Construction Documents

Quotes: Construction Documents

“It may be set as the glory of an architect’s specification, that it shall be so clear, that the builders who from it are estimating the probable cost of the intended work, may have to ask no questions; that the specification, shall contain and exact comprehensive and proper description of the work, as it really…

Is TimberSIL Resilient?

TimberSIL is a glass-infused wood manufactured by Timber Treatment Technologies.  Marketed as a green substitute to conventional chemically-treated wood, TimberSIL has come under recent scrutiny for questionable performance under intended designed conditions.  We use this situation to discuss the implications of vetting new products on the basis of green material ratings. Criticisms have emerged over the product’s susceptibility to rot and poor acceptance of common coatings.  Perhaps…

Failures Associated with Synthetic Stucco Over Fiber Cement Panels

Failures have been documented in association with acrylic-based synthetic stucco applied over fiber cement panels.  Depending on local code requirements, the fiber panels are generally installed over an approved sheathing such as OSB or exterior gypsum.  A number of these systems have been patented and marketed as ‘synthetic stucco finish system’ or as high build finishes…

Quotes: Building Durability

“In studying the art of house building, we discover that the most successful houses do not depend upon ornament, nor any particular kind of material, for their success, but rather upon good lines, simplicity and reasonableness. Any building worthy to be called a house should be built of enduring material, and with proper care should…

Redefining Building Failure

The phrase ‘building failure’ conjures images of fatal effects such as sudden collapse, material loss, and major structural defects.   But for decades the industry has embraced broader definitions – all representative of conditions that adversely affect the intended service life of components or assemblies.  For example, the Canadian Standards Association (S478-95) defines failure as the loss of performance…