Control of window / door recess in exterior walls


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Hi all,


Okay this is really getting down in the weeds, but I'd like to know if there is more control somewhere in Pro over the amount that windows (and doors) are recessed into exterior walls.  In the window properties there are some recess options however there are only 3 and none of them fit my situation. 


Here is a typical wall in the bldg:



From the outside-in the major wall layers are about 8 inches of brick, some parging, then steel studs and drywall.  I created a new wall definition for this: 




You can see I have the brick in the Exterior Layers and the steel studs in the Main Layer.  The software places windows/doors in Main Layer, and so puts them in the steel studs.  The windows/doors are actually in the brick.  So I need to somehow move the windows/doors from the steel studs to the brick.


The recess options in the window properties only control the placement of the window within the Main Layer of the wall definition.  There is no control to move the window out of the Main Layer to the Exterior Layer.


I thought of defining my wall with brick as the Main Layer, and no Exterior Layer at all, however this does not end well, lol.  The floor/ceiling platforms are visible through the wall because there is no exterior to cover them.  Also it's not structurally correct as the brick layer in this wall does not support the floors.  (The building was an old school converted to condos with the addition of a steel column-beam skeleton inside so that the brick walls are more-or-less not load bearing.  All the floors/ceiling are supported by the steel skeleton.  Frankenbuilding :lol: .) 


The only other option I could think of would be to "cheat" it by defining the 8" of brick as two layers, with 4" in the Exterior Layer and 4" in the Main Layer, and moving the steel studs to the Interior Layer (which is actually more correct).  This would then place the windows/doors where I need them, while keeping the structure about as close to correct as I can get it.


Before doing that though, is there another option somewhere that controls the depth that windows/doors are recessed into walls?  Or is it just the 3 that I already found in the window properties?


Thanks and regards,



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Do you know how the brick wall is constructed? These are often double wythe construction where there are two brick walls built back to back.


In this case, you might use the outer wall as the exterior finish, and assign the remaining layers as needed. 


And to answer your question, I believe there are no other window related options.

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...While I'm still asking if any of you know of other options elsewhere to control the window recess depth, I've been experimenting more with the 3 I found and I now have a better understanding of what they do (it helps to have really thick wall layers to see the difference!). 


I have created two new wall definitions, each with the 8" brick layer split into two 4" layers:




And here they are with windows in them:




The first definition puts half the brick into the Main Layer.  I set the window to "Recess to Main Layer".  It's the lower window in the picture.

Pros:  Window recessed correctly.

Cons:  Floor/ceiling platforms extend into the brick wall, which isn't correct for this particular building.


The second definition leaves the brick layers in the Exterior Layer and moves the parging to the Main Layer.  I set the window to "Recess to Sheathing Layer".  The software treats the innermost layer of the Exterior Layer as the sheathing, in this case the innermost brick layer.  It's the upper window shown in the picture.

Pros:  Window recessed correctly.

Cons:  Floor/ceiling platforms extend into the parging, which isn't correct for this particular building..., but I could live with it.  Also the steel studs have been moved into the Main Layer. 


I could also combine the inner brick and the parging into a single 4-3/4" layer so that the window is correctly recessed and the floor/ceiling platforms stop at the parging face as it's supposed to.  The parging would not display as its own layer though. 


Still hoping someone here knows another option to control window recess depth!




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Whups, thanks Eric, your reply came in while I was typing my extra post.


Okay if there are no other options then it sounds like my experments above are going in the right direction.


The brick varies depending on the part of the building.  Lower levels appear to be 3 wythe and upper levels are 2 wythe.  There are some buttresses that are 3 and 4 wythe.

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Okay here's the latest attempt, with the inner 4" of brick and the 3/4" parging combined into a single 4-3/4" layer:


Windows set to "Recess to Sheathing Layer".


Pros:  Window is recessed correctly.  Floor/ceiling platform will not protrude into the parging.

Cons:  Parging no longer exists as a separately specified layer.


Does this look like the best option here?

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Good grief, I just found this in the knowledge base:


Technically it doesn't help in my specific situation, but it is another control over window recess amount.  Posting it here for anybody looking for options in the future.

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That was the way the earlier options were.  I used "Porous Concrete" for it (since changed to "Rough Stucco").


I'm now up to iteration 6 or 7 lol.  It gets really finicky when connecting with other wall types.  Can't seem to find a combination that does everything I'd like.  I guess as long as the interior and exterior surfaces look okay, I shouldn't really worry too much about what's going on inside the wall!   :rolleyes:

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