CountryPlans Design/Build Forum

General => Owner-Builder Projects => Topic started by: glenn kangiser on January 30, 2005, 06:24:03 PM

Title: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 30, 2005, 06:24:03 PM
Forum Administrator note by John Raabe:

This is a very popular thread of photos and philosophy loosely focused on the evolving underground house Glenn and Kathy Kangiser are building in central California. This is a multi-page thread (see the current page count in the upper left) so take you time and load it a page at a time. Several tons of creative ideas here  :D!

Also! Visit Glenn's Underground house page (http://www.countryplans.com/underground.html) at the Owner-Builder Gallery (http://www.countryplans.com/gallery.html). [edit by J. Raabe 3-10-07.]

Here's a preview of some of the photos. Glenn's comments follow:

(http://img216.imageshack.us/img216/6227/glenn27kh.png)

(http://img511.imageshack.us/img511/7233/glenn37la.png)

(http://img511.imageshack.us/img511/453/glenn19np.png)

Here are more photos-- don't give me too bad a time about not ever finishing anything - I just run around trying to get the the worst fires put out before I have a chance to go back and work on the other ones.

Work also interferes with my progress-- excuses- I got a ton of 'em ;D
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/th_2353.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/?action=view&current=3bd6d9b8.pbw)
Slideshow - click picture to start.  Also - It links to 126 Photobucket pictures.

Photo Link

http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Demian on January 30, 2005, 07:12:00 PM
Glenn,

I really appreciate this post.  Perfect timing!

I finally purchased "The $50. & Up Underground House Book" and just received it a couple of weeks ago.  I've been poking about within the covers wishing for more images.  You cover quite a bit in these 16 photos from cob to stawbale.  This is great!

Demian
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 30, 2005, 08:07:41 PM
Note - changed host so you wouldn't have to create an account. Picture quantity will change from time to time.

Demian- if you like the book and are interested in more, the videos answer a lot of things and give a lot more pointers.  2 important  points - logs are pinned with 16" long rebar spikes in pre-drilled holes and retaining boards should be 1 1/2" thick on side walls for 8' spans or cut span to 4' with an extra post - smaller diameter is ok for intermediate. 3/4" thick  bow excessively.   I will answer anything I can.  I don't receive any income from Mike Oehler but highly recommend his publications and ideas.  Also beware of other supposedly "underground housing experts" -they may cost you a lot.  Mike has sound reasons for his methods and has been living in his original -expanded $50 house converted to $500 house for over 30 years. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Demian on January 30, 2005, 08:36:56 PM
From where are the videos available?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 30, 2005, 08:42:19 PM
There should be an order form in the back of the book or go to Mikes site and order direct.  Here's a link.

http://www.undergroundhousing.com/videos.html
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: JeffnTN on January 31, 2005, 12:19:54 AM
Looks good.  
No insulation problems there, I guess?

>:(
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 31, 2005, 05:25:24 AM
No real problems- most is surrounded by dirt with 18" of dirt and horse manure on the roof- the parts that stick out have either straw bales at about R50 or used 2 1/2 inch celotex at R22 I think.  Usually above 50F with no fire even if freezing or below outside.  
Summer here stays above 80F at night for several weeks but as I get things more finished nights are cooler  inside then too.

I'm probably the only guy you know that will die being inundated with horse manure if his project fails.  I can see it all now.  Everybody will be standing around in a circle with their heads down then Jonesy will get philosophical again to make everyone feel better as he says, "Crikey mates, at least he died happy doing what he wanted to do.  He always said he wanted to be smothered in horse manure when he died.  I think he lost the will to live when John censored the male enhancement adds from the forum."  

Glenn ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on January 31, 2005, 06:16:58 AM
Great photos Glenn! Thanks for the update.

Quite the place - it should go on the historic registry after you are gone. Love that cob stair.

I hope I never have to do the "as built" drawings so the building inspector can issue an occupancy permit.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 31, 2005, 05:52:05 PM
If I ever get industrious the cob stairway may get a earth plaster coat that is a bit more durable but it has been holding up quite well and is not much problem to repair.  The oak limb handrails were set in straw reinforced soil cement in places and drilled with a rotohammer and set on steel pins in others.

I hope you don't have to do an as built either - but before that happens there will be a large test of whether we still have any constitutional rights or not.  I tend to get well known in governmental offices sometimes.  I stopped Fresno county from imposing new water well permit fees for several years by calling the news team at one of the local TV stations.   The county had it set up to slip the fees through without time for the people to voice opposition to it.   After an onsite interview with me things changed.  

By the next afternoon they just wanted the phone calls from the outraged public to stop.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Demian on January 31, 2005, 06:14:16 PM
This is off the thread topic, but Glenn's last post brought it to mind.

If anyone knows, where in California are we least likely to encounter difficulty with county inspectors or fees?  Counties known to allow owner/builder exemptions?

I'm at Lake Tahoe, but when I build I won't be building here.  Just within the last 5 years a friend built a two-car garage.  The permit alone cost him $16,000.  That's SIXTEEN THOUSAND.  I'll die first!
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 01, 2005, 06:06:21 AM
I think Marin county used to have a owner builder permit or exemption but I'm pretty sure that's gone now.  They lose too much tax revenue that way.  The first place they get permission to enter your property is when you sign it to them on the permit application that you are forced to get when you apply for electricity.  Many times the power co. staff will be unofficial reporters back to the building dept/assessor office (note the combination as that is the way they work).  This tends to make you want to think about the wind generator/solar option.  Unhappy neighbors are another problem.  If they are next to you with a million dollar house and you are there with a $50 one they don't always like it.  Over the hill and far away is good.  Go out of your way to be a good neighbor.  Try to get to the end of the road.  Another option is to put in one of Johns small cabins to code- pay the small fees - do your obligations then expand.

Is this wrong or are illegal laws that conflict with the constitution or your God given right to support yourself and provide shelter for your family wrong???

Here is my favorite sign
(http://tinypic.com/1iicr9)  Note that this sign does work in our county, as the sheriff's department called in an unmarked car and un-uniformed person to tear down the sign at a place a few miles down the road before they would cross it to go to a domestic dispute as reported by a relative next door.  The day use fee usually stops the county from picking up the tab for the individuals you file suit against in small claims court.  Go to the site on the  sign for more info.  Note that any time you want to try to stick up for your rights things can get messy and you have to be a determined scrapper - I do it as a hobby so I don't feel bad about wasting money on it ;D  Again avoiding the situation is the best policy or compromise or talking your way out of it if possible.  You must know your rights and laws that affect you.  The government and laws won't protect you if you don't make yourself aware of them and use them.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Epiphany on February 01, 2005, 09:14:29 AM
Love your cabin, Glenn.  Perhaps when you all get together to help with the cabin, I should just bring shovels.... and more beer. ;D

Epiphany
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 01, 2005, 09:27:36 AM
My ground is hard.  Bring picks, jack hammers and backhoes ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Okie_Bob on February 03, 2005, 04:06:14 AM
Hey Glenn, Jonsey has been busy trying to rope that goanna and having some weather problems down under. But, I think I've talked him into coming up here to the states this summer to give us all a hand.
Epiphny, we probably will need a LOT of beer to wash down the goanna and prepare us to blast our more space for Glenn.
He mentioned something about bad weather problems down under as well, wouldn't get into details except to say he plans to update his website with new pics soon.
BTW, if you haven't checked out his website, and if you have any questions about a simple foundation, you owe it to yourselves to take a look. It's very similar to John's pier system only this is commercially available down under and could easily be copied. In fact Jonsey did a new design for me to use under John's saltbox plans that I'll probably go with.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on February 03, 2005, 05:30:41 AM
Jonesy's owner builder project is quite interesting and very well documented.

Here is the home page where you can get the step by step of his one story house. It is built on a welded steel post and pier foundation using site built exposed trusses for the cathederal roof.

http://users.tpg.com.au/jonsey/home.htm

For the garage and laundry area he built a thick "modified waffle" slab using recycled old tires.

http://users.tpg.com.au/jonsey/carport.htm

This type of slab involves little excavation but would have to be modified for deep frost areas as it doesn't have buried footings.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 03, 2005, 07:20:56 AM
I hope all  goes well for Jonesy and he gets his chance to get up here.  We miss his remarks here but I know how weather etc. can change your available time.;D

Currently I am covering the front section east wall with  stabilized earth plaster - 10 sand, 4 clay, 2 lime, 1 cement, 1/2 fast set cement, 2 handfuls cut straw over stucco lath.  This is an infill wall over a post and beam log frame with a window framed in it.  This method allows me to take the sidewall covering completely to the top over the earth retainer boards and over the exposed edge of the plastic on the roof.  The wall look will be of adobe pueblo style where it rises above the excavated earth.  :D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 04, 2005, 09:52:26 PM
Note:  Changed photos to public to prevent password request.  Added earth plaster photos.  I will update these occasionally. :) http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/

"When I began to have a fire at evening, before I plastered my house, the chimney carried smoke particularly well, because of the numerous chinks between the boards. Yet I passed some cheerful evenings in that cool and airy apartment, surrounded by the rough brown boards full of knots, and rafters with the bark on high overhead. My house never pleased my eye so much after it was plastered, though I was obliged to confess that it was more comfortable. "  from
Walden: House-Warming
by Henry D. Thoreau
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on February 05, 2005, 06:04:33 AM
Glenn: I've updated your information on the Gallery page http://www.countryplans.com/gallery.html to include a link to this photo update. Thanks for all that you share here.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 05, 2005, 06:34:12 AM
My pleasure, John.  It keeps me from boring my wife by always making her look at what I've done ;D  Actually she works on it a lot and enjoys looking at progress too.

Album guests, please note-- If you have seen most of the photos and only want to look at new ones click the  "Back to Album" link at the top of the photo page.  That will bring up a page of thumbnail pictures to choose from. ::)

Here is a link to the thumbnail page.

http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 05, 2005, 12:15:43 PM
Inspector dropped by today.  Said I should add more straw to my earth plaster mix.  Said it tastes better.  See- they can be helpful if you just show them some respect and treat them like they're human ;D

(http://tinypic.com/1jso3l)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 10, 2005, 08:20:48 AM
Added new photo's to same link - here it is.

http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/

Also I would like to welcome our new member - Mike Oehler, the father of the underground house (author:"The $50 and Up Underground House" book, videos and other books)..  Mike is very busy writing another book now, however hopefully he will get a small break sometime to offer his insight.   :)

Here is a copy of the link to Mike's web site.http://www.undergroundhousing.com/ (http://www.undergroundhousing.com/)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on February 10, 2005, 11:23:41 AM
That's gotta be one of the better looking inspectors I've seen.

Looks smart too!

::)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 10, 2005, 11:51:12 AM
In dealing with her, I find it's best not to try to slip anything by her lest it come back later and bite me in the behind (or butt me in the behind). ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 10, 2005, 07:38:02 PM
Welcome to another new member - Reenie who is from my area and is helping to get a group of people together for a cob/alternative building workshop at the Underground Cabin in the near future.

She has been studying alternative building for a while and is the proud owner of a copy of  The $50 Underground House book. She said she would like to live in a cave or underground house.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 21, 2005, 09:14:56 AM
I received an e-mail from Becky Bee this morning and sent her a reply about keeping dry in the underground cabin.  Becky is the author of "The Cob builders Handbook" and in my opinion a foremost authority on building with cob.  A link to her site follows the copy of the reply.

----- Original Message -----
From: Bex
To: glenn kangiser
Sent: Sunday, February 20, 2005 9:29 AM
Subject: Re: ref books


I looked at your pictures this am! Beautiful! Congratulations! What did you do to prevent water coming into the underground part?

Becky Bee

Groundworks
PO Box 381
Murphy, Oregon 97533
USA



cobalot@cpros.com


Hi Becky,

I built using the methods in Mike Oehler's "$50 and Up Underground House" book.  Mike uses what he calls the PSP method-post, shoring and polyethylene-Basically you put in posts then a shoring of boards with poly and tar paper behind them and wrapped about 1 foot around the bottom.  You continue stacking the boards behind the posts and pulling up the plastic as you go up.  I used tarpaper to protect the plastic from rocks in the backfill.  You hand tamp the backfill equally on opposite sides.  Drainage is one of the keys to keeping water out.  Roof plastic extends past the sides a few feet to keep runoff away.  Mike is now recommending EPDM sheeting for the roof as he has had a few leaks over 30+ years.  Another friend of mine recommended torch down roofing.  The roof has a minimum of two layers of 6 mil poly with tarpaper underneath on mine.  Tarpaper over the boards with a lap then poly then 4 inches soil then another layer of poly. We have also used good heavy duty reinforced poly tarps in some areas.  The dirt cover prevents UV deterioration nearly indefinitely.  Over the top layer of poly I put compost and soil mix for the garden.  Gardening requires that you don't go deep enough with a shovel to harm the poly.  With good composted horse manure you don’t need to shovel much so we use non-tillage methods and minor surface tillage mostly.  The top soil layer should be about 14" giving a total of about 18".  Another key to keeping dry is the uphill patio.  It is excavated on the uphill side to stop missed runoff before it gets in and gives you light and a back way out also.  A greenhouse over it also helps.  If  you are in a wetter area than I am French drains along the walls through under the floor to the low side of the cabin would take away any missed runoff. The French drains can be combined in plumbing trenches.  I occasionally get a little seepage from gophers digging around one area where I don't have an uphill patio.  It usually only gets damp- not major wet.

Glenn

For a lot of interesting information on cob, her cob books, and lots of cool pictures go to Becky's site.  Below is some of  Becky and friends work from the Oregon Woman's Natural Building Symposiums

http://www.beckybee.net
(http://www.cpros.com/~sequoia/gazebo1.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 21, 2005, 09:34:25 AM
I was honored last night to receive a call from the guru of underground building, and author of "The $50 and Up Underground House" book, Mike Oehler.  

Mike is currently working on an earth sheltered greenhouse book and later will come out with a higher cost underground house book for those of you who are skeptical because you think his methods are too inexpensive-- the ones who tell corporate America, "Hurt me, baby, hurt me!"   ;D  Okay -okay - drop the rocks - don't throw them at me- I have a conventional house also and I let them hurt me too - it's just that my underground cabin is my favorite. :)

Mike has requested a floor plan of the cabin so I'm working on it - have to run around with a tape and see what I did as it was all in my head.  (Terrible place to be-- ).  I will try to get it here in an update as well.

Mike is now recommending EPDM for the roof for longer more trouble free life.  Another friend also recommended torch down roofing- I am looking into that and will try to provide an update on it as well.

