S - Technical Dictionary


Sabre Leg                                                  
A leg with a gentle concave curve, predominantly seen on chairs, that was widely used on Regency, Empire and Federal furniture during the first half of the 19th century.

Safe Place                                                 
A safe place provides a final refuge from a fire, such as a road or open space at the end of an exit. It can also be a temporary “haven” or “refuge” to protect people while they are evacuating during a fire. The term is only used in the Performance Requirements. Safe places can be inside or outside a building, and must provide a person with protection from a fire and then allow them to safely escape to a road or open space. Example: fire-isolated stairways; fire-isolated ramps; fire-isolated passageways; and an adjacent fire compartment.

Safety Fold                                                
Sheet metal edge folded and pressed 180° back on itself to provide a safe straight clean edge.

Safety Wired Glass                                   
A single sheet of glass with wire completely embedded in the glass.

Salamander                                               
Kitchen equipment that grilles food items from above using gas or electricity.

Samples                                                    
Physical examples that illustrate materials, equipment or workmanship and establish standards by which the Work will be judged.

Sapwood                                                   
The outer layers of a tree which are still living and contain nutrients.

Sarking                                                      
Sarking is a layer of timber boarding, covering the rafters underneath roofing tiles or slates of a pitched roof, to provide a moisture and thermal barrier.Sarking membrane is a pliable, water-resistant membrane for use beneath the external roof or wall covering. Its purpose is to collect and discharge any water that may penetrate or condense under the covering . Often sarking is combined with a reflective foil to add thermal insulation benefits.

Sash                                                          
In general, a frame which holds the glass of a window. It may be opened or fixed.The opening portion of a window.

Sash Window                                            
A sash window is one consisting of two or more vertically sliding sashes. A pair of sashes is called a casement.

Satinwood                                                 
A fine-grained, golden-yellow hardwood used for fine cut veneers. It was popular in Britain during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

Scabble                                                     
Roughen concrete to provide a key for an applied finish.

Scaffolding                                                
Temporary structure providing access for operatives to construction works and support for materials and equipment.

Scale Relative Size                                   
The term is used in architecture mostly to relate a building to the human being or its surroundings. For example, a building of comfortable size is said to have 'human scale'.

Scalloped Edge                                         
A term used to describe a wavy edge or border resembling the edge of a scallop shell.

Schedule                                                   
A graphic or tabular representation of activity and time information representing parts or all of the work of a contract.

Scheduling                                                
The assignment of desired start and finish times to each activity in the project within the overall time cycle required for completion according to plan.

Scissor Stair                                              
Two interlocking stairways providing two separate paths of egress located within one stairwell enclosure

Scope                                                        
Defines the work to be accomplished in a contract, documented by a contract's parameters.

Scotia                                                        
A concave moulding, especially at the base of an Ionic column.

Scratch Coat                                             
The first coat of plaster, which is scratched to form a bond for a second coat.

Screed                                                       
(1) A layer of material usually cement based, of defined minimum thickness which sets in situ and which may be interposed between the structural substrate and bedded finish.
(2) To level off concrete to the correct elevation during a concrete pour

Scribe                                                        
A moulding cut to fit a joinery unit to an irregular surface.

Scroll                                                         
Spiral shaped ornamentation.

Scupper                                                    
(1) An opening for drainage in a wall, curb or parapet 
(2) The drain in a down-spout or flat roof, usually connected to the down-spout.

Sealant                                                      
Any material used to seal joints or openings against intrusions from foreign substances such as water, air, gasses, or dirt. The medium used to seal joints in a window or between window and building. Can be silicone or other type of sealant. Applied from a caulking gun or similar.

Sealer                                                        
A finishing material, either clear or pigmented, that is usually applied directly over raw wood for the purpose of sealing the wood surface.

Seasoned                                                  
Drying and removing moisture from green wood in order to improve its usability.

Secretaire                                                  
A French term for a large cabinet in two sections, popular in the late 18th century. The lower section has a fall front that drops down to provide a writing surface and reveals a number of small drawers and pigeon holes. Above this there is usually a bookcase or glazed cabinet.

Section                                                      
View of the features of an object lying on a plane passing through it, not showing features in front of behind the plane. A subdivision of a project into physical locations, eg level, block, zone.

