Affleck House Analysis

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Tom
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by Tom »

g.dorn wrote:
Tue Apr 14, 2020 2:13 am
web page on restoration - mainly retaining walls and brickwork facing the gully
http://www.butters-law.com/affleckhouserestoration.html
I sent Mr. Butters an email asking if he could help us out.

Tom
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by Tom »

Butters just emailed me back and said I could call him in the afternoon and he'd be happy to talk and answer questions.

What questions do we have for him?

g.dorn
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by g.dorn »

Tom wrote:
Wed Apr 15, 2020 10:03 am
Butters just emailed me back and said I could call him in the afternoon and he'd be happy to talk and answer questions.

What questions do we have for him?

1. can we have a copy of the actual Taliesin working drawings - ie Floor framing plan, roof framing plan - roof plan, millwork sheet, cabinetry sheet which is readable
2. how did they stage the construction
3. how thick is the slab - and what is underneath it
G Dorn
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g.dorn
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by g.dorn »

Tom wrote:
Wed Apr 15, 2020 9:02 am
<snip>


Yes - the carport framing is simple, but still amazes me. I mean who else would have thought to do something like that in 1940? Most of the load of that roof is taken by ONE cantilevered beam with a whole lot of brick on top. The other two beams, technically, are simply supported, that is supported at two locations.
This carport roof is not quite working out now that I have added the timber members - I wish could read the detail better..

What I am seeing in the detail, is that the principal timber cantilever is a 3 x 2" fixed on top of 8x2", that cantilevers over the 8" steel beam about 1 bay - 4ft = 1200mm , then another 4 x 2 is fixed to underside of the 3 x 2 to give something for the ceiling lining to fix to.

3" + 8" = 11 " which seems to be about the right thickness of the carport roof

Image

Image
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Tom
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by Tom »

The note right above the steel beam in the detail drawing above says: "2x6 cut over beam"
Then another note low to the beam and to the right says: "2X4 ...illegible... under beam"
So I think the full structural depth there is only 10" and the carport siding is fastened directly to those 2x4's on the bottom.

Will call Butters tomorrow.
He says the call does not need to be a one time thing and can be ongoing.
Spent time reviewing his website tonight.

He says, and this is the first I've ever heard, that Wright incorporated a stylized figure of the first letter of the owners last name into his houses.
At Affleck he says this can be seen in the perf pattern. He says it's a stylized 'A'.

He was involved in some extensive foundation and brick wall restoration.
He says he does not know wether this was intentional of fortuitous,
but the brick at Affleck has only three cores and they are set farther back from the face of the brick than ones with more cores.
He says this enables the brick to take the deep rake of the horizontal joint without water damage and freeze/thaw pressures.

g.dorn
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by g.dorn »

Tom wrote:
Wed Apr 15, 2020 9:32 pm
The note right above the steel beam in the detail drawing above says: "2x6 cut over beam"
Then another note low to the beam and to the right says: "2X4 ...illegible... under beam"
So I think the full structural depth there is only 10" and the carport siding is fastened directly to those 2x4's on the bottom.
<snip>
hmm, so 2 bay back span is 6 x 2 + 4 x 2 = 10 " , if steel beam is 8" then 10 - 8 = 2 " of timber over steel beam and that 2" is doing most of the 1 bay cantilever -

another case of the fascia doing most of the work again?

I gather then, is what the section detail is showing

Image
G Dorn
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g.dorn
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by g.dorn »

Tom wrote:
Wed Apr 15, 2020 9:32 pm
snip

He says, and this is the first I've ever heard, that Wright incorporated a stylized figure of the first letter of the owners last name into his houses.
At Affleck he says this can be seen in the perf pattern. He says it's a stylized 'A'.

snip
according to the catelogue, pg 12 + 13

"Gregor Affleck had added a handwritten message to a letter to Wright in September 1940, suggesting a mark on one of the stones in the form of an abstracted “G” and “A” superimposed – much like Wright’s official signature mark, as Affleck pointed out. The final choice of brick over stone rendered this suggestion moot, but in the house there are small windows in the bathrooms and in the clerestory at the north end of the living room containing a design that some see as the abstracted initials but in a different form. Gregor began using stationery with this pattern as early as November 1941. It may be that Wright liked Gregor’s idea of a personal mark and found a way to incorporate it"
G Dorn
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g.dorn
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by g.dorn »

