Friday, August 23, 2013
Cobbler's house north of Boston, c. 1840 - Part 3 of 4
I have just finished writing about the Arnold House: how it uses the 3-4-5 triangle as a regulating principal and how it is almost but is not the same as the Golden Section.
If you don't know what that is, please read the posts on the Arnold House. Thank you.
I said the same thing about this house: it 'almost used Circle Geometry', but didn't. I realized I needed to look again.
I do love the grace of the Golden Section and Circle Geometry.
But look at how the 3-4-5 triangle fits.
(A) marks the diagonal of the rectangle created by the 3-4-5 triangle. It's half the house. The other side matches it.
(B) marks the corner of the smaller room on the right, its size determined by the triangle. The larger rectangle forms half of the house footprint. The room's proportions are determined by the proportions of the house itself.
The back wing, a rectangle that matches the 2 front sections, is a little longer. (C) shows how the extra space is determined by half a 3-4-5 rectangle.
I rather hoped the end elevation wouldn't fit the pattern!
(A) shows the rectangle created by 2 3-4-5 triangles. It fits the size of the house, easily giving the master carpenter the dimensions he needed for post and beams. It even determines the roof pitch! Not a 9/12 or a 10/12 pitch, ratios commonly used today, but the 3-4-5 triangle.
However, the floor heights, the window placement, the elevations still seem determined by both circle geometry and the Golden Section.
The house's outline - its footprint, height and roof pitch - do seem governed by the triangle.
How nice it would be if I could teleport back to 1840, watch the house-wright at work, and ask questions!
My great thanks to Jay Cougar White Cloud for his good questions that pushed me to consider the simplicity of framing with the 3-4-5 triangle.
For the next post, and a more thorough analysis of the house click here: http://www.jgrarchitect.com/2014/10/the-cobblers-house-c-1840.html