Post 160   by Gautam Shah ➔

Finishes are inherent on natural objects or fashioned out of such objects. Objects are also produced with required finishes, or the manufactured objects are finished with desired quality of surfaces. A surface finish nominally represents the nature of the material, however, many finishes are pseudo or make-believe effects. These are imposed on the objects. The relationship between the ‘nature of the material’ and its surface quality, some times it becomes a restrictive condition.

Roofs of Old Town Lijiang

Processes for Natural Surface Finishes: Natural Finishes result due to many different factors, such as: Elemental conditions of formation, subsequent responses like weathering, cognitive affectations, and later, natural or man-made interventions (angle of cut, tools and techniques used, etc.).

stone Inlay -Pietra Dura Taj Mahal, Agra, India

Natural surface finishes have three main cognitive affectations: Colour, Pattern and Texture. The colours are of original formation, subsequent weathering, readjustment of stresses, or induced by physical and chemical changes. The patterns result from the stresses, mixing of constituents, weathering, and the varied reactivity of different parts and constituents. Patterns also result from granular or fibrous orientation, method of cut, cyclic nature of growth, formation of residual products, deposition of contaminants, and tools-techniques of handling and processing. Textures primarily result from the degree of homogeneity, angle of cut, differential weathering, and various formative processes.

Water Pots varieties of materials, colours, finishes



Processes for Manufactured Surface Finishes: Manufactured Surface Finishes result at three levels: Raw material stage, Product formation stage, and later, through Application of surface finish on Completion of the system. In an integrated production set-up all three could be a single stage or plant process, but in most other fabrication shops only the last two processes are combined. For a site fabricated systems like buildings, the last process, i.e. surface finish application, is a distinct process as it is carried out at a site. Manufactured surface finishes as a result are of two categories: Plant based and Site-based systems. Though lot of preparatory work may occur in the industrial plant for the site-based surface finish application. Products fully surface finished in industrial plants require very careful handling (transportation, loading, storage, delivery and positioning), and so may carry protective but removable coatings or shields.

Synthetic -leather feel a like material for furnishing


Make-believe or pseudo finishes: These finishes are of two basic types:

● Surface finishes that duplicate the natural materials, such as: wood figure (pattern) or texture effects in polymers, stone like effects in ceramics, cotton like fabrics made out of polyester, or synthetic gems and diamonds.

● Surface finishes that copy the effects of other manufactured finishes, such as: chrome polymers for metals, white metal ornaments for silver, or acrylic for glass. Future possibilities include flexible glass, elastomeric metals, polymers with programmable colouring or texture forming system, metals lighter than ceramics or polymers, biodegradable ceramics, etc.


Astro Turf -Grass look-feel a like product








Post 159by Gautam Shah



Space is a vast extent where one needs a placement. Placement for the self manifests in the sense of ownership, feeling of belonging, and familiarity. The ownership bestows freedom to develop it freely, the sense of belonging derives from security and safety whereas the familiarity develops with exploration. The exploration of surroundings helps in knowing sites related advantages and location of resources. The exploration is also about keeping the past alive to be able to revert to the original position. Orienting ones self to the features of the space and its environment, and where necessary establish new ones, is very important part of space occupation. A domesticated space is an easily identifiable personal asset. It is also acknowledged by other members of the society.

Faza Kenya Territorial markings and Space identity

A domesticated place carries markings of the person who establishes it. The markings are in the arrangements of task modules, their interrelationships, sizes, scaling and crafting. The built-form represents such totality. It has been the prime expression of identity.


In a street there are many built-forms with similar features. All street dwellers pass through nearly similar process of space domestication and their approach to space occupation is the same. Here in this world of consistency one needs to create markings that are distinguished from others. At the same time there is an effort to do something as good as others. The contradiction of doing different and doing as good as others leads to innovation and consistency. What one attempts with the built forms, is also replicated with the lifestyle and behaviour.