No - I am not fantasizing-  He really did call and we talked for nearly an hour. :D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 21, 2005, 01:11:32 PM
Finally got a floor layout roughed out in 3DHA -6

Glenn

(http://tinypic.com/1ys64h)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Demian on February 26, 2005, 06:21:33 PM
Of all the threads in all the forums that I am a member of, I've enjoyed this thread more than any other the last few weeks.

The photos are great!

And, the entire thread is very inspiring.

Demian
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 27, 2005, 06:22:49 AM
Well, what are you waiting for ???  Get your roll of plastic and tar paper and start digging ;D

Mike is recommending EPDM rubber now but I priced it and it is currently  $765 for a 30 x 50 roll of 45 mil.

For the best material this is the way to go.  If you're recycling wine bottles like me,  polyethylene will work.  Mike said he had a leak or two over the years during spring snow breakup, where the $50 Underground House was joined to the expanded $500 house mainly.  I have a couple spots that get damp where I don't have an uphill patio and occasionally where a gopher decides I need the soil loosened along the side of the cabin- they don't usually bother the plastic and dampness is noted at the floor level only.  These are minor and I justify it by noting that many of the conventional houses and stores around here have bigger leaks than I do.

Looks like I'm repeating some stuff I posted above- a little senility kicking in I guess :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 27, 2005, 06:29:26 PM
Inspector snuck up on me today while I was putting on the second coat of earth plaster.  There I was thinking she wouldn't know if I skimped a bit up in the corner on a Sunday afternoon-- what does she do ???  Climbs right up there-- red tags me, and makes me do it over.  
Luckily I got off with a stern warning after repairs were made.  I guess I won't try that again ;D

(http://tinypic.com/1yr81e)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 27, 2005, 07:14:48 PM
A head of cauliflower from the year round garden on the roof makes a few great meals.  Note:  This was one head -slightly broke when I was carrying it down- we had already eaten one meal from part of it.  


(http://tinypic.com/1yredl)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on February 28, 2005, 07:46:35 AM
Lovely.  

Not to mention yummy!

Did you start the cauliflower inside, or cold-framed it as it grew over the winter?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 28, 2005, 07:59:11 PM
That one was from last summers garden or from seed that started late- a few weeks ago it was small -then it turned great big fast-  we also have broccoli crossed with kale that is producing broccoli heads now.  On the mountain we have very few freezing days while the valley below us 1/2 mile away is 10 to  20 degrees colder regularly.  Carrots, fennel, parsnips, onions, potatoes, beets, turnips, spinach and other things are doing well right now.  All this is outside - I hope to get some hydroponics going in the greenhouse this year yet.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on March 10, 2005, 08:55:46 PM
Stabilized earth plaster wall is now finished.  Currently working on making the end of the greenhouse look better so the ugly doesn't hit you in the face as you enter the driveway. ;D  

Sometimes it just helps to stand back for a minute and look and ask myself-- What looks bad here ???  The wall was also one of them.

(http://tinypic.com/22ykat)

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on March 13, 2005, 12:10:42 PM
Garden is growing and blooming.  Things are looking better.
(http://tinypic.com/23uo9h)

Inspector stopped by again today checking out the new blooms.  Said I hadn't done enough to prevent various voracious villainous vermin & varmints from viewing & violently de-Vouring vast volumes of my veggies, violas & vincas, volunteering to help show me the holes in my plan.  Her fee was only around 1/4 of the nice new growth.  I bet that is the first time you knew that goats were ground burrowing rodents. (Actually she came up from the underground woodshed).???

(http://tinypic.com/23uom8)

Here is an example of rough sawn clapboard siding added last week to the corner of the greenhouse/shop.  

Now back to putting up fence so the inspector won't arrive unexpectedly again! :o

(http://tinypic.com/23uotu)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Mark Schneider on April 10, 2005, 10:17:09 AM
The old place is starting to look pretty good.  Sue and I will have to get down there this Summer to see it.
I was surprised you were using strawbales.  One of my crew is in to strawbale houses .  Do you plaster over those bales?  I thought the bales were compressed and sealed.
 I have a lot of questions about how you did stuff.
I loved the front door.  Will that keep a bear out?
Seems like you have more light than I thought you would have. 8)

                                      Mark and Sue Schneider

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 10, 2005, 07:30:38 PM
The way this place is made there are a few places that stick out so where the west bedroom wall sticks up there are straw bales and where the greenhouse goes up above the uphill patio there are straw bales.  That way my greenhouse gets optimum angle for winter sun.  The bales will get a stabilized earth plaster some day - I don't want to rush into anything.  As long as rain is kept off the top of the bales with a roof and overhang the sides will shed light rain like thatch.  If the bales are kept off of the ground with a footing they won't deteriorate.  Some have successfully used plastic under them with proper drainage.  Code (in areas where they have a straw bale code) usually requires the bales being on a foundation 6 to 12 inches above ground. Some have left them unfinished inside their house.  I used them for a quick well insulated wall. :-/

Most of this place was made as an experiment to demonstrate that it is possible to build a shelter at a low cost.  Recycled, homemade, natural materials from the local area.  The  only time I bought anything extra fancy was when it was impossible to satisfy the wife any other way - Okay so I have to admit the stuff she wanted looks good (she made me say that-had me in a full Nelson).  You can come and look as long as you're not expecting to see any fine carpentry.  ;D

Will the door keep the bear out ???  If it does that, who will keep me warm at night :o

Using Mike Oehlers methods it is possible to get light  from all points of the compass -and you can even have a sunscoop on the roof.

For those of you who don't already know, Mark is my cousin, Sue is my girlfriend ;D  Glenn
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Shelley on April 10, 2005, 08:19:26 PM
You know Glenn, I've looked at your pics.

Mike's segment was on HGTV again today.  I've been on his web site.

What you and he did seems not the easiest.  Huge beams and a lot of dirt work.  Unlike the other owner-built methods....

It's tough, isn't it?  A lot of hard, heavy work?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 10, 2005, 08:37:56 PM
My Mom called also to say Mike was on TV.  

Maybe not the easiest for everyone- I have two remote controlled cranes to help but Mike did his the legitimate hard way.  I also have a John Deere trackhoe with a loader bucket and a Bobcat and enjoy playing with them.  Mike dug his the hard way.  Does this make me a fraud ??? ;D

Mike's original  shelter was ultra-low cost - timber and dirt on his land, and made a shelter he was happy with.  I guess its not too much work if it's what you want, and it will provide inexpensive shelter using available non-toxic materials.  Most would not go as far as I have as it is more than  basic necessity size, but then again some will do more.

I'm a bit of a lazy guy so usually find some way to do it with a machine - even if that's more work than doing it manually ;D

Actually progress is made pretty fast though. 9 posts, 3 girders @16', 9 joist beams @16' and you have a 16x16 cabin frame.  A nail gun makes quick work of nailing down roof boards.  Still it is quite a bit of work but you don't notice it if you're having fun (or don't have good sense). It's a lot quicker,easier and makes more sense than forming concrete and steel, pouring it then tearing out the forms and throwing the two form walls away- besides concrete is pretty ugly.;D

For those of us of the troglodyte persuasion, it is the most sensible thing to do. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Shelley on April 10, 2005, 09:46:06 PM
Hope you don't think I was making light of it.

I've gathered in the last the several months that you've been around big construction.

Just making an observation.  This type of construction is not for the faint-of-heart...and probably not for those who have no big yellow at their disposal ;D

We did some 6x10x18s once.  Green.  We estimated 500lbs each.  Some of those logs....which we call vigas here....in your pics are huge.  Cranes are nice.  Cranes are your friend.

Certainly more labor than stomping a little cob, or laying some car batteries (adobe bricks) or framing a small cabin.  Actually, my hat is off to you. :-*
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 10, 2005, 10:05:56 PM
Thanks, Shelly.

I don't mind people making light of it if they want even though you weren't, In fact I sometimes get offended if people don't call me eccentric.

Actually though, even though it is a rough, rustic piece of work, everyone seems to love it.  We had new friends over yesterday and last night.  The first one said there are tons who talk about doing it but few who do it.  He said he would have plenty to talk to his wife about at the dinner table last night.

The second walked around the cabin for a bit last night and said he was still speechless.  

Something about using the things underfoot to build with that takes people back a bit.  They don't get to see this type of thing because most are prohibited from doing it.  Some of us just aren't smart enough to not do it. ;D

Most of my equipment is pretty old but with some coaxing and a roll of bailing wire it will do the job.  Logs could be put up with a homemade jib boom, backhoe, forklift or sometimes a few tough guys.  All of what I did can be done by hand, but would be harder and take longer.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on April 11, 2005, 06:04:26 AM
Even cob is very very slow when done by foot and one or two people.

A lot people finding themselves in that situation end up using the tiller of the tractor to mix the stuff--or deciding that going in debt for a newer single-wide is a good idea.

But it sure can be purty.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 11, 2005, 06:04:41 AM
Thinking about speed of construction, I can always have an extra room done faster using Mike's methods than I could if I did it with cob, considering that I have equipment available.

Using the bobcat I could make quite a bit of cob pretty fast but it takes time to dry before you can continue up.  It is fireproof, moldable and saves wood though.

I guess with cob or adobe there is quite a bit of work there also but it is in smaller chunks.  The cob is easier for my wife to handle.  Some of the logs were around 20" dia 21' long and should weigh about 1800 lbs dry.  These were for larger span, slightly bigger dia. than necessary and could have been cut in half if equipment was not available, but a jib crane or something would still have had to be rigged to do it by hand.

I also am impressed by your experience and knowledge Shelley.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 11, 2005, 06:13:12 AM
I think the Bobcat is the way to make cob, Amanda, if one is available.  Something about the diesel smoke, the tires spinning and sliding in the mud, the noise, and the ease of getting the finished cob to the work area that just gets a girl all excited!  ;D

In the absence of a Bobcat though just any machine is helpful and many just love to squish it through their toes if they have the time. :)  You are right about being able to make it look nice.  It is always interesting looking even if it is primitive.

I stayed in the motor home in the early stages of making the cabin - lets say it was similar to a single wide mobile home.  I couldn't wait to get into the cabin in the ground when winter hit.  The cold wraps it's hand around a mobile home and it is just like trying to stay warm in a giant freezer.  Everything all around -top -bottom and sides is cold.  At least in the ground the temperature usually never gets below 50f even when below freezing outside.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: maplicker on April 11, 2005, 08:34:07 PM
Hi All,

I was one of those recent visiters to the undergound hobbit cabin.  What an inspiration!  It can be done!   :D.  For me the biggest plus was having my wife realize that a very comfortable, quality, and nice house can be had that does not look like a cookie cutter ticky tacky box.  (oh, and for a lot less than $xxx.xx per ft2)  For many this seams like an large leap.  But seeing someone do it helps relight the flame of interest that had waxed and waned with mundane chores.  Thanks Glenn, and your place will be talked about in even greater circles.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 11, 2005, 08:48:41 PM
My pleasure- glad you enjoyed this crude hole in the ground. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 28, 2005, 05:10:59 PM
Updated photos- Added 15 more.  Here is a link to the album

http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/glennkangiser/album?.dir=/8ac1&.src=ph&.tok=phT.FdCB6IwyWCaf

so you can save time by scrolling to the bottom of the thumbnails if you only want to see the new ones. ;D

These are better than some of the older photos, as they were taken for Builder News Magazine.  

http://www.buildernewsmag.com/

There will be some kind of article coming out about The Underground Cabin and underground building with hopefully a plug for John in July.

:)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on April 28, 2005, 06:54:41 PM
Sounds like a bit of a stretch for Builder's News.  

Even if that is what they need to do.

The other day at a potluck dinner we had some greenhouse tomatoes, from some people who had overwintered theirs, they were so good.  Just getting around to planting mine outside.

I still love your goat!

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 28, 2005, 07:32:02 PM
It looks like something will go there at least a little blurb anyway.  As with most stories tons of stuff is submitted, but little usually gets out -- but who knows-- they contacted me so there must be something coming out.

The goat is kind of like a dog - thinks she's real smart but a bit more hyper than a dog sometimes and actually too smart for her own good.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ChatBot on May 03, 2005, 10:23:52 AM
  Forgive the stupid question, but where did you get the floorplans for the home you've built?
 Did you use the book and modify your plans along the way?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 03, 2005, 01:26:54 PM
Hi ChatBot,

The place my plans came from is a real mess -- I got them out of my head as I went along.  The engineering is designed so that you can just add on in increments as you go and as long as you follow the engineering tables.  The frames are all the same design so you are extra strong around the edges (loaded one side only) but it is great for expansion in any direction. ;D

Part of my design grew as I saw other places to dig between giant boulders - other places grew as I got 33' long beam logs and decided to use all of them.  Part of it grew as we decided we didn't have enough room in one area so added another room.  The shop took advantage of the backside of the above ground greenhouse wall.

This is best done in an area where you don't have officials to deal with.  My point is that housing can be affordable if you manage to cut the red tape.  Safety is still number one, therefore I required engineered guidelines to follow.  A shelter does me no good if only my arms and head - or possibly feet are sticking out of the dirt and horse manure. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ChatBot on May 03, 2005, 01:47:15 PM
  I hear that...and I love the look of your place.
 But what do you do with all your "stuff?"

 I don't see alot of closet room there.

 Did you make your place small on purpose, or was that the only option?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 03, 2005, 02:06:29 PM
ChatBot, please quit inciting my wife to riot. :-/

There will be more closets as other parts of the cabin get done.   ;D

She nearly had a cow, making me use Sheetrock in her bedroom closet.  I wasn't allowing Sheetrock but got some 1" fire rated free so put it there for her.  The east end of the temporary studio apartment area will have a pantry and storage closet.  There are more to be downstairs in the main room.  I wanted to build closets with cob but would have had to seal them with acrylic or plaster and seal them to keep her clothes clean.  ;D

Still need more places for stuff- lots downstairs in the unfinished area and shop - wife uses plastic drawers under the bed and finally got her dressers etc here too.   I just try to take pictures that don't show that. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 03, 2005, 09:50:34 PM
Wouldn't gypsum plaster (sets up fast--not too bad for a closet) or even lime plaster work just fine?

Just as an alternative to drywall.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 03, 2005, 10:00:14 PM
I think they would , Amanda, but around here it's rush - put a fire out- work- go somewhere else - put out another one - then eventually hang on to one part of the project long enough to get it almost done.  --Then I got lazy - the Sheetrock was free so my rules allow recycling- that's how I had to justify it-I shot nails in it and my wife taped and put on joint compound. :)

Another thing-- it seems that if I decide to do something, it always requires that I do 4 more things first.  Example:  Trim the edges of exposed plastic - no wood - -solution - get chain saw gas - chains - binders -trailer- fix flat tires - go to the woods -get logs- make trade deal with log owners- load logs- bring to my sawmill - sharpen blades - unload trailer -put log on mill after moving previously cut boards- cut boards - carry to trim needing area.  Nail on-  No wonder I never get anything done-- ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: JRR on May 04, 2005, 12:54:02 PM
"If you're really gonna bake an apple pie from scratch .... you must begin with the Big Bang".
                                            ... Carl Sagan
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 04, 2005, 07:23:00 PM
I know that feeling!
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 06, 2005, 07:50:44 AM
Speaking of sawing boards,

Betty Bryant, a local lady, writes a email newspaper every week.  Here is an appropriate joke she published.

