Title:
FIRE RESISTANT INSULATIVE LOG SHAPED SIDING
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A fire resistant siding system made up of combinations of preformed pumice concrete pieces that can be fastened to a typical internal building support structure through the use of traditional fastening materials such as nails or screws. These pumice concrete pieces are made of a concrete mixture that allows these items to be significantly lighter than other concrete products of a similar size, and can therefore be easily transported and connected to an internal building structure such as the framing studs of a house or other structure. These devices have a high resistivity to fire and are highly insulative, thus, providing fire protection to the occupants and items within a structure encased in these materials, as well as reducing the heating and cooling costs of these structures.



Inventors:
Clegg, James (NAMPA, ID, US)
Application Number:
11/380121
Publication Date:
10/25/2007
Filing Date:
04/25/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04D1/34
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Primary Examiner:
CAJILIG, CHRISTINE T
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SHAVER & SWANSON, LLP (BOISE, ID, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A fire resistant siding system for buildings comprising: preformed pumice concrete pieces having a first end and extending along a generally linear length to a second end, said preformed pumice concrete pieces made from pumice mixed with concrete in appropriate quantities so as to provide said preformed concrete pieces with predetermined qualities of weight, resistivity and providing said preformed concrete pieces with the ability to be bored through.

2. The fire resistant siding system of claim 1, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are adapted to be connected to an interior building structure through the use of a fastener.

3. The fire resistant siding system of claim 2, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are configured to be nailed to an interior building structure.

4. The fire resistant siding system of claim 2, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are configured to be screwed to an interior building structure.

5. The fire resistant siding system of claim 1 further comprising a fastening device for fastening said preformed concrete pieces to a building structure.

6. The fire resistant siding system of claim 1 further comprising a caulking compound configured for placement between said preformed concrete pieces.

7. The fire resistant siding system of claim 1, wherein each of said preformed concrete pieces further comprise a support structure located within each of said preformed concrete pieces.

8. The fire resistant siding system of claim 7, wherein said support structure is comprised of a rebar reinforcing bar and an open wire mesh that are interconnected and selectively placed within said preformed concrete piece.

9. The fire resistant siding system of claim 1, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are configured to have the appearance of wooden logs that have been cut in half.

10. The fire resistant siding system of claim 9, wherein said preformed concrete pieces have generally flat margins that allow said preformed concrete pieces to be stacked.

11. The fire resistant siding system of claim 1, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are made from a dyed concrete and pumice mixture that allows said pieces to have desired color characteristics.

12. The fire resistant siding system of claim 1, wherein said preformed concrete pieces have a length of about four feet and weigh less than seventy pounds.

13. A fire resistant siding system for buildings comprising: preformed concrete pieces having a first end and extending along a generally linear length to a second end, said preformed concrete pieces having a pair of generally flat sides configured so as to allow stacking of said preformed concrete pieces upon one another in a generally longitudinal direction, each of said preformed concrete pieces further comprising a generally curved face, said face dimensioned and configured to have the appearance of a wooden log, each of said preformed concrete pieces made from pumice mixed with concrete molded around a reinforcing frame comprised of an open wire mesh and a piece of rebar so as to provide lightweight preformed concrete pieces having the appearance of a wooden log, each of said concrete pieces further configured to allow penetration of said log by a fastener, said preformed concrete pieces configured for connection to a framing portion of a building structure with said fasteners.

14. The fire resistant siding of claim 13, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are configured to be nailed to a building structure.

15. The fire resistant siding system of claim 13, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are configured to be screwed to a building structure.

16. The fire resistant siding system of claim 13 further comprising a fastening means for fastening said preformed concrete pieces to a building structure.

17. The fire resistant siding system of claim 13 further comprising a caulking compound configured for placement between said preformed concrete pieces.

18. The fire resistant siding system of claim 13, wherein said preformed concrete pieces have a length of about four feet and weigh less than seventy pounds.

19. The fire resistant siding system of claim 13, wherein said preformed concrete pieces are made from a mixture comprising: mixed yard of the pumice concrete will contain between twenty and twenty-five percent cement, between thirty-five and fifty-five percent fine pumice (having pieces no larger than ⅛″), between thirty-five and fifty-five percent loose pumice having pieces sized between ¾″ and 5/16″, and sufficient water so as to reconstitute said mixture.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The invention generally relates to outer coverings or sheathings for buildings and more particularly, to a fire resistant insulative covering for buildings.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Millions of acres are destroyed by forest fires and range fires throughout the United States and many parts of the world. Many of these uncontrolled blazes can cause damage to lives and property by attacking and setting structures that have been built in these areas on fire. The remoteness of these areas coupled with the rugged terrain, in many instances, limits the ability of firefighters and other persons to arrive at these locations and extinguish such blazes.

