Ralph W. Liebing RA, CSI, CPCA, CBO (auth.)-Handbook of Detailing_ The Graphic Anatomy of Constructi

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Unformatted text preview: fJ SpringerWienNewYork Handbook of Detailing The Graphic Anatomy of Construction Ralph W. Liebing, RA, CSI, CPCA, CBO SpringerWienNewYork Ralph W. Liebing, RA, CSI, CPCA, CBO Senior Architect - Specifications HIXSON Architects. Engineers. Interiors 659 Van Meter Street Cincinnati, OH 45202. USA This work is sub ject to copyright. All rights are reserved, whether the whole or part of the material is concerned. specifically those of translation. reprinting, re-use of illustrations. broadcasting, reproduction by photocopying machines or similar means. and storage in data banks. Product Liability: The publisher can give no guarantee for the information contained in this book. The use of registered names, trademarks. etc. in this publication does not imply. even in the absence of specific statement. that such names are exempt from the relevant protective laws and regulations and therefore free for general use. e 2009 Springer-VerlarJVienna Printed in Austria SpringerWienNewYork is a part of Springer Science-Business Media springer.at This book contains 300 figures/details from many different sources. they are examples of use in daily practice. were part of actual project documents and not necessarily intended for publication. So in some cases the quality might - despite lithography - not be perfect. but deficiency of reproduction does not spoil the content. nor distract from the lessons that can be learned . The publisher and editor kindly wish to inform you that in some cases. despite efforts to do so, the obtaining of copyright permissions and usage of excerpts of text is not always successful. Layout: Vera Gehmayer, , 2340 Modling, Austria Coverdesign : Waiter Zivny. Springer-Verlag, 1201 Vienna, Austria Photocredit back cover: photo courtesy of constructionphotographs.com Printing and binding: Holzhausen Druck & Medien GmbH , 1140 Vienna, Austria Printed on acid-free and chlorine-free bleached paper SPIN: 12197842 Library of Congress Control Number: 2009924399 With numerous figures ISBN 978 -3-211 -99134-3 SpringerWienNewYork TABLE or CONTENTS 5 TABLE OF CONTENTS PREFACE 6 FRAME OF REFERENCE 9 THE END RESULT 10 THE CONTEXT 29 INTRODUCTION 42 HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE 49 THETHRUST OF DETAILING 58 THE REALI1Y OF DETAILING 77 QUESTIONS TO ASK ABOUr DETAILING 99 THE INDMDUAL EFFORT 105 REVIEW OF SAMPLE DETAILS 119 DISCUSSION OF CASE STUDIES 238 ANALYSIS OF A DETAIL 321 DETAILS "BY OTHERS" 336 EPILOGUE 370 APPENDICES: A: B: C: D: Excerptof speech by Professor Edward Alien, FAIA Construction Abbreviations Listof trade and professional organizations Book Listand Added Resources 372 374 385 392 GLOSSARy 396 INDEX 423 PREFACE 6 PREFACE In a world of rapid and ever-changing practices, among design professionals, there is, we feel, a need to at least recall other times- times more sedate, slower paced, but nonetheless no less highly professional. And to bring them forward for expression, understanding and use in today's professional practice. Indeed, they may have been MORE professional. This is not whining or lamenting about times passed by persons late in their career trying desperately to hold on to that past- to things obsolete, outmoded, archaic or snail-like slow. It is about being open, factual, and advisory about moving forward, in new ways, but maintaining a sense of and use of well proven values- basics and fundamentals so very vital and valuable to the success of project, but so easily lost, too quickly. No one can rationally decry or dismiss the evolution of computerized drafting, and the increasing use and ever-evolving sophistication of the related systems. But in all this we are loosing a sense of what we must be about and indeed, what we need to do and accomplish- using the expression of CAD and other computer capabilities. The loss centers on the lack of a truly hands-on and respectful relationship to our drawings, and with that the inherent thought process of what to do, how to relate it, and how to do it [i.e., the knowledge of appropriate construction materials, methods, techniques and systems]. Along with the "feel" of pencil on paper [or other manual drafting media] and the need to understand how to make a line properly, convincingly and correctly, we have, for the most part, lost track of both the intent and the content of the drawings. What are the drawings "supposed" to do? Why do they even exist? What should beshown on thedrawings? How should the individual drawings bedone? When "mechanical drawing" and drafting efforts, even at the junior high school level, began to be computer activities, the drafter [operator) was literally "cushioned or isolated" from the feel of the lines and the drawings, by the keyboard . Punching a typewriter-like [look it up, it existed too] key is far distant from starting, drawing, and finishing a line, with proper weight, width