Here is another question from the Redneck Aptitude Test:
A front porch is constructed of 2x8 pine on 24-inch centers with a field rock foundation. The span is 8 feet and the porch length is 16 feet. The porch floor is 1-inch rough sawn pine. When the porch collapses, how many hound dogs will be killed?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Eric Anderson on May 10, 2005, 06:54:26 AM
Glenn,
I love what you done with your home.  I have recently finished Oehler's book.  My wife is currently looking at it also.  We are thinking about doing something like this in Northern California, although I am wondering how far away I am going to have to go to get away from any inspectors.  If you ever have a workshop at your place, we would love to go.  I like your building inspector a lot more than any of the ones I have met around here.  :)  Thanks.

Eric Anderson
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jon rothwell on May 10, 2005, 08:29:14 AM
This is a question for anyone who has ordered the $50 and over underground house book.... i ordered it online from http://www.undergroundhousing.com last week, paid for it, shipping and all, and have received no book, received no notification of it being shipped or anything, and no one answers the phone number given on the page.
Is this a scam??? I had paid 16 + shipping to come to about $20. Help please,
-Jon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jimmy C. on May 10, 2005, 08:52:42 AM
Quote
i ordered it online from http://www.undergroundhousing.com last week, paid for it, -Jon


I order many times per year online. Most of the time I receive my package in about 10-14 days.
Some places wait until the last day of the week and ship everything ordered within the past 7 days.
This is done mostly by people living in rural areas to save on trips into town.
Hang in there and give it a little more time.
I totally understand the, I want it now fever!
Every day that passes is one more day you are not making progress to your goal.  
             

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dave M. on May 10, 2005, 06:27:28 PM
Mike is the real deal. No scam. I spent the day at his place in Idaho about 3 weeks ago. He is strictly a low tech home based operation working out of small cabin in the backwoods of North Idaho. Let me know if you dont  get your book or make contact and I will try to let him know their is disgruntled customer out there.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 10, 2005, 07:17:46 PM
It's a pretty good idea to stay on top of orders.

I ordered stuff from one person who lost about half of that day's orders.  He was very nice about it, I got my book, I was in no particular hurry, it probably won't happen again.

On the other hand--One of the used book people lied to the order clearing house about having sent a book.  They tried to cover their asses by sending the book priority mail postmarked ten days after they told the clearing house that they'd sent it, and two days after the clearing house person talked to them.  Yeah, right.  Unfortunately, one never knows who is the recipient of the order on the used book clearing house (e.g. Amazon or Alibris)

And worst of all--a very expensive order was ignored.  The company, while still taking orders and issuing order numbers by robot generated email, had their answering machine tell us to send them an email, which they never answered.

In this case I called in Mastercard who had me wait a month before removing money from seller's bank.  Not sure what would have happened if they hadn't had money in the bank.  I might just have joined a long list of creditors.

A year later, just for fun, I looked them up, found no explanation--family crisis or whatever--for the lost month, and the same things they didn't send me were still "available" at the same probably too low prices.  I didn't reorder frrom them.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 11, 2005, 05:00:28 AM
Hi Jon,

You have absolutely nothing to worry about with Mike.  He has even called me on his dime to see how My cabin was coming along and things I have done on it.  

Let me know also if you don't get your book soon.  Mike is only interested in seeing that his methods reach the people who need them.  Sounds too cheap- He is writing a book for more expensive homes because many people don't take him seriously.  See pictures in this update for a cabin built by his $50 and Up Underground House book.

Sorry I was slow to respond - working out of town - dial up connection here-- no DSL like in the underground cabin :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 11, 2005, 03:31:56 PM
I hate people with DSL lines, at least I'm jealous  ;).

Not available this far from town, I asked the last time I paid the phone bill.  They had raised the dial-up speed from 10k to occasionally as much as 46k.  The gals in the office and I were agreed that that repair guy is cute--and competent.

If it's taken two weeks to get a book, send a nice email (preferably as a reply to the message that gave you the order number) asking what the story is.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 11, 2005, 06:04:33 PM
Us trogolodytes have to stay up to date, Amanda.  Do you have a dial up accelerator service available, They help a lot-- I think you can even use an outside service if not available locally.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 12, 2005, 04:38:21 AM
Yesterday on the way home from work, off in the distance 75 road miles away I could see my mountain gleaming like a giant diamond on the finger of a new bride.

Whoa-- that's kinda poetic -- have I been away from heaven that long ???  I don't like being down here in the bowels of the earth.  Maybe one or two more days.

We are working on a building for a septic pumping station.  Getting into Daddymem's work area.  Don't get too excited, Daddymem.  Don't want to see you drooling over those 4 big 10" sewage pumps.  Currently we are puddle welding and edge stitching decking to open web truss joists 50 feet long.  The building is 38 feet wide.  

Soon I will be able to go home and remain on the mountain relatively unmolested until the evil telephone rings and they once again call me back to hell to work on buildings for the masses.

This is pretty goofy.  See what happens when I have to get up too early

???
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jimmy C. on May 12, 2005, 04:50:34 AM
Quote
Us trogolodytes have to stay up to date  

I had to look up this word, Trogolodytes.
It all makes sense now.

[size=24]Trogolodytes[/size]

If you happen to be strolling by an open field and see a chimney incongruously sticking up out of the ground, you should guess that you are walking on top of a Troglodyte dwelling. Saumur has a very large number of cave dwellers, as does the entire Loire Valley region. When there were not caves, man dug into the sides of mountains for shelter. The natural Tufa stone of the area is fairly easy to cut and makes digging into the sides of hillsides not too difficult. Mankind has been living in caves or under ground since the beginning of time and there seems to be some positive reasons for doing so.

The Tufa rock of the Loire remains relatively dry, the average temperature in a cave remains a fairly steady 12 degrees centigrade, or about 54 degrees Fahrenheit, winter and summer, caves are sheltered from windstorms, and at no risk from fire. Some of these cave houses are simple rude shelters, while others have front glass windows installed, verandas, and central heating. There are also complete Troglodyte villages.



Two farms consisting of 40 rooms in the Troglodyte village of Rochemenier are open to the public. The entire village has 250 rooms, with the oldest part dating from the 13th century. It would seem to have everything an above ground village would have, houses, barns, village hall, stable, chapel, wine cellar, etc. Oddly enough, even though the personal rooms are very spare and small, they appear to be comfortable. Then immediately outside the front door of each room, is the large sunny communal courtyard. This affords not only light, but a necessary feeling of space as well.

If you would like to get an idea of what its like to be a Troglodyte for a couple of hours, then reserve a table at one of the underground restaurants. One such restaurant is Les Cave de Marson and is entered by walking down a curved incline of about 20 feet to its front door and into the cave. Suddenly, you are in a space that could only be described as looking like a cathedral with very high ceiling and many large connecting rooms. There are hundreds of candles lighting the place, and there is the aroma of fresh bread baking in the wood fire stone oven. The bread being baked in the oven uses an old recipe from "Gargantua," a book by the famous French author Francois Rabelais. Of course, the bread has been refined somewhat for today's diner before being included on the menu. Prepare yourself for a five-course dinner accompanied by red wine.

(http://www.romartraveler.com/RomarPages/SaumurPIX/Trogolodytes-2-Comp.jpg)
(http://www.romartraveler.com/RomarPages/SaumurPIX/Trogolodytes.jpg)


troglodyte \TROG-luh-dyt\, noun:
1. A member of a primitive people that lived in caves, dens, or holes; a cave dweller.
2. One who is regarded as reclusive, reactionary, out of date, or brutish.


Troglodyte comes from Latin Troglodytae, a people said to be cave dwellers, from Greek Troglodytai, from trogle, "a hole" + dyein, "to enter." The adjective form is troglodytic.



Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Daddymem on May 12, 2005, 05:16:15 AM
Quote
We are working on a building for a septic pumping station.  Getting into Daddymem's work area.  Don't get too excited, Daddymem.  Don't want to see you drooling over those 4 big 10" sewage pumps.  Currently we are puddle welding and edge stitching decking to open web truss joists 50 feet long.  The building is 38 feet wide.  

10" outlets??!  50 foot joists?  What are you building?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on May 12, 2005, 10:43:08 AM
When the Lord of the Rings movies came out there was a short flurry of interest in "hobbit houses" — this is a somewhat romantic troglodyte structure.

For fun you might want to search the old forum on the word hobbit.

From what I have seen of Glenn, he is too big to be a hobbit. Also, the hairy feet seem to be missing. But that might just be the fact that we always see him with his shoes on.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 12, 2005, 06:21:16 PM
Unfortunately your phone company has to cooperate to give you DSL line access.  Two years ago they said, "maybe in a couple of years."  Now they're not even saying that., bless their little hearts.   :'(

In town they've got what is apparently a pretty fancy wi-fi system.  I think I'm too far away even if I was line-of-sight to their tower.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 12, 2005, 07:20:15 PM
Daddymem, I'm building the roof over a sewage pumping plant for a Indian Tribal Gaming center.  They are building a great big new addition - motel I think and need a sewage plant the size of one for a small city.  It looks like 4 10" inlet and outlet pipes to the pumps.  The trusses are running the long way on the building - It's a little under 2000 square feet.  Decking welds  to top of trusses every 6" with rows about 6"6" apart.  I'm only doing the roof system so don't know much more about the pumps.   Possibly they are for fresh water but they are a few hundred feet from the existing sewage plant.

John, I have to keep my shoes on so the hair on my feet doesn't get tangled in the bushes and trip me.

Jimmy, the Loire river valley is where we stayed in the troglodyte cave in the town of Troo.  Really a nice area.  We toured the area from there.  

Amanda, the dial-up accelerator is a compression program that is loaded on your computer and a host computer that compresses text and graphics.  It will greatly speed up normal dial up service with variable quality on the graphics.  It does not require DSL.  Just a normal dial up line.  MSN has it.  We have one called Accelenet at Sierra tel that kicks in and speeds up my dial up no matter where I call from if not on DSL.  Normal charges are about $5 per month - MSN includes it now.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jon Rothwell on May 12, 2005, 08:14:12 PM
Hey guys,
about the book I ordered. I received an e-mail from Mike himself, I was kinda stunned that the author himself deals with it all, I think its wonderful. I still am waiting for the book, but trust it will come in good time, just glad to hear from him. I guess I jumped the gun about the order..
Anyways, I don't have any of my own woods yet to build (i am a renter for now), but am extremely curious on the topic, and the possibility of having such an economic home is really intriging me, possibly enough to buy some wooded land and build myself a cheap underground home. I'm from upstate NY, around mostly farmland. For now I could only make practice homes on lots owned by friends, but eventually would love to do it for myself,
-jon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 12, 2005, 08:40:18 PM
That's the kind of guy Mike is, Jon.  Mike feels that everyone should be able to afford a home of their own sans mortgage.

Study his book- If you need help with anything feel free to ask..  If you compare his methods to other designs you will find that he has a reason for the way he does everything the way he does it, and it will usually be the most economical -not by a little bit but by a lot.

Try a small building to get started.  Wood shed, goat shed or any other type small building you may have a need for. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 13, 2005, 01:24:38 AM
One thing to keep in mind, Jon, is that Mikes methods are for the safe building of a structure that is to provide shelter for you.  Most areas that have building codes will not accept them as is without greatly modifying them to suit their demands, whether they are safe for you or not.

One example is that the code requires the use of cancer causing chemicals to treat the wood in your underground living space.  Mike does not allow that in his methods.  He has safe alternative designs that probably will not be accepted by the local building officials.  Best to consider building in an area where codes are not a consideration.  Most of the code testing is paid for by big business and corporate interests, and a low cost or no cost method will never make it into the code books, because that is not where their interest lies.  There is no money to be made.  

If after 10 to 30 years one or two of my boards or timbers develops a problem, it is no problem to change or repair.  I could safely change any board or timber that may need it in a day or two.  I may use one of the extra days of life I gained by not dying of cancer from the dangerous chemicals I didn't expose myself to, to change those boards.

With a lot of work and possibly a variance and many modifications, one may be able to work with the local officials to build an underground cabin according to Mikes plans, but expect to encounter great if not impossible obstacles if this is the route you choose to take.  

I chose to press for my constitutional rights and failed to ask permission rather than submit to their requirements that I poison myself in an underground dwelling of their design.  Mikes designs are sound, engineered by a very well qualified engineer.  The difference between what they will allow and what it will cost you as opposed to Mikes methods may cost as much as $1,000,000 citing a specific example of a house I know of.  Read earlier portions of this thread for more information on this.

Nobody is guaranteeing that you will be able to build a dwelling that the officials will accept from this book.  What it does is show you a safe method of providing low cost shelter whether it is accepted everywhere or not.  The book tells you more about your options.  Mikes video's tell much more than the book, and are highly recommended as the next step  if you decide to get serious.  I have already proven it works.  That's what my cabin is about- an experiment in low cost sustainable housing.

The methods in the code are not sustainable over a long period.  When the oil is gone or out of economic reach, a great majority of the coded materials will be un-obtainable.  If this is not true, then why are we no longer building out of straight clear old growth boards ??? ???     .................They are gone-- that's why, or so few left they are mostly protected.  Why do we have people so allergic to new housing that they can't live in it ??? ??? ......... Their bodies reject the chemical soup that holds the new high tech materials together.  ---How about a little non-toxic dirt and real wood?  That's my choice.

When you take in the knowledge in Mikes book, you will never be without the know how it will take to provide shelter for you and your family if times ever get rough.  Better than that, Mikes low impact technology can provide a great home for you today if you work yourself into a situation where you can use it.

Glenn
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 13, 2005, 01:37:20 AM
Eric- sorry I didn't reply sooner - you should have a message from me by now. Working out of town -this dial up connection is killing me.  I am willing to give you whatever help I can on this subject and look forward to talking to you more about it. ::)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on May 13, 2005, 07:02:06 AM
Here's an interesting use of cob style construction.

(http://countryplans.com/images/cobhouse.jpg)


I wonder if the windows roll down?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ejanderson on May 13, 2005, 10:15:37 AM
Thanks for getting back to me Glenn.  Does anyone know of any states that have either no building codes or real loose building codes?  I am not sure I want to fight the establishment when it comes to building something that does not fit their idea of a house here in California.

