Effendi builds a Howse

I know its a joke, here though single storey is better because of tornadoes. Sometimes they can skip over a single storey house where if it was a two storey job it would just lift the entire (timber framed) lot off the foundations. The wifes boss was hit the year before covid; the edge of the tornado hit the house of the bloke over the road so that it took the brunt and it more or less skipped over H's house, still causing a couple of hundred $ worth of work.......prices all seem to go up when there has been a tornado.

I though the combination of the toilet block being used Hurricane Shelter at my last company's Dallas Warehouse was pure genius.

Should the wind get up and you have to retreat there to survive, you wouldn't have to go far to avoid messy floors when you started shitting yourself
 
Where'd ya keep yer horses?

Looks sweet!

We've relatives with a place in Katy just outside of Houston - It's typically massive surrounded by other equally massive houses - so cheap compared to the UK per sqft, and I love the open plan interiors (mainly downstairs) they have.

Hope it works out well.
Ah yes, Katy, the Downton Houston flood prevention scheme.
 

RBMK

LE
Book Reviewer
When you say 'over here' are you talking about the UK? The price of a lot of stuff has increased because there is a shortage. Our kid (a builder) travelled 40 miles for 6 bags of cement yesterday. That cost and hassle will go to the customer I'm afraid. It's outrageous really. The big builder snaffling it up doesn't help either. Four large pallets in Jackson Buildbase were reserved and they can't say when the next delivery is coming in.

Timber has increased 30% since March, the choice (low) and price (high) of house bricks is staggering. Trying to get an exact match on a twenty year old house is getting harder and harder. 6' Plaster board is running low, so he's using the smaller stuff. That's more expensive because he needs more per sq ft and it takes him longer. All added to the customer bill.

I blame Dianne Abbot.
Totally agree.

A couple of weeks ago I struggled to get a bag of cement to repoint the patio (only space for one more under there now).

Two local builders merchants totally out, and eventually found a bag of ready mix mortar at Wickes 10 miles away, and even they only had about half a dozen bags left.

My regular builders merchant is OK for plasterboard but is rationing cement and then has to be pre-ordered. I've also been struggling to get the insulation board that I want to line out the garage workshop.
 
Unless Pavel the Albanian builder buys second hand blocks, which don't lock together and the slightest hint of wet concrete forces it's way through he joins that didn't seal properly.
I think ICF is relatively new to the UK and there are or were very few builders or project managers with experience of it. I get the argument that use of non-recyclable materials such as polystyrene in ICF and Icynene foam, particularly in roofs, is justified by reduction in fuels expended to keep a building warm in winter or cool in summer. I have some reservations though. Polystyrene is not permeable to allow egress of water vapour but I think Icynene is. I wonder how that affects design considerations.

At some point in the future if the building is to be replaced, the polystyrene and foam persist. As far as I know they can only be broken down by solvents.
 
I think ICF is relatively new to the UK and there are or were very few builders or project managers with experience of it. I get the argument that use of non-recyclable materials such as polystyrene in ICF and Icynene foam, particularly in roofs, is justified by reduction in fuels expended to keep a building warm in winter or cool in summer. I have some reservations though. Polystyrene is not permeable to allow egress of water vapour but I think Icynene is. I wonder how that affects design considerations.

At some point in the future if the building is to be replaced, the polystyrene and foam persist. As far as I know they can only be broken down by solvents.

What is this recycling of which you speak? Seriously, that’s a good point. I must ask my builder what the plan is in that regard. My particular builder prides himself on “green” buildings. All the insulation is spray-foam, the windows are Low-E etc. I expect there’s an answer, I just don’t know what it is.

On the water vapor, don’t forget pretty much all new buildings in the US, and certainly in the South, have air conditioning, which also includes dehydration. In our case, the ICF you see in the photo was back-filled on the land side and so the whole thing was externally waterproofed first. It surely is not permeable, so I guess it relies on the HVAC plant to evacuate the moisture.
 
Home Depot are predicting lumber prices will be dropping Oct-Nov.
I’m lucky compared to you location wise, l generally buy my lumber from the Amish or Mennonites and they didn’t jump onboard the price gouging train to a great extent.
 
