11 January 2009

My new bicycle workshop

I need some excuse to show off this roof on this bicycling blog.

The excuse is that this will be the ceiling over my intended bicycle workshop. Above will be Nashesha's bedroom.

I could make this a long, long, story as it involves many parts in my life over 15 years. However I will be brief.

I have been building a house at the clay brick factory for 4 years in the chance we have to move from where we live now.

My original well thought out floorplan keeps changing. It is bad enough that I can not make up my mind on the floor plan and keep changing the plan. Then add to that our ability to build with bricks is evolving.

The past 6 months several two factors have come up to make me change the floor above the garage/workshop from wood frame and floor to a groined brick vault. First the price of lumber has shot up astronomically and secondly my personal progress in brick building has followed the evolution in building Gothic cathedrals in Europe from wood trusses to barrel vaulted roofs to groined vaulted ceilings.

It started with plain single storey brick buildings 20 years ago.

From experience building underground water storage tanks and bio gas digestors I then built round rooms with dome roofs. Not very practical.

Then I learned about catenary vaults as roofs. As I mentioned previously, this was built as a storage room but Diana our maid lives here now.

Thomas Caspary a local architect then got me trying flatter vaults for between floors

The past month we have made groined vault for floor/ceiling.
Here is my mason Robson trying to figure out how to place the first brick on each arch. It was trial and error for a few days.

And our man Robson showing off his finished work, before pointing.

He built without form work, using one r-bar as a template for each wall. The bricks are put up quite dry or dry and the mud mortar works like glue and holds if you build fast enough.

The next step is high angle groined vaults, suitable for churches and musical buildings as shown below.

1 comment:

  1. WOW, I'm impressed with the vaulted ceilings ....and done without a form!! When touring the cathedrals in Europe, I heard that the builder had to be in the dome as the scaffolding was taken down. Then if the ceiling didn't hold, he got immediate punishment.
    If you have a slight vault between floors, doesn't that make the floor on the 2nd story be curved?? Byrna