Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Higher Ground

Here are some roof detail shots. We have not made alot of progress on the roofing due to poor weather. It's either been raining here or the wind has been blowing pretty hard and it's very difficult and dangerous to try to handle sheets of metal this big in much wind. You can get an idea of the type of roofing that we are using though. I'm still hearing about choosing this type from the BFA. (He hates it) He did admit though that all architects had rather sit and complain about what had already been done rather than be an active participant in choosing beforehand. I think he just likes to aggravate me too. Anyway, I like the stuff and I think its going to look good. This is a detail where the pieces overlap although the overlapping piece is not there yet! You can either run a bead of silicon down the joint or use this sticky, gummy stuff that the manufacturer sells. It's like 2-sided tape, kinda.
This shot shows the edge flashing that hides the 2 stacked 2x4's that contain the Iso Board. I think its a nice detail. We screwed the trim every 2' o.c. above the rafter tails. These screws have little neoprene gaskets made on them so they seal up the penetrations they make in the sheets. We use a cordless drill with a nut driver and they run in pretty easy.
A friend requested a photo showing the whole house and I tried to get one that showed what little roof we have on. I know this photo sucks but it was about the best I could do at this time of day. The roof is highly reflective, as you can imagine, and in the afternoon this was the best angle. I'll try to get one in the morning time. Any newcomers also keep in mind that this is only half of the house. The rest will hopefully be built at some later, unknown date. You can see my growing collection of concrete block and stone though, that I will use to enclose the underside of the house and build planters with. I'm hoping that this light colored roof will do alot to cut down on heat gain in the summer. We'll see.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Mailman, Bring Me No More Blues

I'm somebody!!! We have mailboxes! No mail yet but, hey! We'll get to that. I thought Allen came up with a nice design for them that incorporated anti-bash structure. We have the occasional teenage box mashers like everywhere does I guess and we are hoping maybe they will skip over these. I know these are not the most exciting photos but it has been raining alot here lately or dark by the time I get home so I have not been able to get many pictures lately. Several people have requested certain shots of the house and I am working on it!!
The roof came in!!! I am pretty excited about some stuff as you might guess. I could not get all the roofing in the shot but this is most of it. It is standard 1 1/4" rib metal roofing; ribs are 1 foot on center. I think it is 26-gauge Galvalume. It's the silver stuff like you see on barns, sort of. The BFA ranted and raved because I didn't get corrugated Galvalume but he did not tell me in time! I didn't think it mattered. Oh well, this stuff was not special order (read cheaper) so that was the deciding factor. The longest sections are 27' long. The truck had just a little trouble making the turn in our drive but he did OK. He just got up on one of the rocks a good bit but didn't hurt anything. We have started installing it but have not gotten very far due to rain etc. It has been miserable working weather here lately with the rain and cold. The house is about sealed up though and we have a propane heater so it is somewhat comfortable in the house. I'll try to get back with some more photos and/or stories soon.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

She Came In Through The Bathroom Window

Well, the title has nothing to do with this post but it was the only song I could think of that mentioned a window and it's one of my favorites. Anyway, these are MW windows, made in Virginia I think. I liked them because they are just plain wood windows, no frills or grilles or cladding. You can get that with this brand but they have good solid wood too. I don't care for vinyl or aluminum windows. They are fine if that is what you like and want but I just like the feel and look of wood. Now, these do have composite sills but everything is paintable and the wood is treated with a sealer. As I mentioned before, I'm not much impressed with Pella and some of those either and here's why. Lots of the expensive window makers use white or sugar pine for the frames because its pretty wood (it really is), fine grain etc. But it rots like crazy. There is no sap in it. But they charge alot because it looks so nice and it does look pretty on the inside where you might stain it. Now, these windows use good, ol' hard yellow pine. Lots of sap means harder wood and less rotting. Now if installed properly, they should not be getting water under them anyway but things happen. But the interiors are still nice and would look just fine stained. Also, last year I replaced about 6 sills in some big Pella windows. They had only been there about 7 or 8 years and were completely rotted out, so the owner calls the Pella rep and complains. So the rep says, "I'll come out on Friday to look at them 'cause that's my day to check out complaints". He has one whole day devoted to complaints?? Anyway, the guy comes out and looks at the windows and says, " Yeah, they're rotted. Too bad." So I don't care much for them. We put down this rubber flashing under each window. It's a peel and stick deal and you have to make sure and not let it touch its self. Some peope say you only need this if you are going to have brick or stone on your house but we use it regardless. Let it roll up the sides about 2 inches and stick it down good. Then set the window.
After the window is securely set, I stuff a little insulation under it and then you kind of roll this flashing up on itself to make like a little dam at the back or inside of the window. This photo is a little misleading 'cause I rolled it a little different that what I show here. It will secure itself if you roll the sticky side in.
So it looks like this. This is in case any water gets under your window somehow, it will not fall back into the wall. It will either flow out and behind the siding, where it will evaporate, or just evaporate on the sill. Now, if you get lots of water, that's another story! So that's my window lesson for the day. The metal roofing is suppossed to be here Friday morning!!! I'm excited again! It cost way more that I thought! I'm running out of money! Need to work more side jobs. We added alot of trim to it so that's what ran the price up because that stuff has to be custom made.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Nick Of Time