Roof Framing added

generally allowed
6 x 2 rafters to carport
6 x 2 rafters to deck roof
12 x 2 to living roof (terrace floor joists)
8 x 2 rafters for bedroom and loggia
note: loggia has an additional layer of rafters - for trimming the skylights

8 x 2 rafters to Workspace

Ive added ceiling boards to carport
I am sure there is blocking for rafters and joists - but I havn't added that in yet

also sun as at equinox ( sept /march 21st) for the shadows.

hope this helps

Image

Image

Image all images by g dorn, on Flickr
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Tom
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by Tom »

Looks great. Really informative.

One detail I'm interested in if we can get better drawings -
is the connection between the living room/roof deck rafters and the east parapet wall
above the flank of glass doors that open to the balcony.

Talking with Butters today in a couple of hours.

g.dorn
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by g.dorn »

I gather you mean on the Taliesn sheet: Roof Framing, its Section Detail on top middle

this is my version of that detail?

I havn't modelled the stepped walls or ceilings correctly yet - also no doors

Imageaffleck roof terrace parapet detail by g dorn, on Flickr
G Dorn
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Tom
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by Tom »

Yeah, that's the one.
Hadn't realized it was posted.
Too bad we can't get a clear shot of that sheet.
Maybe Butters has a connection.
I missed hooking up with him today, but he's in the office again tomorrow.

g.dorn
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by g.dorn »

Ive put in most of the stepped walls now.

During the process of this , I wondered

1. in terms of the unit grid - where abouts is the stepped walls located -

as this determines the position of both the bottom fascia and the top of the wall - which in turn determines where the other structural elements go - ie floor bearers + steel beams.

So is the ply core centred on the gird at floor level, ceiling level roof level as the lowest level ( floor soffit)

Does anyone know? got a photo to show this.

2. how were these stepped walls built ? - ie the process - was it

a.) ply wood core put in position and fixed to floor , brick walls and roof beams , then once all the shell is complete, cladding is then fixed to these plywood sheets

or

b.) whole panels fabricated on tressels , that is ply core and finished boards, then whole lot lifted and braced into position, and fixed to brickwork and floor framing.

I reckon, with all the mitred corners ( and having built this sort of thing myself), that its option a. ( not discounting there could be an option c.)

ImageAffleck stepped walls by g dorn, on Flickr


picture of one of my projects whereby we did mitred joints at the corners
Image
G Dorn
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Tom
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by Tom »

I think one thing that must be out there somewhere, but has yet to be published, are lots of construction photographs of Wright's work.
Bringing those to light would answer many questions.

Cool project - like the stairs.

SDR
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by SDR »

My first question re the battered weather-board walls is, how many houses were built with these walls as drawn ? Perhaps, to get a thin three-ply wall, the section as shown is the only structurally viable option ?

The matter of where a Usonian wall falls relative to the unit line might vary with conditions. Wright wrote somewhere that the interior partitions and the fenestration would center on unit lines, while the inside face of exterior walls would fall on the unit line. Unit lines appear on section drawings as verticals. Lloyd Lewis section drawings show, with exceptions, the battered walls and parapets set just outside the unit line and rising from there.

Image
Image


Suntop's walls are shown here (in three variations !) as built with overlapping boards and no plywood core. Again, is that the method employed in the building ?

Image


One revealing photo of the Suntop project shows the builder running out of room while making a battered wall that abuts a too-narrow brick return:

Image

As to technique, as you suggest it would be the mitered corners that would defeat the accurate prefabrication of Usonian walls---especially the battered ones. It was done, at least once, as revealed by construction photos of the Sondern house. The prefabricated three-ply miter would prevent the carpenter from nailing the plywood to itself at the corner, thus relying solely on exterior nailing to keep that joint together . . .

Image

Image
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Roderick Grant
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Re: Affleck House Analysis

Post by Roderick Grant »

I would say, not definitively, that when it came to positioning Usonian walls relative to unit lines, FLW tended to place brick or stone walls with the interior face adjacent to the unit lines, while non-structural wood walls were centered on the units. But as usual with Frank, he ignored his own rules whenever he felt like it.

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