Architectural and Engineering Glossary



A P-shaped trap forming a water seal in a waste or soil pipe;esp.used for sinks and lavatories.


Abbr.for “planed and square jointed.”


Abbr.for “planed,tongued,and grooved.”


Abbr. for “post and girder.” 


Abbr. for “post and timbers.”


Abbr. for “planed one edge.”             


 Abbr. for “planed one side.”


Abbr. for “planed one side and two edges.”


Abbr. for “planed four sides.”


Symbol for pascal; a unit of pressure. 


A seldom used term for stair landing.

Pack Set

The condition induced in stored cement (whether in stationary containers or during bulk shipment) of reduced ability to flow freely; usually caused by interlocking of particles, by mechanical compaction, or by electrostatic attraction between particles.

Package Deal

See turn key job.

Package Dealer

A person or organization assuming responsibility under a single contract for the design and construction of a project to meet the specific requirements of another.

Package Stability

The ability of a liquid, such as paint or varnish, to retain its original quality after prolonged storage.

Package Trim

Factory made door and window trim, ready for installation; delivered to the job site in packages.

Packaged Boiler

A boiler unit having all components including boiler, burner, controls, and auxiliary equipment assembled as a unit.

Packaged Building

See manufactured building and precut building.

Packaged Concrete

 A concrete mixture of dry ingredients in a package; requires only the addition of water to produce concrete.

Packaged Fan Equipment

See air handling unit.

Packaged House

A prefabricated house composed of building components cut to size at the factory and/or manufactured components that are commercially available.

Packed Chord.

A composite chord, 1 which consists of several longitudinal structural members that are bolted together.


1.A device, usually expandable, which is inserted into a hole to be grouted; prevents return of the grout around the injection pipe. 2.Same as compactor, 2.


1.The stuffing or a thin ring of elastic material around a shaft or valve stem, or around  a joint, to prevent fluid leakage. 2.Small stones embedded in mortar; used to fill the cracks between the larger stones.

Packing Piece,stool

A block which is used to raise one or more members above others.

Pad Foundation

An isolated, concrete slab on  grade,1 that serves as a foundation.

Pad Mounted Transformer

A transformer designed to be mounted directly on a pad foundation with high- and low tension cables coming directly into the terminal compartments which are part of the transformer housing.

Pad Saw

A small compass saw.

Pad Support

In an acoustical ceiling assembly with a perforated metal pan, a device (such as a wire grid) for holding the sound absorptive element out of contact with the perforated pan.


A hard, heavy wood,red with black stripes,from India; used in cabinetmaking and veneer.


A flat plastering tool used to clean out or to finish an angle or corner.

Paddle Mixer

A mixer for concrete or mortar having power operated mixing blades which revolve about an axis.


A small field near a house or barn in which animals, usually horses, are enclosed.

Padstone, Pad

A strong block bedded on a wall to distribute a concentrated load; a template, 2.


A short thin wedge.


A page organization for specifications as set forth by the Construction Specifications Institute.


A multistoried shrine like tower, originally a Buddhist monument crowned by a stupa. Stories may be open pavilions of wood with balconies and pent roofs (prevalent in Japan) or built-in masonry, of diminishing size with corbeled cornices.

Pai-lou, Pai-loo

A monumental Chinese arch or gateway with one,three,or five openings;erected at the entrance to a palace,tomb,or processional way.Usually built of stone in imitation of wood construction.


In decorative work, a bit of metal or colored foil used to obtain a jeweled effect.


Bright metal foil, used to show through a thickness of enamel or paint to alter its color and give it brilliance.


A liquid solution of pigment in a suitable vehicle of oil,organic solvent, or water;liquid when applied but dries to form an adherent,protective, and decorative coating.Often categorized according to the solvent used for thinning,for example,water thinned paint or solvent thinned paint. Also see acrylic paint,cement water paint,epoxy paint,latex paint,synthetic rubber base paint, vinyl paint,water based paint.

Paint Base

The vehicle into which pigment is mixed to form a paint;commonly alkyd,latex,acrylic.

Paint Bridge

A platform or gallery,of fixed or adjustable height,beside or above the stage of a theater or in a paint loft;esp.used to paint scenery.

Paint Brush

A tool for applying paint,consisting of a flexible brush composed of long filamentary material bound to a handle.

Paint Drier

See drier.

Paint Frame

A movable frame,which can be raised or lowered,used to hold stretched canvas (and/or “flats”) on which stage scenery is being painted.

Paint Kettle, Paint Pot

An open can with a bail (wire handle)for carrying or hanging on ladders while painting.

Paint Loft

In a theater,a narrow vertical loft containing paint frames and/or paint bridges.

Paint Oil

See drying oil.

Paint Pad

A tool for applying paint,consisting of short filament material or an open cell resilient material which is connected to a handle;designed to apply paint by a wiping action.