Strawbale House

This blog is intended to chart our progress through the self-build process, from half-hearted plot-hunting through to completion of the build. The twist is that we're building the house from timber and straw (hence the blog title).

Click on the image at the end of each post to see that day's photos.

Thursday, 28 June 2007

June 28th - Foundations complete. Let the fun begin!

A momentus day. At last, the foundations and blockwork are complete, and the carpentry – the “real work", as Mal calls it – can begin. Yesterday I spent an hour on site before breakfast taking delivery of and spreading the last load of concrete, which was used for the second half of the solum and the remaining cavity infill. Mal was at home looking after Michelle, who had discharged herself from hospital. I left Melvin a note calling off work for the day, and spent the day catching up on the day job.
Today we were all back on site for a full day with no weather interruptions. I had to nick off for an hour at lunchtime to ship an urgent order, so I missed the first timber being cut and fixed in place.
The last of the blockwork was knocked off by lunch, with much of my morning spent splitting bricks in half and using them as packers above the block vents. This was after scrounging some large-bore alcathane pipe from Neil to use as ducts for the incoming water main, which I installed in the north wall. These will be above ground-level, but beneath the steps to the back door, so will be well-lagged and protected from frost.
In the afternoon Hamish joined us and spent the time playing with Boston (and regretting ignoring my advice to bring a jumper!)
By the end of the day we’d fitted the DPC and the sole-plate on all the block walls, the timbers fixed every 800mm with anchor-screws. The first two floor-joists were installed and squared up just before the weather started to crack at 5pm. A good day’s work. Progress should seem much faster from now on, now that we’re on the timber frame. Had a quote from Rembrand Timber for all the windows, roof-lights and chip-board flooring. Apparently there’s been a fire at the UK’s main chipboard factory in Liverpool, which has reduced availability and therefore increased the price considerably.

First timbers 280607

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