Need for personalization for Individual units –Tietgenkollegiet student housing in Copenhagen, Denmark by Lundgaard & Tranberg Architects

A Dwelling is a personal domain and must be so declared. Children at very young age begin to associate the spatial configuration as the home. The image is further reinforced by the pride that family bestows on it. The home has an architectonic meaning. Opening systems on the street or entrance foyer are the prime places for such personalization. These are straight forward or direct declarations as much as they are subtle identifications.

Row houses -clueless identity

Yaowarat Road, the centre of Bangkok's Chinatown

The Direct Expressions highlight the building number, street name, postal distribution code, and name of the owner. They also show timings and conditions of visitations. Identifiers mark the status of the owner, as well as the nature and antiquity of the ownership. The occupier’s name, caste, educational qualifications, honours, nationality, titles, are marked over the door.

Door symbols Jewish

The Indirect Expressions are little more abstract or implied. These somehow suggest the ethnicity, social standing, political and other allegiances, religion or faith. It also shows the nature of building use like place of residence, worship, or commerce, etc. Often the abstracted forms are placed as continuation of traditions without being aware of the purpose or significance.

Famous Door Mark -10 Downing St London

Identification elements differentiate a building within a group, or associate the building to a category such as class or colony. In a mass housing colony, people treat their doors, windows, or curtains, extravagantly different from their neighbours. Opposite to this, identical doors and windows conjoin several, even differently styled buildings into a cohesive entity, a colony.

Door God -Orients

Entrance Identity



Post 158 by Gautam Shah

Gateway of India, Mumbai (Bombay) India

A Gateway is an inclusive definition of a gate. A gateway is a gate, but has the sense of passage in it, giving an idea of depth. The depth is created by the deeper section of the gate structure, or by dual or multiple gates with an intermediate passage.

Bhadra Fort, Ahmedabad, India, -Multiple gates

The depth due to the elongated structure or the passage enforces the discipline and place for intervening changes. Gates are nominally two-way structures that are have single passage across it, but some gateways are four-way structures with crossing passages. Gateways have one, three or five passages, if more it expresses a colonnade or arcade.

Two way structure gate / Dura-Europus, a Hellenistic structure on the bank of Euphrates river (Syria)

Char Minar Hyderabad India – Four-way gate

Agra Fort Gate Inside view, India

A gateway stands alone or is part of a wall structure of a fort, but in both the cases as a very significant entity due its scale and proportions. Formal gates function as controller entry or exit and so have shutters. Such gates are usually in fortified or bounded areas. These gates need functional shutters. A gateway structure, however, could be so large that no gate of such a size (doorway) is technologically feasible, and even if feasible, it is difficult to operate it frequently. Such gateways have doors of manageable size, or the large doors are inset with small doors just sufficient for one person entry.

Shaniwar Wada Gate with smaller inset gate -Pune (Poona), Maharashtra, India

Gateways structures denote a change in the environment. Such structures are real, or indicative metaphysical entities. Gates have been a symbol of power, protection, and prosperity. A gateway is a point of transition into a world that is civilized, peaceful and ordered, unlike the chaos, fear and uncertainty outside it.

Gates of the Nations, Persepolis Iran

Muscat Road Gate -a symbolic structure

Gates are conceived to be very significant, and naturally receive all the due patronage. The functional importance and patronage of the society for the gate are often so overwhelming that it becomes a superlative entity with more grandiose than the king’s palace or temple of God.

Thirukovilur Temple Tower -Gopuram (South India) -a gate structure as a superlative entity then the building (Temple)

Golden Gate Kiev – a superlative structure



De Waag, Amsterdam, 1904 Giclee Print by Nico Jungman Art com



Post 157 by Gautam Shah



There are basic TWO classes of openings. Openings that touch the floor on one or both sides to facilitate floor level movement goods, people and animals. Openings placed at higher sill level -away from the nominal floor level, and chiefly used for seeking illumination, view and ventilation.


At other level gates and gateways besides serving the basic functions of door are used for grandiose. Micro size openings such as cracks or crevices of joints are casual openings that serve need for minor ventilation. Openings are nominally designed as multi function systems, but some openings are exclusive systems serving one or few purposes, such as terrace level wind catchers, pip holes, delivery slots or hoppers, etc.