What is this recycling of which you speak? Seriously, that’s a good point. I must ask my builder what the plan is in that regard. My particular builder prides himself on “green” buildings. All the insulation is spray-foam, the windows are Low-E etc. I expect there’s an answer, I just don’t know what it is.

On the water vapor, don’t forget pretty much all new buildings in the US, and certainly in the South, have air conditioning, which also includes dehydration. In our case, the ICF you see in the photo was back-filled on the land side and so the whole thing was externally waterproofed first. It surely is not permeable, so I guess it relies on the HVAC plant to evacuate the moisture.
Good point about the air conditioning.
 
All trades, particularly painters and decorators (next year in the closing phases) will be welcome. $200 a day plus beer and burgers.
My wife thinks that's a brilliant idea for a working holiday .

i.e I work my ass off painting & decorating while she lounges around drinking your beer :cool:
 
I’m lucky compared to you location wise, l generally buy my lumber from the Amish or Mennonites and they didn’t jump onboard the price gouging train to a great extent.

They’re probably still struggling with the loss of blokes in WW1 and news of the global lumber shortage in 2021 hasn’t reached them yet :)
 
What is this recycling of which you speak? Seriously, that’s a good point. I must ask my builder what the plan is in that regard. My particular builder prides himself on “green” buildings. All the insulation is spray-foam, the windows are Low-E etc. I expect there’s an answer, I just don’t know what it is.

On the water vapor, don’t forget pretty much all new buildings in the US, and certainly in the South, have air conditioning, which also includes dehydration. In our case, the ICF you see in the photo was back-filled on the land side and so the whole thing was externally waterproofed first. It surely is not permeable, so I guess it relies on the HVAC plant to evacuate the moisture.

A single US style whole house aircon system will remove around 5 to 7 gallons of water per day in a high humidity area - two units will therefore potentially remove double the quantity. If you live in a high humidity area you can fit an ancillary de-humidifier to the unit (around $1000 - $1200 in parts) to remove even more moisture. Then like a thermostat you have a humidity sensor on the wall that you set to the desired level.

I have considered the polystyrene (EPS) question and come up with my own answer: Like asbestos the manufacturers don't give a toss as long as they are making money today. Disposal is tomorrows problem. I chatted with a bloke from BASF a few weeks ago from their foams division in Phoenix, Az., he told me that there are alternatives to polystyrene (EPS) that are more environmentally friendly.
 
They’re probably still struggling with the loss of blokes in WW1 and news of the global lumber shortage in 2021 hasn’t reached them yet :)
I enjoy going to their small sawmills, all the machinery looks to be at least a hundred years old and they always employ at least one or two “English “ to run the diesel gensets that power the belts and run various yard tractors.
 
I enjoy going to their small sawmills, all the machinery looks to be at least a hundred years old and they always employ at least one or two “English “ to run the diesel gensets that power the belts and run various yard tractors.

I used to like going out to see them at work in Pennsylvania, it was like stepping back in time to a degree.
 
A single US style whole house aircon system will remove around 5 to 7 gallons of water per day in a high humidity area - two units will therefore potentially remove double the quantity. If you live in a high humidity area you can fit an ancillary de-humidifier to the unit (around $1000 - $1200 in parts) to remove even more moisture. Then like a thermostat you have a humidity sensor on the wall that you set to the desired level.

I have considered the polystyrene (EPS) question and come up with my own answer: Like asbestos the manufacturers don't give a toss as long as they are making money today. Disposal is tomorrows problem. I chatted with a bloke from BASF a few weeks ago from their foams division in Phoenix, Az., he told me that there are alternatives to polystyrene (EPS) that are more environmentally friendly.

The thermostat is a key point. We have Ecobee thermostats, and they are most excellent. They report telemetry to their HQ, so I can see historical data, energy consumption vs performance etc. Can also remotely log in to them and change settings if we’ve forgotten to do so before a trip. One of the settings is humidity, so I assume there’s a command capability for the actual HVAC units to adjust humidity. They’re relatively inexpensive, I think they were $150 apiece, very good value compared with a “dumb” thermostat.

But that brings up another point - cost control. We found that all these good suggestions are all fine and dandy, but $150 here, $300 there, and oh it’s only another $500 for the fandango dooberry-firkin all add up. Hopefully you won’t make the same mistakes we did. If we were to ever build another house (cold day in Hell), then there are an awful lot of lessons that we’ve now learned. Your prior experience should hopefully keep you above water though!
 
