Masonry

Technological Mix

A fireplace in a circa 1900 mansion. The floors are terra cotta tile arches supported on steel beams. The fill layer that runs over the arches has been temporarily removed during the current construction, leaving the tops of the beams standing proud above the terra cotta surface. The beams are supported by brick bearing walls. …

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A Fake That Is Real

The picture shows an old mansion in Brooklyn, currently in renovation. It’s got the standard 1910 New York mansion construction: brick bearing walls, steel beams and tile arches for the floors, and terra-cotta block partitions for the room dividers. The groin vault on the left is fake: it’s plaster on metal lath, hung from the …

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Oddball Variations

Anything that people do, they find ways to do differently. So for anything human-made we have, we have variations of it. Sometimes those variations are harmless and provide entertaining debate – the designated hitter rule being used in the American League but not in the National League comes to mind – and sometimes they are …

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Another Massive Fake

That is not an arch. Sure, it’s arched, but (a) the big steel column extending through the middle is sort of a tip-off that the old New York Evening Post building is a steel-frame structure and (b) there are windows on both side of the arched opening that are directly in line with where the …

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The Thrill Of Reality

After a lot of discussion, I’ve brought the story of the Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of Saint Sava up to date. Steel erection started not long ago, and the new roof trusses are in place. The current work is the roof enclosure – the steel deck that is the actual roof supported on the trusses – …

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