Door Gap Inca Machu Picchu Peru


Openings are gaps and shuttered. For gap-openings the view across is very important aspect. Gap-openings are designed as well as casual entities. Nominally an opening entity has four sides, of these the sides and top are omni present. The fourth one the bottom is however, is often completely floored and its identity is missed. Gap openings with deeper setting frame a view at the silhouette or the ‘other edge’. Shuttered openings have visible leaves, closed or open, have a stand-alone presence. The stand-alone presence is result of differentiated colour, texture, singular pattern, and in many instances repeated geometric divisions. Shuttered openings scale the architecture.

Gorge -Narrow gap Samaria, Crete, Greece

Narrow Gap Alley Washington DC

Openings with fixed glazing serve the function of a picture window, framing a scenery or like a shop front window to display items. Fixed openings also become space dividers as partitions or are cover element like a curtain wall.

Narrow gap -Brasilia National Congress Oscar Niyemeyer

Computer gateways and ports (air, sea, land) are like opening systems that serve as a hub for transit, termination and re-connection. At this point one can have choice how, where, when a connection could be made. To provide such choices, the hubs are endowed with protocols, converters or translators.


Ludwig Mies Van der Rohe Lake Shore drive Apartments -Standardized window architecture

As opening is a very universal architectural system. Openings are often mass produced with standard range of options. The openings follow a very strict exterior architectural regimen without consideration of the interior use related specific needs. For the above two reasons openings of same size, shape and design are used on all orientations, floor levels, neighbourhood conditions and geographic locations. Users however strive to mark the openings’ system with individual personality, cultural ethos, beliefs, affinities etc. These occur as appendages, add-ons or treatments.





Post 156by Gautam Shah

Natural and manufactured raw materials are invariably compounds, made of many materials. These raw materials are formed into products by a method of assimilationthe COMPOSITE or the raw materials are organized into a geometric formthe COMPOSITION.


1 Composite (Cloth+Gypsum) (Wikipedia image by JanSLWC)  2 Composition -geometric arrangement (Wikipedia image by Viapastrengo at En Wikipedia)

Many of the raw materials are naturally compounded materials, in the form of Composites. The composite materials come into being, by putting together natural and manufactured materials in such a special way that the strength and other qualities are different from the constituents, individually and cumulatively. The term different, is considered here as an improved quality, because man-made composites are designed and created towards specific performance requirements only.



Man-made composition -Howrah Bridge Kolkota

Similarly natural and man-made materials have an inherent organization of geometric arrangements which endow unique structural behaviour capacities. Some of the simplest examples are hives of honey bees or birds’ netted nests. At a complex level a truss, bicycle frame, a hull of a boat, are all Structural Compositions or geometric arrangements.

Natural and manufactured materials, and their composites, all are further shaped, re-formed and geometrically integrated to create secondary components as well as Structural Compositions.

1- 640px-PCCB_Wiki_9949



A composite is a natural or designed material entity with potential utility, but has no operational functionality. On the other hand, a component is a configuration of many materials into a utilitarian product. Component manufacturing involves processes that are many times similar to a composite formation. As a matter of fact for component manufacturing, the ‘composite formation’ and the ‘component creation’ both occur simultaneously. Structural compositions (trusses, bridges, buildings) are geometric-configuration of materials, often assisted by components (nuts, rivets, pins, bearings, etc.). Structural compositions use composites to form the constituent elements.

A Layered composite -Plywood

Various Definitions of Composites:

# Consisting of two or more physically distinct and conceptually separable or visually identifiable materials.

# Products that can be made by mixing separate materials, so the dispersion of one material in the other can be done in a controlled way to achieve optimum properties.

# Products with properties that are superior and possibly unique in some specific respects compared to the properties of their individual components.

Particulate composite


Cement Aggregate composite -Mosaic tile

Classes of Composites:

Natural composites               Wood, Bamboo, Bone, Muscle and other tissues

Macro composites                 Galvanized steel,

Engineered products           Reinforced cement concrete (beams, etc.), Helicopter blades Skis, Tennis rackets.

