I've been lookng around on the web for information on a certain type of brick and found no real help, so i thought i'd post here where someone may be able to either answer or point me in the right direction.
Me and my wife have bought an old building (a masonic temple, built around 1925), brick built and very good condition, on the inside of the building i have removed the plaster and lathe (sp?) to reveal a ceramic brick about 6inches thick, i have been told that the bricks must be kept dry because they will shatter if they get wet and freeze, i noticed that the builders left a gap every 4 bricks which they then placed a wooden sheet about 1/2 an inch thick and 6 inches wide into, they then attached the furring strips to these boards, and then lathe (?) and then plaster.
My questions are these.
1) do the ceramic bricks need to have a gap without mortar every 4 bricks for a specific reason (ie expansion and contraction thru heat cold)?
2) how should i attach new furring strips to this wall (dependant on answer to q1 above) re-use the original board or fill the gaps with mortar and then use masonry screws/nails to attach furring strips?
3) as the building is to become a residance i will need to put up plastic sheeting to protect the outter walls from condensation, what mil thickness should i be looking at for this purpose?
this is very much an ongoing project and i'm sure i'll have hundreds more questions, but these are the most important to me right now, any help from someone in the know would be greatly appreciated.
thanks for reading.
PS. please note i am not a builder by trade but a computer technician with a little knowledge of building concepts etc, please try to give it to me in laymans terms.