Security Grille                                            
A grille that is fitted into a special flydoor or flyscreen frame that makes it more difficult for an intruder to gain access through the door or window.

Self-Closing                                               
Applies to doors which are smoke or fire doors and the like. In each case it is important that the doors be fitted with a device that immediately closes them after manual opening, and keeps them closed to stop the spread of fire and/or smoke during a fire situation.

Semainier                                                  
A French term for a tall chest of seven drawers originally made one for each day of the week.

Sequence Closer                                      
A door closer that automatically closes a pair of fire-rated doors in sequence, so as to ensure correct latching.

Servery                                                     
A room or rooms adjoining a dining room from which meals and liquors are served and in which utensils are kept. A room used for the preparation and serving of food other than a kitchen. This is the room where servers complete the final touches of food preparation remote from a kitchen.

Service                                                      
A mechanical or electrical system that uses energy to provide air-conditioning, mechanical ventilation, hot water supply, artificial lighting, vertical transport and the like within a building.

Service Enclosure                                     
(SE) An enclosure or wall cavity for mechanical services terminated at each floor slab.

Service Entrance                                      
An entrance intended primarily for delivery of goods or services.

Service Shaft                                            
(SS) An open vertical space connecting two or more floors (use the word shaft if space is limited).

Serviceability                                             
Serviceability refers to the conditions under which a building is still considered useful. A structure may be sound, but, in may not be serviceable. For example a bouncy bridge may never collapse but many people would feel uncomfortable walking on it !

Set Down                                                  
A recess in a material such as a concrete slab.

Settee                                                        
A seat for two or more people, with low back and open arms. It pre-dated the sofa.

Setting-Out Drawing                                 
Drawing used to establish marks and lines to define position and level of elements for construction work so that work can proceed with reference to them.

Settlement                                                
Shift in a structure.

Sewage                                                     
The fluid that travels down “sewerage drains” namely poo and wee.

Sewerage                                                  
Drains that carry sewage.

Shaft                                                          
Walls and other parts of a building bounding a well or a vertical chute, duct or similar passage, but not a chimney or flue.

Shagreen                                                   
Untanned leather, originally the skin of the shagri, a Turkish wild ass, but long used also to describe shark or ray skin. It was used by some 17th and 18th century designers as an inlay, and revived in the work of Art Deco designers in the early 20th century. It is also known by the French term galuchat.

Shambles                                                  
A butcher's market stall; a flesh-market, hence, a slaughterhouse. A place of carnage (figurative); a mess or muddle (colloquial). Shambolic adjective (slang) chaotic.

Sheet Metalwork                                       
All components of a house employing sheet metal, such as flashing, gutters, and downspouts.

Shell                                                          
The exterior wall of a building. Other terms used include façade, elevation and building envelope.

Shellac                                                      
A coating made by dissolving purified lac (resinous secretions of the laccifer lacca insect) in alcohol. Used in the manufacture of varnishes, polishes, etc. Also called Shallac varnish.

Sheraton Style                                          
British Neo-classical style named after Thomas Sheraton, who published designs in the early 1700's that were reinterpretations of the Adam style. Sheraton diminished ornamentation, and his style was more delicate than Adam, yet more severe and linear than Hepplewhite. Many Sheraton pieces contain inlay, painted decoration and bands of contrasting veneer. Openwork with urn, swag or lyre motifs is characteristic of his chair backs.

Shingles                                                     
Roofing or wall cladding material installed in an overlapping manner. Shingles can be made from wood, cement, tile, asphalt or metal.

Shiplap                                                      
An arrangement of boards or plates, used especially on a ship's hull, in which the lower edge of one overlaps the upper edge of the adjacent one.

Shop Drawings                                         
Drawings prepared for a fabricator to use in a workshop. Based on Working Drawings, but with full dimensions, and extended to show each piece of work individually.

Short Circuit                                              
The convergence of two uninsulated wires of different potentials.

