nasty!”
Definition: The temporary wall ends where alternate stretchers project out. Projecting masonry units are called tooths.
Proper Usage: The toothing process can be used when a window or door opening is to be cut into an existing masonry wall.
Improper Usage: “I’m exhausted. Baby Humphrey has been crying all night. I think he’s toothing.”
Definition: A single component of a prefabricated roof framing system, normally built off-site and delivered as part of the complete truss package.
Proper Usage: “The transport carrying the trusses to the Trunket Project was hotwired while parked at a Tim Hortons, so the project is at a standstill at the moment.
”Improper Usage: “Sandy has truss issues ever since her Facebook account was hacked.”
Term: Tongue and Groove
Trade: Carpentry / Flooring
Definition: Type of plywood that locks together.
Proper Usage: “Tongue and Groove flooring is very popular in homes that have floors. Plywood that locks together stays together.”
Improper Usage: “Tongue ‘n Groove jazz makes me nervous with all the frenzied tootling.”