Professor Montgomery

Author: JaimeR


In reading number six “Building construction illustrated” chapters 5.25 ~ 12.14, we go over five different building elements. We review the terminology and functions for brick/CMU bonding, wood components, steel shapes reinforced Concrete and precast Concrete floor systems. Beginning with Masonry, Brick is extensively used for cladding on the building envelope. Structural clay tiles are used in areas of heavy wear, or places with lots of moisture. There are Different wall thicknesses and patterns that can be constructed. For example, “Wythe” is a continuous vertical section of a brick one unit in thickness. On the other hand, “course” is a continuous horizontal arrangement of bricks. A “stretcher” are bricks laid horizontally with the longer edge parallel to the surface. Mortar joints are mentioned as well, some examples of these joints are concave joints, v-joints, struck joints, and weathered joints. Brick is also used for cavity walls, which uses the running bond method. Standard brick walls can use either Flemish, Common or Stack for decorative purposes. Next building element is wood; Wood is classified as a renewable material that can be cut and shaped in order to satisfy the demand of a structural load. Lumber; which is simply wood that has been cut to a specific dimension is used as structural lumber, boards and timber. Each has its own strength and load requirements. loads must be evenly distributed with the use of a grid system that supports load bearing elements. Connections between wood pieces can be made by using steel plates, bolts, nails and much more. Steel beams on the other hand are much stronger and are forged instead of cut. Steel beams can be connected using angles, stiffer plates, and bolts. The strength of these connections depends the alignment between individual iron pieces and their size. Then we come across Reinforced concrete, which in most circumstances act as great load bearing columns. Concrete beams main function is to resist applied forces. Lastly precast concrete slabs and beams are used in helping to span units that may be supported by site cast concrete, steel, precast concrete frames. In chapter eight Ching speaks about masonry, and the fact that for the majority of human history masonry was the main material used in building technology, A lot of the foundation and facade were made by using the simplest of building techniques that required more skilled laborer’s than complicated equipment. Materials such as brick, stone, or concrete blocks were stacked in order to make walls and load bearing walls. The chapter also goes into depth about mortar mixes, the construction of brick masonry and its ingredients and components. It emphasizes that brick is the best material to build with when it comes to its fire resistant and color schemes. Bricks also are made with hollow cores to add grouting and reinforcing steel and was easily upgraded when insulation material was later introduced.

Reading #5

In reading assignment 5 ( Material & Properties / Ching ; 12.04 ~ 12.12 ) We explore the strengths and weakness of five fundamental building materials. the materials discussed are Stone, Brick/CMU, wood, steel and concrete. Following the reading order, we start off with the properties of stone; stone can be comprised of different compact minerals and inorganic matter, its compressibility is fairly high compared to its shear strength, being only 1/10 of its strength. This is why stone works very well when using it as load bearing walls.  these stones can be broken down into five categories; Hardness, Durability, work-ability, density and appearance. these characteristics of the stone determines how it should be used in a particular project. There  are three types of rock formation – Igneous , Metamorphic rock and sedimentary with some familiar names such as granite, marble and limestone falling under one of those classifications respectively. Next comes Masonry, which refers to brick, stone or concrete block. Brick which is defined by Chang as “a masonry unit of clay, formed into a rectangular prism ~ hardened by firing in a kiln” has different classification, which are determined by its moisture content, two types of brick  are called “common brick” and “face brick”.  these bricks come in different grades according to its resilience against  weather; classifications are NW, MW, and SW , with higher weather tolerance going from left to  right. concrete masonry which are precast of Portland cement are broken down into two groups; Grade N – load bearing concrete 800 to 1500 psi and  Grade S load bearing concrete 600 to 1000 psi and no moisture. The next material to discuss is wood; Wood can be broken down into two classes, Soft wood and hard wood. some examples of soft wood is ever green, pine and hemlock which can be used in general construction. some exampled of hardwood would be cherry maple and oak which can be used as decorative floor paneling. wood generally has 1/3 more of its force if  cut parallel to its grain. but steel which is the following construction material is the best of all worlds, steel has a compression and shear strength of about 50,000 psi and is defined by having a carbon content less than that of cast iron,  more than raw iron and is heat treated. steel can become hard or soft depending on the carbon content within the alloy. steel becomes ductile at approximately 1000 degrees Fahrenheit, making it necessary to coat it with anti corrosion and heat material.  the last material concrete is made from various minerals but can primary be broken down by its clay to limestone mixture. The Law D.A Abrams states that  Comprehensive strength of concrete is inversely proportional to the ratio of water to cement. A cement mixture with a water ratio approximately 0.45 ~ 0.60 can fully cure and harden after 28 days, with the 7th day allowing for early strength concrete.


Summary #4

For chapters 2.19 through 2.23 in Chang’s “Building Construction illustrated” we are introduced to three key elements when thinking about the design and construction of an inclosed space. The first being structural Units and the two dementions which defines it; Horizontal span (which should consist of either reinforced concrete, slabs, gurders or planks) and Vertical support ( consisting of loadbearing walls, columns and beams). The second topic (Structural patterns) dives into the purpose of creating a grid that aligns with the functionality of the structure; which ultimately will determine the placement of the columns or load bearing walls according to the critical points or intersections within the grid. The third point made by chan is Lateral stability, which should have one of the following constructions; knee bracing, k brace or cross bracing in order to better  avoid destructive torsion.