Shou-Sugi-Ban                                          
The traditional Japanese technique of burning external timber cladding to resist rot and fire. Literally, Burnt sugi boards. Sugi is known as Japanese Cedar, but its really a cypress not a cedar. It that involves blackening the surface of the wood with flame, extinguishing the fire, and then scrubbing to embed the ash into the grain of the wood. The charring preserves the timber underneath and eliminates the need for paint or other sealants, and renders the cladding resistant to rot and fire.

Shower Area                                             
The area affected by water from a shower, including a shower over a bath. Enclosed The area enclosed by walls or screens including hinged or sliding doors that control the spread of water to within the enclosure. 

Shower Base                                             
A preformed, prefinished vessel installed as the finished floor of a shower compartment, and which is provided with a connection point to a sanitary drainage system. Shower bases are commonly made of plastics, composite materials, vitreous enamelled pressed steel, or stainless steel.

Shower Screen                                         
The panels, doors or windows enclosing or partially enclosing a shower area.Shower Tray An internal or external liquid or sheet membrane system used to waterproof the floor and the wall/floor junctions of a shower area.
  
Shrinkage                                                  
Timber typically 1mm/100mm up to 10mm/100mm (10%)

Sideboard                                                  
English wall furniture, first designed by Robert Adam in 1760 to complete dining room furnishings, but made popular by George Hepplewhite. The most common version had a central section with drawers and two side sections, and stood on six legs, two against the wall and four front ones. Sideboards were a development of the long side tables previously used in the dining room to serve food.

Signage                                                     
The arrangement or design of a sign or signs; signs collectively.

Silicone                                                      
A synthetic rubber based on silicon, carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen that is used in sealants. Very stable and inert, low toxicity. Potential toxicity comes from additives.

Sill                                                              
The stone or wood member across the bottom of the door or window opening. Also the bottom member on which a building frame rests (sill plate).The bottom horizontal frame member.

Sill flap                                                      
A vinyl seal fitted to the underside of the window to take up variations due to building settlement.

Single Hung Window                                
A window with one vertically sliding sash or window vent.

Single-Line Diagram                                 
Diagram which shows with single lines only, in a simplified way, the composition of a service installation.

Site                                                            
A parcel of land bounded by a property line or a designated portion of a public right-of-way. Area of land or water where Construction Work or other development is undertaken.

Site Coverage                                           
The proportion of a site covered by buildings.

Site Glaze                                                  
Window glazed after installation of window into building.

Site Plan                                                   
Location drawing giving the position of construction works in relation to the setting out points, the means of access and the general layout of a site. It may also contain information on service networks, road work and the landscape.

Sitework                                                    
Work on or around a site, including earthworks, preparatory to or associated with the construction, alteration, demolition or removal of a building.

Sketch                                                       
A drawing commonly prepared freehand and not necessarily to scale

Skillion-Roof                                              
A sloping roof without a ridge or peak.

Skirting                                                      
A moulding that covers the join between wall and floor.

Skylight                                                     
A more or less horizontal window located on the roof.

Slab on Grade                                           
A floor slab placed directly on the soil. The edge of the slab is usually thicker and acts as the footing for the walls.

Sleeve                                                       
A device secured to the substrate to allow the penetrating service, e.g., pipe or duct to move independently of the substrate.

Sliding Door                                              
A door where the opening sash or sashes slide in a horizontal direction. A glass door which opens in a horizontal direction. A window also used as a door.

Sliding Window                                         
A window where the opening sash or sashes slide in a horizontal direction.

Slip Resistance                                         
Frictional force opposing movement of an object across a surface, usually with reference to the sole or heel of a shoe on a floor.

Slop Hopper                                              
A sanitary appliance (similar a toilet) for washing solid waste out of bedpans (normally found in a health care building).

Slope                                                         
Vertical to horizontal inclination. Eg. 1 in 8

Slotted Pipe                                              
A slotted underground drainage or seepage pipe. Do not use the term agricultural drain or agg pipe.

Smoke-Developed Index                          
The index number for smoke as determined by AS/NZS 1530.3

Smouldering                                              
To burn and probably smoke without flame; to exist in a state of suppressed activity. Can result in high heat release when oxygen is plentiful.

Snowload                                                 
Loads imposed on slope glazed structures by the accumulation of snow.

Soaker Flashing                                        
A perimeter flashing positioned under the surrounding roof.