and intensity, as well as style and understanding of impact and purpose. Now the "key" triggers an electronic sequence which instantaneously produces a line- but, oops! The line is yellow on the screen, what does that mean? You don't know; well, how do you know the line is the right line at all? Thus, our dilemma - of growing proportions. The further we move from mid-20th century the more we stray from the mindset, direction, execution and understanding of working drawings, and detailing of that time. We seek not to regenerate and reinstall those times- but we sincerely feel and strongly suggest that there needs to be a lasting expression of those times, and the filling of the voids left by time- from then .til now. Techniques may change, but understanding, direction, orientation, and values from the past remain valid, important and of value- particularly when they were so successful. Here, history is not bad; it can teach; it can give context and meaning to the effort; it can make better simply by being able to talk to and inform today's drafters and those still coming on-board ... whenever. This book was conceived to present a new understanding and approach to the task of detailing construction projects. There are numerous books which present "sample" or "representative" detail drawings, which mayor maynot be pertinent to the project in hand. Often these are used merely for reference, and to present thought-provoking impetus for correct detailing. In some cases, they are actually proposed asdetails thatcan be copied and directly utilized in project documents. To date detailing remains an enigma rarely addressed specifically in architecture curricula. One of prime exceptions where clarity is provided comes in the works, in years past, of Professor Edward Allen, both in his academic career, his comments and writing on the state of technical architectural courses in general and in his several books. But especially in his ARCHITECTURAL DETAILING: Function, Constructibility, Aesthetics [written with Professor Patrick Rand and published in second edition by John WHey & Sons; 2007] This is the one book on detailing committed to teaching the process of detailing [many other "detailing books" merely contain collections of suggested or example details, for consideration, adaption and re-use- no real teaching of the process]. Allen's book stems from his class notes he used at Yale, MIT, Oregon and other schools where his stated task was to teach detailing- this direction and his expertise and dedication earned him high esteem and the 2005 AlAjACSA Topaz PREFACE Award. This exception is a book that can easily be portrayed, envisioned, suggested, and strongly recommended as a companion to this book. Professor Allen introduces, explains, and elaborates on a series of very fundamental "patterns" for detailing, that he has developed for and through his courses at Yale, MIT and other schools of architecture. Each pattern acts as a firm conceptual basis and rationale for problem solving, in producing construction documents, and the requisite construction detailing . His fundamentals provide theoretical insight into the various solutions that can be extracted by utilizing or applying one or more of the principles [the "patterns" I to solve a particular problem. This provides both student and professional with a reliable and basic resource catalog, which identifies problem areas that require detailing, sparks ideas, shows flexibility in problem solving, and facilitates innovation for common sense, and positive solutions. The concepts are fully developed in the text, and accompanied by illustrations, both written and graphic. I would like to pay more than merely due tribute to this excellent and insightful effort by Professor Allen, in conjunction with his numerous other books on the technical side of architecture- all are recommended here with highest regard! In my communication with Professor Allen, he suggested that another book by the author of this book, could act as a resource for the "mechanics" of detailing, or the correct depiction and implementation of the solutions developed through use of his patterns. It seems appropriate, though, to extract and isolate the specific information on detailing [from other aspects of working drawings] since this process is so fundamental to the success of the transfer of information for every project, and indeed, to the project itself. The use of the best and most appropriate mechanics to display the solutions, well-founded through use of Professor Alien's' patterns, should provide the undergirding for good , well-conceived detailing solutions. The goal is the clear, accurate, pertinent, concise and complete communication of those solutions to the field, and in turn, high quality construction faithful to the approved design concept. This effort is toward the graphic communications aspects of detailing, which are noted as an area ofcurrent interest. Alien's book is excellent, but does not address the graphics- rather it puts forth a system for