Eric Anderson
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Shelley on May 13, 2005, 11:08:25 AM
We talked about that very subject no too long ago.

http://countryplans.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=01;action=display;num=1114612360;start=9#9
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ejanderson on May 13, 2005, 12:24:41 PM
Thanks for the link to the previous discussions on building codes.

Eric
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 13, 2005, 03:38:18 PM
The doors might even open!  Looks like a frame might be stuck in there.  (I can't think why you wouldn't leave the window cranks in there, as well as the padding on the inside).

I don't really think though that a cob wall would be a great place to put doors that you often slam.

Looking through windows the other day, found a reference to a residential window that opens and closes (and seals) the way a back seat door does on a van.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 13, 2005, 10:00:37 PM
I wonder if the cob car is drivable ???

I found out that the water system is a freshwater treatment system for about a 250 room hotel they are building.

(http://www.thepalace.net/New_Web/_images/New_Main_image1.jpg)

In this picture I welded on the mounts for the round medallion sign appx 50  feet in the air and installed handrails in the circular tower and restaurant several years ago.  The current project is about two blocks from this one.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 14, 2005, 01:38:12 PM
The inspector met her untimely demise probably about Thursday while I was away at work.

Some wild animal(s) decided she would make a good dinner.   She has one last chance at leveling the playing field as she is currently baiting a large box trap, so possibly I can get whoever did her in.

May she rest in peace-- Inspector Cupcake 2004-May 12, 2005
(http://tinypic.com/538xle)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Shelley on May 14, 2005, 01:44:16 PM
aahhh.  Sorry Glenn.  That was one cute goat.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 14, 2005, 02:22:10 PM
Oh, dear.

Donkeys or Great Pyrenees might have helped?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 14, 2005, 02:29:18 PM
She was accompanied by a large ram sheep named Studley -I am sure he would have tried to help her, but they are no match for the coyote packs, mountian lions, bobcats and bears we have around here.

Studley's fine.

It's just one of the hazards of living out here on the edge of the wild country. :(
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 14, 2005, 03:59:28 PM
Afraid that's true even with the livestock protection livestock.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Epiphany on May 18, 2005, 12:38:14 PM
So sorry to hear about the Inspector.  I'm sure her spirit lingers on.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on May 18, 2005, 08:56:19 PM
So sorry to hear about this - just getting caught up on the thread.

A better looking inspector I have never seen.

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 18, 2005, 09:17:17 PM
Nor smarter.  Thanks everyone.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 23, 2005, 11:40:52 PM
I just finished hooking up the new (used) inverter that I got on Ebay.  It was made the same year as my other one.  Some of the new ones are not compatible with the old ones even though they have a similar name by the same company.  The 4024 Plus Trace/Xantrex is apparently not the same as the 4024 as they take different stacking cables.   The stacking cable causes the inverters to syncronize sine waves 180 degrees off from each other so you get 240 volts.   I now have 2 4KW 4024 inverters stacked so I have 240 volts to run my pump without a transformer.  No transformer loss when pumping and no overloads on one inverter when the pump, refrigerator and freezer all run or start at near the same time.  That was my motivation to get the upgrade done.  Power kicking off when too many things happened at once.

I am not running a voltage regulator on my solar panels at this time.  My wind generator is set up to route excess power to a resistor (heater) to burn it off.  When the batteries are full the dump load kicks in.  I wired it to two 12 volt car relays in series to match my 24v system.  This turns on a 120v relay that turns on a 220v relay.  By doing it this way I can plug in the 120 v relay to a standard plug and pump water at other times.

Currently my excess power is pumping about 500 gallons of water per day free.  Enough to water the garden on the roof of the Underground Cabin, supply all our needs for us and the animals and have a little extra.  The water is pumped to a 2600 gallon storage tank 75 feet elevation above us on the hill.  This provides good steady pressure for the drip irrigation system and house.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 30, 2005, 11:31:05 PM
I buried the shop in horse manure and dirt this last weekend in preparation for the innovative homes tour that was rescheduled for June 4th.  What could be more innovative than that. ??? I haven't quite completed trim and landscaping yet but should later this week so will post a photo when it is more complete.  My wife put flowers and vegetable plants on the roof the other day while I cut a log on the sawmill to make more of that untrimmed clapboard siding that we like. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: JRR on May 31, 2005, 03:25:28 AM
What do you have in place to switch off the batteries when they are "full"?   All automatic?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 31, 2005, 04:36:44 AM
Automatic.  The wind generator cannot be shut down or cut loose from charging as solar panels can, or it will overspeed, so it includes a circuit to go to a dump load - heater or resistor - to burn off the excess generated power.

Rather than waste this power on a resistor, I hooked a relay to the 24v dc that would normally be burned off.  The relay controls my water pump which burns off the excess by pumping water to my storage tank.  As soon as the voltage drops to an acceptable level the pump goes back off.  I used 2 Ford accessory relays (12V) wired in series to make a 24v dc relay as one was not readily available here in town.  This pumps about 500 gallons of free water per day which feeds the drip system that keeps my garden watered on top the house while I'm gone.  This burns off power created by the solar panels also as it senses the same battery bank.

I had a couple years electronics in high school, eh! ???  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 04, 2005, 07:05:55 AM
Finally a picture of the shop buried in horse manure and strawberries.  (Also a great dessert combination.) :P

(http://us.f3.yahoofs.com/users/41fdb066z210983f4/8ac1/__sr_/8239.jpg?phzPcoCBE55lgPEA)

and The Mother of All Medicine Cabinets - that sucker is 3 feet tall.  

(http://us.f3.yahoofs.com/users/41fdb066z210983f4/8ac1/__sr_/254d.jpg?phLZcoCB9HtDz_QK)

and last but not least, I finally finished the South wall of the bedroom for the Innovative Homes tour which happens today.

(http://us.f3.yahoofs.com/users/41fdb066z210983f4/8ac1/__sr_/23e4.jpg?phLZcoCBl4BdIuBM)

One piece at a time. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on June 04, 2005, 07:05:55 PM
I'm getting red x's instead of pictures.

(this computer is dying, but it might not be the cause.)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 04, 2005, 09:27:31 PM
I checked a couple of different ways and I still get pictures even if I'm not signed in to Yahoo where they are hosted.  They are in a public album and are the last pictures if you follow the link on page one of this update.  If you still have problems when you try again let me know and I will host them at another service.

Here is a link to the thumbnail page

http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/glennkangiser/album?.dir=/8ac1&.src=ph

I noticed problems with the thumbnails loading tonight but the titles were there and the picture would load if you clicked the title.

On another note - the Innovative Homes tour was a great success - we probably had at least 40 people show up and all were interested in the cabin.  Tomorrow we get to see some of the other homes that were on the tour.  We were busier than a cat covering up crap today so could not get away to see anyone else's place.  My wife and I talked to people non-stop for 5 hours -- so what's new you say  ???  :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on June 05, 2005, 04:12:29 AM
Those worked.

The more I look the more I like your house.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 05, 2005, 09:50:17 PM
Thanks, Amanda.  The last couple weeks has been a rush to improve a lot of things -side and bury the shop- cover it with soil -plant garden - make steps to the uphill patio - saw lumber on the sawmill to do the above - add guard rails to keep visitors from making unscheduled flights off the roof, etc. :-/

Now for a little breather - put in a few more irrigation lines, then maybe start closing in the great room area, between regular work breaks. ???

We saw some cool places today, one homeowner who was very resourceful was making stucco by screening decomposed granite for sand as he dug it and landscape rocks from behind his house.  A younger fellow, he was also a good welder, blacksmith and great artist and knew the value of having some nice piles of junk from which to create things. ;D

He had a spring box with a solar slow pump pumping water to an elevated tank on the hill for gravity feed of water.  

Another couple had a 2.8 kw solar setup that took care of their electric needs including charging the total electric Ford pickup they rescued from the crusher by staging a protest at the Ford dealership so they could buy it.  Their total power bill is usually less than $400 per year.  

These people are some I have to spend more time with. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ejanderson on June 06, 2005, 10:56:39 AM
Glenn,

Sounds like you have been really busy over the last couple of weeks.  That home tour sounds very interesting.  I looked at the new pictures you posted...very nice.  How did you learn so much about pv and wind power?  I am still in the researching stage and wonder how much I can do myself and whether or not I will electrocute myself in the process.

Eric
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 06, 2005, 10:38:15 PM
I learned much of what I know about solar and wind from the Internet, the local solar guy, Bergey Wind power, and self experimentation, failure and success.  I got to the point of now having things working pretty good and knowing which way I want to go farther.  I also had 2 years of electronics in high school and was a Dodge dealer head mechanic and diesel mechanic for a few years.  Much of the electrical knowledge is transferable from one trade to another. ;D

I was totally busy for a bit then worn out then have to go back to real work to pay the bills :-/  The home tour was much better than I thought it would be- we met many people interested in alternative or innovative building and got to make contact with many more interesting knowledgable people who are willing to share their knowledge.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: conohawk on June 11, 2005, 06:31:21 AM
Quote
Mike is the real deal. No scam. I spent the day at his place in Idaho about 3 weeks ago. He is strictly a low tech home based operation working out of small cabin in the backwoods of North Idaho. Let me know if you dont  get your book or make contact and I will try to let him know their is disgruntled customer out there.


I ordered the video set from Mike.  Arrived within two or three days.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 11, 2005, 06:51:50 AM
Mike's a great guy- he even visits houses other people have built from his plans once in a while.

We had 2 more visitors last night - a neighbors daughter and her friend were walking along our road- I told them to drop by- they were impressed before they got inside- they left with both saying they had been inspired.  I think she just graduated from college.  That's what this place is about- opening peoples eye's to the fact that things don't have to come from a factory to make usable shelter.

Quoting Baldasare Forestiere again, "To make something with lots of money that is easy— But to make something out of nothing... now that is something."
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 11, 2005, 11:56:12 PM
We went to the hostel about 10 miles away for dinner last night and met a mate from Australia.  Knowing what a great guy Jonesy is, we got to talking and invited him to look at the Underground Cabin.  He is in the building trades over there.

My daughters boyfriend and he both were hoping to see a rattle snake while here. :-/  Not wanting to dissappoint them, one decided to show up at our barbecue.  That was a bad move on his part because our rules are no live rattle snakes near the house.  Two people have recently died from snake bites near here.

(http://img245.echo.cx/img245/3906/tryingtogetittogether0en.jpg)

Well - to make a long story short, after knocking the tops off a few cold ones we decided to invite him to the barbecue - in fact we decided to let him be the barbecue.  ;D

Toss another snake on the barbie, anyone ???(http://us.f3.yahoofs.com/users/41fdb066z210983f4/8ac1/__tn_/43f3.jpg?phQk.qCB.mhZ6Y8q)

Yes-- we really did eat him. :o
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Mudball on June 12, 2005, 03:15:51 AM
Quote
Those worked.

The more I look the more I like your house.

I'll second that.
I really wish I had the time, location, and most importantly the knowledge to build something like that.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 12, 2005, 05:49:40 AM
I'm glad you both like it- everyone does - I don't know why - I tell everyone it's crude - put together with a chainsaw, sledge hammer and nail gun.  Most trim is done with a skill saw but somehow it still manages to come out looking pretty cool. :-/

3 1/2 years ago I didn't know how to do it.  Typed a question into a search engine on the net - "How do I build an underground house?"  Several stories and books came up.  I ordered them.  Mike Oehler's book made the most sense - a real reason for everything- how and why he did it, and most importantly for me- rule of thumb engineering tables.  I then ordered his videos and they answered a lot more questions.  He gave some advice somewhere - If you come to a problem you can't figure out a solution to, let it rest and go work on something else.  Soon the answer will come to you.  Seems like that always works.  He left a little out but not much.  One I found I made my own rule of thumb for- retaining wall spans - His post sizes are great - engineered and never a problem- for 8' spans I went to using 2x material or break it down to 4'spans by adding a light post, if wanting to use 1x material to keep walls from bowing - as he said - backfill gently - not with a heavy tamper  or mechanical tamper and things will be fine.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Mudball on June 12, 2005, 07:27:56 AM
As far as the rattlesnake goes I seriously would like to get one and save the rattles and eat it also. We have some here in TN . but I haven't found one yet.
Besides that if I was to eat one I've always been afraid that I'll get drunk and bite somebody ;D
Title: Ghost from the past
Post by: Daddymem on July 19, 2005, 11:50:56 AM
Watch your head and IE only unless you wanna crash Mozilla:

http://veepers.wingateinns.com/card/Yf0Ma3J42rgi5BEHo4oBMW

Enjoy  :)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Okie_Bob on July 21, 2005, 03:18:49 AM
In Oklahoma and Texas, some of the smaller towns have annual 'Rattlesnake Hunts'. These are usually three day affairs when people come from all over to go out and catch as many as they can. They then bring them into town and collect the venom then skin and cook them for everyone to eat. And yep, it tastes like chicken! (So does gator!) The skin is used for a lot of differnt things like boots, belts, wallets, etc. Not sure where the rattles go and don't care, I hate snakes. My father-in-law goes to about one a year, camps out and loves rattleshake meat! (I knew he was strang before I married his daughter!)
Okie Bob
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 21, 2005, 05:31:40 AM
I hope his daughter loves snakes, Bob. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 24, 2005, 08:43:43 PM
I was hungry tonight to I went up on the roof of the cabin and dug some All Blue potatoes- purple inside and out-- nuked them a few minutes in the underground solar powered microwave, slathered them with butter and salt and now I'm gonna eatem.  Grrrrrrrrr.  Boy are those good.  Photo courtesy of the nearly usable phone camera. ;D

(http://tinypic.com/9bfb41.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on July 26, 2005, 04:50:14 AM
Yum, on the blue potatoes.

I need to get a good vegetable garden going!

And I agree with you on the phone camera.   Seems like I sometimes see--slightly--better looking photos from the phone camera on Weather Underground's picture page, but mostly they are best viewed as expressionist or watercolor pictures.  Maybe to the extent of running them through somebody's expressionist or watercolor filter.

(That's what I decided on my first digital camera--1 big megapixel--so of course I had to push its limits all the time.  A quarter or a tenth of the frame needed badly not to be considered a photograph.)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jimmy C. on July 26, 2005, 11:07:58 AM
I  just found out this week that my camera phone(Toshiba-VM4050 ) has a setting adjustment for resolution of 480x640 or 240x320 and a quality of normal or fine.
It will only hold 3 or 4 pictures on the fine resolution setting and will hold 15-19 on normal.

Much better pictures by changing the settings!
It is still a little fuzzy the further away you get from the  from the object.
I use my phone every time I go to Home Depot or Lowes. Snap a picture of the things I like and the price. It sure beats trying to remember things!