Sofa                                                           
A fully upholstered seat for two or more people, and a less formal version of the settee. It was made from the late 17th century onwards.

Sofa Table                                                 
A long narrow table with a drop leaf at each end, and with drawers. Designed to stand behind a sofa it was popular during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

Soffit                                                         
Soffit refers to the underside of a structural element, for example a concrete slab.The underside of a floor providing there is no ceiling. The underside of an external eaves overhang is referred to as an EAVES SOFFIT. The under surface of a beam, arch or stair.

Softwood                                                   
Wood harvested from trees that have needles, such as pines, firs and cedars. Does not necessarily refer to how hard the wood is.

Soil                                                            
A naturally occurring loose or soft deposit which either disintegrates or softens on immersion in water. Also see rock.

Soil Tests                                                  
Tests on the building site that determine the stability of soil and the type of footings required.

Sound Absorption, Sound Reverberation, 
Smooth surfaces in a room tend to reflect high frequency sound. Hard surfaces like concrete and timber can increase this sound reflection or reverberation.Sound absorption is the ability of a material to absorb sound within a room. Sound absorbent materials such as drapes or carpet are commonly used to reduce sound reflections or echoes. Sound absorption can improve the sound quality within a room. Sound absorptive materials are also useful within internal cavities of double skin partitions or hanging ceiling constructions. They help absorb sound within the cavity, reducing noise through the building element. Efficient sound absorbers in cavities are typically made from glass wool, rock wool, polyester fibre, natural wool or cellulose fibre. These materials are often used for sound and thermal insulation. The ability of a surface material to reduce sound reflection (sound absorption) is not the same as its ability to control noise passing through from the adjoining residence above (sound insulation). It is important to make this distinction when choosing materials. High mass, dense and well sealed materials generally offer improved sound insulation.

Sound Attenuation                                     
Sound proofing a wall or subfloor, generally with fibreglass insulation.Sound Insulation Sound insulation refers to the ability of a material to stop or reduce airborne sound. High mass, dense and well sealed materials generally offer improved sound insulation.Internal Sound Insulation is important when designing a wall (or other partition) to stop noise passing through from an adjoining room.
External Sound Insulation refers to the ability of materials to reduce sound transmitting into or from a building. Good external sound insulation is important when designing and constructing the external elements of a building. This includes walls, windows, doors, ventilation and roofing. Good acoustic design uses a combination of sound absorption (to reduce sound reflections within a room) and sound insulation (to stop sound transmitting into or from a room).

Sound Transmission                                
Divided into 2 categories: (a) Airborne sound measured in Rw (b) Impact sound measured in Ln,w + Ci.

Space                                                        
The final frontier. A definable area, such as a room, toilet room, hall, assembly area, entrance, storage room, alcove, courtyard, or lobby.

Spacing                                                     
The distance between individual members.

Spalling                                                      
Destruction of a surface by frost, heat, corrosion, or mechanical causes. Concrete exposed to intense heat may spall explosively. Expansion and contraction of the concrete as well as vaporizing moisture contained in the concrete contribute to this effect. It does not necessarily mean an accelerant was used. The detachment of fragments of material from a larger mass by the thermal expansion/contraction, corrosion, other stresses, pressure or impact.

Span                                                          
The clear distance that a framing member carries a load without support between structural supports.

Spandrel Panel                                         
The rectangular infill panel in a multi-storey framed building between the window sill and the window head below; often made of concrete.

Special Window                                        
A window with design or sizes different to the standard range.

Specification                                             
A detailed description of work to be undertaken including the type and quantity of materials that will be used A written document with technical directions and conditions describing the quality of materials and standard of workmanship of the project or parts of a project. It deals with items that cannot be shown on drawings or in the schedules and is normally presented in a sequence of Trades. The Specification forms part of the Tender Documents and, with agreed modifications (if any), of the Contract Documents.

Specifications                                            
Documents that define the qualitative requirements for products, materials, and workmanship upon which the contract for construction is based.

Specified Product                                      
A specified products listed as 'no substitution' in various sections are to be supplied as specified.

Specifier                                                    
A contemporary term for a specification writer. A consultant, architect, engineer, interior designer, landscape consultant, specification consultant, or some other specialist consultant; each of whom draft or create a specification of requirements.