Parties who build structures in these areas run a considerable risk, as a fire passing through these areas could cause damage to their property and to themselves. In response to these problems, a variety of steps have been taken and various devices utilized to attempt to find a solution to this problem. However, many of these types of methods and devices have required outlays of money, time and equipment, to produce, transport and install. As a result of these barriers, in many instances, parties simply forgo the use of fire resistant materials and place themselves at risk of having their buildings and/or possessions lost in the event of a fire.

Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide an insulative fire resistant sheathing and siding for structures that enables these structures to withstand such phenomena. In addition, it is an object of the present invention to provide an insulative fire resistant sheathing that can be cost efficiently produced, easily transported, and that is capable of connection with standard building structures utilizing standard fastening devices and common tools.

Additional objects, advantages and novel features of the present invention will be set forth in part in the description which follows and in part will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon examination of the following or may be learned by practice of the invention. The objects and advantages of the invention may be realized and attained by means of the instrumentalities and combinations particularly pointed out in the appended claims.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The purpose of the following Abstract is to enable the public, and especially the scientists, engineers, and practitioners in the art who are not familiar with patent or legal terms or phraseology, to determine quickly from a cursory inspection, the nature and essence of the technical disclosure of the application. The Abstract is neither intended to define the invention, which is measured by the claims, nor is it intended to be limiting as to the scope of the invention in any way.

The present invention is a fire resistant siding system made up of combinations of preformed pumice concrete pieces that can be fastened to a typical building with traditional fastening materials such as nails or screws. These pumice concrete pieces are made of a concrete mixture that allows them to be significantly lighter, up to one third, than traditional concrete products of a similar size. These devices have a high resistivity to fire and are highly insulative, providing up to four times the thermal resistivity of panels of similar thickness made from traditional aggregate concrete. Furthermore, the pieces of the present invention are sound absorptive, soft enough to be nailed and sawed, and sufficiently elastic so as to provide reduced brittleness under earthquake conditions. These items are also resistant to freezing and thawing and are sufficiently moisture absorptive so as to eliminate or reduce moisture condensation on walls and ceilings. These pieces also will not flake or spall when subjected to a flame.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the pieces of the present invention may be stained, sealed or dyed so as to provide a desired outer appearance. When so treated, the present invention provides a sheathing product that is not only strong and protective, but is also virtually free from any additional maintenance that might be required to keep these items in a desired condition.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, each of these pieces of siding have a first end and extend along an elongated body to a second end. Preferably, this generally elongated body has a generally flat back side that is configured to connect with a portion of a building structure, a generally curved front face portion that is configured so as to have a generally log shaped appearance, and generally flat top and bottom portions. The generally flat top and bottom portions are adapted and configured so as to enable these pieces to be stacked on top of each other in a manner similar to the way that masonry products are stacked. These pieces can then be connected to the building through the use of fasteners such as nails, screws or other devices. After placement or stacking of these devices, the pieces themselves can be interconnected through the use of caulk, mortar or other binding materials. In some embodiments, the original placement of the pieces may take place with spacers placed between the siding pieces and this space can then be filled in at a later point in time if so desired.

The siding pieces of the present invention have an internal support structure that assists in providing strength and integrity to these concrete siding pieces. In the preferred embodiment of the invention, this internal support structure is made up of a singular piece of rebar that is configured to pass through the central section of the piece. A curved wire mesh cage is also included within the log and provides additional strength and form to the device. These support items are spatially arranged and bound together by pumice concrete that is configured and mixed in such a way so as to provide desired attributes to the pieces of the siding, according to the particular application in which the siding is to be used. Depending upon the environmental conditions present at the time of creation, or the environmental conditions that may exist in the particular environment in which the siding pieces are to be used, various other additives may be included in this mixture.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the preformed pieces of the present invention are manufactured by being molded in a wood form mold that is shaped to produce pieces that have the shape of a half log. This half log configuration produces siding pieces with a greater cross section than vertical height and as a result, provides an increased insulative capacity as compared to other siding items that exist in the prior art. Within these pieces, a curved wire mesh cage and a rebar support structure provide support to this structure. During the formation process, these items are placed into a mold and then surrounded by a pumice-concrete mixture. After an appropriate period of time has passed and the pumice concrete has dried sufficiently, the mold is removed and the items are removed and allowed to cure. After a desired amount of curing has taken place, the siding pieces can be used and installed in various desired locations.

