Opinions on Remodel Design.

Discussion in 'Decorating and Design' started by jesselfout, Jan 25, 2012.

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Would this design be appropriate in an older home to "open it up"

  1. Yes, it looks great.

  2. No, it's too "busy" "crowded" "maze like"

  3. IT's not terrible but it's not what I would do.

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  1. Jan 25, 2012 #1

    jesselfout

    jesselfout

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    I've attached a sketch of my proposed remodel, it's an older home (1939), small 1400 sq. ft. split between three levels. Right now the space is divided up a lot, I'd like to put a pass through between the dinning room and living room, a bar and door in the wall between the dinning room and kitchen, and a door between the kitchen and the living room. Some people I've asked said they love it, some say it's "a lot of arches" or "a lot of doors" the wall between the living room/dining room and living room/kitchen is load bearing but the wall between the kitchen and dinning room is not. I tried just taking the kitchen wall completely out, but that would mean demolishing an additional wall.

    Please no hate speech on my color choices, it's more for contrast than anything else.

    TableView.jpg

    viewfrombar.jpg

    viewfromlivingroom.jpg

    viewfrombackdoor_small.jpg
     
  2. Jan 25, 2012 #2

    nealtw

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    As you can see in other posts about cutting holes in bearing walls, I can,t stress enough to get an engineer to make engineering decisions. Making arches of different width will turn out much like what you have. They will all look different. Any place that you stand and see two or more they will just look wrong. I like arches but I would do flat top and rounded corners, they will look more standard.
     
  3. Jan 25, 2012 #3

    jesselfout

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    Definitely going to consult an engineer for the modification of the supporting wall.

    If I understand you correctly, you think that, unless all the arches can be the same size I should instead do rounded corners with flat tops or prehaps just flat tops instead?

    Thanks.
     
  4. Jan 25, 2012 #4

    nealtw

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    Yes that is my opinion, but why not just go for the open look.
     
  5. Jan 25, 2012 #5

    jesselfout

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    So just remove the kitchen living room walls entirely?
    Span of the of existing arch to the stairs is about 12 feet.
    I guess I really need to get an engineer in here to see what's possible.
     
  6. Jan 26, 2012 #6

    nealtw

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    For twelve feet he will want to check the bearing all the way down to the foundation.
     
  7. Jan 26, 2012 #7

    jesselfout

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    Gotcha, this wall sits on a steel ibeam which is in the foundation.
     
  8. Jan 26, 2012 #8

    Jdmrenovations

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    Neal is dead on with the arches...they are tough to get right. First the openings need to be roughly the same size...they just look better that way. Everyone will naturally look at them...then compare them...then critique them in their minds...drawing attention away from the house as a whole.

    Either way you decide to go, get a good framer and finisher, and make sure he makes some sort of template instead of just "winging it" They are tougher than they look to get right.
     
  9. Jan 26, 2012 #9

    BridgeMan

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    I agree with nealtw--too many arch sizes really clutters the place up, making things look too "busy." Constant corner radii and common top clearance (distance from floor) is the answer. For different openings, they'll all still be different, but in a uniform way, if that makes any sense.

    I helped design/build a buddy's house a few years ago, and came up with 3 different sized arches using the above suggestions, and it turned out great. I used the "floating stringline and pencil" method to mimic a natural elliptical shape for the middle-sized opening, then just copied that one's corner radius and top clearance for the other two.
     
  10. Jan 26, 2012 #10

    jesselfout

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    indeed, they were too tough in sketchup, and that wasn't even real wood. We have a couple arches that are original to the house but maybe after we talk to the engineer we'll just give up on ArchFest '12 and go with the curved corners flattop. if it was just a simple arch it would be one thing, but I think the style we have currently is called ogee or a depressed/compressed tudor so it's basically made up of two sections of circles on the corners and then two arcs meeting at a point at the top... it's a real son of a gun to draw

    1. Engineer to evaluate the situation.
    2. Pay architect neighbor in homebrew for his professional opinion
    3. possibly knock some stuff down

    One question I have for BridgeMan, is can you link a video or a post on what your a talking about?

    next idea.jpg
     
  11. Jan 26, 2012 #11
  12. Jan 26, 2012 #12

    nealtw

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    Holy cow !! is right, that guy works by the hour, we never have the time for that.
    We use three tricks for this: 1 for just your common arch we have a peice of alluminum like his straight edge but 8 ft long, know the height at the center and the height of the side and bend the alluminum in a curve untill it looks good, cut one side and thats your pattern. 2 For rounded corners use a paint can, not big enough get a bigger can.3 For those fancy ogee shape and eliptical shapes, find a picture on the net inlarge it and print it. Cut a sample, and if it is not big enough you can use a washer with your pencil to draw the line bigger, still not big enough drill a hole in the center of the lid to the paint can.
     