Splashback                                               
An area of impervious material such as metal, tiles etc which is adhered to a wall behind a workbench or sink.

Splat                                                          
The flat, vertical central part of a chair back. Back splats can be solid or pierced, and are usually shaped. They are a good indicator of period styles.

Spontaneous Combustion                       
A term normally used to denote the chemical process of both spontaneous heating and subsequent spontaneous ignition.

Spontaneous Ignition                                
Ignition and fire due to the self-heating process encountered in certain fires. The first onset of burning or fire in a combustible material which has been heated without external heat.

Sprayed Finishes                                      
The term "sprayed finishes" is ambiguous. It is used for sprayed concrete finishes e.g. "Gunite", for sprayed insulation (for sound and fire), for sprayed plaster coatings, for sprayed floor finishes and for sprayed paint finishes. It may also be used for fibre-reinforced concrete and fibre-reinforced plastics (polyester). Differentiation can only be achieved at detailed specification level.

Spread-of-Flame Index                             
The index number for spread of flame as determined by AS/NZS 1530.3

Spreader                                                   
A downpipe-tee or elbow fixed at 90 degrees to the roof slope used to spread stormwater over a greater area of the roof.

Square Hollow Section                            
(SHS) A steel structural member.

Squash Fold                                              
Sheet metal edge folded back on itself and squashed flat.

Stability                                                      
Stability of a structure or building can mean the following: A structure can resist normal loads satisfactorily. I.e. live loads, self weight, gravity, wind loads etc. A structure will not collapse immediately in a crisis. I.e. it provides enough time to escape to safety.

Stage                                                        
A floor or platform in a Class 9b building on which performances are presented before an audience.

Stainless Steel                                         
(SS) An extremely durable metal alloy that resists corrosion. Grade 304 Kitchen use, grade 316 50% more expensive.

Stair                                                           
A series of steps, usually in plural from floor to floor, refer the following related hyperlinks: Balustrade Fire-Isolated Stairway Flight Landing Newel Post Nosing Rise String or Stringer Tread Winder (Quarter Landing)

Stair Flight                                                 
An uninterrupted series of steps.

Stair Landing                                             
The area of a floor near the top or bottom step of a stair. An intermediate landing is a small platform that is built as part of the stair between main floor levels and is typically used to allow stairs to change directions, or to allow the user a rest.

Stair Nosing                                               
The leading edge of treads of stairs and of landings at the top of stairway flights.

Stair Riser                                                 
The vertical portion between each tread on the stair. This may be missing for an "open" stair effect

Stair Runner                                              
Carpeting that runs down the middle of the stairs. Runners may be directly stapled or nailed to the stairs, or may be secured by specialized bar that holds the carpet in place where the tread meets the riser.

Stair Spandrel                                           
If there is not another flight of stairs immediately underneath, the triangular space underneath the stairs is called a "spandrel". It is frequently used as a closet.

Stair Tread                                                
The part of the stairway that is stepped on. It is constructed to the same specifications (thickness) as any other flooring. The tread "width" is measured from the outer edge of the step to the vertical "riser" between steps.

Stair Walkline                                           
For curved stairs, the inner radius of the curve may result in very narrow treads. The "walkline" is the imaginary line some distance away from the inner edge on which people are expected to walk. Building code will specify the distance. Building codes will then specify the minimum tread size at the walkline.

Stair Winder                                              
Winders are steps that are narrower on one side than the other. They are used to change the direction of the stairs without landings. A series of winders form a circular or spiral stairway. When three steps are used to turn a 90° corner, the middle step is called a kite winder as a kite-shaped quadrilateral.

Stair Winder (Quarter Landing)                 
A tread that is constructed within a landing and is non-parallel, only permissible in “private stairs”.

Staircase                                                   
The stairs themselves: the steps, railings and landings; though often it is used interchangeably with "stairs" and "stairway". In the UK, however, the term "staircase" denotes what in the U.S. is called "stairway", but usually includes the casing - the walls, banisters and underside of the stairs or roof above.

