Arch of brick by own hands

Everyone who passes by a building with arched brick arches, unwittingly imagines ancient Roman or ancient Greek architecture. For millennia this type of brickwork remains in demand, as it gives the building a more graceful appearance. Looking at objects with arches, we begin to rack our brains, as it is possible so to fix bricks that they do not fall on our heads. Meanwhile, an arch of brick with their own hands can be laid out, if you become acquainted with the technology of its masonry.

Brick arches at the entrance to the building are excellent decor elements

Brick arches at the entrance to the building are fine decor elements.

. What is the arch and where did it come from?

The laying of semicircular arches is based on the action of compressive brick forces. For each single brick, there are three forces: gravity and two compressing from the sides, directed at a certain angle. So the sum of the modules of the lateral forces is much greater than the force of gravity, which causes the brick to hang and not to fall. Stretching and bending forces for the arch are not acceptable, since the angle of their application does not contribute to the stability of the structure, and destruction occurs. For this reason, making an arch on a very narrow span will be problematic.

The expressions "arched arch", "arches made of bricks" in many people are associated with ancient Greece, Rome or Byzantium. This is not surprising, indeed, the art of building brick buildings came to Russia from Byzantium. Our ancestors-the Slavs knew very well how to fold the arch. It is enough to imagine at least an ordinary Russian stove or a national Ukrainian cellar - lokh. Arch can also be found on the Kiev Golden Gate, and on the facades of old, churches and buildings. So the ability to build an arched clutch sits in us on a genetic level. Let's take a step-by-step look at how to make an arch of brick.

Types of arches according to the type of bricks laid

An arch is a semicircular jumper that connects two vertically standing supports. There are many different arched forms, very different in appearance, but not all of them can be made of bricks, especially if you want to build an object with your own hands. Traditions of arched brick construction often use only three varieties of arches:

  • Ordinary or full arch - in its construction, the arch is made equal to half the diameter of the circle. The simplest version of the arch, which can be made by the hands of lovers to make.
  • A wedge or rectangular - arch vault is made equal to the radius of the circle. Externally, it looks like the letter "P".This is the most complex arched form for a device made of bricks. If it is composed of an amateur who is not experienced, it is likely to just fall apart.
  • The arched arch, which is also called truncated or incomplete, has a low vault in size smaller than the diameter of the circle. This form is intermediate between the two previous ones, both externally and by the complexity of the device.

Depending on the type of arch selected, the permissible distance between its supporting columns is also different. At a full arch columns can be placed at a distance of up to 2.5 m, in the arch - up to 1.5 m, and in the wedge - no more than 1 m. These figures should be well remembered for lovers to do everything with their own hands with a small professional level.

Varieties of arched clutches

Types of arched masonry

Preparing for the construction of

First of all, it is necessary to mason the two pillars. On them in the future will rely on the arch. If its span is more than 1 meter, then the columns should be made into two bricks, because the length of this span depends on the height of the arch, from which, in turn, the lateral load on these same columns. If they are weak, they can not stand the mass of the arch. The laying of supporting columns is made symmetrically. That is, having laid down a number on one column, it is necessary to stack a number on a level and on the second. This is done to the very top. Cement mortar for arched masonry needs to be made a little thicker than always, since the liquid solution can not hold it, and the masonry can creep. For the symmetry of the clutches of both columns, it is most convenient to pull the cord around the level, lifting it after each row to the required height.

The most responsible, but not very difficult work is to make a wooden template. It is needed for laying bricks on the vault on it, so that a semicircular shape is formed and to temporarily hold the arch until the solution dries completely.

The scheme of installation of a semicircular wooden form - circled

Diagram of installation of a semicircular wooden form - circled

Make a wooden template yourself is not difficult. For this purpose, you need to cut out two half-circles of the required diameter from a 20 mm chipboard. In addition, you need to cut the board with a width equal to or slightly longer than the standard brick. The board is nailed to the base of the previously fabricated semicircles. The length of the board and the diameter of the semicircles should be equal to the distance between the supporting columns. Semicircles from the chipboard along the whole circumference are fastened with blocks of wood of the same length equal to the width of the board. It turns out that the distance between the semicircles will also be equal to the width of this board. Then it is necessary to nail a steel strip 6-8 mm thick to the circles of both semicircles. All - the template is ready.

Wooden template for building a brick arch

Wooden template for the construction of the brick arch

The prepared template must be installed on the supporting posts. To do this, it is necessary to make wooden or metal supports, having a diameter of 8-10 cm, for it. They must be equal in height to the height of the support columns. These supports should be inserted between the two pillars from their inner side and fixed rigidly with wooden spacers. The finished template is installed on top of them.

If you make a wooden template yourself, you must remember that every half a meter of this pattern must have at least one spacer. Therefore, with an arch length of 1 m, in addition to the spacers that are at the edges of the template, it is required to install one more in the center. If the length of the arch is already 1.5 m, then you will have to add 2 props, etc. They are needed so that the heavy, damp brickwork, under the action of gravity, does not bend the template.

For the construction of the arch we will need: a saw-hacksaw, a hammer, a trowel, a level, a screed, a cord.

Technique of masonry arches made of bricks

The most important thing to remember when performing the masonry of the arch, is that it must be completed in one step. It is impossible to stop, because the different degree of drying of the solution will lead to its destruction. The physical meaning of this is as follows: the cement slump grasps fairly quickly and creates some pressure on the brick, as if "stretching" it. Therefore, if you take too long a break in the construction of the arch, the places from which the masonry was restored after the break will crack.

Masonry of an ordinary arch

Masonry of an ordinary arch

Some builders advise before the beginning of a brick laying to make a template on the template to make the laying absolutely smooth and symmetrical. In fact, this is not necessary, because it will turn out okay, even if an inexperienced mason will do it. The main thing is that the bricks should be laid simultaneously on both sides. This will lead to the fact that in the end the masonry will reach the top, where it will only be necessary to insert the last vertical brick, which will fulfill the role of the castle.

It is also easy to build a so-called arcuate arch, because the technique of laying a brick does not differ from the usual one. Similarly, the bricks are installed on the template, cementing each other with cement mortar. Stitches make the usual, even. Masonry is carried out from two sides by pairwise laying bricks. In this case, the divergent slope of the brick from above equals 4-5 degrees. This means that every next brick must be slightly inclined towards the previous one. In the middle, the masonry is secured with a wedge-shaped lock. To properly "feel" the bias, you need to have some experience. Therefore, beginners are not advised to begin building arches with this type.

The masonry of a full and beam arch brick differs from the usual one in that it needs to be placed wedge-shaped in the solution, and the seam on top makes it much thicker than usual. The subsequent row is laid in the same way as the lower one. To maintain symmetry, you can use a cord. In this case, it is necessary to do the seaming of the joints, and in addition, cosmetic cleaning of the masonry surface. To do this, the bricks are wiped dry first, then a damp brush. The last step is to remove the template after the solution has completely solidified.

If you are an amateur with your own hands to make something beautiful and original, have at least the initial skills of a mason and understanding the process of laying a brick - do this architectural miracle. You will have something to show your friends who will say: "How beautiful it is! As if they were in an ancient Greek or Roman city! ".