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Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2018 10:25 am
by Matt
What was the prefabrication system of these homes? I take it the horizontal wall elements? Or were entire walls shipped to the site? It seems there was still a lot of custom building on site for these homes.

Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2018 10:59 am
by Forest
If you read the Prospectus, you will see that the exterior walls were shipped as panels, with sheathing, siding and windows installed. Interior surfaces were not pre-installed to allow for electrical work. Of course, the wall sections had to be limited to a dimension that would fit a trailer, so some field joinery would have been required. Interior partitions were likewise shipped as framed panels, ready for finished surfaces once the utilities were in place.
From the Prospectus I would assume that the roof system was constructed on site from components provided.

Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:04 pm
by Paul Ringstrom
It is really too bad the Model "C" was never built. It may be my favorite. It has some of the features of Model "B" with the high ceiling in the living room, but it is more horizontal (Wrightian).

Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2018 4:45 pm
by Roderick Grant
I agree, Paul. #3 looks more like FLW's work than the other two. Like the ASBH buildings, the modest Cottage B-1, and many of the other unbuilt cottages of similar size, are more interesting than a lot of the larger houses that were executed.

Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 5:06 pm
by DRN
I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest the masonry base, end of wall trellis, and fascia details seen on the two-story Erdman Prefab are likely what Wright had in mind and evolved for the Model C in his drawings.
A pic of Rudin with the relevant details: ... din-house/

Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 5:23 pm
by SDR
That certainly seems to be the case. Those photos reveal that the Erdman II has its ground-floor level a full two-foot vertical unit (there should be a single
term for that vertical unit ?) below the top of the masonry base. How could that have escaped attention til now ? I find no section drawings of an Erdman
Prefab of any stripe . . .


Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:16 pm
by SDR
Here again are Erdman II elevations, as published in Taschen III, and two plans, the first from that publication, the second published in Monograph 8.

Image T 5706.026

Image T 5706.027

Image T 5706.03

A note at the top of this plan calls out the two perimeter walls -- foundation and planter -- at Datum + 2'-0"; the kitchen is Datum + 1'-0", the living room
Drum + 2'-0" (changed to, or from, 1'-0"). Stairs have been drawn and erased.

The pinwheel arrangement of the "moat" (planter) in the second (earlier ? later ?) plan is notable. A note to a unit line in the carport reads, "Edge of
Conc. Mat"; the driveway is called out as gravel. Does the note in the carport indicate that the majority of that space would have a graveled floor ?
Is the enclosed but doorless Erdman II carport more garage-like than the Usonian prototype ? An appeal to the average home-buyer ? Would this
space remind Mr Wright of outbuildings like the ones in his own courtyard -- and perhaps the flooring of the vernacular Japanese house wherein the
unpaved ground enters the enclosure, within which is the raised wood platform that is the floor of the house ?


Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 9:21 pm
by clydethecat
When were these prefabs removed from the market?

Posted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:37 am
by DRN
"Edge of Conc. Mat"; the driveway is called out as gravel. Does the note in the carport indicate that the majority of that space would have a graveled floor ?
Most of Wright's carports are gravel...some early Usonians had concrete: Suntop, Christie I know do...both were built by Harold Turner. Goetsch-Winckler, also built by Turner, has concrete now, but I'm not sure if that is original; the plan noted gravel. There are likely others.

The incontinence of cars is not good for the tinted concrete finish. Shady carports, if paved, can become icy...again, salt on tinted concrete is not good.

Posted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:56 am
by SDR
So, my question is, how many of those houses have gravel-paved carports, and how many have an extension of the slab as the paving material ?


Posted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:00 pm
by Roderick Grant
SDR, I think you're reaching a bit. I've seen McBean, and there is no 'Japanoiserie' evident. It's All-American! The drive and carport are concrete now, but may have been gravel originally.

The rough drawing is preliminary; the almost identical as-built plans of Rudin and McBean differ significantly from the prelim.

Posted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:09 pm
by SDR
Just daydreaming there; I'm not suggesting any intentional reference.

Another related question: how many, if any, Taliesin plan drawings indicate the planning grid when no grid is in evidence in the building ? Are there any
plans (besides Storrer's) of Fallingwater, or other stone-floored or carpeted Usonians, where the grid is shown on the plan ?

There are numerous plans -- and elevations -- where unit lines extend to the edges of the sheet. This may be a separate if related phenomenon.
(Anyone not interested in the question is free to ignore this post.)

The note "edge of concrete mat" in the most interesting preliminary of Erdman II, above, either indicates a change of intention, or shows the grid over the full
plan despite the partial paving of the carport in gravel.


Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:36 am
by DRN
The one story Model C truly does seem to be of a piece with the two story Prefab #2's. The two built versions of the #2 could be a used as a pattern book for the Model C.
Of all the FLLW unbuilts, this might be the one that could be reasonably executed with a high level of consistency to the original intent, provided its owner would be satisfied with a 1616 SF 3-bed, one bath house.

Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 4:08 pm
by SDR
I like it a lot. Like the faculty Usonian for FSC, it is an orphan residential design just waiting for a friendly circumstance . . . ?


Posted: Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:50 am
by SDR
Constant readers will know that I've made a big deal about the unequal size of the upper and lower lites of the Anderson windows found on the rear elevation of Erdman 1 houses.

A Dave Anderson photo provides the perfect illustration to show that my fuss about the unequal lites in these windows may have been be misplaced. Could Mr Wright have anticipated that the effect seen in the elevation drawing -- where the eaves above the row
of windows at right cover the "extra" glass of the upper lites, making them appear equal in size to the lower ones -- would also operate in the flesh, thanks to the reflection of daylight being blocked by those same eaves ?

It is difficult to find an exterior photo in which this effect doesn't operate; only one pair of images below reveals the discrepancy to any degree. Magic !

(In fact, looking more closely at the elevation drawing, it appears that the windows in question were intended to have equal lites, perhaps with a row of narrow windows above, to take the glass to the ceiling. A photo of the LaFond corner bedroom shows a variance
from the elevation drawings.)




photo of the Jackson residence © Dave Anderson