Stairs                                                        
The following is a list of stair terminology:
  • Baluster/Spindle - The vertical member, plain or decorative, that acts as the infill between the handrail and baserail (or tread if cut string).
  • Balustrading - The collective name for the complete assembly of handrails, base-rails, newels, spindles and caps.
  • Bullnose Step - Usually at the bottom of the stairs with one or both ends of the step having a quarter circle design.
  • Closed String - A string with the face housed/trenched to accommodate treads and risers so their profile cannot be seen.
  • Continuous Handrail - Using straight lengths of handrail connected to handrail fittings and ramps, the handrail flows over the tops of newel turnings creating a continuous run of handrail.
  • Curtail Step - A decorative shaped step at the bottom of the stairs usually accommodating the volute and volute newel turning of the Continuous Handrail System.
  • Cut or Open String - A string with the upper edge cut away to the shape of the treads and risers so that their profile can be seen from the side.
  • Going - The going of a flight of stairs is the horizontal distance between the face of the first and last risers. The individual going of a step is measured from face of riser to face of riser.
  • Newel - Accommodates the strings, handrails and treads/risers of stairs.
  • Nosing - The edge of the tread projecting beyond the face of the riser and the face of a cut string.
  • Pitch - The angle between the pitch line and the horizontal.
  • Pitch Line - the notional line connecting the nosings of all treads in a flight of stairs.
  • Rake - The pitch of the stairs.
  • Rise - The rise of a flight is the vertical distance between the floors or landings connected by the flight. The individual rise is the vertical measurement from top of tread to top of tread.
  • Riser - The board that forms the face of the step.
  • Staircase - The entire structure relating to a stair, comprising steps, treads, risers, strings, balustrading, landings etc.
  • Stairway/Stairwell - The space/void provided for the stairs.
  • Step - The tread and riser combined.
  • String Margin - The distance between the top of the string and the pitch line measured at 90° to the pitch line.
  • Tread - The top or horizontal surface of a step.
  • Wall String - The string of a staircase fixed flush with a wall.
  • Winders - Radiating steps narrower at one end that are used to change the direction of a stairs through 90° or 180°.

Stairway 
The entire stairwell and staircase in combination; though often it is used interchangeably with "stairs" and "staircase" Exterior A stairway that is open on at least one side, except for required structural columns, beams, handrails and guards. The adjoining open areas shall be either yards, courts or public ways. The other sides of the exterior stairway need not be open. Interior A stairway not meeting the definition of an exterior stairway.Spiral A stairway having a closed circular form in its plan view with uniform section-shaped treads attached to and radiating from a minimum-diameter-supporting column.

Standard                                                    
That which establishes by authority, custom, or general consent as a model or example.

Standard Specification                              
A book of specifications that are standardized such that editing for project requirements is not required.

Standard Window                                      
A window which is manufactured to a standard design and sizes.

Standards                                                  
Means a grade or level of quality Also means having wide acceptance or recognition. A standard is really a specification prepared by some third party organization.

Starting Step or Bullnose                          
Where stairs are open on one or both sides, the first step above the lower floor may be wider than the other steps and rounded. The balusters typically form a semi-circle around the circumference of the rounded portion and the handrail has a horizontal spiral called a "volute" that supports the top of the balusters. Besides the cosmetic appeal, starting steps allow the balusters to form a wider, more stable base for the end of the handrail. Handrails that simply end at a post at the foot of the stairs can be less sturdy, even with a thick post. A double bullnose can be used when both sides of the stairs are open.

Stationer                                                    
A shopkeeper, a dealer in writing-materials and the like.

Stationery                                                  
Belonging to a stationer.

Statutory Maintenance                              
Maintenance that must be carried out to meet statutory requirements.

Step Flashing                                            
A folded flashing formed to follow masonry wall joints at a roof slope.

Step Ramp                                                
An inclined access way with a length not greater than 1520 mm and a gradient not steeper than 1 in 8, located in, or instead of, a step other than a kerb.

Step Trim                                                 
Trim (e.g. quarter-round or baseboard trim) is normally applied where walls meet floors and often underneath treads to hide the reveal where the tread and riser meet. Shoe moulding may be used between where the lower floor and the first riser meet. Trimming a starting step is a special challenge as the last riser above the lower floor is rounded. Today, special flexible, plastic trim is available for this purpose, however wooden mouldings are still used and are either cut from a single piece of rounded wood, or bent with laminations Scotia is concave moulding that is underneath the nosing between the riser and the tread above it.

