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Intricate Brickwork

Intricate Brickwork

The architects behind this new development at Sydney’s Mater Hospital complex envisaged a striking building encased in seamless brickwork, unspoiled by the appearance of structural components. They also envisaged a building shaped by a series of interwoven straight and curved walls, and where a variety brick types, colourings and glazings might be used to highlight different features.

Grand in design, the construction process presented contractors with a number of interesting problems. One such problem was how to construct a curved brick panel above an opening such that the supporting concrete slab/lintel structure might remain completely concealed and only the full face of the coloured soffit brickwork fully visible. After consulting Helifix, the bricklaying contractors for this project put together a clever and reliable solution.

First, the glazed, face bricks that were to be used to create the bottom edge of this panel were cut to custom sizes and shapes. Second, these cut bricks were lined up and bonded to long lengths of HeliBar with EpoxyPlus resin to enable easy on-site positioning and manipulation, and the easy formation of the curved facade lines. Third, short PatchPins were partially driven into each individual brick, leaving an exposed tie section of around 50mm extending from the back of each brick. Finally, while allowing for movement, the concrete slab/lintel was poured. The slab has now cured, and each PatchPin now acts as a mechanical key, connecting each brick directly back to the concrete slab.

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