Microscopic composites     Metallic alloys, Toughened plastic (impact polystyrene, ABS), Reinforced plastics.

Nano composites                   Electronics circuits, diodes, transistors

Toys Object Sport Ping Pong Ping-pong Table Tennis

Some natural composites are easy to identify, such as: wood, bamboo, bones, muscles, etc. First man-made composites related to the bronze, as man tried to fix natural stones and ceramic pieces by hammering into the bronze. Layered wood composites have been used by Egyptians. Mud bricks reinforced with hay, hair, and rice husk have been used in prehistoric times. Cow-dung is also reinforced with granular sand particles for wall plaster. Gypsum (Plaster of Paris) has been applied on a lattice of jute, papyrus and such other fibres.

1 - 640px-Textolite

Macro, Micro and Nano Composites: Composites can be categorized in terms of the size of constituent particulate matter. Ingredients of macro composites can be distinguished by naked eye, whereas one may need an electron microscope to understand the constituents of micro composites and nano composites. Nano composites are created by introducing nano-particulate, which drastically add to the electrical, thermal, and mechanical properties of the original material.

1 -Composite_laminate_specimen

Basic Constituents of a Composite:     MATRIX and FILLERS

The constituents of a composite are ordinarily classified as Matrix and Filler. It is the nature of relationship between the filler and matrix, or the Interface that defines the composite. Fillers serve to resist stresses, mainly tension, and the Matrix serves to resist the shear, and all materials present including any aggregates, serve to resist the compression.

Fibers -used as FILLER in composite

Categories of Composites on the basis of strengthening mechanism.

Composite materials can be distinguished into three categories based on the strengthening mechanism.

These categories are:

1. Dispersion strengthened,

2 Particle reinforced

3 Fiber reinforced.


Dispersion Strengthened Composites have a fine distribution of secondary particles (fillers) in the matrix of the material. These particles impede the mechanisms that allow a material to deform. Many Metal-matrix composites would fall into the dispersion strengthened composites’ category.

Particle reinforced composites have a large volume of particles dispersed in the matrix. The load is shared by the particles and the matrix. Most commercial ceramics and many filled polymers are particle-reinforced composites.

Fiber-reinforced composites have fiber as the main load-bearing component. Fiberglass and carbon fiber composites are examples of fiber-reinforced composites.



Post 155by Gautam Shah

Climate response Casa de Osambela, Lima


Lima -another response same climate

Each building form provides its own unique environment. 1. Affectations of the climate are highly directional and scheduled in time. 2. The sub sections of the building are variously oriented and so impacted differently in time and space. 3. The building is formed of many materials and their composites, which interact differently with the various aspects of climatic.


Old Mumbai Kalbadevi

FIRST strategy to deal with the climate is to place various sections with most appropriate orientation. SECOND method relates to shifting activity schedules according to time and space. THIRD process relates to use of building materials and forms for their behaviour with the various aspects of the climate.

Anna Heringer: DESI Vocational School, Rudrapur (2006) BanglaDesh

All sections or activities, however cannot get ideal placement, size form, or building materials. The other problems include linkages or management of inter relationship between sections and activities. There are often inherent contradictions in climatic affectations (the best side for breeze may get maximum heat gain, or the colder breeze face may not have any solar gain). Similar problems are also situational, such as due to the location and terrain features.



In a building, once constructed, the shell (shape. size, materials etc.), its siting, and to some extent the amenities, are constant factors. The variables, however, are: climatic factors, inhabitants and activities of the inhabitants. When constants and variables are appropriately matched, we get an environment that is always in a flux, only partly predicable, but mostly full of surprises.


From a climate point of view, a building behaves like a biological entity, that is in a continuous process of achieving equilibrium. But the process, towards equilibrium, is not always favourable to the inhabitants or their activities. We need to hasten, delay, curtail or terminate some of the effects of the climate. Primarily we use permanent passive devices for the purpose, such as the shading devices, insulation systems, heat absorption or dissemination systems. Where such permanent installations are not physically possible or relevant for their small-scale need, we try to modulate our life style by relocating and re-timing the activities, change our clothing, food, postures and furniture like amenities. The use of climate control by mechanical devices, must be last resort.

