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FLLW often specified linoleum countertops, and if granite was available, he probably would not have used it. As an example, he would often try to match the edge profile of counters with other similar elements, such as shelving and even roof fascias. The countertop surfaces may coordinate with similar surfaces, such as floors and furnishings. This attention to detail is essential FLLW.
The other issue is upgrading. If the house is a usonian, the idea was to create the most possible beauty with the least costly materials, and the least possible variety of materials. Simple, inexpensive, but poetic design. A granite countertop in an otherwise perfectly coordinated symphony of materials may be a sour note.
Further, Wright had no time for those who would attempt to alter his designs as they were built. Sometimes, if the client insisted on a change that he did not like, he would simply tell them they can do any thing they want, but they will not have a Frank Lloyd Wright house when they are done.
Doug Kottom, Battle Lake
For those unfamiliar with the First Christian Church in Phoenix, it was part of a much larger seminary campus intended for Phoenix, built in stages in the 70's. It is magnificent and has been well maintained and respected. I was at Taliesin during various phases of construction. Having also spent countless hours in the archives with Bruce Brooks Pfeiffer and others documenting original drawings to film, I have a perspective on drawings-in-drawers vs. those still being realized.
Irrespective of the varioius opinions of whether Wright's buildings should still be constructed or not, it sure is more thrilling to be in a completed work that many, many others can enjoy then to be restrained from (or be one of the rare few who) ever having access to original designs and drawings tucked safely in vaulted care and never have the opportunity to experience, much less see, these creations. I for one don't oppose the legacy program, yet there is the valid concern over who will interpret Wright's intent once those closest to him eventually pass on. Can that torch stay lit?
I hope you will be able to have your deam. Would selling some of the 92 acres make it possible to "do it Wright" ? I imagine you've thought of that. . .
Please continue to keep us posted. Every good house built is one less piece of ____ on the land !
Anybody ? Call Mr Rattenbury, Mike ?
It's not single pane glazing and it's certainly not insulated either, but the two panes of glass create a cavity in which condensation can safely occur. The cavity would allow condensation to collect on the inner pane of glass (rather than on the wood frame) and drain through the holes drilled in the jamb and sill. These holes would also serve to ventilate the cavity and keep it from fogging up in temperature differentials.
Pros -- you get a mitered glass corner window
Cons -- the window must be built from scratch, you are relying solely on sealant to keep water out (it'll break down over time and how do you service the bead inside the cavity?), the drain holes provide access to bugs and dirt, the insulating value of the window is far less than modern windows and there is no warranty so who knows how long the window would hold up over the long term.
According to my co-worker, the window detail did stand up fairly well in comparison with the other windows on the project at the time (we're also talking about 60's quality windows here). The window was suposedly protected by a very generous roof overhang as well, keeping it sheltered from the elements, which probably helped its durability a great deal.
This may not be exactly what you're looking for, but it may be the compromise between single pane and insulated glazing. I hope this helps you out, or at least stirs up some more ideas and conversation until an solution is found.
It's still true that those sealants are applied to +- 1/2" glass, after the glass is in place, and would normally be accessible from both sides of the glass. But with glass at least 3/16" thick, I would think that the sealant could be applied without resorting to a surface bead as shown in your fine sketch ? This should make a fairly invisible corner, I would think.
Anybody know which methods were used by Taliesin, and when silicone became available to them ?
I was told Pella used to manufacturer Themopane mitered corner windows. I was told they were VERY expensive and they stopped making them.
During my Wingspread tour the curator told me Wright designed a Thermopane window for the design. Unfortunately, the manufacturer had trouble manufacturing them so Wright used single pane windows.
Single pane windows will sometimes sweat in winter. I met with Dr. Christianson at his house for 2 hours in dead of winter. He told me Wright was aware of the sweating issue so he added more coils of radiant floor heating pipes around the French doors and windows to counteract this. I didn