structural stone walls

To control SPAM, you must now be a registered user to post to this Message Board.

EFFECTIVE 14 Nov. 2012 PRIVATE MESSAGING HAS BEEN RE-ENABLED. IF YOU RECEIVE A SUSPICIOUS DO NOT CLICK ON ANY LINKS AND PLEASE REPORT TO THE ADMINISTRATOR FOR FURTHER INVESTIGATION.

This is the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy's Message Board. Wright enthusiasts can post questions and comments, and other people visiting the site can respond.

You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening, *-oriented or any other material that may violate any applicable laws. Doing so may lead to you being immediately and permanently banned (and your service provider being informed). The IP address of all posts is recorded to aid in enforcing these conditions. You agree that the webmaster, administrator and moderators of this forum have the right to remove, edit, move or close any topic at any time they see fit.
jmixon
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:49 pm

structural stone walls

Post by jmixon »

Is this a possible thingg? I mean people built stone houses for ages, but is it up to code or today's standards? Does anyone have building plans on the walls at Kentuck Knob?

SDR
Posts: 20201
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Post by SDR »

It is usually possible to gauge the thickness of stone veneer -- anywhere from 1" up -- by looking at outside corners. The "quoins" -- in this discussion, the ends of the individual blocks -- reflect the thickness of the stone used. The quoins would occur no more frequently than every other course of stone, with quoins appearing alternately at the left and right sides of the corner. Solid stone walls also have quoins, of course -- but it's unusual to see a structural stone wall less than 8 or 10 inches thick. Photos illustrate some examples:


Image
Solid stonework at Taliesin . . .


Image
and at Fallingwater; inconsistent thickness of quoins suggests solid construction.


Image photo: Michael Shuck
The ground-floor masonry at the Alvin Miller residence suggests solid construction, but the mass above -- added later ? --
clearly shows a consistent thickness of veneer at every second course, suggesting it was laid over block or poured concrete.


Image
Stonework at the Neils house suggests veneer by its surface appearance, and the decorative quoining at the corner (center of photo) seems
to support that view because of the fairly consistent non-structural thickness of the material.


Image
Installation of stone veneer; the thickness of the stone is visible at the corner, where each successive course is lapped right or left.


Image
The same evidence is available to the eye at far left in this example of cast-stone veneer.


Structural masonry walls today would usually be built of a poured concrete or CMU wall faced with stone. Only the dimension of the quoins would give away the thickness of the stone that was used.

SDR
Last edited by SDR on Sun May 12, 2013 2:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jmixon
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:49 pm

Post by jmixon »

Thanks, SDR. But stone structural walls ARE feasible?

SDR
Posts: 20201
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Post by SDR »

As much as ever, I would think. But hardly the most economical thing. Clients do sometimes erect their own masonry; we were recently reminded that Virginia Lovness laid the stone for their little house, and very nicely too. A bit hard to imagine, frankly . . . making walls isn't like stacking Legos . . .

SDR

egads
Posts: 892
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:42 am
Location: Long Beach CA

Post by egads »

Stone walls probably cannot be built to California earthquake codes though.

jmixon
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:49 pm

Post by jmixon »

bad economically because of the price of stone? or the labor?

lang
Posts: 49
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:19 am

Post by lang »

jmixon, Nowadays structural stone walls are simply too inefficient, and they cause problems. Stone is a really poor insulator, so a structural stone wall has to be insulated somehow, either by making a "double" wall of stone and insulting the space between, or by finishing the interior in a different material, such as wood paneling or gypsum board. Stone veneer walls go up quicker and easier than structural stone. Thats why almost all residential stonework is a veneer. You could probably create a structural stone support pier, but I have no idea if that would be pass code. Langdon

P.S. best of luck on your project!

Roderick Grant
Posts: 10575
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:48 am

Post by Roderick Grant »

Neils may well be veneer, considering how thin some of the walls are, even though the walls are stone inside and out.

Anthony, Gillin, Shavin and Kinney Houses, Sol Friedman, to name a few late designs, appear to be solid stone.

jmixon
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:49 pm

Post by jmixon »

lang wrote:jmixon, Nowadays structural stone walls are simply too inefficient, and they cause problems. Stone is a really poor insulator, so a structural stone wall has to be insulated somehow, either by making a "double" wall of stone and insulting the space between, or by finishing the interior in a different material, such as wood paneling or gypsum board. Stone veneer walls go up quicker and easier than structural stone. Thats why almost all residential stonework is a veneer. You could probably create a structural stone support pier, but I have no idea if that would be pass code. Langdon

P.S. best of luck on your project!
This stone work would be for a cold shed/garage so the insulation wouldn't be an issue for me. I'm just looking at alternatives to CMU.

Rood
Posts: 1189
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:19 pm
Location: Goodyear, AZ 85338

Re: structural stone walls

Post by Rood »

jmixon wrote:Is this a possible thing? Does anyone have building plans on the walls at Kentuck Knob?
Plans and construction photos of Kentuck Knob are found in Bernardine Hagans book: Kentuck Knob: Frank Lloyd Wright's House for I.N. and Bernardine Hagan, c. 2005 The structural walls are of reinforced concrete, and the stone walls are largely veneer. Only when the walls are both inside and outside a room are they double width ... separated by a layer of insulation.

SDR
Posts: 20201
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Post by SDR »

Hagan exterior veneer -- perhaps averaging 6-8" ? Nice . . .

http://www.cambridge2000.com/gallery/ht ... 8978e.html

SDR

jmixon
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:49 pm

Re: structural stone walls

Post by jmixon »

Rood wrote:
jmixon wrote:Is this a possible thing? Does anyone have building plans on the walls at Kentuck Knob?
Plans and construction photos of Kentuck Knob are found in Bernardine Hagans book: Kentuck Knob: Frank Lloyd Wright's House for I.N. and Bernardine Hagan, c. 2005 The structural walls are of reinforced concrete, and the stone walls are largely veneer. Only when the walls are both inside and outside a room are they double width ... separated by a layer of insulation.
Ah shucks. I was somehow hoping they were structural. Thanks< SDR

SDR
Posts: 20201
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Post by SDR »

Why would that be preferable to you ?


SDR

jmixon
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:49 pm

Post by jmixon »

SDR wrote:Why would that be preferable to you ?


SDR
Well I was hoping I could scrounge enough stone together over a year or two to stack up and make walls. If I'm going to put up block I'll just end up using the block as the structure and aesthetic.

egads
Posts: 892
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:42 am
Location: Long Beach CA

Post by egads »

Why not desert masonry then? I take it that this is a shed in rural Maine?
One that is not going to be inspected? One of the drawbacks of actual stone walls in a cold climate is the frost cycle. It breaks them apart over time.

Post Reply