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The truss-supported stone panel evolved during the last 20 years from simple strongbacks to entire prefabricated building bays. The advantages of prefabrication assure higher quality at competitive cost. The development of the many types of truss panels was dictated by the various characteristics of specific buildings. These panels can take practically any form, from strongbacks to spandrel and window truss panels, column truss panels, full wall panels, and specials. The panel is assembled with the truss in either vertical or horizontal position. The type of assembly greatly influences the type of stone anchor system to be used. A variety of stone anchor systems have proven value. The steel truss panels themselves need special connections to the supporting building frame to accommodate the various building movements without transferring forces to the truss panel. Design, proper installation, and inspection of such connections are vital. Full-scale mock-ups should be built for testing and feasibility of construction. The possibilities of the prefabricated stone panel systems are great, but they require vigilance and professional planning.
stone wall panels, prefabrication, wall panels, stone anchors, wall panel anchors, stone replacement, wall panel assembly, mock-up, testing, truss panels, building movements
Technical director and vice president, Stone Tech, Inc., Long Island City, NY