By Edmund W. Jupp
The purpose of the "Watching" sequence is to attract realization to a couple of the very attention-grabbing goods round us, issues that maybe we do not observe up to we would. the 1st was once "Bridge Watching", and whilst this used to be positioned "on the internet" it produced, to the shock of the writer, any such friendly flood of email that one other used to be written, known as "Water Watching". This, too, used to be kindly acquired. So it was once tempting to proceed with the topic. Brick-watching is a cheap hobby, that could flip an outdated brick wall into an exhilarating locate, and produce on your awareness the fascination that's hidden from those that glance yet do not see, or even see yet do not glance. it really is taken without any consideration that everybody understands brick is a lump of clay moulded right into a oblong block after which baked; yet there's in fact even more to it than that. Armed with a bit wisdom, each brick constitution is an merchandise of curiosity, whatever to be spotted, probably to be jotted down in a checklist, or photographed, drawn, painted, remembered. the writer hopes that this light process will supply a few perception into the esoteric global of bricks, and may raise the excitement of discovering and learning the numerous brick constructions (including the multitude of attention-grabbing ruins) not just in the community yet around the globe. it may possibly even convert the reader from being detached to turning into enthusiastic.
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Extra resources for Brick Watching
At one time a closer was struck from a whole brick by a suitable clout with the trowel. Now there are simple machines that will cut a closer, or shape a brick at any angle, with ease. They demonstrate the purchase one can get with a long lever. Power cutters are used too. It is unlikely that the first course will have open ends. It will usually have a "return" or corner at each end, for stability, or perhaps a pillar, or adjacent wall. The courses will key into such features. This first course demands accuracy, for if it wanders, or is not level, length-wise and across, the rest of the wall cannot run true.
It must be sufficiently stiff but at the same time yielding as each brick is laid and then pushed into precise position. So the making of the mortar is a matter requiring understanding and skill. The man who mixes the mortar is no fool. The three lines of manufacture, then for brick structures, are the bricks, the mortar, and the water supply. For these, clay, sand and cement are the necessary elements. Brick-watchers can learn much about the brick manufacturers and the builders from close inspection of the structure itself.
Here and there, in the lower courses, bricks were omitted to permit percolation of the water into the well from the surrounding aquifer. Wells were dangerous places when children were about, for there was rarely any grid to prevent a child from falling right down to the water. In many places a windlass was built over the well. A chain was wound round the barrel of the windlass, to which a bucket was attached. Well water was mostly sweet and pure, and much preferred to mains water by some people.