Hey, what are those funny pieces of glass that keep the rain and wind out and raise up and down?? They're my windows!!!! We worked most of the weekend installing these and got all of them on the main level in. We still lack the 4 clerestory windows. Those are going to be a little bit of a challenge since they are up so high. We did get the pick board up and everything prepped for it so we can just go right to sticking the windows in. About 30 minutes after we got the last of these windows in a huge storm hit. But no rain came in! It's starting to look more like a house now. I'm excited!
I'll have more about the windows on the next post probably with some better pictures. I was just trying to put up a little something for now. These are all wood with composite sills. I've have to replace too many rotted sills for other people. And no, I did not go with a big name like Pella and I'll tell you why later. It wasn't the cost. Well, not entirely!
We also installed the bathroom and shower lights and bathroom exhaust fan and did a little more wiring in the living room. It seems like that is going on forever. Crazy architect and his crazy lighting plan. I'll try to post more soon; maybe tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Blinded By The Light

We got almost all the lighting wired for the living room/kitchen area. This is the lighting plan that the BFA came up with for me and I think it is SO cool. Due somewhat to the fact that the ceilings are so high and vaulted etc. he decided to put all of the lighting on the walls. The fixtures start approximately 2' out of the corners and then you have one every 4 feet and go all the way around the room. On the North and South walls these line up with every other rafter; this photo shows that. Now, they are wired in equal sections so that you can turn on part of them instead of just everone of them coming on at one time. If I want just the ones over the kitchen sink on, I can turn just those on or opposite sections in the living room etc. I think you probably get the idea. I know at first glance some of you are probably thinking that there is nothing green about this as they probably burn alot of electricity but it would be rare for me to actually turn them all on plus they will use about 40-60 watt bulbs and now they have those cool swirly ones that hardly use any power. Now, the BFA wants me to use plain, porcelain socket type fixture (very economical) but this would require using special light bulbs since they would be exposed and you don't want them glaring at you. I'm not very disposed to having to go someplace special to find some special light bulb that they are going to charge you some special price for. So.. I'm trying to find a very simple, affordable fixture ( I need 30).
Plus, with a porcelain fixture etc., the bulb sticks out straight and I just don't like that or the color blah, blah, blah so anyway, I am trying to come up with something maybe I could make. I'll keep you informed. The BFA is aggravated at me for this but he is usually aggravated at me about something so it's all fine. I am going to keep it simple though which I think is the main idea. These pictures really don't do it justice but of course, there is no drywall up or anything so it is sort of hard to imagine. We have some sockets on the boxes now just to be able to have light and the bulbs in them are 100 watt so they are much brighter than what I think they will be later.
This is just a silly shot of the bedroom ceiling with the light on. I'm still fascinated with the fact that you can go in the house and flip lights on. Oh!! My windows came in this morning so we will be installing those soon. YES! No more wind and rain blowing in! We have hung all the ceilings that get drywall and have hung the Durock in the shower and insulated some exterior walls. That means that I now have an attic too! Which needs insulating. I feel like I will be working the rest of my life on this house and I know in ways I will, but I will be glad to see even a glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel.