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My question is how can all of these bricks be supported by the thin columns on either side? How can there be that much empty space under all of the bricks that the arrow is going through? Looking at it I am under the impression that it should collapse because there are no bricks underneath to support such a huge area. It also does not look like there is a beam or anything else directly under the rectangle of breaks so they should fall down.

In the second image, there is a stone support to support the weight of the bricks above but the first image does not.

The third image looks like it should collapse as well. brick building

brick building with stone structural support

enter image description here

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This was intended more a comment regarding the third image, (however I opted to put a

The confusing part for me is, the arch like section in the middle, and the differences between the style of the walls, and the ceiling (which appears to be wood). So it seems to me to be some type of renovation.

If you blow up the image, you will notice that the final row has a different orientation.

enter image description here

enter image description here

Although this might be to produce a visual effect, another interpretation is that the bricks clad to an underneath structure.

enter image description here

enter image description here

Sometimes the brick weight also is not that great, and the end effect can look very convincing

enter image description here

enter image description here

My point is that without a closer inspection its difficult to tell what is happening. I agree though that if that are indeed chemically bonded bricks without any underlying steel structure I wouldn't want to live in the third house.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, those images do explain how the bricks must actually be a decorative aspect and not a solid brick structure. $\endgroup$
    – Jamaal
    Aug 22 at 14:00
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Your first photo looks like it is a concrete structure and the bricks are only glued onto it.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thats what I thought, but shouldn't they still fall down without bricks to support underneath? That looks like hundreds of pounds of bricks. $\endgroup$
    – Jamaal
    Aug 22 at 3:06
  • $\begingroup$ @Jamaal you anchor the bricks into the structure, there will be steel coming out from the structure and anchored into the mortar. This is called a brick veneer in the US and is extremely common. $\endgroup$
    – Tiger Guy
    Aug 22 at 3:15
  • $\begingroup$ Ok that makes sense, image #1 must be veneer bricks but what about image #3 I just added? I dont get how the bricks are supported with nothing underneath and unlike the veneer bricks in image #1, in image #3 it does not look like they are anchored to anything. $\endgroup$
    – Jamaal
    Aug 22 at 3:23
  • $\begingroup$ I have a similar column ( modern house) and the structure is 2 X 4 framing; the bricks are decoration. $\endgroup$ Aug 22 at 15:08
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These are veneered brickwork used over either concrete or steel structure with proper dowels or fasteners supporting the bricks. These fasteners are regulated by code to support both vertical loads and lateral loads of a potential earthquake and also depending on the type of the building and its function meet fire codes as well.

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Here is an example of false brickwork at a lintel. You can see the 90-degree bracket anchors, and horizontal steel mesh to attach the veneer to the concrete blocks, the waterproofing sheathing, and the bottom support.

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veneer detail with wiremesh fasteners

brick venner detail at lintel.

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  • $\begingroup$ Yeah I see how that is the case with the first image, but what about the third one? I do not see any structure that could be supporting the bricks $\endgroup$
    – Jamaal
    Aug 22 at 4:42
  • $\begingroup$ @Jamal, I added another detail that shows how the veneer brick can be attached to reinforced concrete blocks. $\endgroup$
    – kamran
    Aug 22 at 5:15
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All structure openings require either lintel/edge beams or lintel plates to support the load above.

For brick and reinforced concrete structures, the lintel/edge beam can be made of reinforced concrete or CMU lintel blocks with steel reinforcement for large openings.

For structural steel construction, the lintel/edge beam can either be made of reinforced concrete or built-up steel shapes.

For smaller openings such as doors and windows, a steel lintel plate may suffice.

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    $\begingroup$ Not true. Most of the windows and doors in my brick-built house have no lintels, and they have been fine for more than 50 years. The only ones that do have lintels are where a later builder messed about with the original structure and damaged it! $\endgroup$
    – alephzero
    Aug 22 at 15:09
  • $\begingroup$ @alephzero You need to study more on this subject. Older brick buildings without face tiles usually have bricks arched over small openings, or reinforced stone masonry, acting as lintel beams. Mortar alone can't hold the bricks without some kind of support below. $\endgroup$
    – r13
    Aug 22 at 15:44
  • $\begingroup$ @alephzero Here is one simple article on lintels for your information. theconstructor.org/structural-engg/… $\endgroup$
    – r13
    Aug 22 at 15:54
  • $\begingroup$ @alephzero Here is another one. Note the failed arches on the brick wall. Pls let me know If you need more information structuralguide.com/concrete-lintel-beams/…. $\endgroup$
    – r13
    Aug 22 at 16:08
  • $\begingroup$ @alephzero This article offers the most direct answer, in layman terms, to your comment. askinglot.com/do-you-need-a-lintel-above-a-door $\endgroup$
    – r13
    Aug 22 at 18:40

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