  13. Jan 26, 2012 #13
  14. Jan 26, 2012 #14

    BillDean

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    Correct me if I'm wrong , but i think what bridge man is referring to is taking a string and attaching it at two points and letting it hang in the center.

    Trace the string carefully with a pencil . For example, lets say your arch is to be 6 foot wide, 6 inches high . You would do this by placing two screws 6 feet apart on some sort of pattern material(plywood). Next with pattern material upright( leaning against a wall) take a string attach it to both screws while letting it droop down 6 inches in the center. Carefully take pencil a trace the strings arch to pattern being careful not to move the string while tracing.

    I have found it to be kind of time consuming tracing the arch of a hanging string and to be much easier for me to spray paint the hanging string . once you remove the string you will be left with a nice unpainted line to follow.

    Hope this didn't just add confusion.
     
  15. Jan 26, 2012 #15

    nealtw

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    Bill: I like that one.
     
  16. Jan 26, 2012 #16

    BridgeMan

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    First things first. I think your flat top, corner radius thing is ugly. Looks like it's about to collapse. But that's just my personal, untrained eye (along with those of millenia of ancient builders). If it makes you happy, just go with it. You're the one who has to look at it every day.

    Personally, I like a smooth, sweeping top curve set between 2 smaller (8 or 9 in.)corner radii. Classically speaking, from the earliest evolution of architecture, the elliptical arch has always represented a symbol of strength and beauty. And it also is a structurally significant shape, with the top compression chord providing strength and stability, while the outward thrust is resisted by strong side columns. With respect to the elliptical shape, I don't have any online references to explain what I'm talking about, but it's all just simple high school geometry. I think if you Google it, something should turn up. Try "elliptical arch with stringline," or variations thereof. In summary, you just anchor each end of a loose string at the ellipse's focal points on the horizontal major axis (centers of the corner radii), leaving enough slack to enable a (held with the hand) pencil to be pushed against the string from the bottom to stretch it tight, while pushing it tightly all the way around, starting at one side's vertical plane, going upwards towards the apogee (highest point, in center) and back down to the opposite vertical plane. It's based on the principle of the equation: ("x" squared divided by "a" squared plus "y" squared divided by "b" squared = 1), meaning the sum of the two straight-line distances between focal points and any place on the periphery is always the same. Trust me, the ancient Greeks/Romans/Egyptians knew what they were doing.

    I built a full-sized plywood/fiberglas form (6' span) using the foregoing to construct a brick arch over a wood stove used to heat an entire former house, and it turned out very nice-looking. Realtor said it was the selling point of the place, with everyone who toured it saying they were struck by the arch's beauty and simplicity.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2012
  17. Jan 26, 2012 #17

    jesselfout

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    Bridgeman,

    I certainly did Google it but as you see by my posts I wasn't that successful. I wasn't really too found of the flaptop rounded corners either actually, but that's the greatthing about sketchup, took five minutes. I did, however, enjoy your rant on historic architecture and high school geometry.
    Thanks so much for taking the time to explain your method there are tons of of ways to do a particular thing I guess, I like both of the posted methods, sounds good, boths methodsreoy on the stlack in the string but yours could be used to draw on an existing structure in the right direction (up). Now when you say smooth corner radii you mean that the elllipicatical arch starts at the straight wall?

    Actually one of these reasons we bought our house was the ogee or compressed Tudor arch in the dining room and over the front door.
     
  18. Jan 27, 2012 #18

    vette2020

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    I like the first picture with the multiple arches. They look great.
     
  19. Jan 27, 2012 #19

    BridgeMan

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    Didn't mean to rant, but rather just explain. I've been accused of getting too technical in some of the construction inspection classes I teach, but I never intend to rant. My apologies. If my rambling met your definition of rant, so be it.

    And yes, the elliptical arch does start (and end) at each vertical wall surface, where the horizontal ellipse axis intersects the walls. The corners that I referred to as radii are actually spiral curves, and part of the complete elliptical arch. One trick to making the string/pencil thing work is making sure the string is pre-stretched, and kept as tight as possible at all times. I actually like to wrap it around the pencil, and use nylon mason's line for the string to allow the slippage necessary against the pencil's surface. And I've always worked "downhand" on a flat surface instead of a vertical plane like you intend to do, drawing on either heavy cardboard templates or plywood that I then used to build my forms. Not being skilled at computer drafting, I find that using a variable radius drafting curve (Acu-Arc, by Hoyle Products; good for curves from 6" to 200" radius) helps to smooth out any double pencil lines or irregularities, to come up with a final, single heavy-line curve.
     
  20. Jan 27, 2012 #20

    jesselfout

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    Not really, I was more just amused by the rambling :D Thanks for you advice and help and no you didn't get too technical at all, good to have some technicality with design. That's how I brew.
     

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