In one preferred embodiment of the present invention, the siding sections of the present invention are formed in four-foot sections, and contain a rebar section that extends along this entire length. In some embodiments of the invention, the rebar may be curved so as to extend up to or past the flat surface back portion of the siding piece. A curved open mesh support structure made from a durable galvanized steel wire material, having a thickness of approximately 3/16 of an inch, or other appropriate material that has been formed into a mesh having openings of approximately four inches square. This mesh support structure is curved so as to provide a generally semi-cylindrical shaped piece. This piece is positioned within the mold between the curved outward face and the internal rebar support portion.

A specialized mixture of cement, pumice rock, pumice sand, water and other preselected items, is added to the mold and allowed to set or cure for a preselected period of time. In one embodiment of the invention, a mixed yard of the pumice concrete that is utilized to manufacture the pieces of the present invention, will contain between 570 and 660 pounds of concrete, between 1,070 and 900 pounds of fine pumice (having pieces no larger than ⅛″), between 1,050 and 1,150 pounds of pumice having pieces sized between ¾″ and 5/16″, between 15 and 30 gallons of water together with desired quantities of appropriate additives such as shrink reducers, water reducers, air entrainers, and pozzolan. This resulting mixture will have a strength of between 2,500 and 3,000 psi, R values of approximately 0.46, and K values of approximately 2.2.

In addition to these ingredients, in some instances the concrete and pumice mixture also includes a dye that is added to this mixture so as to obtain a material that has a desired appearance. In other embodiments of the invention, the coloring of the pieces may be achieved through the use of various stains that are applied to these pieces after the pieces have been molded. Additional quantities of other materials suitable for modifying characteristics such as the adhesiveness, color, texture, hardening or drying time, or other characteristics of the concrete may also be included in the mixture. After the appropriate mixture has been created and placed into the molds, the items are allowed to set and dry.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, a dried, cured, four-foot section of this siding will weigh between 65 and 70 pounds, preferably around 68 pounds. This translates to a weight of between 15 and 20 pounds per foot, significantly less than comparably sized items made from standard concrete with sand and gravel aggregates. These relatively lightweight pumice concrete log siding pieces can be installed so as to provide both insulative and fire resistant protection to various building structures. This device is capable of being fastened directly to a support portion of a typical residential structure such as a framing stud or building sheathing utilizing standard fastening devices such as screws, nails, or other similar devices. These concrete siding portions may also be cut and drilled utilizing standard woodworking tools. If so desired, connection and sealing of these devices between themselves may also be performed utilizing caulk, mortar or other types of sealants. The use of dyes, stains or sealants upon the pieces provides aesthetic and functional benefit to the devices and reduces the need for additional upkeep and maintenance to the exterior of buildings that are covered with the siding system of the present invention.

The present invention provides an insulative, durable, maintenance free, fire resistant barrier that prevents unwanted heat and fire from contacting the inner portions of a building structure. The present invention also provides these advantages in a way that is easy to install, requires no specialized tools, conserves natural resources, is cost efficient and provides additional structural support to the structure that the device is placed upon.

Still other features and advantages of the present invention will become readily apparent to those skilled in this art from the following detailed description, describing only the preferred embodiment of the invention, simply by way of illustration of the best mode contemplated by carrying out my invention. As will be realized, the invention is capable of modification in various obvious respects all without departing from the invention. Accordingly, the drawings and description of the preferred embodiment are to be regarded as illustrative in nature and not as restrictive in nature.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 shows an embodiment of a prospective front view of the preformed piece of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a cut away view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, revealing the rebar and wire mesh cage that is located within the device.

FIG. 3 is a plan end view of the device of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is a view of the present invention in connection with a wall of a typical internal building structure.

FIG. 5 is a view of the present invention in use on a completed building structure.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

While the invention is susceptible of various modifications and alternative constructions, certain illustrated embodiments thereof have been shown in the drawings and will be described below in detail. It should be understood, however, that there is no intention to limit the invention to the specific form disclosed, but on the contrary, the invention is to cover all modifications, alternative constructions, and equivalents falling within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the claims.

The present invention is a modular fire resistant siding system made from pieces of preformed pumice concrete. As has been described previously, the present invention is capable of being fastened directly to a support portion of a structure such as a stud or sheathing, utilizing standard fastening devices such as screws, nails, or other similar devices. The device may also be cut and drilled utilizing standard woodworking tools. Connection and sealing of the devices to each other or to another device may also be performed utilizing caulk, mortar or other similar materials. In addition to all of these features, the pieces of the device may be utilized as masonry pieces to form various structures.

