Customizing, Cutting and Modifying Blocks

Splitting and cutting blocks

Video: How to Build Split and Cut Blocks

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How-To Sheet #210

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Install Guide

The AB Courtyard Collection blocks come with a built in angle. By splitting the blocks at a quarter(1/4),half (1/2) or three-quarter(3/4) length, you create a straight side to the block. See the AB Courtyard product page for detailed information as to where the blocks are to be cut or split to fit properly.

The straight side that is created with splitting is needed when meeting up with a flat surface or when building curves within a wall panel. You can modify the blocks using a hammer and chisel when splitting or a saw with a masonry blade when cutting the block. Some of the blocks are produced with pre-marked splitting notches for ease of locating the cut line, but any ofthe blocks can be modified


Always wear safety glasses when splitting or cutting block. A dust mask is recommended when cutting block.

Splitting a concrete block

Score all sides of block with chisel

Splitting a concrete block

A few sharp blows should yield a nice split

Score the Block with a Saw

Score block with a saw

Use Chisel To Split the Block

Use chisel and hammer to split at score line

Splitting an AB Courtyard Block

Tools for Splitting a concrete block

Splitting and Cutting Tools

Use a hammer and chisel,tap around the entire block in the same locationwhere the split is needed to create a quarter(1/4),half(1/2) or three-quarter(3/4)length piece. Then strike the chisel with more force in the score line to break the block

Cutting an AB Courtyard Block

Use a circular saw to score around the entire block in the same location where the split is needed to create a score line for the quarter(1/4), half(1/2) or three-quarter(3/4) length piece.Then with a hammer and chisel,tap around the score line until the block splits. A masonry saw or a metal chop saw can also be used to make a complete cut through the block, eliminating the use of the hammer and chisel.

Cutting AB Courtyard Corner Blocks

First determine where the corner block will need to be cut/split.

Use a circular saw with a masonry blade to score around the entire block and then with a hammer and chisel score around the block until it breaks. This should yield a nice split.


Use a masonry saw with a dry cutting diamond blade. This method makes a complete cut and eliminates the need for a hammer and chisel.


Use a metal chop saw with a dry cutting diamond blade to cut the block.

NOTE: Masonry saws and metal chop saws are available for rental at most retail centers.