Architectural Hardware What Is it?
What is Architectural Hardware
You may not know it, but architectural hardware is a key element in maintaining proper functionality of your house. Knobs, doors, latches, buttons, and keys are the pieces that work in our homes. Such devices set our homes in motion, helping us to manoeuvre around them, whether it is a hinge that swings a door or a lock that unlocks a cupboard.
Architectural hardware is one of the most important elements of house design, and one of the most frequently overlooked: the knobs, handles, hinges, and levers that allow you to move around your home.
Wrapped up in the big picture of a restoration or a new construction project, all homeowners and builders frequently forget to consider the small details — including the correct equipment that will upgrade the home's logistics and aesthetics.
Where would we be without those elements that work hard? Whether it's a bolt that secures a lock, a pull that moves a cabinet, or a crank that unlocks a window, operation with decoration must occur.
Where is the hardware from?
Determine in which country the hardware is being made when shopping for hardware, specifically door hardware. The majority of European manufacturers produce products for the Australian market.
Much of the quality hardware that is sold in Australia is actually from Europe. But it is important to be informed, when buying foreign hardware that certain countries have special hardware requirements.
France, for example, is using lever handles almost strictly for its door and window hardware. The spindles are smooth and 1⁄4 "(7 mm) thick, while the English typically produce round and oval door handles with 1⁄3" (8 mm) thick spindles.
DIY or Experience?
And while there's plenty of hardware for the do it yourselfer (DIY) in Australia, several European countries also make hardware construction a job best left to an artist, so the systems may be a little more complex.
Remember to ask the contractor or supplier of equipment whether measurement is in inches or centimetres. You can find a beautiful knob, but if it doesn't match the door you'll only get a nice paperweight.
How is it made?
Another factor to consider when doing hardware shopping is how it was made. Often this will decide both the quality and price. Hardware is made using three methods: cast, carved, and wrought.
High-end hardware manufacturers still use sand-casting hardware, which was made popular in the Victorian era, to make marks or pits in the hardware and give the new hardware the illusion of antiquity.
Another casting method still used today is lost casting of wax. An ancient art, lost casting of wax provides the most detailed reproduction, but is a complex process.
Forced casting is a method where a pattern is forced or etched onto the tool. Usually this approach does not produce fine detail and is fairly cheap.
The process of hammering or rolling metal into shape is forged hardware and is the method used by early blacksmiths.
"Wrought" indicates the metal is rolled into flat sheets, and punched or die-cut, which can create any hardware thickness – from a thin back plate to a thick hinge.
Today of course there are many forms of manufacturing incorporating the old with the new.
Changing door hardware is a popular DIY project for homeowners, but get to know your home's door hardware argot, or the "hand" of the door before you buy new locks or hinge.
The hand applies to door turn. When you step through the hinges on the left side of the door, it's a lefthanded entrance. It's a righthanded door, if the hinges are right of you.
When replacing older components, carefully measure the hardware and its openings. Examine the spindle before, for example, replacing a doorknob. Standard spindle size can be either 7.5mm or 8mm with 7mm and 9mm sizes still around. Some may have threaded spindles for knobs, so don’t assume that every knob will fit every door.
Note also the spindle orientation when the lock is in place. Is the spindle on the diamond or the square? If the hole of a knob is shaped like a diamond, the spindle is said to be on the diamond.
European knobs are mounted on the square as with Australian knobs. The misdirection leaves an oval or lever handle at an odd angle.
Once the door specifications have been established, make sure that those requirements suit those of the hardware that you consider.
If you buy a new lever handle for an old lock, check that the lock is capable of carrying the lever weight. If the internal springs are too weak to lift the lever, then the lock will not be operating.
We recommend you bring to us your old door handle and lock so that we can help you make an accurate and cost effective purchase.
Locks provide protection and comfort when it comes to protecting everyone you value as well as all your most valuable possessions — whether it's plasma television or the silver heirloom.
Over the years, residential locks technology has advanced to include such mechanisms as keyless entry (popular in hotels), where you type a code into a keypad and, voila, the door is unlocked.
Consider the grade of lock you are buying when purchasing a lockset for your exterior doors.
If your locks do not make the grade it could threaten your safety and security.
Many locks that are sold in Australia are tested against the Australian AS4145 lock standard. 2:1993. 2:1993. This is the most important standard to look for, because it determines whether or not your lock is safe. This standard tests if your locksets are resistant to forced entry and are durable.
Today's two most common home locksets are the mortise lock, and the cylindrical rim lock, deadlatch or night latch.
The mortise lock replaced the rim lock, a box fixed to the outside of the frame. A stunning device, many high-end hardware manufacturers are now reproducing eighteenth-century rim locks for entrance doors.
If you have old mortise locks, then work with an experienced locksmith to determine if he can get the piece to work smoothly. If you need to replace the existing mortise lock, make sure to buy one that has the same size as the old model.
Locks have been around since ancient times, as a mechanical device that secures a door, gate, or cabinet. Locks are actually mentioned all over the Old Testament. The oldest recorded use of locks was in Egypt at 4,000 BC.
Architectural Design Hardwareis not as old as 4000BC but we do supply high quality European and Australian locks along with Australian and European door components to suit your every need. If you have questions bring them with photos and hardware. We are here to help.