There is no part of the building process in which the necessity for absolute system is greater than in selecting and making out a bill of Hardware. To illustrate this point, let us take the example of the Colonial House of which detailed plans are given in the section on "Estimating" in Volume II. It is surprising to find that there are required approximately 50 types, exclusive of nails, screws, bolts, etc.; and that there are 1,100 pieces of these various types required in this one building. Hardware is expensive to buy, and expensive to put on. If these eleven hundred pieces get mixed, a large amount of valuable time is consumed in getting them arranged; if too much is bought, the excess is a loss, as it is difficult to return broken lots; if not enough is purchased, the loss of time in going over the work again and again to find what is missing, is expensive; and waiting to have delivered the last belated portions of material still lacking, is exasperating.

Therefore the first thought should be to place the whole matter in such orderly shape that every point in connection with the selection, arrangement, and distribution is settled, and so clearly noted that future uncertainty relative to any point will be impossible. It is also necessary to determine the exact cost of the entire bill before deciding on any of the types; and only with a complete list is it possible to find just the relationship between the cheaper and better lines.

For all these reasons, a most useful purpose will be served if we now proceed to set forth in detail, step by step, a scheme for preparing bills of hardware, so arranging the items that definite and intelligent decision can be made, and serving also as a guide to the expeditious and accurate arrangement and distribution of the materials to the proper points for installation.

It is evident that the types at each point must be practically the same for all grades. Thus, for instance, a door requires butts (4x4 or 5 x 5 inches) irrespective of whether they are wrought-iron, japanned, bronze-plated, or solid cast bronze. Two knobs are required whether "Mineral" jet, wood, glass, or bronze is used. Therefore, in proceeding, the question of quality of material will generally be disregarded, except in cases such as knobs, where it is desirable to use a better material for the selected type in the major rooms and a cheaper material in the minor.

After the list is completed, it can be made out in three forms - the first designating the cheapest line appropriate; the second designating a line of intermediate grade; the third, the best grade which is suitable.

In preparing these three lines, there are many appliances which will not be varied. In the case of locks, for example, a thoroughly good grade should be used in the cheap line; there is no advantage to be gained in selecting expensive locks of the more intricate mechanism and more elaborate design, even for the better-grade schemes.

After these bills have been prepared, figures can be readily obtained on each, so that an intelligent decision based thereon can be made.

Listing the Items. The first step is to lay out the floor-plans, showing every point at which hardware is required (Figs. 68-71). Doors should be indicated with their swing right-hand (R. H.) or left-hand (L. H.). In the case of windows, it can generally be taken for granted that small cellar windows, unless otherwise indicated, are hinged at the top to swing up against the first-floor joists, and that all other windows, unless otherwise indicated, are double-hung with cord and weights. The location of china closets, pantries, linen rooms, etc., in which are cupboards, drawers, hooks, etc., should be clearly shown. These plans should be very simple, carrying no details except those necessary to indicate the need for hardware at the various points. It is better to make the drawings on tracing cloth or onion skin, so that after the hardware is designated thereon, prints can be taken for the use of the workmen.

On these skeleton drawings, every point requiring hardware should be numbered. Thus,

Basement Doors should begin with 1, 2, 3, etc.

Windows should begin with 50, 51, 52, etc. Closets, cupboards, etc., should begin with 90, 91, 92, etc. First-story Doors should begin with 101,102,103, etc.

" Windows should begin with 150,151,152, etc. " Closets, cupboards, etc., should begin with 190, 191,192, etc. Second-story Doors should begin with 201, 202, 203, etc.

" Windows should begin with 250, 251, 252, etc.

Closets, cupboards, etc., should begin with 290, 291, 292, etc., etc.

In this way the floor on which any number occurs can be recognized. Breaks in the numbering should be allowed, as it will be found, in working out the later details, that certain points have been overlooked, and numbers can then be assigned which will not necessitate any rearrangement.

It will be noticed that in the above scheme of numbering, we have subdivided our hardware into three distinct lots - namely, for doors, for windows, and miscellaneous items. , It is well throughout to keep these subdivisions entirely distinct, as in this way all liability to confusion will be practically avoided.

Fig. 68. Basement Plan with Hardware Items Indicated.

Fig. 68. Basement Plan with Hardware Items Indicated.

The second step is to make a list of appliances which will be required under the various divisions. Thus, under the heading Doors, we shall have

Butts of various sizes,

Locks

"

"

kinds.

Etc.

Etc.

Under the heading Windows, we shall have such items as

Pulleys, Sash-locks, Etc. Etc.

Under Miscellaneous, the list would include such items as

Hooks, Drawer-pulls,

Etc. Etc.

Each item in this list should be numbered; and, to prevent confusion, designating letters should be attached, indicating the division to which it belongs. All numbers for door hardware, for example, should carry the letter D, as D 1, D 2, D 3, etc.; those for windows should carry the letter W, as W 50, W 51, TV 52, etc.; and those for miscellaneous items should carry the letter M, as M 90, M 91, M 92, etc.