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Anchoring a long 1 x n brick used vertically for support

uncleMontyuncleMonty montrealMember Posts: 7
Hello, I was wondering what the best practices for anchoring a long n x 1 brick, used vertically for support, would be for maximum solidity. I need to support quite a large architectural structure above a fairly open space; the sides of the space cannot be load-bearing and so I will have pillars inside the space. For aesthetic and scale-related reasons I would like to have these pillars be no larger than 1 stud x 1 stud. I had thought of using a 1 x 16 technic brick vertically, as potentially stronger than a spindly tower of three 1 x 1 x 5 bricks, which doesn't seem like it would be particularly strong. My questions are:

1) Am I right that a single brick or beam will be better than a tower of three 1x1x5 bricks? The structure above will be approx. 30-35 bricks high, and 30 studs by 95 studs. Approximately a 30 stud by 30 stud area of this needs to be supported in this way, only using 1x1 pillars, of which I could place about 9. (The rest of the supported structure can have sturdier support as it will be hidden from view -- I would also appreciate any recommendations for this.)

2) If using a vertical beam, how to anchor it so it bears the weight properly? At first I was thinking a bracket attached to the baseplate and to two studs of the 1x16 brick. But this seems like it will be transferring the load-bearing to a sideways stud connection so this is probably no good. I could put two 2x1 bricks down either side of the vertical brick and attach the three with a technic pin, but then the vertical beam won't be touching the baseplate.

3) How about at the top? How to anchor the plates above these beams--the same way, with two bricks "straddling" the vertical brick using a pin, then build on top of these bricks?

4) If I use a long brick vertically like this, and if I use the technic holes and a pin, would there be any advantage to using a liftarm instead of a studded technic brick?

My thanks to those of you with experience with this kind of structure!


  • LyichirLyichir United StatesMember Posts: 661
    Do the supports have to be rectangular? A chain of part 62462 (connected with a long Technic cross-axle running through the center and connected to the floor and ceiling at the ends) would seem to me like one of the easiest ways to make a long 1x1 support. A single-brick solution like a 1x15 liftarm or 1x16 Technic brick would be stronger, though.

    In either case, for mounting it I would recommend sticking with Technic for the greatest amount of stability. Using a frame of Technic bricks inside the floor and ceiling should ensure that the supports line up correctly and that the overall structure remains strong.
  • uncleMontyuncleMonty montrealMember Posts: 7
    Lyichir, thanks for your suggestion. I didn't know Technic pins could be used in this way--simply joined end-to-end, with a long axle running through them. Am I right that the pins would not fit inside one another with any system connection, but simply meet end-to-end, with the weight of whatever they are supporting keeping them firmly together?

    For the liftarm version, I am imagining this:

    I'd extend this kind of arrangement to other pillars in the same way. The plates for the upper storeys would then be attached to the horizontal bricks, and I'd build on that. What do you think? It seems odd to me that the vertically positioned brick is not bearing weight through its bottom, but via a peg. Also it's obvious to me now that the whole thing can tip "sideways" very easily so I'd have to anchor it at each end. I wouldn't want the technic assembly on the floor baseplate to take any more room than this (which is already more than I'd like--I was hoping to avoid a sunken floor).

    The building I'm modelling has square pillars but a studded or technic brick is already different-looking enough that using the cylinder of Technic pins wouldn't be out of the question if that ends up being better in some way.

    Or maybe I'm overthinking and I'd be fine with the tower of 1x1 bricks for each pillar.

  • nexandernexander Glasgow Member Posts: 866
    I would avoid using 1x1 bricks if there will be a lot of weight and/or you will be moving it.  The time you use a technic beam vertically and clad them it will be quite big.  How about using 2x2 round bricks with an axle through them with a 4x4 at the top and bottom for extra stability? It shouldn't look too chunky and you can use ridged bricks for added texture.  Even then I wouldn't rely on just them.  Aesthetics v strength can be a challenge but consider the consequences of having it too weak and failing!   I have pushed the stresses on 2 of my current mocs to the limit I can get away with to get a better look but if they fail it will be a quick fix.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,324
    What about a load of spiral staircase axles, joined by technic pins?
  • uncleMontyuncleMonty montrealMember Posts: 7
    About Lyichir's technic pins: I tried them like this:
    this is with an axle of length 12, which uses 5 of the 2L pins capped at top and bottom by 2x2 round bricks also attached to the pillar by the axle.

    I could also imagine using bigger round bricks so I could attach more beams of each top piece, extending the grid of pillars in both dimensions, but then I noticed this:

    Here I'm comparing the heights of the tower with the 12-long axle to a stack of bricks of height 10, which theoretically should have the same height - but they don't quite line up, because the height of each round bricks is 6/5ths of a stud. I can't jiggle them into place in to line up. Then I tried one with a longer axle and seven 2L pins + one 1L pin, and again the height doesn't seem to be quite in system with a tower of bricks of height 14.

    Is there a solution for this? If I don't use the round bricks, which because of their studs-up orientation throw off the compatibility with the (usually horizontal) axles, then how do I attach the pin+axle columns securely to the base plates? And to the "ceiling" plates?
  • uncleMontyuncleMonty montrealMember Posts: 7
    Nexander, thanks, I'm sure that would be very sturdy but I've found that a column of 2x2 round bricks is just too chunky for my build at its current scale.

    CCC, thanks for this suggestion, I didn't know about that piece! The height is a bit odd (5 1/3!) but I can probably make it work. What would a good floor and ceiling support look like for that, do you think?

  • CyberdragonCyberdragon Maryland, U.S.AMember Posts: 364
    Have you tried various combinations of plates in the towers to try and line them up? There's also bushings (though they are only grey).
  • uncleMontyuncleMonty montrealMember Posts: 7
    It seems to me that plates won't help as the mismatch is less than one plate in height. It would be easier to figure out with real bricks I'm sure--it's probably just a matter of adjusting where the round bricks sit on the axle.

    The smallest bushing is one half-stud in length, I believe, and I don't think that's right either. Thanks
  • PeteMPeteM Gallifrey (near Bristol)Member Posts: 392
    edited March 29
    The spiral staircase axles are usually top and tailed with the pieces below, making the total height up to a round 6 (though using technic pins to join them means this won’t be the case when using multiples)

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