Architectural and Engineering Glossary

King-post Truss

A structural support for a roof formed by two inclined rafters joined at the apex of their intersection;a horizontal tie beam,2 connects the rafters near their lower ends, and a vertical central member,called the king post,connects the apex with the midpoint of the tie beam.


In medieval architecture,the string course,with ballflower ornaments,usually under parapets.


A tie rod or long bolt which takes the place of a king post.


1.A small pavilion,usually open,built in gardens and parks.2.A similar structure,often enclosed,for the sale of merchandise such as newspapers or magazines.


In early Russian architecture,a niche to house one or more icons.


A unit of force;equals 1000 pounds (4448 newtons).


A sacristy in an Eastern Orthodox church.


A church,especially in Scotland.

Kiss Mark

A mark on a brick face produced during firing;results from the method of stacking.


See cistvaen.

Kit Home

Same as prefabricated house.

Kitchen Cabinet

A case or box-like assembly consisting of doors,drawers,and shelves primarily used for storage for food,utensils,linen,etc.

Kitchen Garden

A private garden especially for raising vegetables and herbs.


A room intended for the preparation and cooking of food,often where meals are also eaten;if prepared in a structure detached from the main house,then called an outkitchen.Also see summer kitchen.


A small room or an alcove fitted with the essential conveniences of a kitchen. 

Kite Winder

On a staircase,a winder which is triangular in shape.


Art or architecture that is sentimental or banal in tone;considered to have little or no aesthetic value.


A yellowish long,hard brick;primarily used in paving.


Abbr. for “kilometer.”


Abbr.for kilonewton,a unit of force.

Knapped Flint

A flint stone that has been broken or chipped to obtain a desired shape;often set in patterns in a wall,with the split face showing.

Knapping Hammer

A steel hammer for breaking stone;used for splitting cobbles and  for shaping paving stones or producing roughly sized material;usually has two square (or rectangular) faces,or one such face and a wedge peen.


See knur, burl.

Kneading Compaction

The  compaction of a plastic soil by the action of a sheepsfoot roller.


1.A piece of wood having a bend,either natural or artificially set;a crook,2.2.A part of the back of a handrail having a convex upper surface.3.See label stop, 2.

Knee Brace

A corner brace;a diagonal member placed across the angle between two members that are joined;serves to stiffen and strengthen a framework so constructed.

Knee Iron

A kneepiece,2,fabricated of iron.

Knee Piece

1.Same as knee rafter.2.An angular piece of timber used in a roof to strengthen a joint where two timbers meet.

Knee Rafter

1.A principal rafter having a bend in it.2.A brace between a principal rafter and a tie beam.

Knee Roof

A curb roof.

Knee Timber

A timber having a natural curve or knee 1.

Knee Wall

A wall which acts as a knee brace by supporting roof rafters at some intermediate position along their length;shortens the span of the rafters.


See kneeler.

Knife Consistency, Knife Grade

A grade of caulking or glazing compound which has the proper firmness for application with a putty knife.

Knife File

A file having a blade like cross section,with a sharp edge;used to finish narrow grooves.

Knife Grade

See knife consistency.

Knife Switch.

A type of electric switch consisting of one or more movable copper blades which are hinged and which make contact with stationary forked contact jaws by being forced between them.

Knife-blade Fuse

A cartridge fuse having a metal blade at each end of a cylindrical tube for making contact with the fuse within.

Knob Bolt

A door lock with a bolt controlled by a knob on one or both sides.

Knob Latch

A door latch with a spring bolt controlled by a knob on one or both sides.

Knob Lock

A door lock with a spring bolt controlled by one or both knobs,and a dead bolt controlled by a key.

Knob Rose

A round disk or plate fastened to the face of a door around the hole in the door through which the doorknob spindle passes.

Knob Shank

The projecting stem of a knob into which the spindle is fastened.

Knob Top

That part of a doorknob which the hand grasps.


1.A handle,more or less spherical,usually for operating a lock.2.A similar protuberance,useful or ornamental,such as a boss.

Knobbing, Knobbling, Skiffling

In stone cutting,a preliminary process,usually the knocking off of pieces projecting beyond the required dimensions.

Knocked Down (KD)

Prefabricated,but not assembled;said of items delivered to the jobsite for assembly there.

Knocked-down Frame

A doorframe furnished by the manufacturer in three or more basic parts for assembly in the field.


See door knocker.

Knocking Up

1.Preparing and mixing a batch of concrete,mortar,or plaster. 2.The reworking of a mortar mix so that it is plastic once again.