Perhaps the builders who put this series of ties up all those years ago were unaware that they looked like an 'S' but at least they mirrored, or handed, the two on the opposite side of the gable end.
The three that look like a capital 'I' are hard to get wrong, although you could put them on their side, but that wouldn't allow them to cover a two or three courses of bricks. Making ties must have been quite a lucrative part of the local blacksmith's business, maybe they were all related to the local builder.
The mystery and the magic of the black arts of the builders trade. And the blacksmiths too, don't forget the blacksmiths.