(http://tinypic.com/9h4znn.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 26, 2005, 11:32:03 AM
Glenn - great roof spuds. Just another benefit of the living roof!

Jimmy - what a great use of the camera phone. Quick, easy, unobtrusive and easy to review.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 26, 2005, 10:09:07 PM
My picture was in low light -no flash so probably pretty good all things considered.  Soon will have to try out it's video feature.  

Another reason I wanted to try it is that I can take photo's of job problems and email them directly to the fabrication shop as soon as I take them- right off the phone.

Lots of vegetables from the rooftop garden now.  The garden has expanded onto the shop also.  It really looks better than 25 year comp roofing I think. ;D

The place is looking good, Jimmy.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 26, 2005, 10:19:23 PM
So essentailly your now eating your house  :o 8) :D Pick your icon LOL
  Just don't get to hungry ;) HTBH  ;)PEG
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 26, 2005, 10:33:43 PM
You got it Peg-- eating the living roof-- and you can't even taste the horse manure. ;D

Overgrown veggies go to seed or to the sheep/garbage disposal/fertilizer manufacturing plant. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 22, 2005, 10:43:35 PM
The latest thing from the Underground Cabin Control Center -- a crappy little website---- ;D

But now that I finally got off my duff and started it maybe it will get better. :-/

http://members.sti.net/glennk/index.htm
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 23, 2005, 09:49:37 AM
A little more information about my floors in reply to an e-mail question from a friend.

Quikrete Concrete cure and seal is available at Home Depot and other places - near the additives- colors etc. section in the concrete area.  About 18.00 gallon as I remember.  A sponge mop with extra heads for replacement after wear are great.  Clean good with water or prepare to throw them away - they will harden.  A plastic bag over the mop will prevent hardening for a few days or more to give you a break if necessary.  Works for latex paint brushes and rollers too.

I have dirt floors and use concrete cure and seal on some of my mud furniture - conversation pit etc.  It also seems to be good as the expensive stuff which runs near 40 per gallon.  

The floors are cob or various experimental soil cement mixes varying in quality.  The best is 30% clay 70% sand 5 handfuls chainsaw chopped straw per 10 shovels full - water - let dry and grout the cracks with clay-fine sand and acrylic (concrete additive or cure and seal) mix -- seal top with 4 coats linseed oil thinned with thinner then Concrete Cure and Seal over that after dry.  Adding cement about 10% stabilizes the mix- not soluble in water- but the linseed oil doesn’t soak in as well leaving a less durable surface subject to more chipping or surface scratching.

Note that the threshold is actually nailed through the vapor barrier into the hard mineral clay below.  I actually had to jack hammer out rock to make room for the threshold.  Large rock is mixed in with the natural clay.  The pink object -lower right is actually a 3' or so boulder in the clay to the side of the door.
(http://tinypic.com/dxoked.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 23, 2005, 09:06:48 PM
I am currently working on the entrance to the lower area so it can be closed in before winter.

The entrance roof is supported by a tree that is 24' long -2' in diameter at the trunk.
(http://tinypic.com/dy41gm.jpg)

To the west is a recycled window, a "seconds" vinyl window and there will be 2 tempered glass salvage door windows also, making most of the corner glass.  I am going to build my hypocaust inside in front of the window hopefully incorporating a Roman bath (hot tub) for heat storage also.   Water can be pumped from there to the hydronic heating tubes in the other area of the house or to radiators as necessary.  (Yeah -right-- when will that be complete ??? )
(http://tinypic.com/dy4n15.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 11, 2005, 01:42:08 PM
I received an E-mail from Sharon and am posting it and responses with permission.

----- Original Message -----
From: Sharon
To: glenn-k@msn.com
Sent: Monday, October 10, 2005 10:19 PM
Subject: Your Home


Glenn,

I just logged onto Cottage Plans for the first time in a LONG time (it was the old forum then) and found the pics of your home.  Totally awsome!  I have been researching Earthships and Cob building for the last 4 years (or so) and can't seem to decide which is for me.  I like the concept of the earthship--underground, self-sufficient, the indoor planters using greywater, solar power--but don't like the idea of pounding all those tires!!!!  I love cob because of it's greater design ability--and I love the idea of glass colored bottles in the walls to let the light in--but it lacks any insulation for this Minnesota climate.  

I loved what I saw of your home.  The use of cob, timbers, underground, solar, the large room with windows (sorry, forgot what you called it and yet I have no idea what it is) I was wondering if you could tell me a little about your home--where did you get your ideas? did you build one room and then keep adding? is your climate warm and arid? would it work here with the snow loads and cold weather? ETC....I would love to know all you can offer for knowledge.

I will next investigate the $50 and Under book you recommended. I have read all the Earthship books and the major Cob books, already.

Just want to build a home that is a part of the earth, not on it.  I do have land in MO where there are no building restrictions I could build on when we retire, but family is here in MN.  Any suggestions of what/how to build for our extreme climate?

I truly appreciate  you taking the time to help me.  I look forward to your updates also.

Thank you,
Sharon



glenn kangiser <glenn-k@msn.com> wrote:
Hi Sharon.  I checked several different methods out and the one that made the most sense was the cheapest and has the engineering in the book-- log sizes etc.  "The $50 and up underground house" by Mike Oehler.  $50 and Up Underground House  This will get you safely into the ground without pounding tires.  Most of the ideas came from Mike with modifications for my conditions by me.

You are probably talking of the Conversation Pit-- Has the clay oven in the shape of a cat.  It was my woodshed the first year.  Large rock caused me to make the clay oven to use the space.  Needed a roof to protect the cob - cob seating fit well into the woodshed hole that was there.  Windows allow a view of the trees and valley below.  There is still dirt banked up to the window level and on the roof.

Heathers place and her parents are for sale and in heavy snow country - a link was added today - it was also built from Mike's methods.  Peace and Carrots Underground Home  Mike recommends the heavier liner over the roof now rather than plastic as I am using- a good change but expensive - defeats part of his purpose.

I am purposely experimenting with different alternative building methods.  Adding a suspended tree room for an entrance now.  Maybe some pictures soon.  My cabin now measures 57' x 57' in a kind of a T shape.  It is hot here in the summer - avg 90 to 100 or more sometimes- winters as low as a little below freezing occasionally - valley 1/2 mile below gets much colder.  Avg 25" of rain per year but 55"  last year.

Snow loads should not be a problem - rated for 2' of dirt and 1 foot of water -Mike has since recommended cutting dirt down to 18". Attention to drainage is an important part of making this work.  For your Minnesota climate I think I would insulate from the frost level or more up with a foam board.  My porch is done that way on the roof- entrance will be also- cuts down on weight -I used 2" of soil over that roof -milled  4x4's for roof beams.

Glad to help with what I can.  Do you mind if I post this to the forum so others may benefit also?

Glenn

----- Original Message -----
From: Sharon
To: glenn kangiser
Sent: Tuesday, October 11, 2005 12:03 PM
Subject: Re: Your Home


Glenn,

Please do post my messages.  I will post future posts to the group.  Thank you for the info.  I am sure I will have more questions once I read the book.

Do you use any type "thermal mass" to help heat in the winter?  Any suggestions on how to incorporate thermal mass into a design such as yours?

Thanks again,
Sharon
 
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 11, 2005, 01:42:38 PM


I will post them in the Underground Cabin Update-- thanks - saves me typing and increases available information available to all.  The entire cabin uses thermal mass as part of its design.  Being covered with and in the earth, you have a thermal flywheel effect evening out daytime and night time temps as well as annual temps to a point.  Using cob in the conversation pit is more of the type of thermal mass you are referring to.  It has large windows facing south and about a 3 foot overhang above.  Winter sun warms the seating area -Summer sun can't get in due to the higher angle.  The ground itself remains fairly constant in temperature  -probably 50 to 60F so a fan in summer or fairly small to medium fire in the winter will suffice to keep things comfortable.

In the new section I am going to incorporate a fireplace into a hypocaust system (Roman heated floor-fire underneath-)with a Roman bath above it to store heat in the water.  Water stores much more heat than rock or soil.  The water will be able to be pumped to the hydronic heating tubes in the floor of the existing apartment section which is semi-finished (I try to never completely finish anything).  The floor with the tube is soil cement -similar to cob without straw so will store heat also.  It would probably be better to have crushed rock under the soil cement floor to break the heat from traveling to the ground but John hadn't told me that before I got into the forum .

Glenn
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harrybear_12001 on October 16, 2005, 05:07:44 AM
wow-quite the imagination-my building inspectors like everything by the book and have a difficult time accepting anything different-I'll build on the family ranch someday-into a hillside-have a great day-Annie
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 16, 2005, 07:25:21 AM
Hi Annie.  You are right - the building inspectors would make this impossible.  Now that you mentioned it, it reminds me that I may have forgot to ask if it was OK.  It is not corporately correct.  It doesn't use enough manufactured materials.  The materials manufacturing corporations aided and abetted by the government and insurance companies would not approve.  It is not financially correct according to the money lenders.  I don't need them -I don't pay 20 times the cost in interest.  Actually, with a lot of time and a major investment with a phenominal increase in costs, and substituted approved -(read expensive) materials I think I could get this approved.  Not worth the trouble to me.  I'll try to stick with my rights.

I use the last few shreds of the Constitution to protect myself and reserve my rights to provide shelter for my family.  I noticed that Supreme Court Judges are still sworn to uphold the constitution. (However, I must note that they did install our current president in office for his first term, and they did rule that it is OK for the local government to take your property if it will increase their tax revenue.)  Laws that states make in conflict with the Constitution and Bill of Rights are null and void. Good luck on finding an un-corrupt official who will uphold the Constitution when it conflicts with local law, but you stand a better chance if you know your Constitutional rights.  The local Sheriff's tend to shy away from directly violating these signs as attested to by another friend who's neighbor posted them.  The Sheriff when, he saw the sign, left,  called in an unmarked car with an un-uniformed person to tear the sign down.  He then returned to check out the disturbance behind the posted area.  I'm not saying that building codes are not good.  There are unscrupulous contractors out there who would and do take advantage of of people who don't take care of themselves.  I'm saying I don't have a problem with them if I am building for someone else who is in agreement with the system and has surrendered their rights to the state.  The houses in New Orleans and the gulf coast were mostly built in compliance with the codes.  Everyone was saved and their reliance on the government assured them a prompt and speedy return to their homes along with the finest in Federal assistance so they did not have to endure hardship.  Write to any of them at their home address to verify that this is true.

(http://tinypic.com/1iicr9)

Mike Oehler came up with this method of building for safe shelter at low cost.  This method of building has been checked and designed by a professional engineer.  It is not a public building.  It is built by me for me and my family.  It will no more fall on me than a historical building downtown that was built before the codes.  That is not the point though I realize.  The point is that the proper agencies and special interest groups are not being paid off.  Engineering departments do not make any money if they can't re-invent the wheel on each project.  Rule of thumb tables are not profitable.  You should all be happy that conventional framing with stud walls was grandfathered in because there is not one piece of wood that is uniform enough to stand up to a scientific structural quality standard test.  Not that I am saying it needs to, to be safe.

A friend of ours has tried to design an underground structure smaller than mine.  The banks and government will still not agree and allow her to do it for a reasonable cost.  She has tried to go through "proper channels" for over 15 years.  Her cost estimate through "proper channels" is over $1,000,000 .  She is being denied her rights through impossible economics.

Until our Constitutional rights are completely destroyed, I will keep trying to exercise mine.  There I go again -was that a rant ???  Why can't I learn to keep my big mouth shut ???

Note:  The opinions expressed by me on this site are mine only and are not meant in any way to reflect the views of the site owner, nor are they meant in any way to influence you to do things by other than proper methods and through proper channels.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: DS on October 16, 2005, 10:22:13 PM
Hi Glenn,

My house is currently on the market, and as soon as it sells I intend to move out in the sticks and build my own underground house. I'm not letting the fact that I have no building experience or knowledge or tools or any idea what I'm doing get in my way either.

Anyhow, I have Mike's books and videos. I have studied them intently, and have a pretty good idea what I need to do. However, the one part that I need help with is how to correctly notch the posts.

His video only confused me more on the matter. Is there anyway you could post a pic or describe the correct way to notch the post? I appreciate your help.

On a side note, I have been in contact with the Discovery Channel who seems interested in filming me build this house (amongst other things) for a new show they have comming out next year. If my house sells in time, it seems pretty likely I'll end up doing it. I've been trying to get them to call Mike and see if he will come out and help, sort of as a guest expert, but they are not being all that helpfull with my request.

At any rate, I appreciate your help. Thanks alot.

DS
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2005, 06:37:28 AM
It may make it easier if you think of what you are trying to do and what is happening.  Mikes reason for a special method of notching is that the earth puts pressure against the sides of the post when you backfill.    Center post have no side thrust so can be flat on top, then notch the girder log an amount to match the top of the post.  If you have a 2/12 pitch and your post is 12 inches across, the notch will be 2" deep on the low side so when the girder is placed on top the post it will sit flat at the notch.  The difference with side posts that have thrust against them is that you notch only the outside 1/2 of the girder level with the ground and the inside 1/2 of the post to match the angle of the girder -lets say 2/12 pitch.  This makes the outside half of the post notch catch on the inside 1/2 of the girder, so that in addition to the strength of the rebar pin you also have the interference fit of the notches to resist the force of the earth pushing in.  The girders will have side force wanting to make them roll but this is resisted by the 16" long #4 rebar pins driven into the 1/2"dia.  16" deep pre-drilled holes.  They are a very tight fit and will lock the beams to the girders preventing roll.  Girders are slightly notched for beams also although I have skipped the notch once in a while for a beam if it made it fit better.

(http://tinypic.com/eq5x1h.jpg)

Hope this helps.  I have a lot of notches that are not the greatest, but they still work and you will get better as you progress.  Feel free to ask questions.  Are you going with buried posts or cement and pins at ground level?

How big a cabin do you plan to build?  Good luck on your project.  Please keep us updated on your progress.


Note:  My wife is giving me a bad time about publishing a picture of our pet spider, but I do have a signed release, she is over 18 and records are available here at our headquarters.  Do you think she's showing too much leg for a PG rated forum?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: DS on October 17, 2005, 04:00:08 PM
Hi Glenn,

Thank you for the picture and description. I need to read it a few more times so that it will stick in my brain but I very much appreciate your help.

The cabin I have planed will use 10 foot spans between posts along the walls and 8 foot in the center. Right now I'm planning to start out with a 520 SF cabin.

Im figuring a 3/1 pitch, so I'm looking at about 7 total feet of drop in my roof. To compenstate for this I plan on dropping the floor 3.5 feet in the center.

Since I really havnt got a clue what I'm doing, I have kept my design as simple as possible. So far I am planning just the wall of windows in the uphil patio, and a basic royer foyer. Nothing fancy like hollywood wings or side patios.

Here are some simple picture of my design I created in a 3d program. The green areas represent the earth around the house, the carpet is blue, and the wall boards are white. I've removed the roof so you can see whats going on inside.

I'd be interested to hear your comments and thoughts on these plans. Any advice I can get is appreciated, because, as I've said, I'm sorta flying blind. However, if I do manage to get this thing built, It will prvoe that anyone can do it. Thanks a lot.

DS

(http://www.timelessstudios.com/house/houseae1.jpg)

(http://www.timelessstudios.com/house/houseae2.jpg)

(http://www.timelessstudios.com/house/houseae3.jpg)

(http://www.timelessstudios.com/house/houseae4.jpg)

(http://www.timelessstudios.com/house/houseae5.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: DS on October 17, 2005, 04:03:44 PM
I forgot to answer your question. I am planning to bury the posts using the char moethod and then wrapping them in 5 or 6 bags.

DS
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2005, 08:14:52 PM
I really like your drawings, DS.

I hadn't thought about doing the post spacing at 10 feet on walls -8' in the center but it could be done-- You would be using the larger girder beam on the walls - technically it only has 1/2 the load but the rule of thumb tables are set up for the same engineering throughout and if you stick with that, you can always expand without worrying about beefing up the wall you lightened up before.

A point not made clear in the videos or book as I remember is that you will need to us 2x material for side boards for an 8' span retaining wall or add a small -maybe 4" post mid span to use 1x material for retaining boards or they will bow in even with light hand tamping as Mike suggests.  Ask me what happens if you get too close to your light retaining boards with a Bobcat sometime--- OK -it bows them in rather badly so as Mike says don't machine tamp or drive too close.

Ar you using 2' spacing with 1x roof boards or 3'10 spacing with 2x boards ???  Your roof spacing looks wide in the pictures but maybe you put it that way for clarity.  Looking at it again it looks like you are on the wider spacing???

I did a couple sections at 8'x10'6"   I kept all my beams on 2' spacing to use 3/4" thick boards and smaller beam logs.

I had to put my posts on top the ground -I used round concrete stakes driven in with a jackhammer 2' deep the 1 foot  sticking up-drilled a 1" hole and dropped the post on it - a square piece of plastic for a vapor barrier the a couple of inches of fairly dry wet concrete under the post.  My ground is way too hard to dig a 3'deep hole in -about 4 hours per hole with a jack hammer- if you can do it.  The stake will go in in about 5 to 10 minutes or I cut it off.  This method requires temporary bracing and careful backfilling as the poles will hinge at ground level until the backfill is in around the walls.

I have talked to Mike a couple of times on the phone and I know that one of the things he would like to see is light coming in from all 4 directions.  Is there a reason you don't want that?  People say that my place has more light than a regular house.  Mikes ideas work to easily let light in nearly anywhere with very little trouble.  I have a gable on the east side, a sunscoop west center -South is mostly open -similar to his ridge house drawing - a wrap around would get you some of that.  North is my uphill patio with greenhouse overhead - lots of light.  Bathroom has a Hollywood wing over the top corner -

A heavy duty drill with 16" long self leading auger bits is a must.  I use a 1/2 inch right angle Milwaukee.  Gives you something to hang on to.  I just bought a new Stihl 140 electric chain saw-- burned up 2 Remingtons in the last 3 years.  Gears went out.  Gas saws are great for harvesting logs but the electric is nicer for making those fine cuts that PEG likes so much.  Also a 4 lb fiberglass handled sledge for driving finishing nails - OK use it for rebar spikes instead.

Your design is looking great - I think I would consider more windows.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2005, 08:42:31 PM
In front of your offset room I see a problem - the wall is a bit like the first thought house-- possibly you could do a wraparound from the uphill patio even if not as deep and drain the upslope water before it gets to where it will want to go down in front of your wall and across your floor.  Take it around the side and then you can have a window in the corner on the side while getting rid of the problem water.

There are several ways to get light into the other areas if you are interested.  Without the windows it can get pretty dark back in the corners.

Just a suggestion. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: DS on October 17, 2005, 09:14:16 PM
Thank you for the advice. You are right about the offset room. In my earlier models I had the uphill patio excavated from behind it, but somehow I forgot all about the need for it and filled it in with earth. I will make sure I make that change to ensure I do it correctly when I do it for real. Thanks for pointing it out.

The beams are set for 3'4''spacing using 2 inch lumber for both the roof and the walls. As I have no source for free wood and materials, I was planning to just buy 2x10's to do the roof and walls with. I'm not married to this and am open to any different ideas.

As for why there are not more windows, it all came down to my wanting to keep the design and the build as simple as possible. I can't stress enough how little building experience I have, so I wanted something very simple to build. The hollywood wings and what not seem more complicated then this simple no frills design.

Secondly, this house will be built in a warmer climate, with little to no additional air conditioning. so i wanted as much earth as possible on all sides in order to keep it cooler. since the house is going to be mostly open, I was hoping the wall of windows on the uphill patio and the Royer Foyer would provide enough light. Once again I'm not married to this and more then willing to listen ot suggestions.

Thanks for the tip about saws. I have not purchased anything yet. As soon as my house sells, I will be purchasing everything I need. I think I've decided to get a tractor and a 3 point backhoe attachment to do the digging. I know its not ideal, but I think it'll get the job done and then when I'm done I'll still have a tractor to use around the homestead. I considered buying a used backhoe, but since I am not mechnically inclined, the thought of having it break down terrifies me.

I have a budget of about 10 grand for this house, not including Land and tools, so i think I can build the place for that.

At any rate, I appreciate your advice and look forward to more. Thanks alot.

DS
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2005, 10:08:16 PM
I don't know what state you are in, but you may a able to find a local saw mill where you can find rough sawn lumber cheaper- maybe not though.  I was surprised at how cheap some of the prices were on 2x material at the local big box store.  

If you can attempt this project, you will also be capable of doing a few extra things to get windows into other areas.  

The Hollywood wing is very simple.  Imagine the lower corner of your shed roof -- just lift the roof boards up like the corner of a piece of paper-- put a prop under it to hold it up.  Add a couple of framing members at an angle back down to the regular framing beams  for the roof boards.  Put boards around the sides and windows can be made to fit - even the crystal clear vinyl will work for an odd shaped window.  The water will flow around the lifted corner and downhill on solid ground.  A gable causes water to flow around the window or door below also.  Generally the framing can be done just like you have drawn it then add the desired features.

For this information I am giving you, I am assuming  you are in a no permit area or have an owner builder exemption-- most building departments don't wish to understand the concepts involved and it would require a lot of work to get them to allow it, probably with a lot of changes and expense incurred by you.  

The codes are not designed for safe affordable shelter using common local materials- they are designed for uniform safe shelter using high tech, corporate manufactured, high cost, high embodied energy materials and maximum tax generation. (This point was recently proven when the Supreme Court ruled that it is OK for local  government and developers to take your house and land if their project will generate more tax revenue than your house did).
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jonseyhay on October 17, 2005, 10:41:35 PM
I got one of those electric chain saws as well. I was surprised how good they are, even on tough timber. They really shine when you are climbing round on a roof, nice and light. They would be just the bee's knees for that job.
jonesy. :)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Daddymem on October 18, 2005, 02:21:50 AM
I surprised my friend with my old electric craftsman chainsaw when we took down some trees a while ago (he laughed at me).  It worked great, it has a nice long cord to hang it on a branch, freeing up your hands to climb.  When you let go of the on button, it is off.  Just make sure you use a properly rated extension cord for them.  There is an article about electric chainsaws in the current Mother Earth News, how timely of them... :P
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on October 18, 2005, 08:06:16 AM
The hardware store owner mentioned the same thing about cords - for the Stihl, not over 50' with a #14 cord, heavier for more distance.  Power shortage will burn out the motor.

One thing the Mother Earth News article didn't mention about the Remington is that they won't hold up under heavy use.  It hurt to break out 4 times the money for the Stihl or probably similar for the Husquavarna, but I am sure both will last much longer.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: DS on October 19, 2005, 02:18:01 PM
Thanks again for the wonderful advice.

I will be moving to an area with no building codes. I completly agree with everything you have said about them.

I'd like to get your opinion on another idea. Do you think having a hollywood wing on both sides of the house would bring in enough light? Much like my Royer Foyer in the pictures above, but adding a second one to the right corner of the house as well? Once again I am trying to figure out a way to bring in the most light while at the same time getting the benifits of having the cool earth all around me.

How cool does your home stay in the summer?

Also, do you have any sort of root seller or cold storage areas? I would really like to see them if so and hear about how you designed them. I have seen the pictures of the "Peace and Carrots" house that was designed using Mike's methods. They have a root cellar area but theres not alot of information about it.

Once again thank you for your help. Your house has really been an inspiration to me and I greatly value your opinion.

DS
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update/Demain
Post by: Harold Epps on October 20, 2005, 12:48:46 AM
This is in Reply to Demain's question about a part of California where one would be least likely to encounter problems because of building codes etc.

I found a publication  that I received in 1993 which stated that  Tehama County California voters had passed the "Landowners Bill of Rights" which struck down all zoning laws and legal controls on  buildings on private property.  I hope the publication was correct and that it is still in effect.
Good Luck,
Harold

 
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on October 20, 2005, 06:07:03 AM
DS, I used the Hollywood wing over the bathroom.  It is more for smaller windows.  Light can come in on two sides of it though.  I have a 3'x2'  (3020) in mine plus a small hand made one.  My Hollywood wing is a corner  about 6'x6' lifted about 4 feet.  Sometimes I build the frame from boards in front of the logs if there are interference problems.  If you wanted more light you could use the wrap-around or a sunscoop, or a sunscoop to the side with a Hollywood wing on the top end to move the water around it smoothly, or a gable on the bottom-- lots of ways to do it.

I started a root cellar in the deepest portion of the cabin under the uphill patio.  You need the coolest area and ventilation -I haven't had time to complete it yet.  Expanding rather than finishing things now.


It does get to 80 here in the summer as I am open outside the west side wall yet and we have about 12 weeks of weather over 100 with nights not dropping below 80.  As I get the center section closed off, next year should get better I think.  Air currently flows up the mountain through the open section and out the uphill patio - think convection oven.

DS, note that my cabin is sideways near the peak of the ridge so my uphill patio is similar to a sidehill patio and I have regraded so that I have water flowing away and downhill on both ends -south is quite open above area dug into mountain.  Mike likes all exposed areas to be glass although that is a bit much on my south side.  The pix with the goat in it is on the south side facing looking west -.  My cabin is more like Mikes ridge house design.

My wife got me a throw pillow that says "Everyone is entitled to my opinion."  I don't know why. :D

Great bit of info, Harold.  Thanks.

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on October 23, 2005, 07:01:46 AM
Trying to get the lower entrance done before the winter rains come.

(http://tinypic.com/eukplk.jpg)

The stucco paper covered section to the right has a semi-circular bathroom area, and will be covered with stabilized earth plaster.  From the front wall of the  bathroom to  the edge of the uphill patio is now 61 feet back into the mountain.  The right (east) side will be landscaped with boulders to make it once again look like it is part of the mountain.  The west side under the windows has heavy boards to be retaining walls so the earth can be brought back up around it.  The posts are up on rocks to provide a vapor barrier and keep them dry as water drains off below- .  The bases of the posts are drilled with a roto-hammer and anchored to the rock with 6 inch spikes.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on October 27, 2005, 03:12:23 PM
I'm sure I've mentioned it at least a few times -- I have my own saw mill and can make all my own un-stamped, ungraded lumber if I want to.  I can cut 30" diameter logs up to 20 feet long.   You say the unstamped  ungraded lumber is not as strong as the crooked, wet, stamped, graded lumber you can buy from the big box store.  Would you think the same if struck over the head with a 2x4 made of it???   ;D  Well. maybe on the bottom story of a wood 5 story apartment complex it could be questionable but for my own place I don't have a problem with any of it.  Same as the big box lumber without the price-- just throw the crappy boards out.

My granddad had 3 sawmills in Oregon starting in about 1910 when he was 20.  They pulled the trees from the woods using horses.  Actually the donkey engine many times pulled itself through the woods on skids, by its own cables hooked to trees. The mill was taken to the timber.  It ran on steam, burning scrap wood.  My dad stoked the boiler up with bark to get up a good head of steam when it was short.   Some day I may post a picture of the horses in front of the mill.

Here is a video of one of the ways timber was cut in those days from a little farther north.  1935 Canada

http://www.bcarchives.gov.bc.ca/exhibits/movies/large/LOG1_240.mpg

Thanks to British Columbia archives for saving this bit of history.
http://www.bcarchives.gov.bc.ca/exhibits/movies/movimage.htm
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 08, 2005, 07:23:49 AM
Hi Glenn,

I have been reading Mike's book and have a few questions for you.

1)  Can a slope be too steep for this type of building, and what is too steep if the answer is yes?

2) Doesn't this method require a LOT of digging/excavation?  I assume you dig out the uphill patio and the house area and then add the roof to the house at the same slope as the hill? (sorry, still a little confused with the first part of the book and have not gotten to the building part yet)

3)  You and Mike added on to the original building, did you add on to the sides of the house or did you dig down/back into the back side of the house?

4)I realy like the Clerestories floor plan shown in the bood, but on P.44 it shows flat foofs sloped slightly towards the house.  Is this correct and if so, isn't that a possible water issue?

5)Is the Ridge House cut into the hilltop or is it backfilled?

6) Being in Minnesota and needing all the insulation that the earth can give, would either of the flat land designs work for this area?  Seems that there may be too many windows and no protection to the north side. Your opinion?

I am realy enjoying the $50 & up book, but I am finding that I do not know what some of the ideas Mike is suggesting using are. There are things like the different types of windows for example, that have only written explainations for and no drawings on how they should look or how to build.  I would have liked the book to not only explain the building process but to show me more.  As a woman wanting to build a house myself, it will obviously take a while to examine all the things that are missing from this book.  I like this building technique a lot and would like to take advantage of it, but I find more technical info on other alternative styles and they seem easier to understand with having that info.  Any suggestions? (have to save up for Mikes video)

Thank you for you time and your help,
Sharon  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 08, 2005, 07:56:16 AM
Quote
Hi Glenn,

I have been reading Mike's book and have a few questions for you.

1)  Can a slope be too steep for this type of building, and what is too steep if the answer is yes?  I think if you can possibly stand up on it you can do this.  You can modify a bit running the water to the side then turn it to go down the hill by re-grading.  Different levels also help stop extreme changes in elevation.  My wife mentioned that the video's may help you also if you are seriously considering this.  Mike likes the parts that are above ground to be mostly glass.  Look at his ridge house as a bit more of an example of this type of building.

2) Doesn't this method require a LOT of digging/excavation?  I assume you dig out the uphill patio and the house area and then add the roof to the house at the same slope as the hill? (sorry, still a little confused with the first part of the book and have not gotten to the building part yet)
The larger it is -the more digging - Mikes first place was quite small.  For larger, a backhoe or Bobcat or both helps.

3)  You and Mike added on to the original building, did you add on to the sides of the house or did you dig down/back into the back side of the house?
I expanded mostly to the sides and downhill but all directions are possible if you want to bad enough.

4)I realy like the Clerestories floor plan shown in the bood, but on P.44 it shows flat foofs sloped slightly towards the house.  Is this correct and if so, isn't that a possible water issue?
That is an illustration problem I think- actually they slope down to the side - Mike always runs his water down hill and off on solid ground someway.

5)Is the Ridge House cut into the hilltop or is it backfilled?
I don't recall exactly, but Mike always had some backfilled around the parts that took runoff to the ground level - this provides earthquake and normal bracing

6) Being in Minnesota and needing all the insulation that the earth can give, would either of the flat land designs work for this area?  Seems that there may be too many windows and no protection to the north side. Your opinion?
Building methods must be varied to fit the location -maybe most to the north underground with only a sunscoop -Hollywood wing etc. sticking out for light.  A write up for a magazine I think it was mentioned that you could add insulation - I have used rigid foam board in some areas- to cut down on the amount of earth.  With the extreme cold there in the winter, I think you would want to consider this.  Mike is also recommending something like an EPDM -pond liner etc- over the structure rather than the plastic as a better roof material-expensive though.

I am realy enjoying the $50 & up book, but I am finding that I do not know what some of the ideas Mike is suggesting using are. There are things like the different types of windows for example, that have only written explainations for and no drawings on how they should look or how to build.  I would have liked the book to not only explain the building process but to show me more.  As a woman wanting to build a house myself, it will obviously take a while to examine all the things that are missing from this book.  I like this building technique a lot and would like to take advantage of it, but I find more technical info on other alternative styles and they seem easier to understand with having that info.  Any suggestions? (have to save up for Mikes video)
Things in the book are not always clear -or addressed sometimes - I learned a lot the hard way - 1 1/2" boards for 8' wall spans -etc.  As Mike mentioned -his book mainly adresses how to get a safe structure underground - finish details are left up to the actual builder.  Keep in mind that gravity pulls the water down and it spreads sideways as it goes down.  Water cannot be routed over windows or doors and exposed windows need something above them to make the water go around and down -such as Hollywood wing etc.  Nearer conventional building on things like that.  Feel free to keep asking questions, Sharon.  You are helping everybody.

Thank you for you time and your help,
Sharon  

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 08, 2005, 08:41:01 AM
Hi Glenn,

No problem, I promise to ask a lot of questions.. ;D

I have been examining your floor plan and your pics but still can't get the "overall" pic in my head.  Any way you can update your floor plan with there the windows are and where the ups/downs to levels are?  maybe some #'s to match your pics ("you are here" sort of thing)? Will you be taking pics of the full front, sides, and back so we get a better idea of your home?  

Is your greenhouse a "building"?  I think I read in the $50 book that you can put a "roof" over the uphill patio to create a greenhouse. which is better in a winter like MN?  I'm thinking building at the top of the patio since I will need all the winter sunlight I can get.  If your's is a building, doesn't it block a lot of light for the uphill patio?  The one thing I realy want in my house is a year round greenhouse (from the Earthship idea) that I can use to recycle gray water, so I am thinking I may end up with a house that is a "first thought" design with the uphill patio and the roof sloped to the sides like Mike suggests.  Unless you can think of another way to recycle the gray water "up' to the uphill greenhouse?

Like I mentioned in my first post, I like the earthship idea but NOT the tire pounding!! :P  When I realy apply reality instead of desire, I just think that in MN even the vertical glass (which is what I figure I will need to get the winter sun inside) will loose more heat than it will gain.  Since I would still have to heat the ES, it makes Mike's ideas more realistic to MN.  

Also, I see that you have a curved wall of glass for your conversation pit, nice.  But, can you curve the walls of the house itself if you don't want the "box" house?  Can the front wall (uphill patio side) be of cob or would there be problems?  Maybe strawbale with cob inside/outside ?

Well, are you tired of my questions yet.....LOL  ::)

Thank you again,
Sharon

PS...thanks for the quick response, but doesn't that mean your not getting your work done....LOL  (i'm not either....my day off from work)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 08, 2005, 09:31:30 AM
I do have to take a work break will get back tonight with more details -what little I know.  Not tired yet. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 08, 2005, 09:43:21 AM
My wife says - who could get a full picture in their head - people get lost here even after we've taken them through the place.

My greenhouse does stick above ground 15 feet to get optimum angle for winter sun -about 46 degrees- I used straw bale infill to build the back wall --about R50 insulation - no - it's not finished - what is???  Behind the wall is my shop to work on stuff in the winter - opening of the uphill patio under the greenhouse is about 8' x 30'  -greenhouse glass all combined about 15'x32' -all tempered used door panels for safety.  All free.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on November 08, 2005, 10:05:58 AM
The last time Glenn's mom was here (she's visited many times), while looking up at the uphill patio greenhouse... she asked... "don't you get snow in here?"  That was after we had just walked down the stairs & were standing on the bridge... and she's a "bright" lady!   As Glenn said in his last post, there's glass (15'x32') covering the greenhouse/uphill patio, but when you are down below, it looks like it is open sky as you can't see the glass, just the light... makes you feel like you are outside.  I like it!  

there, I've done it,  finally ventured onto the forum! ::)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 08, 2005, 10:25:05 AM
Welcome to the forum!  I am a newbie and I know how hard that first post can be....(giggle)   :D

Is the roof also glass?  

So, if I understand you and Glenn correctly, the uphill patio is connected to the back of the greenhouse with glass on the sides?  What is used to support the front side of the greenhouse? (patio side)

Hope to see more of you here!

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on November 08, 2005, 10:43:14 AM
Hi Sharon, thanks for the welcome.  I've enjoyed reading the forum ever since Glenn found John's site.  I'm hooked on it just about as much as he is!  The glass on the topside of the greenhouse is attached to the strawbale framing; at the base - to wood framing that sets on the roof which is our garden! ???  Glenn is going to try & attach some pic's with explanations.  Kathy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 08, 2005, 10:54:05 AM
There is a small roof at the top due to the angle of the glass - the glass is at a 45 degree angle over the opening -the bottom of the glass is at roof level which is ground level at the top of the cabin and uphill patio  -we have exits at 3 lower levels also.

(http://tinypic.com/ff6yye.jpg)

This pic is on the roof - the front angled wall/part of roof is glass- The strawbale wall is behind the glass.  the stairs down are between the glass wall and the strawbale wall.  The strawbale wall is vertical and about 12 feet behind the glass at the base of it getting closer as the glass angles toward it at the top.  It is 29' vertically from the top of the glass to the bottom of the cabin through the uphill patio.  there is about a 4 1/2 foot high wall at the bottom level to the floor of the uphill patio.  In general - not exactly. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 08, 2005, 11:01:04 AM
WOW!  Now I understand that part of the plan. Thank you SO much.

I like that idea a lot.  

I have a bunch more questions, but will wait until this evening when you have time to answer my previous set (2nd) of questions first.  Don't want to put the cart before the horse....wow, doesn' that line date me...lOL   :o

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 08, 2005, 11:06:47 AM
Here is looking at the uphill patio through the kitchen glass- the kitchen floor is 10'6" below ground level.  The stairs to the right go up to top ground level.  Sunlight shines clear to the bottom of the uphill patio in the summer.  Some bottom greenhouse glass is removed in the summer to allow heat to blow out above the cabin.

(http://tinypic.com/ff73nr.jpg)

Straight through the french doors behind the kitchen stove above is the bridge that goes to the bedroom.  Kitchen/study/apt are on the 4'6" level -bedroom at 8' level -bridge is split level with steps in center to higher level and down to the 0'0" level of the Great Room.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 08, 2005, 11:10:11 AM
Do the doors only go up door height and then it is open to the patio above them?  

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 08, 2005, 11:24:27 AM
The doors and french doors are normal 6'8 doors.  There is glass above the doors so you can still see the logs and outside of the cabin to the light in the uphill patio.  The entire interior walls around the kitchen that are not wood have glass.  Separates and keeps the room separate from the center section which at this time is still open to the uphill patio and south to the unfinished lower entrance.  The new lower entrance is at 16 feet below upper ground level but pokes out of the ground on the south.  The edge of the uphill patio is 61 feet north of the stucco paper wall around the 3rd bathroom - I will backfill and boulder landscape around it to make it disappear back into the mountain.  I am using a layer of normal stucco for strength- think ferro-cement-- then earth plaster over that on the stucco paper.

(http://tinypic.com/ff7951.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 08, 2005, 07:08:03 PM
Quote
Hi Glenn,

No problem, I promise to ask a lot of questions.. ;D

I have been examining your floor plan and your pics but still can't get the "overall" pic in my head.  Any way you can update your floor plan with there the windows are and where the ups/downs to levels are?  maybe some #'s to match your pics ("you are here" sort of thing)? Will you be taking pics of the full front, sides, and back so we get a better idea of your home?  

I will see what I can do.  I was thinking of small videos possibly later.

Is your greenhouse a "building"?  I think I read in the $50 book that you can put a "roof" over the uphill patio to create a greenhouse. which is better in a winter like MN?  I'm thinking building at the top of the patio since I will need all the winter sunlight I can get.  If your's is a building, doesn't it block a lot of light for the uphill patio?  The one thing I realy want in my house is a year round greenhouse (from the Earthship idea) that I can use to recycle gray water, so I am thinking I may end up with a house that is a "first thought" design with the uphill patio and the roof sloped to the sides like Mike suggests.  Unless you can think of another way to recycle the gray water "up' to the uphill greenhouse?

I haven't been using my greywater except to water trees downhill.  It could be pumped up to some filtration pond etc then re-used - in Minn. that would be ice in the winter though.

Like I mentioned in my first post, I like the earthship idea but NOT the tire pounding!! :P  When I realy apply reality instead of desire, I just think that in MN even the vertical glass (which is what I figure I will need to get the winter sun inside) will loose more heat than it will gain.  Since I would still have to heat the ES, it makes Mike's ideas more realistic to MN.  

Mike has had some success withhis greenhouse in Northern ID.  Brrrrrrr cold there.
Mikes Greenhouse
More here  http://www.undergroundhousing.com/structures6.html
(http://www.undergroundhousing.com/images/7agarden.jpg)
Mike's  hillside earth-sheltered greenhouse before planting. This greenhouse has taken tomatoes into the second week of December repeatedly. It is heated only by the sun and earth. It has taken hardies like kale clear through the winter.


Also, I see that you have a curved wall of glass for your conversation pit, nice.  But, can you curve the walls of the house itself if you don't want the "box" house?  Can the front wall (uphill patio side) be of cob or would there be problems?  Maybe strawbale with cob inside/outside ?

Strawbales could deteriorate if not kept completely dry - plastic could help- cob under the roof could be shaped as desired- Board walls are faster.  Seems the hillside in Minn. would be best - lets the water drain away.

Well, are you tired of my questions yet.....LOL  ::)

I'll yell uncle when I've had enough. ;D

Thank you again,
Sharon

PS...thanks for the quick response, but doesn't that mean your not getting your work done....LOL  (i'm not either....my day off from work)

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: tjm73 on November 09, 2005, 07:08:24 AM
Boy I would love to tour your house.  It's so damn interesting.

Do you have a single page where we could view all your pics in one place?  Like a homepage for your home?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 09, 2005, 07:36:32 AM
The address to Glenn's web page is: http://members.sti.net/glennk/index.htm

The address to all his pohots in one place is: http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/glennkangiser/detail?.dir=/8ac1&.dnm=3371.jpg&.src=ph&.tok=phT.FdCB6IwyWCaf

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 09, 2005, 08:18:47 AM
Thanks, Sharon.

Sorry my website isn't better - I get lazy and send everyone here but I wanted the little website to have a place to host some little videos when I do them and later some family history.

I have since found a video host on the web too.

http://vimeo.com/
Welcome to Vimeo!  Video hosting.

If in the area let me know and I'll give you the royal tour, tjm73, or anyone else with the exception of those listed on my No Trespassing sign who do not come unofficially as friends. ;D  All rights reserved-GK
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 09, 2005, 08:37:41 AM
Glenn,

I didn't see my name on the no tresspassing sign...LOL..so I would also love to see your place.

Where are you located and by what major city to fly into?  If I plan it right mabye we could come this late winter or early spring.

I printed out a copy of your floor plan and then went through all the pic and I could find most of where the pics are taken...I think!  The bedroom is a little confusing, but if the uphill patio faes East I think I may have it. (am I correct?)

On your floor plan, the kitchen is to the left of the study.  In the pics, it show windows on adjacent walls (like a corner) Did the kitchen go all the way to the right side (into the study area)?  Sorry, slightly confused with that room.

Sharon

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 09, 2005, 08:47:37 AM
Welcome, Sharon - your name is not on the list. ;D

We are just west of Yosemite National Park.  Fresno, 75 miles, Sacramento 170, San Francisco 170, Oakland 160, Stockton 120.  All miles approximate but fairly close.

Lots to see and do around here.  We are on the gold highway.

The bedroom and kitchen face each other with a suspended bridge 16' long between them.  The uphill patio is actually north of both of them to the right of the kitchen - kitchen is on the east of center and the studio apartment is joined with the kitchen.  The uphill patio joins the bedroom, suspension bridge on the north end of the great room and the kitchen.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 09, 2005, 08:58:16 AM
The stucco paper around the 3rd bathroom above is 61 feet south of the uphill patio.  The lower entrance was not there when I did the floor plan.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/xoutentranceb1da.jpg)
The light at the end of the tunnel is the uphill patio.  The light to the right is a shortcut from the front porch to the lower level.  There will be stairs there and a door.

The log in the air is over 2' in diameter on this end and 24 feet long.  The floor at this end will be at -6" based on the great room floor as being 0'0".