Various views of a preferred first embodiment of the present invention are shown in the attached FIGS. 1-5. While the preferred embodiment of the invention is shown, it is to be distinctly understood that the invention is not limited thereto, but may be variously embodied according to the needs and necessities of the user. Referring first to FIG. 1, a top perspective view of a preferred first embodiment of the invention is shown. In this first preferred embodiment of the invention shown in FIG. 1, the invention is a half log shaped preformed piece of pumice and concrete 10 having a first end 12 and extending along a generally linear length to a second end 14. An outward face side 16 is configured to have the features and outward aesthetic appearance of a wooden log. The top 18 and bottom 19 are generally flat and configured so as to allow these pieces to be stacked in a similar fashion as pieces of masonry. The piece 10 also includes a generally flat backside (shown in FIG. 3) that is adapted for placement against and connection with a portion of a support structure.

Referring now to FIG. 2, the preformed siding piece 10 is shown in a cut away view so as to reveal the various internal features that are present in the device 10. The preferred embodiment of the present invention 10 includes a cage 22 that is formed around a rebar section 20 so as to provide structure and assistance to the configuration of the preformed concrete pieces 10. These pieces 10 are formed by placing the rebar section 20 and the wire mesh support cage 22 within a mold, then filling the mold with an appropriate mixture of pumice and cement so as to form a half log shaped piece of siding 10 that has the desired properties. The rebar section 20 and the internal wire mesh 22 provide an internal support structure to these pumice concrete pieces 10 of the present invention, which assists in providing strength and integrity to the concrete siding pieces 10.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the internal support structure is made up of a singular piece of rebar 20 that is configured to pass through the central section of the piece 10. A curved wire mesh cage 22 is also included within the log 10 and provides additional strength. These support items 20 and 22 are further bound together by the addition of concrete mixed with pumice, as well as a dye. Depending upon the environmental conditions present at the time of creation, or the environmental conditions that may exist in the particular environment in which the device is used, various other additives may be included in the concrete mix.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the preformed pieces 10 of the present invention are molded in a wood form mold, configured to have the shape of a half log. This configuration provides a greater thickness between the outer face surface 16 of the siding and the internal portions of the building that the device is used upon, and in so doing increases the insulative capacity of the present invention.

In one preferred embodiment of the present invention, the pieces 10 are formed in four-foot sections and contain a rebar 20 section that extends along this length. In some embodiments of the invention, the rebar 20 may be curved so as to extend up to or past the flat surface back portion of the siding piece. An open mesh support structure 22 made from a durable galvanized steel wire material, having a thickness of approximately 3/16 of an inch, or other appropriate material formed into a mesh having openings of approximately four inches square. This mesh support structure 22 is curved so as to provide a generally semi-cylindrical shape and is positioned within the device between the curved outward face 16 and the internal rebar support portion 20.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the preformed pieces of the siding 10 are manufactured by being molded in a wood form mold that is shaped to produce pieces that have the shape of a half log. This half log configuration provides siding pieces that have a greater cross section than vertical height and as a result, provides a siding portion with an increased insulative capacity as compared to other siding items that exist in the prior art. These pieces contain a curved wire mesh cage 22 and a rebar 20 support structure which are placed into the mold and then surrounded by the pumice-concrete mixture. After an appropriate period of time has passed, the mold is removed and the items are allowed to cure. After a desired amount of curing has taken place, the items can be used and installed in various desired locations.

In one preferred embodiment of the present invention, the siding sections of the present invention are formed in four-foot lengths and contain a rebar section 20 that extends along this length. In some embodiments of the invention, the rebar piece 20 may be curved so as to extend up to or past the flat surface back portion of the siding piece. An open mesh support structure 22 made from a durable galvanized steel wire material, having a thickness of approximately 3/16 of an inch, or other appropriate material formed into a mesh having openings of approximately four inches square. This mesh support structure 22 is curved so as to provide a generally semi-cylindrical shape and is positioned within the device between the curved outward face 16 and the internal rebar support portion 20.

