Architecture Questions


Why I cannot open the bim fi

ecem o, Architect • Mar 2

When I try to open the zip file, it says "file is broken" When I try to import from revit, file is not existed.

Scott B, Other

hmmm that seems odd, what version of Revit are you using?


Downloading Revit2011 Compat

Steven W, Architect • Feb 18

Some manufacturers have the latest Revit version objects only. How do I download older versions? In fact, how do I download anything? I placed some items into "My Projects" or "Favorites". Where is the button to download what I have selected? I... Read More

Mike C, Modlar Administrator

To download, click the products you saved in your project and click download. you need to go to the individual product page to download. Some products might not have bim/cad files... 2 More Answers


Can these objects be used in

Corey C, Designer • Jan 31
Corey C, Designer

Hi Scott, thanks for the reply. Got it sorted now. Cheers. 1 More Answer


What are the challenges to a

Carrie M, Architect • Jul 5

High-rise wood buildings are becoming quite popular around the world. What are the building codes that have be adhered to in US? I think a major challenge would be fire safety since it's all wood.

George W, Designer

George - Arch Designer: Structural Wood Beams, Trusses, Columns, Girders have been historically used for building even before Steel. Wood Members must be treated with Fire Resistant Retardants that are preferably "Green", or creating a petrified surface, as to support weight. 3 More Answers


Fashion that could inspire a

Carrie M, Architect • Jun 23

What a superb topic. Where do you find your design inspiration? Do you refer to projects of well known architects or you like to derive inspiration from organic forms or something else?

Bobby P, Architect

In addition to browsing through various blogs, I find Ted talks to be a great resource too:


As these prefab units have t

Carrie M, Architect • Jun 23

How much or what percentage of the total cost of the unit would be the strengthening cost.

miked m, Other

Yes from what I've seen it came add a lot of extra cost because a building with standard construction, then has to be engineered to handle loads from different directions, which normally wouldn't occur if the building was built in place. In saying that, recently there have been a few designs which have been engineer more like a vehicle/capsul...


How to effectively waterproo

pauly j, Other • Jun 16

I recently had a project in a high wind zone, where some of the window waterproofing failed (not a fun situation!). Can anyone recommend a good waterproofing system to use in low rise housing projects?

Bobby P, Architect

I find the most important thing here, is always keeping an eye on the contractors and making sure they are taking the time to follow the proper waterproofing procedures, as per the details. 3 More Answers


What is the Future of Design

artlyn j, Designer • Jun 13

How will the classical notion of Modernism hold up in our future? What sort of materials will help forge a new future in architecture?

Philip A, Architect

Most buildings are experimental prototypes reliant sadly on low-bid contractors, self-styled "value engineers" and a bevy of subcontractors some of whom have little in the way of real skills or craftsmanship. Imagine what buildings would be like if we took best practices from companies like Boeing, Tesla, Apple and a host of other g... 2 More Answers


How are these metalized tile

vinny d, Other • Jun 8

What kind of metal is used to achieve that look?


What type of architecture pr

Modlar D, Modlar Administrator • Jun 6

Also, share with us the most interesting topics/projects that has kept you coming back for more.

Ray B, Architect

Shipping container homes 3 More Answers


What is the formula of chemi

Shawn C, Designer • Jun 5

We have been specifying 'blackened steel' (i,e. chemically treated mild steel to give a natural, blackened finish) for quite a few years and EVERY time we ask a contractor to tell us what the chemicals/method is for this they clam up like its a top secret or somethi... Read More

Anthony C, Architect

Armorers created blackened steel in the Renaissance with linseed oil. They heated the steel and applied the oil in much the same fashion described by "grahame-white" above. It probably is a little less toxic than old motor oil, and because it requires multiple applications, allows for a broad color range of "blackening" . 4 More Answers


What is the garage door deta

miked m, Other • Jun 1

Is this a sectional door or tilt?

Austin E, Designer

This is an overhead sectional door. you can tell by the fasteners along the horizontal lines. the vertical line in the centers is most likely cosmetic 2 More Answers


Are these the under sides of

gregco g, Other • Jun 1

I like the look of the roofing and it blends well with the other elements in the house.

William S, Architect

shawn.cooper is correct. Another manufacturer is Epicore ( The product shown in this home appears to be perforated for better acoustical performance (a thin layer of acoustical insulation separates the steel from the poured concrete. The steel can be left shiny as shown, primed for field painting, o... 4 More Answers


Advice on modular design aro

Gio Z, Designer • May 30

I am student doing a Post Grad in Interior Architecture. I am using the ideas of prefab and modular design to design a fire station. I was wondering If I can send a list of questions regarding modular design methods also for professional input.


What are the challenges to g

vinny d, Other • May 27

Other considerations apart from structural and the additional costs associated.

