Sunday, 7 December 2014

Turtle's pace Downgraded to a Snail's pace

It's been months since I've written a post and I'm having trouble knowing where to begin. It will seem to you, from the photos, like a lot has been accomplished here at Turtle Falls but then when I remind you that the last post was August 22nd you may wonder what is taking so long. I wonder that every day too even though I'm livin' the dream. 
The number of roadblocks we have encountered can truly get us down at times. Weather, architectural design flaws, architectural detail omissions, weather, material delays, painstaking attention to air-tightness details, weather, health issues with the building crew, not having enough building crew, engineering omissions and the delays associated with waiting for new engineered details. Oh...and did I mention weather? We are now just waiting for the winter to kick into high gear. That should really help with our schedule!
Sarcasm aside, we are happy to have a crew that takes the time to do things with care and attention to detail. We are confident that we are getting a very well built house. Now, if only we could find them a faster turtle!
Here are some photos of what's gone into building passive house Casa Tortuga to date:
One inch (2.5cm) thick polyisocyanurate board (foil-faced foam) is glued
on every stud and nailed to the exterior side of the stud wall.
One inch (2.5cm) thick high density Styrofoam is installed where floor
joists/rim boards will sit.
Then all seams are taped with Siga Rissan for air-tightness.
The first section of wall raised. Yeah! The seam between wall sections gets
taped from the inside to continue that complete air-tight barrier.
Corners get wrapped with foam board and taped
 before the section gets moved to its final spot.
A bead of adhesive gets applied at the floor...
And the wall section is lowered over the anchor bolts and onto the
adhesive, completing the air tight seal at the floor.
Steel beams and massive window headers are boomed into place.
A rare moment of joyful-jumping and exuberance when weather and
construction speed are playing nicely together.'re too cute!
All seams taped. High density styro on the tops of all walls (you may need
 to zoom in to see that detail) to which the ceiling polyisocyanurate boards
get taped. Once that polyiso is in place, the continuous air-tight bubble of
foam around the living space will be complete. It will eliminate
all thermal bridging as well.
Trusses and roof sheathing finally arrive.
What's with the weird looking window openings, you ask?
Before I get to windows...
the concrete gets two coats of elastomeric waterproofing membrane.
The window bucks are built to accommodate the windows in the 23" (58cm)
thick walls. It looks rather odd right now but once the exterior 16" (40cm)
of insulation gets installed they will look like any other window.

I realize this post is getting excessively long so I will end here for now. You can see from the photos the amount of detail that you will not see in conventional building. Details...just one of the items in the list of why this project seems to take forever to go anywhere.

More later...giddyup turtle, winter is fast approaching!


Anonymous said...

Wow ... a labor of love and patience ... your blogging and photos are an excellent prelude for a touring speaker series on how to build your unique environmental home ... challenges and successes ... or OMG why is this taking so long!!!

S Bark said...

Wow. It has form, function and a roof (almost:-)). Will keep asking the weather goddess to delay snow.
Hugs from Campbellville!!!

Moony & Bryce said...

I feel like we're there watching your dream home being built. Thanks for the update, Mimi & Ras! xoxoxo