Month: September 2016

Not How It’s Supposed To Work

This is not good (click to play video):   That’s steel sheet pile that was installed a few years ago to reinforce a bulkhead. It’s supposed to be capable of withstanding the pressure of earth trying to slide into the water, the pressure of water trying to move landward, and the pressure of waves hitting during a …

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Historic Non-Structural Detail: A Terrible Mistake

Kids, don’t try this at home: That’s a picture taken during brick replacement at a small 1870s building. As was common during the late 1800s and most of the 1900s, the roofing was flashed to the now-removed brick parapet with a heavy application of tar. In the picture above, you see the roof-joist ends at the …

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Non-Structure

The white stripes show the gaps between the now-removed lath: Structural engineering is about structure, right? A while ago, while looking at a historic house upstate, we ran into a problem. The building had wood-stud bearing walls sheathed with clapboard and we ran into an obvious problem: the bearing walls were not performing properly. The studs were buckling, …

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Bannerman Island, Again

Bannerman’s Island in 2003: This article in Brownstoner is a nice description of the history and buildings of Bannerman Island, even if we’re not mentioned. Our first phase of bracing for the arsenal and the flagpoles for the Constellation art installation are quite prominent in the top photo. Given that this is the third time …

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The Shoe’s On The Other Foot

The current view out of my office window: There’s fairly extensive pointing of the limestone exterior of our building going on, and our windows have been taped shut. It’s noisy, and annoying that we can’t open our windows, and distracting to have swing-stages going by on a regular basis. I guess this is what it’s …

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