assessing detailing needs, construction problems that require solution, and basic problem-solving formats . While he includes some detail drawings, his message 7 relates to the way in which details are conceived and formu lated by using various considerations [which he calls "patterns "]. I feel his book is well founded and has the strength of history on its side having been his text for his classes at Yale and MIT. This book, by virtue of a comment by Professor Allen, to the author, centers on the graphics or mechanics of detailing. That is the reason for setting out and then answering the 6 questi ons, "What, Why....." This text goes toward the rationale behind how solutions based on Alien's patterns can be conveyed to the field, in proper order and in a format that is usable by the trade workers. Also, the text goes to the understanding of the intent and content of details on the part of young professionals who do the detailing. There is no competitive scenario here, with Professor Alien's book. Perhaps this text is parallel, but mainly it is supplementary and complimentary. The bottom line is that you can conceive very fine details via Alien's information but if you cannot successfully convey your information and solutions to the workers, via your graphics, you have failed to do your job as a detailer, And your project will suffer in m ore than one way. That is a shame, and professionally unsatisfactory or intolerable. If you have the capacity via Allen to produce very good details, only to come up short through poor execution and understanding of the process that disseminates that information, you are contributing as required. So what started as a sincere quest to produce a relevant current text has now become a valid effort to pass along the stan dards and values from past years- those that are still vitally important, and crucial to successful construction. Certainly, this book can be projected as a supplementary text, since very few schools and courses support full courses dedicated to detailing [unlike Yale and MIT who utilize Edward Allen's expertise]. The information, it is felt, is invaluable to the young professional, no matter what format, equipment, office environment, or project is involved. Yousolve problems by detailing, and then incorporate the solutions in the actual work by telling the trade workers exactly what is to be done! It is my sincere desire that this effort not be perceived as old codger spewing forth archaic, fuddy-duddy information . I have had the grand opportunity to practice across a good number of years, and have had many wonderful people around me, who evidently saw some potential in me. They saw fit to teach me, to help me to understand and grasp the concepts of project documentation and detailing. They were talented and very competent people, skilled, knowledgeable 8 and experienced- successful! I seek only to put forth information that I feel is needed and is helpful to the current and" future professionals. This information is not readily available elsewhere. Information that may be seated in the past, but which is the foundation of successful detailing today, and in coming years. The joy of practice, and successful employment lies, I feel, in the inner-self who is able to come to the conclusion [as I did one day during my co-op college days) that "I understand this [practice, detailing, documenting, etc.) and I can do it- and do it well". Even today after a fairly long career, I can personally attest to the rush of pride, consuming joy, and personal satisfaction to solve a problem by creating a good, responsive detail- makes one want to pump the fist and shout out, "YES!!!" That is a tremendous revelation that I wish to each of the readers. Ralph W. Liebing, RA, CS!, CPCA, CBO Cincinnati, Ohio, USA Dedication: This book is dedicated to my wife Arlene, my daughter Alissa, son-in-law Bob and granddaughter, Mya; to my many colleagues over years of practice; and to all those architects, drafters, CAD drafters and others whose daily dedication to "getting the details right" for the project's design concept, yield successful projects in the clients' best interests. PREFACE FRAME OF REFERENCE 9 FRAME OF REFERENCE Before engaging and studying this book, the author invites/ urges the readers to review the following . Certainly astute comment that indicate and correctly place the function of detailing in the documentation process! This isthe Abstract from a talk given by Professor Edward Alien * at a Faculty forum at Iowa State University in 2007. It is a true expression of the needs of the design professions, and what can and should be done. And it sets our frame of reference- the understanding of the process and methodology that facilitates the correct depiction, use and communication of the information that is developed through efforts similar to what Professor Alien outlines Not Your Father's Technical Courses Edward Alien, recent visiting professor in building technology, MIT Abstract Technical courses should be about turning dreams into