Basic installation hints are provided for using anchor systems, inserts, dowels, fasteners, clips, straps, and lintels, yet are in now way all inclusive of every aspect that should be considered. Additionally, there are a couple of considerations that should be understood. If left neglected, these implications can create complications and a disappointing result. Please understand that a professional engineer, in the art of manufacturing and installation of cast stone material should be consulted when designing your project.
It is very important to have your engineer design the mechanism for lifting the material into place (i.e. inserts for eye bolts to lift), as well as the mechanisms manufactured in the stone that will anchor the cast stone pieces to the structure (i.e. large arch pieces that have to be anchored from the top portion of the structure).
You may decide to have straps securely bolted to the uppermost portion of the structure that will blot to the large stone. Once in place, the archway, or span is secure and the rest of the adjoining masonry material can be installed with precision.
A wood form can be created, in advance, to support the span or archway while installation and drying of mortar take place. This will hold the formation of the span or archway in place and provide for a pleasing result.
One must avoid the mistakes that can transpire should proper planning, design, manufacturing, care for cast stone material, care for lifting consideration, and the care for safety of the installers, contractors, or masons not be initiated throughout the project.
Installation without proper care to the above concerns will result in disappointing results. Installers should consider all the nuances of masonry material before installing.
Our bulletin on Allowance For Movement covers the expansion, and contraction of masonry material and the different consideration with each type of material installed. Our bulletins on Sealants, Mortars, and Pointing of Joints, provides basic installation considerations and the use for each. Expansion and contraction of joints should be considered in every type of installation whether it is coping, banding, columns, balustrades, or more.
The type of structure that the material is being secured to and how it is secured is important to the study. Securing any type of material (i.e. columns) to a support beam welded into place, does not allow expansion, and movement; thus cracking will appear in time. Skid plates may be the alternative to allow the upper support beam to rest on the columns while allowing movement of the columns because of expansion and contraction within the structure itself or resulting from weather conditions.
Our bulletin on Weather Considerations covers many aspects of weather and environmental considerations. Hot and cold temperatures impact the expansion and contraction of materials. Installation in extremely cold or hot temperatures should be avoided.
Each of the bulletins that we include under Reinforcements, covers an overview of what to consider, and what to avoid, so mistakes do not occur. Please refer to each of them and defer engineering questions to an experienced engineer familiar with cast stone installations. Our design team is here to assist you with your many applications. An engineering architect is usually called upon when the design of material requires support mechanisms and multiple levels or elevations in larger projects.
Below is a simple diagram, not to scale that gives an idea of using ashlar clips to secure the upper and lower portions of the cast stone and the surrounding pieces on a wall of a structure. The design of the cast stone piece can have a slot to fit the supporting anchor to the wall, as shown on the top of the piece. The surrounding masonry material can be stone, brick, stucco, as well as cast stone.