Stet                                                            
Latin, let it stand. Written on a drawing mark-up meaning disregard previous instruction.

Stile                                                           
The vertical members of a door to which the lock and hinges are applied.


Store                                                          
A room in which stores are kept; space for storing.

Storey                                                        
That portion of a building or facility designed for human occupancy included between the upper surface of a floor and upper surface of the floor or roof next above. A story containing one or more mezzanines has more than one floor level.

Storey Height                                            
Height measured from floor finish to floor finish. For single-storey buildings and the top floor of multi-storey buildings, the height shall be measured from floor finish to notional floor finish (level at which the next floor would be likely if there was one).

Storm Mould                                              
A section that is added externally to the frame jamb to close off cavity and take up variations in brickwork.

Storm Sash or Storm Window                  
An extra window placed outside an existing one as additional protection against cold weather.

Street                                                         
A paved way to somewhere (from Latin strata via).

Street Furniture                                         
A collective term for objects and pieces of equipment installed on streets and roads for various purposes, including traffic barriers, benches, bollards, post boxes, phone boxes, street lamps, traffic lights, traffic signs, bus stops, grit bins, tram stops, taxi stands, public lavatories, fountains, watering troughs and memorials, and waste receptacles. An important consideration in the design of street furniture is how it affects road safety.

Stretcher                                                   
A rod or bar extending between two legs of a chair or table.

Striking Plate                                             
A shaped or perforated plate into which bolt of lock or latch engage.

String or Stringer                                       
The supporting member for stair treads. The structural member that supports the treads and risers. There are typically two stringers, one on either side of the stairs; though the treads may be supported many other ways. The stringers are sometimes notched so that the risers and treads fit into them. Stringers on open-sided stairs are often open themselves so that the treads are visible from the side. Such stringers are called "cut" stringers. Stringers on a closed side of the stairs are closed, with the support for the treads routed into the stringer.

Stringing                                                    
Refers to narrow lines of inlay on a piece of furniture, used to create a simple, decorative border around drawer fronts or tabletops.

Structural Adequacy                                 
In relation to an FRL, means the ability to maintain stability and adequate load bearing capacity as determined by AS 1530.4

Structural Engineering                              
Structural engineering is a branch of engineering which deals with the analysis and design of various structural systems. Although this branch of engineering has influence on various other disciplines like mechanical or aeronautical engineering, etc it is more commonly identified with civil engineering.Structural engineering mainly involves two activities Structural Analysis Structural Design Structural analysis deals with analyzing a particular structural system. A structural system may vary from simple systems (like beams, columns, slabs, etc) to more complex systems (like frames, bridges, piers, foundations, retaining walls, etc). The objective behind analysis is to estimate or find resultant stresses (or forces) so that these elements can be designed to withstand the load that comes over it.Structural Design is a process of selecting a member of required dimensions such that they provide adequate stability under service loads. There are two main conditions to consider in Structural Engineering. One is stability, and the other is serviceability.

Structural Failure                                      
Actions such as weld failure, fracture of component material, fracture of a frame member, fracture of a supporting structure, or any combination of these.

Structural Frame                                       
Columns, beams, joists, walls, floors, trusses, etc., which act together as the structural frame to which non-structural items or materials are attached.

Structural Joint                                          
An isolation joint intended to allow independent movement between adjoining sections of the building.

Structural Level                                         
(SL) The level of a structural element.

Structural Opening                                    
The dimensions of the opening for a window or door. Use in preference to rough opening.

Structure                                                   
Organised combination of connected parts designed to provide some measure of rigidity, or a Construction Works having such an arrangement.

Structures                                                  
Bridges, culverts, catch basins, drop inlets, retaining walls, cribbing, manholes, end walls, buildings, sewers, service pipes, under-drains, foundation drains, and similar features that may be encountered in the work.

Stucco                                                       
A thin decorative finish applied to external masonry facades to imitate stonework or to provide a decorated textured finish made of Portland cement, lime, and sand. It was traditionally made of lime, sand and other ingredients such as whiting. In the 19th century is became known as cement render.