Steve S, Other

Wind Scour,Foot Traffic, the list seems to be never ending, but the benefits alway seem to outlay the problems. Arial installers, plant and other equipment added post completion, it does happen, I was the Styrofoam Tech engineer for 14 years and saw it all. trees that have grown squirrels that want to did, bees, making home, and a change in b... 3 More Answers


How practical are glass wall

Carrie M, Architect • May 17

These glass walls blur the boundary between indoors and outdoors allowing ample light to enter the interior spaces and they look great but how practical or convenient are they? What's the maintenance cost like?

Manuel A, Designer

In terms of water, it has to do with the degree and quality of glass and the installer. most of the time it is installer error. if you do have a leak and the glass Is within tolerance of accuracy, and you have a leak, it is a problem that is going to be costly because it is probably a not to square or accurate rough opening, or a shifting, mo... 5 More Answers


What's an efficient way to w

Carrie M, Architect • May 11

The handrail detail in this net-zero pre fab home looks really tricky from a water proofing point of view. I'm interested to know how it's been done.

David C, Designer

If timber floor structure face fix the handrail to the front of the floor structure with EPDM washers where the fixing meets the cladding. Bolt fixing through the boundary joists into a L Bracket which bolted to the joist beside. Have 4 baluster paosts, wih the end ones finishing 50mm away from the building. This way the handrail does not pen... 1 More Answer


What type of wood has been u

Kero k, Architect • May 10

Love the finish. Is it timber?

Geoff R, Technician

This is not a material that I am familiar with. Here in the Uk we generally advise against specifying teak due to deforestation concerns. I have just looked up Bali Teak online and can't find any independent advice about specification of this. 1 More Answer


How to achieve a flat or pit

vinny d, Other • May 9

What's the roof like on the iT house project? I quite like it but unsure about the cost.

Alex Z, Architect

I think that as demonstrated with this project, flat roofs can be just as attractive as pitched ones. it all comes down to the look you are trying to achieve. Generally speaking, modern or contemporary styled homes will have a flat roof element incorporated into its design. The advantage of a flat roof is that it can also accommodate a deck a... 1 More Answer


Are these formed with light

Carrie M, Architect • May 5

And why was one chosen over the other?

vinny d, Other

From the looks of the image, I'm 99% sure it looks like plaster, a much easier way to achieve these curves 1 More Answer


How are the stones fixed in

miked m, Other • May 5

Are the stones fixed from behind or held in wire cages in the structure of Villanueva Public Library?

brad, Other

The rock cages or call "Gabions". Commonly used in landscape, or to retain Hills or riverbanks. They are prefab cages, typically fill on site. 2 More Answers


How did Brutalist Architectu

Carrie M, Architect • May 4

What made it interesting and should it be preserved? Share some lesser known facts about this style of architecture.

Len T, Designer

Extraordinary stuff. They certainly knew how to build in the "old days!" 6 More Answers


Floating homes - boats or bu

artlyn j, Designer • 2016

Are floating homes considered to be boats when it pertains to various building codes?

reidh b, Designer

The House Boat, came before building codes. They should be treated like a high quality trailer park. 1 More Answer


Styles of houseboats in Euro

artlyn j, Designer • 2016

Why are the styles of houseboats in Europe so much more well-designed?


What kind of wood is suitabl

artlyn j, Designer • 2016

What maintenance would be required over time and what would be the cost involved

Gershon P, Other

accoya wood best wood on the planet, 50 years guarantee above the ground and 25 year in the ground. Did my first project with it on aggresive beach sea climate, More on google and on my website 4 More Answers


Living wall systems you woul

pauly j, Other • 2016

Living walls or "green" exteriors are becoming more popular. Although they are tricky to design and maintain the plants. Have you seen or used any living walls systems you would recommend?


Any creative ideas on how to

Carrie M, Architect • 2016

These wall hangings are so stylish and blend perfectly with the overall look of the room. I think the room has to be big as these would not work well in small spaces.

cliff m, Architect

I don't think those are wall hangings. They seem to be really awesome and huge pendant lamps hanging above the island. You are correct though, they wouldn't very easily FIT into small spaces. 1 More Answer


How to achieve amazing in-si

pauly j, Other • 2016

A favourite of brutalism, these in-situ cast concrete walls always look impressive and weather ever so nicely with age. Their simple look is deceiving though, as they are often difficult to pour and have a smooth finish, due to air getting trapped during the pour.

Henrique C, Other

Builders often use a special vibrator for concrete, wich can take most of those trapped bubles out of the wet concrete. 1 More Answer


Low profile flashing details

miked m, Other • 2016

These low profile flashing details, always look fantastic, although I'm always nervous they will move and let water in on windy days. Does any have any smart flashing details, that allow you to achieve a wind resistant yet low profile?

snk r, Other

Flashing has to integrate with both the roof and the side. Cleans lines and durable details depend on careful framing.


