Backing Brick: An Insight into Specifications, History, and Applications
Delving into the world of backing bricks offers a glimpse into the unsung heroes of the construction industry. This article aims to enlighten architects, builders, and enthusiasts about the specifications, historical context, and applications of these structural workhorses.
Introduction to Backing Brick
Backing bricks, as their name suggests, are typically used in the interior of walls, providing structural stability while remaining hidden from view. They form the backbone of the building, lending strength and durability to structures.
Backing Brick Specification
Backing bricks are generally made from:
- Clay: The primary ingredient, chosen for its inherent strength and durability.
- Concrete: Often used as an alternative to clay for cost-effectiveness and versatility.
Common Sizes and Types
The standard size for backing bricks in the US is around 194 mm x 92 mm x 57 mm, while in the UK it is typically 215 mm x 102.5 mm x 65 mm. The most common types of backing bricks include:
- Common bricks: These are often used for their cost-effectiveness and general reliability.
- Engineering bricks: Chosen for their superior strength and water resistance, ideal for environments requiring added durability.
Origin of Backing Brick
Backing bricks are primarily used in the inner layers of walls, hidden behind a layer of facing bricks or other finishing materials. They provide the fundamental structural integrity to a building.
Backing bricks have been in use for thousands of years, dating back to ancient civilizations like the Egyptians and Romans. They gained widespread use in the construction industry during the Industrial Revolution, when mass production made them more accessible.
Key Features and Historical Significance
While often overlooked in favor of their more aesthetic counterparts, backing bricks are integral to a building's structural integrity. Their use has allowed architects and builders to erect durable and long-lasting structures throughout history.
Common Structures Built Using Backing Brick
Backing bricks are used extensively in both residential and commercial constructions. They're found in nearly all types of brick buildings, including houses, schools, office buildings, and more.
Although the use of backing bricks is generally hidden in finished structures, any iconic brick building would be incomplete without them. One such building is the historic Fort Jefferson in Florida, one of the largest brick structures in the Americas. Completed in 1862, it stands as a testament to the strength and durability that backing bricks can provide.