Climate and response through Clothing

Designers use many techniques to adopt the climate for a building. They redefine and reorganise activities by new clustering, reformat the functional modules and improvise time schedules of activities. Where an activity must take place at different locations to suit the climate, related amenities are designed to be relocatable.

Modern response to Climate concerns

Designers also exploit territorial features so that energy exchange occurs efficiently and advantageously. Such features are slopes, hills, mounds, gorges, valleys, contours, etc. Landscaping elements such as water bodies, plants, shrubs, hedges, groves, etc. are created to aid the territorial features. Building components like the parapets, barricades, curbs, Chowks, cut-outs, stacks, ducts, chimneys, shafts, etc. help manage the effects of the climate. Shading devices like projections, Chhajjas, balconies, galleries, canopies, textured surfaces etc. and energy receivers like bay windows, glass fronts, solarium, clear storeys etc. are exploited for heat gain or loss, and create favourable breeze movements.

Indian House -Climate response – siting of activities



Post 154 by Gautam Shah


Turkish Handmade Padlocks

Lock is a device that prevents access by those without a key or method to open it. It is nominally a self-sufficient entity, housed in a small chamber that houses its mechanism. Locking devices are of two types: One which can be used to lock and open an opening from same side, and Two which can be opened from either side.

Complex mechanisms under the lid of a safe

Locking devices have been in use for securing the end of the ropes in loops, but lock for security purposes (such as for doors)were perhaps wedges or knots (such as: a thief knot, Gordian knot) on fibre ropes. Egyptians were perhaps the first users of wooden Locks and keys, some 4000 years ago. The first locks were like puzzles that wasted thieves’ time.

Various types of notches or serrations on keys

Early Pin locks had toothed or serrated keys that activated matching levers. Later improvements included increasing the number of pins to increase security, and changing the orientation and profile of the pins. This established the principle of the modern pin tumbler lock.

Viking Age Lock

Key Hole or notch for the key, Guanajuato, Mexico

Locks are mostly mechanical, but now electro-mechanical and electronic locks are available. New locks get a combination of commands through nodes in a printed circuit board, varied electric current, or a digital messaging system which activates the lever system.

An Old Chinese lock

All locks are not intended to prevent unauthorised access through an opening system, but some are used to control the accidental opening or closing of a door system.

PADLOCKS  ⊗ Padlocks are portable locks, with their own body and foldable or a separable locking ring. Padlocks can be used over another ring or shackle, or with a chain to tie up separate objects. Ordinary padlocks are susceptible to direct attack to break the shackle or tie chain, without the use of a key or a combination. Padlocks are used to tie up the wrapped around ropes on goods bundles or packages.

LEVER LOCKS  ⊗  Levers Locks are flat set of grooved or edge shaped devices which can be rotated or pushed by a matching key to operate or activate a mechanism. Insurance companies, police department and other security agencies desire at least a 5-lever lock for external doors of home security system.

Anglo Viking key 900 AD

MORTICE LOCK  ⊗  Mortice (Mortise in American English) is concealed into a cavity (mortice section) in the stile or thickness of the door shutter. A square section pin projects out on one or both the faces to receive the operative handles. Older mortice lock had a large box, but new generation mortise locks are cylinder locks fitted from the front and back. The locking pin could be one or multiple that come out on the side of the door. The locking device is operated through a key, and an additional bolt -a closing device through a set of handles. The locking pin is square ended but the closing pin is tapered on one face for self closing. Night or safety locks have an extra slider which stops the lock being operative with key from outside. Installation of a mortise lock weakens the structure of the typical timber door, but it is stronger and more versatile than a bored cylindrical lock.

CYLINDER LOCK  ⊗  Cylinder locks have the locking mechanism and bolting as two separate systems. Such locks are also available as sets which can be opened by their individual keys and also by a master or common key. Standard cylinder systems include key-in-knob-set cylinders, a rim (also known as night-latch) cylinders. Cylinder locks are small in size and diameter, and are fitted from front and back side of a door shutter, rather than from the edge of a door stile (as in case of mortice lock), so are easier to fit and replace.

ALMIRAH LOCKS  ⊗  Almirah locks are found on commercial Mild Steel sheets (CRCA) cupboards. The Locks are housed in a box fixed on the inside face of a shutter. The closing device has three components, a locking lever that is moved through a handle, and accompanying it is two vertical locking bars that move upward and downward. Such devices are also concealed on a street side of main doors of buildings for additional security purposes.

A wood model showing mechanisms of a Combination lock

COMBINATION LOCK  ⊗  Combination locks are operated by setting a sequence of numbers or symbols, instead of a serrated key in a nominal lock. The sequence is entered by a single rotating dial which interacts with several discs or cams, by using a set of several rotating discs with inscribed numerals which directly interact with the locking mechanism, or through an electronic or mechanical keypad. A combination lock requires a correct permutation and not merely the correct combination of digits. Electronic combination locks are better then their mechanical counterparts. Such locks are used on safes and drawers. Electronic locks work with power-assisted mechanisms. The key combination can be reset, such as for modern Hotel rooms. Floor managers get a combination that can work for all locks of a floor or zone. Such locks are often connected to a central access control system of the plant or building complex, reporting its use.

Electronic Combination lock key-card

  • ‘The first known combination lock was invented in 1206 by the Arab scholar, inventor and mechanical engineer al-Jazari. He documented the device in his book al-Ilm Wal-Amal al-Nafi Fi Sina’at al-Hiyal (The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices). Muhammad al-Astrulabi (ca 1200) also made combination locks, two of which are kept in Copenhagen and Boston Museums. Gerolamo Cardano later described a combination lock in the 16th century. In 1852 a German man by the name of Joseph Loch was said to have invented the modern combination Lock for Tiffany’s Jewelers in New York City. However the rights to his invention were stolen from his business associate who thereby attained all credit of the discovery’.

Bank Safe



Post 153by Gautam Shah



A building has many types of systems such as openings systems, services systems, structural and non-structural systems, etc. Transfer Systems denote a very large group of subsystems used for transferring goods and people in various directions, levels and in different modes. These are intentionally facilitated by architectural design or naturally occur irrespective of the adequate provisions in the building fabric.



Transfer Systems mark the routes or spaces where concentrated or repeated movement of people and goods occur. Stairs, ramps, elevators, escalators, corridors, passages, bridges, etc. are elements or systems that can be identified as transfer systems. The transfer system denotes an exclusive one or the most efficient node available, leading to concentration of traffic.


Mixed traffic crates chaos

The efficiency of a transfer system is determined by the fact whether the system is parallel, inclined or perpendicular to the gravity. The additional effort required to work against or towards the gravity, respectively retard or add to the efficiency.

Le Corbusier Ramps -inclined transfer systems

Transfer system denotes movements which start and terminate somewhere. Simple transfer systems have one to one point articulation. Branched transfer systems have one to many points configuration. It may start or end at multiple points. The third option where many to many points transfer start or end, it results in chaos, and there is no system identity.


Transfer systems are parallel -horizontal to the earth, perpendicular -vertical or inclined towards -downwards or against -upwards the gravity. Passages, Roads, Corridors, Automated walkways, are almost parallel to the gravity. Stairs and Escalators are inclined towards or against to the gravity. Elevators are perpendicular to the gravity. All these are designed to allow greater concentration of traffic, compared to many other parallel to gravity areas like Chowks, compounds, plazas, etc.

Walkway or Travelators at Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi Wikipedia Image by Vineetmbbsat

All movements are essentially bidirectional, though through design the movements may be bifurcated in time and space. An unidirectional or segregated system is more efficient than any bidirectional or multi-directional (mixed) movement systems. In a built environment too many multi-directional movements confuse clear identity of a transfer system. Within such chaos ultimately all movements cease.


Transfer systems are open-ended or looped. Open-ended systems have finite start and termination points. Start-point is one where the first transferee element gets on the transfer system. The end point is one where the last of the transferee element gets off. It is also a point where another system such as the reverse, or parallel movement system begins. Looped systems are continuous systems and have no start-points or terminal points. Looped systems have a circular formation, or part of the segment is connected by straight (point to point) transfer system.

Circular spiral -but nor a looped transfer system

The intensity of transfer depends on whether the system operates continuously or intermittently. Continuous systems such as the escalators, automated walkways, are governed by the speed of movement, while the intermittent systems such as the elevators, buses, railways are affected by the frequency of movement’s module. Both systems however have a traffic capacity limitation.


In a transfer system, people move depending on two counts, anthropometric design of the system, and orthopaedic functionality. On other hand vehicles or goods modules are carried by use of external energy through mechanical devices. Variable capacities of the transferee also affect the speed of transfer, and as a result the intensity of traffic.

Escalator as continuous inclined transfer system

Transfer systems are disturbed when elements moving at different pace cause an unwanted change in the speed or direction of the general moving mass. Transfer systems become invalid when all goods and people reach their destinations, or when there is nothing left to transfer.


Transfer systems necessarily have start-end nodes, but most transfer systems have multiple intermediate exit and entry nodes or points of transfer on the route. Some points of transfer are very clearly defined, like a door in a corridor, railway station, but many others nodes are not clearly delineated such as path or footpath without a barricade.

Multiple transfer systems -too close

Transfer systems that are exclusively directional, with high speed or of mixed traffic, require highly defined points of transfer. At every point of transfer goods and people have to alter the direction and change the speed of movement to embark or disembark the transfer system. Such variations in movements at every entry or exit node reduce the overall efficiency of a transfer system, unless points of transfer provide necessary definitions. Points of transfer provide visual and other information about the available options. A subsidiary system often allows a slow-moving transferee to adjust the speed and direction before moving over to the fast-slow moving system.


Straight transfer systems have greater efficiency, than any sharp twisting turning system. Transfer systems directed towards gravity or any superior environment such as towards promising – enticing situations tend to have greater efficiency. Point to point systems are superior to continuous systems with many points of transfer on the route. Transfer system with designed points of transfer operate better.

Railway -well defined transfer system



Post 152 by Gautam Shah

Costing (cost finding) is a tool to derive the cost of a product, providing a service, performing a function, or operating a department. Some of these are historical facts -historic costs such as –How much did it cost? -while others are predictive -budgetary costs such as –What will it cost?

Cost has relevance primarily to the person, who wishes to acquire or dispose off the item. But often a person to assess the ‘value’ of an object, wish to determine its worth through the costing.

Costs and Values are rated in terms of Money, but need not be…

Cost of a product is the total expenditure (cost of raw materials, labour, rent for plants, and producers’ profit etc.) incurred to produce or procure an item, or its exact replica. Costing can be conducted through two routes: cost analysis and rate analysis.

⊗  COST ANALYSIS: take into consideration all factors that form an item or service. It has one to one relevance. Cost analysis is more effective, for whole items, that is when an item is at a design or conceptual stage, and its parts have not yet been perceived. Yet it requires fairly clear perception of the system. Unless external conditions change a product, the cost analysis is specific, fairly stable, and may not need frequent revisions.

⊗  RATE ANALYSIS: is in a way a comprehensive application of various costs (arrived through cost analysis). Unlike cost analysis the rate analysis takes into consideration the optimum costs of production or supply (economics of volume, batch sizes, packing unit), wastage, residues, etc.


Items that have not been well detailed, or vaguely or partially conceived, various cost parameters like cost per unit of length, area, volume, or unit of the entity derived from known situations, are applied. Often cost of a known thing is considered a typical rate and applied to nearly similar things, with accommodation of the variations, as plus or minus factors. Costing done through rate analysis provides a generalised picture. Rate analysis is preferred for task-based items (assignments that have universal identity).

