Brick Houses & Homes
The characteristics of brick for houses & homes building.
¶ Th portions of the country where stone is not easily obtainable, it becomes necessary to substitute brick. While these make a firm, durable, and excellent wall, they are not so satisfactory as stone in an architectural point of view for country houses; yet by various expedients, the principal objection to the use of bricks in country building, to wit, their harshness of color, is overcome. The objection to stone on the score of internal dampness may be urged with equal force against brick, and the same remedies are found necessary.
¶ In various parts of Europe, it has long been the practice to build hollow walls, and it is now admitted to be the best mode of building brick houses. It gives a greater amount of strength with an equal quantity of brick and mortar; as a preventive of dampness, dispenses with the necessity of the usual practice of firring-off with wood; saves the cost of lathing the interior walls, the plaster being laid directly on the inner face of the brick-work. It is alleged, however, and perhaps with some foundation in truth, that in warm, Southern climates, the wood-firring is the best preventive. Whatever theories may be advanced on the subject, experience must be admitted as the most satisfactory test, and the superiority of the hollow wall over the wood-firring, in point of durability and exemption from the dangers of fire, must give way to the imperative demand for dryness in home rooms.
¶ In picture 1, A represents a 16-inch wall, the hollow space being 4 inches. The outer section of the wall is a double course of bricks, and the inner a single course, connected to the former by the tie-brick a.
¶ In the second course of this wall, B, the position of the tie-brick, is changed to 6, increasing the strength of the wall by breaking the joints. The position of the tie-bricks will thus be alternated throughout the whole height of the wall. Laying every alternate course with headers, as shown at B, is favorable to strength, but is not admissible unless the exterior is to be stuccoed or cemented. When to be left smooth for coloring or painting, stretchers, as shown at C and D, are preferable for the outside of the wall. The bond is then formed by splitting the bricks of the outer course as at A, picture 2, and completing the thickness with a course of three-quarter tie-bricks, or cuttinr the corners of the stretchers and laying the tie-brick dia- gonally, as at B, picture Fia. 2. Either of these methods apply more satisfactorily to a solid 12-inch wall.
¶ The hollow 12-inch wall shown in picture 3 is a simple and cheap expedient where a moderate height of wall is required, without the necessity of supporting a great weight. By the addition of another brick on the outside, a 16-inch wall is attained, but not so highly recomniended as that shown in picture 1. The dotted lines show the position of the bricks b and d in the next course, which, lapping on a and c, give the necessary bond.
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