A single US style whole house aircon system will remove around 5 to 7 gallons of water per day in a high humidity area - two units will therefore potentially remove double the quantity. If you live in a high humidity area you can fit an ancillary de-humidifier to the unit (around $1000 - $1200 in parts) to remove even more moisture. Then like a thermostat you have a humidity sensor on the wall that you set to the desired level.

I have considered the polystyrene (EPS) question and come up with my own answer: Like asbestos the manufacturers don't give a toss as long as they are making money today. Disposal is tomorrows problem. I chatted with a bloke from BASF a few weeks ago from their foams division in Phoenix, Az., he told me that there are alternatives to polystyrene (EPS) that are more environmentally friendly.
Hempcrete is a possible infill alternative. It can be used for non-load-bearing walls or as an insulation core. If used externally, where a frame bears the load, it needs to be protected from water. Perhaps a dampcourse and cladding would deal with that. Hemp wool can be used in roof insulation. Although industrial hemp is used, there shouldn't be much if any THC in the stalks/shiv from the newly legal cannabis farms in Canada and the US. This could save a lot of trees being felled while offering a cheaper, fire resistant material for non-load-bearing use.
 
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I used to like going out to see them at work in Pennsylvania, it was like stepping back in time to a degree.

One of the saddest things I’ve ever seen was Amish in Pennsylvania. A little village just outside Liverpool PA on a 4-lane US-route. I was passing through, but couldn’t help notice an old bloke on an ancient pushbike. 18-wheel trucks thundering through his village, shedding rubber from blown tires, louts throwing trash from cars. And here’s this old bloke, who just wants to live his life in his community according to their traditions, and he’s picking up rubber and drinks cans from the road and putting them in the basket on his bike. He wants nothing to do with the trucks and cars, but they impose themselves upon him. Very sad.
 

Arte_et_Marte

ADC
Moderator
After fixing up many houses I decided it was time to actually build one. Well, supervise the build, it would take forever if I did the actual work. Though with a nod to my actual fathers porridge wog heritage, and my step dads Yorkshireness, I shall of course, being a tight b'stard, be doing some bits myself, like putting in the kitchen, bits of plumbing, some painting, and other odds and ends......better a quid in my pocket than theirs.

The land is in our possession as of last month, should have been January............"Covid ya know"......allegedly. Everything seems to be late due to the plague.

I spoke with the designer chappy this week and he is amending the plans/drawings as we speak, then they will be off to an engineer to do his bit. Unlike the UK where architects are clever people who spend 7 years becoming fully qualified it appears that here either a BS degree, or a quick masters sees you ready to rock, more or less. Unlike the the UK here an architect draws pictures of houses with little to zero understanding for the work that goes into actually building a house. Therefore you have to send it off to a qualified engineer to transform the architects magnificent pieces of artwork into functional engineering quality drawings that take into consideration the practicalities of an actual build.

This is the place I am planning on building, a real far king gin palace of a place in a style that is called contemporary ranch style. It will be built using insulated concrete forms, they look like big polystyrene lego bricks, and the roof will be raised seam steel to cope with the Texarrse weather. External walls will be stucco over Austin snake stone.

430057LY_Render_1573063513.jpg


I'll post the odd piccy and report on progress.
This is going to be a great thread if you keep us up to date mate. I have 'featured' your thread, so it will appear on the site front page.
 
Hempcrete is a possible infill alternative. It can be used for non-load-bearing walls or as an insulation core. If used externally, where a frame bears the load, it needs to be protected from water. Perhaps a dampcourse and cladding would deal with that. Hemp wool can be used in roof insulation. Although industrial hemp is used, there shouldn't be much if any THC in the stalks/chiv from the newly cannabis legal farms in Canada and the US. This could save a lot of trees being felled while offering a cheaper, fire resistant material for non-load-bearing use.
Hempcrete is awesome. You'll never be more chilled or happier than when your house is on fire.

Massive munchies though...
 
Hempcrete is awesome. You'll never be more chilled or happier than when your house is on fire.

Massive munchies though...
I know what you are thinking. Not so much building with stone as building while stoned. Seriously though, Hempcrete is very fire retardant, as is treated hemp wool. That's the straight dope.
 

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