Valuation of Coffee

External conditions affect a rate, extensively and often unpredictably. Costings made through rate analysis need to be continuously improvised.

Cost analysis and rate analysis have very thin differentiation, so some consider them to be the same.

Designers’ specify-choose entities, or increase or decrease their use by predicting the costs. Designers develop their own cost determination methods, appropriate for the jobs they handle, and for types of items specified in their projects. Input data like market rates for materials, parts, components, labour etc. are continuously updated or sought as and when estimates are to be prepared. Updating feedback is also available through the historic estimates conducted on completion of a project.


In design offices predictive cost analysis is made through Rate analysis. Average prices of all commonly used materials, operations, etc. are collected routinely, reformatted and stored. These are presumed as standard rates, and form the basis for the cost analysis.

To simplify the process of cost analysis, number of items and their individual rates or prices are reduced by approximation (through definition of a factor for variation) in quantity and quality.



Post 151 -by Gautam Shah

Metals in cold and hot state can be deformed into useful shapes. The shape, function, and appearance of metal objects are largely determined by the type of metal used. Precious metals like the gold and silver is comparatively softer to work with, whereas base metals such as the copper, tin, lead, and iron and their alloys like bronze, brass, and pewter may differ widely in their characteristics.

Chinese metal working

The surface quality of a metal begins to emerge during the conversion processes like casting, forging or rolling. Even when some of the processes are cold working, there is a rise in temperature that affects the quality of the surface. In hot conversion processes the reheating conditions, in-line scale removal, rolling temperature, and cooling rate, all determine the surface quality of the product. All these also affect the atmospheric corrosion, paint-ability, and many other subsequent operations. Sometimes the final pass in hot-rolling generates specific surface patterns, such as with the protrusions on reinforcing bars or checkers on floor plates, ribs. In cold-rolling a specific surface, roughness is rolled into the strip at the tempering-mill to improve the deep-drawing operation, and to assure a good surface finish over the final product.


Literally hundreds of metalworking processes have been developed for specific purposes, but these can be divided into SIX broad groups: Casting, Rolling, Extrusion, Drawing, Forging, and Sheet-metal forming. The first five processes subject a metal to large amounts of strain. However, if deformation occurs at a sufficiently high temperature, the metal will re-crystallize, that is, its deformed grains will be consumed by the growth of a set of new, strain-free grains. For this reason, a metal is usually rolled, extruded, drawn, forged above its re-crystallization temperature. This is called hot working, and under these conditions there is virtually no limit to the compressive plastic strain to which the metal can be subjected. Other processes are performed below the re-crystallization temperature. These are called cold working. Cold working hardens metal and makes the part stronger. However, there is a definite limit to the strain that can be put into a cold part before it cracks.

Arts and Crafts Center

Frequent heating and graduated cooling anneal the metal mass more ductile or softer. Similarly sudden cooling by quenching in oil or water, causes the surface to cool much faster then the inner or core mass. This makes a surface of metal objects harder. Annealed and surface hardened materials have not only different structural properties but also have special surface qualities, (e.g. colour, hardness, etc.).

Surface Hardened parts

Metal grains or crystals are far from perfect. Due to the imperfect structure, metals are capable of taking shock loads and reversal of stress, unlike non metal compounds which have very regular crystal structure. When metals, such as steel is used at high temperatures and under uninterrupted stress as in case of boilers, jet engines, power house turbines, hot discharge nozzles, they yield very slowly, stretch, and eventually fracture. Metal components, which under go stress reversals very frequently, fail due to fatigue. These are more pronounced in bridges, crankshafts, etc.


 Metals are heated and cooled, without reaching to a melting stage, to provide hardening, strengthening, softening, improved formability, improved machinability, stress relief and improved dimensional stability. These thermo mechanical processes are known as annealing, normalizing, stress relief anneals, quench hardening, tempering, nitriding, martempering, austempering, carburizing, solution anneal, ageing, etc. All metals and alloys in common use are heat treated at some stage during processing. Iron alloys, however respond to heat treatment in a unique way because of the multitude of phase changes which can be induced.