Lath provides a means of holding plaster in place. Typically, three types of lath can be found throughout North America: wood lath, metal lath, and rock lath.
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Plaster assemblies include traditional three coat systems over wood, metal, or rock lath, as well as more recent plaster systems such as veneer plasters.
Plaster in a traditional three coat system is unmatched in its strength and durability. This system is also fire resistive and can reduce sound transmission. Plaster must be applied in such a way that it adheres to the support surface; the support surface, in turn, must be strong enough to carry the weight of the plaster. In the past, applying a plaster coating over a stone or masonry wall seemed to satisfy the strength and texture requirements. However, when framed construction became popular, interior walls lacked both. To solve this problem, thin strips of wood called lath were applied perpendicular to the framing. This solution both strengthened the wall and created a uniform surface to which the plaster could adhere.
Painting was originally a method of representing, documenting, or expressing the varied interests, subjects and beliefs that were a part of society. Paint as a material or method of decorating buildings did not become popular until the 19th century. Master builders and architects of the day used more permanent materials, such as carved stone or marble, colorful ceramic tiles, or pigmented stucco and plaster to develop their designs and decorate the exteriors of buildings.
Terrazzo, derived from the Italian word "terrace," is thought to have been first put to use in 15th century Venice. A vast amount of terrazzo remains in Italy's ancient architecture from this time period, supporting this assumption; however, archaeologists have also discovered the use of a matrix and marble chip flooring system used in Turkey that may be as much as 10,000 years old. Italian craftsmen historically used discarded marble chips to create floors on exterior terraces around their homes. The marble chips were embedded in clay, and when the clay dried, the surface of the flooring was ground down, making it smooth and durable.
Resilient flooring refers to a type of material that has "give" as weight compresses its surface, and "return" (to its original surface profile) after the weight has been removed. Common types of resilient flooring are made from materials like rubber, linoleum, cork, asphalt, and vinyl.
Laminate flooring is a product that represents the most significant change in floor covering materials in the last twenty five years, and its history has been an interesting one. This type of material can be traced to Sweden in the early 1980's. It was originally developed as a possible use for high pressure melamine. Early versions of the product had a base composed of several layers of resin impregnated paper which were pressed together under high pressure. This created a highly wear-resistant composite material. A decorative top sheet was then applied to the base, and the completed composite material was glued onto a carrier material and cut into sections.
Acoustic ceiling suspension assemblies came into use because architects, engineers, and designers needed an affordable way to lower the ceiling height of modern rooms. Lower ceilings help to control noise, increase the efficiency of heating and cooling systems, and provide a place to mount light fixtures. There are several variations of acoustic ceiling suspension assemblies; most common are concealed systems and accessible systems.
Acoustical ceilings are used by interior designers seeking an affordable way to lower the height of a modern room and also deaden ambient noise. Typically, a grid work of metal strips is hung from the room's true ceiling and individual panels of sound-absorbing material are dropped into the sections. Heating and cooling ducts can be hidden behind acoustical ceilings, along with wires for overhead lighting and pipes for plumbing fixtures.
Ceramic tile has been used as an artistic, functional, and enduring building material for the last 4000 years or more. Ceramic tile is nothing more than a mixture of clays which are shaped and fired at a high temperature to create a hard, dense product. This product can be left untreated or receive a glazed wearing surface.
Gypsum board, also known as GWB, wallboard, or drywall, is a common construction product used all over the world to finish the inside of walls and ceilings. It is typically finished with a variety of surface applied products, including wood, fabric, paint, and plaster.