reality, drawing upon thedazzling array of materials, devices and physical principles that are available to designers. As such, technical courses ought to bethe most exciting, empowering offerings in the architecture and engineering curricula. But in most universities, they are neither exciting nor empowering. We have managed to make them dull and often despised. This situation has come about because we have failed to realize that technology is not synonymous with mathematics or science. We have tended to teach only what is mathematical orscientific about technical subjects, ignoring crucial concerns such asselection of materials and systems, design development of technical systems as integral components of architecture, detailing, [emphasis added] and planning for construction. We turn outgraduates who have been exposed to the math and science of buildings, but who are unable to build. Students of architecture and engineering must be taught to build imaginatively and well. This presentation will offer several simple guidelines for creating poweiful, exciting technical courses that develop theability to build, and will show examples of their implementation. Elsewhere Professor Alien had commented as follows: "Detailing isyour sole language ofexpression as ... an architect. Details tell others how to get your project built in the way that you wantit built. If you can'tdesign the major details yourself, someone else will have todoit for you- And that person is likely to have a greater effect on the outcome than you do." *- See excerpt of speech by Professor Alien, in appendix, where he states his approach and philosophy for detailing. CHAPTER ON E- THE END RESULT 10 THE END RESULT Straight Talk The strongest of cases must be made for the process of detailing! This is not to emphasize or give undue status to an essential and important activity, that some see as inconsequential. There is no pretension that detailing is the dominant, pre-eminent or superior function in the design and construction of architectural projects; but neithercan it beclaimed that it is minimal, inconsequential or unnecessary! It is, however, the primary facilitating factor in achieving a successful project! Rather it is to give due credit, in the grand scheme of architectural and construction projects, [and indeed to the whole of the professional services provided by architects] to n eminently important task that is too often murky in the minds of many, minimized by others and maligned by far too many. In addition, most unfortunately, many professionals do not understand the work involved, the necessity for it, and how to best accomplish its intent. "Designing details is not a neat, linear, fully logical operation. Like any design process, it is engagingly messy and complex. It involves false starts, wrong turns, mental blocks, dead ends, backtracking, and moments of despair- as well as purposeful progress, intelligent decisions, creative synthesis and gratifying moments of inspiration, in sight and triumph." - Edward Alien, FAlA Professorof Architecture (ret.) Oregon; MIT; Yale University; Washington and Montana State Universities There is no way to shy away from, avoid or equivocate on this single, simple fact and direct premise that persists, undeniable and irrefutable: To produce successful works of architecture, from the most modest to the most innovative/revolutionary, the architect [and allied staffJ must have the wherewithal to utilize drafting skills [in one mode or another] to create meaningful depictions of the construction; calling upon and based on the application of a large and deep pool of construction knowledge in a format/configuration/manner fully supporting and true to the design concept. The rhetoric of badgering, sermonizing or pontification simply fails in any attempt to deny or refute the truth that detailing is the overriding, fundamental, pre-requisite skill for all architects. Design may be considered as the architect's premier skill or forte, and may be to one's liking, but it must rely on detailing to be successfully executed. The higher the level of detailing skill [coupled with at least commensurate construction knowledge] the greater the capacity of the architect for innovative problem solving, flexibility of thinking, depiction of sound construction, good communication of the information and consistently successful projects. The level of skill in detailing is the basis that determines the level ofsatisfactory achievement required in thefinished project - high skill demands high result, etc. Neither is this [mainly because there is no need to] an apologetic attempt to glamorize or glorify one function of professional practice for architects. It is really to provide a more balanced view of practice and one of the tasks that vitally needed , and which require skill, insight, flexibility and a good depth of construction knowledge. It does not [and there is no suggestion here] supplant design as the primary tasks in ar...
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