A specialized mixture of cement, pumice rock, pumice sand and water and other selected items, is added to the mold and allowed to set or cure for a preselected period of time. In one preferred embodiment of the invention, a mixed yard of the pumice concrete will contain between 570 and 660 pounds of concrete, between 1,070 and 900 pounds of fine pumice (having pieces no larger than ⅛″), between 1,050 and 1,150 pounds of pumice having pieces sized between ¾″ and 5/16″, between 15 and 30 gallons of water together with desired quantities of appropriate additives such as shrink reducers, water reducers, air entrainers, and pozzolan. This translates to proportional amounts of between twenty and twenty-five percent cement, between thirty-five and fifty-five percent fine pumice (having pieces no larger than ⅛″), between thirty-five and fifty-five percent loose pumice having pieces sized between ¾ and 5/16″, and sufficient water so as to reconstitute this mixture.

The pumice concrete, which is formed as a result of this mixture, will result in a mixture that will have a strength of between 2,500 and 3,000 psi, R values of approximately 0.46, and K values of approximately 2.2. In addition, in some instances, the concrete and pumice mixture may also include a dye, which is added to the material so as to achieve a piece that has a desired color and appearance. In other embodiments of the invention, the coloring of the pieces may be achieved through the use of various stains and/or sealants that are applied to the pieces 10. Depending upon the necessities of the user, additional quantities of other materials suitable for modifying characteristics of the concrete such as the adhesiveness, color, texture, hardening or drying time, or other characteristics of the concrete may also be added. When the appropriate mixture has dried within the molds and has been sufficiently cured, the resulting pieces are typically ready for use.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, a dried, cured, four-foot long piece of this siding will weigh between 65 and 70 pounds, preferably around 68 pounds. This translates to a weight of between 15 and 20 pounds per foot that is significantly less than comparably sized items made from standard concrete with sand and gravel aggregates.

In use, these preformed concrete pieces 10 can be directly attached to the studs of an internal building structure and thus, attempt to provide a fire resistant barrier that prevents unwanted heat and fire from contacting the inner portions of the building. In addition to connection with the studs directly, the panels of the present invention may also be utilized to connect with sheathing or other structural portions of the building. The pieces of the present invention may also be connected to an exterior building sheathing, placed next to a hard foam type of outer insulation, or used independently as a separate masonry product. The present invention in any of these various embodiments, provides for an insulative building panel, provides heat resistant protection, structural support and provides for a desired insulation to desired structures. The present invention also performs these advantages in a way that is easy to use, requires no specialized tools, conserves natural resources and is cost efficient.

In FIG. 3, an end view of the embodiment of the invention shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 is shown. This allows for a view of the internal surface 30 of the present invention 10.

In FIG. 4, various combinations and pieces of the present invention 10 are shown as they would be placed in use upon an internal building structure, such as the internal framing structure of a structural wall. In this embodiment, the siding pieces 10 of the present invention are connected to the studs or other framing portions of a building structure so as to hold these devices against the structure. In the preferred environment of the invention, the concrete pieces of the present invention 10 may be fastened to the internal building structures placed with fasteners 24. These fasteners 24 or fastening devices 24 can include, but are not limited to, screws, nails, bolts, adhesives and a variety of other fastening devices that may be adequate to properly secure and hold the concrete pieces 10 in place. In addition to the aforementioned fastening devices, the present invention can also be stacked and interconnected with the use of mortar, caulk, or any other variety of other types of typical masonry binding devices.

The result of the present invention, results in half log appearing pumice log siding pieces 10 that can be stacked and connected to like siding. The preferred embodiment of the invention of these items, are configured for easy transport ability by a typical human and thus, have a length of about four feet, a height of about ten inches and weigh approximately 68 pounds. These pieces can be applied in single layers either to the studs or to the sheathing, which may be placed over the studs in a typical building fashion. These preformed concrete pieces of the present invention, are lightweight and can be used with mortar or caulk if so desired by including the use of spacers. In addition to the generally straight pieces that are shown in the drawings, the present invention may also be configured so as to include a variety of overlapping and interconnecting pieces as well. The present invention provides a significant advantage over the prior art, in that it allows structures to be built that conserve natural resources, are fire resistant, lightweight to use and easy to work with because of their ability to be utilized with typical prior art tools.

Additional objects, advantages and novel features of the invention will be set forth in part in the description which follows and in part will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon examination of the following, or may be learned by practice of the invention. The objects and advantages of the invention may be realized and attained by means of the instrumentalities and combinations particularly pointed out in the appended claims.

While there is shown and described the present preferred embodiment of the invention, it is to be distinctly understood that this invention is not limited thereto, but may be variously embodied to practice within the scope of the following claims. From the foregoing description, it will be apparent that various changes may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the following claims.