Stud                                                           
An upright supporting member of a timber wall frame to which wall coverings and linings are fixed.

Stud Opening                                            
Opening size between timber studs in a building, applies to vertical and horizontal openings.

Sty                                                             
A pen for swine.

Sub Sill                                                      
An undersill section that is used to raise the height of the sill to suit a specific building-in requirement.

Sub-Consultant                                         
A professional consultant commissioned by a Prime Consultant to assist in the planning, design, and preparation of detail drawings and specifications for a portion of the work for bidding, awarding, and site reviewing a construction contract for a new or renovated facility.

Subassembly                                           
A portion or subclass of an Assembly.

Subcontract                                               
An agreement between two parties involved in a construction contract where neither party is the owner.

Subcontractor                                           
A person or entity having a direct contract with the Contractor to perform a part or parts of the Work, or to supply Products worked to a special design for the Work.

Subfloor                                                     
A floor that will serve as the base for another floor; for example, a concrete floor that is covered over with floating floorboards.

Sublimation                                               
A change of state in a material directly from a solid to a gas or from a gas to a solid without passing through a liquid state concurrent to a rise or fall-in temperature.

Substitution                                                
A proposal from a contractor to provide a product, material, or item of equipment not specified in the contract documents but functionally equivalent and readily exchangeable to a specified item; for consideration by the consultant and owner after contract award. Substitutions usually do not affect the bid price nor will they affect contract time.

Substrate                                                  
A surface to which a material or product is applied.

Suburb                                                       
Residential area within the boundaries of a town or city.

Sump                                                         
A pit designed to collect water.

Sump Sill                                                   
An undersill section applied to a window to allow window to gain sill depth to improve the water performance of the window. Standard sill drains out through this sump sill.

Sump-Pump                                              
A submersible pump in a sump pit that pumps any excess ground water to the outside of the home.

Sunburst Motif                                          
First popularized by Louis XIV the motif of the sun surrounded by rays was later used in stylized form by Art Deco designers.

Supplier                                                     
A business that supplies goods or services for work, including that fabricated to a special design, but does not perform labour at a work site.

Surcharge                                                 
An additional load placed atop existing earth or dead loads. Often used in connection with retaining walls. An extra excessive vertical load or weight caused by spoil, overburden, vehicles, equipment, or activities that may affect stability.An extra and usually excessive burden or supply. To overload or make beyond capacity a sanitary sewer system. If large enough, a surcharge will result in an overflow. An increase in flood elevation due to obstruction of the floodplain that reduces its conveyance capacity.

Surface Water                                           
All naturally occurring water, other than sub-surface water, which results from rainfall or water flowing onto the site, including that flowing from a drain, stream, river, lake or sea.

Surrealism                                                 
A further development of Collage, Cubism, and Dada, this 20th-century movement stresses the weird, the fantastic, and the dream-world of the subconscious.

Survey Drawing                                        
Drawing that records measurements of an existing drawing.

Surveyor                                                 
Person who measures and maps land or a building site to establish boundaries, identify topographical features, and estimate labour and costs involved in planned work.

Suspended Ceiling                                    
A ceiling system supported by hanging it from the overhead structural framing. Do not use the term "False Ceiling".

Swag                                                         
A classical decorative motif of a hanging garland of fruit, flowers or leaves. Swags often featured in inlays, and were widely used on Neo-classical furniture.

Swatch                                                      
A sample patch of a color or pattern.

Sway Brace                                               
Metal straps or wood blocks installed diagonally on the inside of a wall from bottom to top plate, to prevent the wall from twisting, racking, or falling over "domino" fashion.

Symbol                                                      
A graphical element intended to succinctly convey information.

Symbolic Line                                            
A line that provides information but is not intended to represent actual geometry in an element.

Symbolism                                                
As part of a general European movement in the latter part of the 19th century, it was closely allied with Symbolism in literature. It marked a turning away from painting by observation to transforming fact into a symbol of inner experience. Gauguin was an early practitioner.

System                                                      
A combination of a range of assemblies, components, and / or materials as a complete functional unit eg air-conditioning system, suspended ceiling system.

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