How to restore an exposed br

Carrie M, Architect • 2016

Industrial and minimalist work well together. I like how the red brick wall has been paired with grey fittings.

vinny d, Other

Brick walls add an old world charm to the interiors making the room feel cozy. However, you want to make sure that there's no crumpling mortar due to the exposure to moisture and extreme temperatures over time. Clean the brick, repair the damaged areas on the wall, try colorwash. 3 More Answers


How to stop metal cladding f

pauly j, Other • 2016

Metal claddings such as these are becoming a lot more popular, however often you see the cladding "warp" when exposed to the sun or on hot days. Often the metal is fixed to a timber sub straight, such as plywood. More modern buildings like this one, seem t... Read More

James W, Architect

One fastener is allowed to secure the panel at a specific point to the structural support. All other fastenings create slip-joints. The slots/holes that provide for the fastener to secure to the supporting substrate/structure are sized to allow for the full expansion and contraction of the material without pinching. Additionally, the fastener... 5 More Answers


Mention your favorite Zaha H

Shruti K, Other • 2016

Deeply saddened by the death of Zaha Hadid. She was a true inspiration for architects and women around the world. Her incredible work has won her many awards some of them being the Evelyn Grace Academy, Maxxi Museum and Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre.

JORGE D, Student

is not her buildings that inspire me, is the self Zaha Hadid with her thinking to think in the impossible forms and transform it in concrete (literally) 4 More Answers


How to achieve natural expos

pauly j, Other • 2016

This natural timber cladding looks fantastic and will weather very nicely. This project uses cedar which is then stained, but there are other many alternatives.

Scott B, Other

Yes this particular project is cedar (it's used a lot in New Zealand) where this is located. They usually stain it, then it will naturally weather over time turner grey. A really timeless natural look. 2 More Answers


Cost of moving and installin

Carrie M, Architect • 2016

The house looks great but what would be the cost of moving and installing it at a new location. Also, would the customized specifications increase the total cost?

Vivien C, Designer

I think current price estimates put the cost of the pod at between USD$16k-55k - a big range but I imagine it would depend on the number of basic pods, the amount of customization (I would imagine from a list of choices), and finishes you're looking for. It is not the type of home you could tow behind a truck, and assembly has to be by a prof... 2 More Answers


Biscuits used as a curtain o

Carrie M, Architect • 2016

It looks like wood, but does anyone know more about the kind of wood that's being used here. Clearly, the purpose is to make the interiors comfortable while dressing up the exterior looks.

artlyn j, Designer

The wood curtain elements here are made from Iroko, sometimes called an African Teak. Like any teak, it is a hardwood that is rot-resistant. It is also waterproof and fairly UV resistant. It's qualities make it a good material for exteriors as well as marine use.


How to achieve green / livin

pauly j, Other • 2016

Not your normal ivy-covered facade. Sprawling flora creates an uninterrupted screen over the elevation of each building that is connected by three walkways. These living facades always present tricky challenges around waterproofing, due to the number of poles and p... Read More

Mat R, Other

Fauna, ha funny. Yes it should read flora or maybe foliage would be more apt? 3 More Answers


Pre formed concrete elements

Carrie M, Architect • 2016

Pre formed concrete elements such as these concrete screens are a unique and timeless addition to the building. Although they look simple, they represent some interesting engineering challenges. Not only do they have to be engineered to stand the test of time, they... Read More


How to use sheet metal cladd

miked m, Other • 2016

Sheet metal cladding is being used on a lot of iconic buildings lately (in some ways popularised by famous architects such as Frank Gehry). Although it gives a simple look, there is normally some tricky detailing going on as special care needs to be taken to allow f... Read More

Lucia R, Architect

while metal cladding is aesthetically pleasing, it could have its downsides. You have to be very careful with overheating, as metal is a great heat conductor. Rusting needs to be taken into consideration too, there are some metallic materials that rust on purpose to protect the rest of the structure (such as weathering steel aka corten steel)...


How to insulate thin timber

Carrie M, Architect • 2016

These exposed timber roofs always look fantastic, however what is the best way to insulate them? As there is obviously not a lot of empty space in them, it could be the reason the rooms would be freezing in winter.

Beth B, Architect

It looks to me like there are two "slabs" of approximately 4" thick each. My guess is this might be some sort of structural insulated panel (SIP) one on top of the other. Perhaps the required insulation here is not that high. In addition, there might be a much thicker roof system st pack from the thin profile that is visible. T... 8 More Answers


How can you achieve organic

pauly j, Other • 2016

There are numerous ways to achieve a organic forms with timber with timber cladding. Often the best way is with the use of thin timber strips, or thin sheet cladding.