This section is from the book "Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry, And Building", by James C. et al. Also available from Amazon: Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry And Building.
Whenever it is not desirable to carry the plastering down to the floor, for any reason, it is customary to make use of a wainscot, which is a covering of woodwork about 3 or 4 feet high, which either goes on top of the plaster or takes the place of the plaster on the inside of the room. Such a covering may be made higher, up to 6 or 7 feet, and it is then known as a "dado," but the two names are very loosely used and are often confused, one with the other.
Fig. 356. Section of Two-Piece Base.
The most simple kind of wainscot is composed of matched sheathing, which may be ornamented by being beaded, or V-jointed, or center beaded. Fig. 357 shows a section through a few pieces of V-shaped sheathing to illustrate the meaning of the term "V-joint." The sheathing is tongued and grooved and the narrow strips are set up vertically and matched together, but each strip has the sharp edges cut away on one side, so as to form in the finished work a V-shaped depression as shown at A in the figure.
Fig. 358 shows a section taken horizontally through a portion of some beaded sheathing. This sheathing is tongued and grooved in the sam eway as is the other sheathing described above, but instead of being V-jointed as the other is, it has a bead worked on each piece on one edge only, as shown at A. This makes it more expensive than the V-jointed sheathing and much more expensive than plain tongued and grooved sheathing.
Fig. 359 shows a section through some center beaded sheathing, where, in addition to the bead A worked on the edge of each piece, a bead or sometimes two beads are worked in the center, as shown at B.
Fig. 360 shows a section taken vertically through a simple wainscot composed of matched sheathing with a base and a cap mold. The sheathing itself is shown at B, the plaster being at G, with the sheathing placed close against the plaster surface. At C is the base, with the top beveled to receive the sheathing. This method of receiving the sheathing on a beveled top to the base is the best, because dust and dirt will not then collect between the joints of the sheathing at the bottom, and whatever does collect there can be easily cleaned away. At A, is shown the cap molding which is grooved on the bottom to allow the sheathing to fit up into it. This cap mold runs the full length of the wainscot and stops against the architraves around the windows, so that its projection can not be greater than the thickness of the architrave molding, and it should be about 1/8 inch less than this thickness.
Fig. 357. V-Shaped Sheathing.
Fig. 358. Beaded Sheathing.
Fig. 359. Center-Beaded Sheathing.
Fig. 360. Section through Simple Wainscoting.
Fig. 361. Horizontal Section through Another Kind of Wainscoting.
In Fig. 361 is shown another kind of wainscoting, the section being taken horizontally through a portion of it. This form of wainscoting is more expensive than simple matched or beaded sheathing, but it is not so expensive as is paneled work. It consists of pieces called "battens," as shown at C, with other thinner pieces grooved in between them, as shown at B. The battens may be 7/8 inch or 1 1/8 inches in thickness, while the panels are usually made 1/2 inch thick. The width of the various pieces depends upon the design of the wainscoting which can be altered to suit the taste of the designer.
Fig. 362. Section Showing Paneled Wainscoting.
Fig. 363. Another Paneled Wainscoting.
Fig. 362 shows the joint between the panels and the battens in simple paneled wainscoting. In this case, the battens C are grooved as in Fig. 361 and the panels B are tongued into them.
In Fig. 363 is shown a better way to fasten in the panels B, the piece A being separate from the panel and the batten, but the molding is still a part of the batten C itself.
Fig. 364 shows a form of paneling where both the molding D on the face and the piece A on the back are separated, and the batten C is cut with a rabbet to receive the molding on the face so that it will not extend too far on the face of the panel B, in which case it is likely to curl up a little at the edge and become separated from the panel instead of lying flat against it. This latter method is much the best, especially in the case of raised panel moldings.
Fig. 364. Still Another Form of Wainscot Paneling.
Fig. 365. Vertical Section through Plate Rail.
Fig. 366. Forms of Picture Molding.
In dining rooms and in some other rooms it is customary to carry the wainscoting to a height of 5 or 6 feet from the floor and in this case it is usually capped with a member called a "plate rail." Fig. 365 shows a section taken vertically through such a plate rail. The wainscoting or dado A stops underneath the blocking C, and a molded piece B is planted onto the face of the blocking to form a finish. The projection of the rail from the wall is about 3 1/2 inches. Wood Cornices. In many cases the only portion of the cornice around a room which is made of wood, is the picture molding, which is a small molding to the top of which picture hooks may be fastened. Fig. 366 shows several forms which such a molding may take.
Fig. 367. Section Showing Construction of Wood Cornices.
When it is desired to have the entire cornice in wood, it should be built up out of comparatively thin pieces, say 7/8-inch stuff, and these thin pieces should be blocked out with rough blocking to the extent desired. In Fig. 367, A, B, and C are furring strips placed about 2 feet apart and the shaded portions represent the pieces out of which the cornice is built up.