Going from this end straight north, the rooms are 3rd bathroom and lower entrance 24' , great room including bridge 37', then the uphill patio about 12 feet then behind the strawbale wall is the shop at about 30'.  The laundry will move against the right wall just past the bathroom.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 09, 2005, 09:10:40 AM
Sorry, Sharon - I couldn't even find my own floorplan.  Page 2.  The part marked storage/study is in one big room with the kitchen.  The plan is pretty well oriented to the north as you would expect it to be.  The new lower level entrance is roughly 15'x24' and extends south from the Great Room 24'.  Due to slope variations it will be at -6".  The new lower entrance area grew so now has room to move the laundry down there and clear off the porch area just outside of the kitchen window looking south.
A major consideration for the entrance is that it has a door big enough to get the Bobcat in the house.
;D

Lots of dirt work to do inside yet.  Root cellar- hypocaust - etc.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 09, 2005, 07:34:47 PM
We put a coat of stucco on the outside today.  We are doing it more as a ferrocement base for earth plaster.  We mixed it a bit extra strong as it is over the insulation and later will be landscaped against to make the entrance hide a little more back into the ground.  We also added fibermesh to the mix as reinforcement to combine with the wire in the stucco paper and make a wall that will be a lot stronger than plain stucco. The fibermesh is fine like hair - thousands per handfull, and tough like fishing line.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/fiberstucco247b.jpg)

Fibermesh can be bought from the concrete company  for about $6.50 per bag which is enough for 1 cubic yard.  We put a medium handfull to 4 sand 1 plastic cement 1/2 lime putty and were very satisfied with the mix.  The fibermesh ties everything together and makes a great stucco or plaster.

I've found that by far the easiest way to plaster the wall is to have the wife do it. ;D

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/stucco5a17.jpg)

I was just kidding - I actually worked on it too.  She also ran the mixer and made the next batch as I continued plastering.

Here is an overall view from the South looking North.  This is open on the South pretty well to gain winter solar heat.  The ground has been regraded to make it downhill to both sides to comply with Mikes requirements that water drain downhill onto solid ground.  Driving in from the east all you see is the garden on top the house.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/overall13a5.jpg)

The wind generator tower is visible in the back center just above the greenhouse roof.  Earth and rock is still up around the parts of the porch that are not glass.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 10, 2005, 08:07:29 AM
Good morning Glenn,

I just may be figuring this all out.  I was trying to compare the pics with the floor plan and could not figure out how you could have a south facing view with the bathroom and great room in the way.....LEVELS!  ok, got it.

When you say that the bedroom is 8' the kitchen (i think it was) is 4'6" and that the great room is 0'0", can you explaine a little for me please.   (like, how far down is the floor of the great room and then how far up is floor level to other rooms)  When I first saw the pics it said bathroom looking up at hollywood window 8', I thought that ment the bottom of the window was as 8'.

Sorry to be so confused.  I'll try to blame it on being a woman.......and if that doesn't work, a blond.... ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 10, 2005, 08:53:39 AM
Kathy,

Obviously Glenn had you do the stucco because he wanted it done right the first time...... ;D
(ok, women sticking up for women...LOL)

Good job, too!

Sharon

PS. hope this doesn't put my name on the no tresspassing sign :o
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 10, 2005, 08:10:41 PM
Quote
Kathy,

Obviously Glenn had you do the stucco because he wanted it done right the first time...... ;D
(ok, women sticking up for women...LOL)

Good job, too!

Sharon

PS. hope this doesn't put my name on the no tresspassing sign :o


Okay, Sharon, I think it's time you took a little time out now.  We'll start with 5 minutes in the corner ---- you must remain quiet if you want to come out. >:(      Just kidding -- ;D  I know someone saying something like that couldn't really be serious :o ;D  I am the man ;D  

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 10, 2005, 08:52:11 PM
Hi Glenn,

Thanks for the time out. I love time to daydream about the house I want to build!

I don't think I have been this excited about an alternative building technique as I am this one. You are the "man" Glenn!  And you are lucky to have a wife like Kathy that will help you with your endevor.

This forum is definately my favorite!  

Could you please explaine the floor level heights in my earlier message today? (before I was naughty :-[)

Thank you both for all you are willing to share with others,

Sharon  

PS. I promise to be good from now on ;)  (thanks also for realizing I was just teasing)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 10, 2005, 09:12:48 PM
Now that you have been sufficiently chastised, Sharon - by the way-- you can come out now- I will get on with your answer.  I had to send your little buddy, Kathy to work so you two don't gang up on me again. ;D  
Quote
Good morning Glenn,

I just may be figuring this all out.  I was trying to compare the pics with the floor plan and could not figure out how you could have a south facing view with the bathroom and great room in the way.....LEVELS!  ok, got it.

 Levels and offsets and glass internal and external windows strategically placed so that they line up to give an outdoor view even at the kitchen sink.  South to southeast view from the window to the left of the kitchen sink  Southwest view about 35 feet away from the window in front of the kitchen sink View of the sky and rooftop garden from the sunscoop front left of the kitchen sink about 12 feet.  The kitchen, study/apartment, first bathroom, lower half  of the bridge and old mid level south entrance where the cat clay oven is, are all on the 4'6" floor elevation level, except the floor in the conversation pit is at 3'6 elevation.  The bottom of the bathroom window is 8' above the 4'6" floor elevation, top at about 11 feet.  All elevations are referenced from the great room floor level which is 0'0"  The new lower entrance to the great room, the new laundry area and the 3rd bathroom are at -6" -there will be one step up to the great room -easier to match existing grade this way and keep the entrance farther into the ground.  The elevation change is outside the kitchen sink wall and behind the kitchen stove and under the bridge, where it drops from 4'6" floor elevation to the great room floor at 0'0"  The kitchen ceiling at  11'0" at the highest point joins the great room ceiling at 15'6" on the other side of the glass/wood wall behind the stove.

When you say that the bedroom is 8' the kitchen (i think it was) is 4'6" and that the great room is 0'0", can you explaine a little for me please.   (like, how far down is the floor of the great room and then how far up is floor level to other rooms)  When I first saw the pics it said bathroom looking up at hollywood window 8', I thought that ment the bottom of the window was as 8'.

Up the steps in the center of the bridge to the 8' floor elevation of the bridge and bedroom.  The Bedroom ceiling goes up from 15'6" above the bridge (outside the bedroom at the ceiling of the great room to get head room to about 20' elevation or 12 feet above the bedroom floor.  Dirt goes up the wall at the head of the bed on the outside about 4 feet then the part that protrudes from the ground is insulated with strawbales at about R50.  The second bathroon is 4 steps down at 6' elevation floor level.  All rooftops are covered with earth at about 6 to 18 inches deep.  The old porch over the cat oven has 2 1/2 inches foam board and 2' of dirt/cob.  The new entrance will have ferrocement stucco with foam board or fiberglass depending on where it is then be covered with earth plaster.  It juts out of the ground about 6 feet - 4 feet under - will be planters on drip over some roofareas also.  I wanted to get the effect of having a 24' tree (viga) on the ceiling so wanted to cut weight loading on the roof except over posts and beams.  

Sorry to be so confused.  I'll try to blame it on being a woman.......and if that doesn't work, a blond.... ;D


I feel it is my duty to try to keep you confused.
;D  Actually I enjoy seeing people who are here even wondering where they just were.  All rooftops either join with dirt just like a hilltop or have bridges or pathways to them.  Thus the handrails you see in the pictures.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 10, 2005, 10:16:33 PM
Glenn,

Your house is the only other house I have seen pics of other then in Mike's book.  Do you know of other such houses that may have pics and/or info and where they are located posted on the web?  

Thanks,
Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 10, 2005, 10:27:43 PM
I only know of a couple - you have seen the pictures on Mikes site I assume.

The only other one I know of is Wendy's underground house which is currently for sale in Vermont.

http://www.homestead.com/peaceandcarrots/pictures.html

If I find more I'll post them.

So much stuff on the net!  Here are some interesting things with a little underground at Potkettleblack.  Follow the links to item 15 - Oehler style U house. -not a lot of info.

http://www.potkettleblack.com/natbild/index.html#underground

I combine lots of different ideas into my underground cabin - it is a bit of an ongoing experiment in all types of alternative building, but generally based on Mikes methods.  I always find mysellf going back to his rules and methods when I get in a hurry.  A cob wall is great under his framing, but his boards ,plastic and I add 30 lbtarpaper for extra protection, are faster.  Mostly think of it as a protest against forced purchases of high environmental impact, high embodied energy, high cost commercial products.  And I am not an environmentalist or tree hugger.   ;D

I just don't like being pushed around at my expense.  I keep pulling big brothers hand out of my pocket and slapping it. ;D  Who knows-- maybe some day he'll get tired of it and hit me over the head with a 2x4.  'til that day I'll keep safely resisting------- :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 12, 2005, 03:01:25 PM
Hi Glenn (& Kathy too)

There is another thing I don't understand.  OK, you put in the posts and then add the boards, psp,and dirt until the wall is up to the roof (according to the book), but what if the wall extends above the ground before the roof?  How do you put windows 3+" deep on top of 1" deep boards? (hope I asked that right, or I hope you know what I mean)  In other words, what is the wall above ground made up of and how is it connected to the board wall?

In your house, did you finish the inside walls in any way or are they just the unfinished boards?  I was thinking of putting cob coating on them or maybe stone (or both)  Would this work?

I like the idea of a cob floor better than the dirt floor with a carpet over it!  What did you seal your floor with, if anything?

You mentioned that you used Mike's basic ideas and then added other styles you liked.  What other methods did you use that I might like to investigate?

Thanks again and I hope you are both doing well,
Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 12, 2005, 08:13:18 PM
Quote
Hi Glenn (& Kathy too)

There is another thing I don't understand.  OK, you put in the posts and then add the boards, psp,and dirt until the wall is up to the roof (according to the book), but what if the wall extends above the ground before the roof?  How do you put windows 3+" deep on top of 1" deep boards? (hope I asked that right, or I hope you know what I mean)

Boy, Sharon -- you are really getting into this aren't you???  ;D  Good question - I assume you mean because the frame on some sliders sticks all on the inside - some are half and half -  Its not really too much problem just frame it out with boards and do it like a regular wall - Since  your walls are all non-bearing you can do whatever you want.  Sometimes it is a bit of  a problem matching framing to crooked logs.  I get a lot of 4x4's free with my steel work so if I have good ones I use them or cut good ones on my saw mill.  You can put a 2x 6 or larger shelf at the bottom and or top of the window-cut it long enough to fit over the logs at the end next to the wall-angle cut on each end - when pressure pushes on it it can't go through- alternatively notch the log post a bit on both posts at the same elevation -slide the board in and toe nail it.  As Mike mentioned -he designed the frame only - he didn't go into details of fitting walls etc.  Each case seems to be different depending on location types of windows etc.  Since you are working with solid wood framing to it is not much of a problem.  Once you are above ground you can nail the boards to the back of the logs - I have gone to #10 galv ring shank nails -with the nail gun I can easily shoot lots of them and they hold real well.  A different case -lets look at this one
(http://tinypic.com/22ykat)  The retaining boards in this case are full 2" thick of Bull Pine - very strong wood- A 15" log girder is overhead.  I cut 4x4's about 12" longer than the opening between the log and the retaining wall.  I coped the top to fit the log when in the plumb position even with the outside of the retaining board.   I coped the bottom to fit flush with the outside of the retaining boards with about 6" of lap, then nailed it to the retaining board and the girder.  Sometimes it takes a few cuts to get it right.  Offsetting and marking with a compass or scriber helps to get the marks right so the cut will fit the log.  I put a 4x4 header in and fastened the window to the frame.  The log on top is actually just a slab for trim.  This is not bearing so framing materials only need to be sufficient to hold the above ground window and wall.  The adobe or cob look is only stabilized earth plaster on stucco wire with about 4" straw added for strength and looks.  It is about 1" thick and very strong - there is no wood behind it, but later I will fill in the space with insulation and put on boards and plastic to make an insulated wall for the above ground part.  I guess the short answer is conventional frame and box out windows as necessary.

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 12, 2005, 08:14:42 PM
I actually got told my message was too long - cut it down--here's the rest - I hope. :-/


In other words, what is the wall above ground made up of and how is it connected to the board wall?

Here is another one-- 4x4's to the ground - boards nailed to them -furred out to match 2x8 retaining boards then window installed - this was a remodel job - We put a bigger window here the second year -
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/east20end.jpg)

With the hard ground here I can drive a piece of rebar in, drill the bottom of the log or 4x4 -put down a piece of plastic to stop moisture -add a couple inches of cement if desired and use that to support the bottom of intermediate posts also.



In your house, did you finish the inside walls in any way or are they just the unfinished boards?  I was thinking of putting cob coating on them or maybe stone (or both)  Would this work?

 Most boards are unfinished but highlight areas, sink, counter and a few other places are varnished.  Mike says varnish everythng- plain is ok though -

Both would work - cob or earth plaster on stucco wire or jute landscape netting would work fine and also fireproof the wall.  Mike mentioned somewhere that rock could be used as infill if you desire - no boards needed - It would also make great bracing - I did one small area to support a roof.  Solid cob or rock infill is strong enough if done properly to support a girder -consideration would have to be given to the foundation under the wall if it is full thickness.  Unofficially, cob is good for 100 lbs per square inch compressive strength per Ken Kern and old USDA records or 14400 lbs per square foot - most ground is not rated at that though- mine will take it -through my own testing-nonofficial.  I use some cob as infill where walls go above ground.  Get Becky Bee's cob builders hand book or most of it is available on line.
http://www.weblife.org/cob/index.html

I like the idea of a cob floor better than the dirt floor with a carpet over it!  What did you seal your floor with, if anything?

The cob floor is our best - it seems to only come in brown -  Put it in - let it dry and crack - grout the cracks with a different color sand and clay grout if desired, to highlight them.  We mixed linseed oil and thinner 50/50 starting out then went thicker oil on the later coats.  After dry we put on Quikcrete concrete cure and seal.  Other more expensive sealers will work also.  Some talk of hard wax -I haven't tried it.  Shelley mentioned laquer thinner with styrofoam -as much as it will take-dissolved in it- brush it on walls - I don't know about floors - give a shiny plastic  finish.  I will try that some day -haven't yet.  Stabilizing the cob with cement makes it water resistant but it will not accept linseed oil as well therefore the top is not as durable -chips and has to be repaired every six months to year.  Some lady wrte a book about adobe floors - guess I should find it and buy it.  We use the acrylic or Quikcrete Cure and Seal on all the floors.  Rugs in strategic locations help on softer floors but someties wear the top off too.  Many times glass bowls etc. dropped won't break on the adobe floors.


You mentioned that you used Mike's basic ideas and then added other styles you liked.  What other methods did you use that I might like to investigate?

As above - cob, strawbale also to insulate above ground walls, foam board outside the single board walls and above board roofs where I didnt want full dirt loads on lighter framing and stucco or stabilized earth plaster - Check out Dirt Cheap Builder CD and books - Charmaine Taylor for personal service.  

http://store.yahoo.com/dirtcheapbuilderbooks/index.html



Thanks again and I hope you are both doing well,
Sharon[/quote]
My pleasure, Sharon ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 12, 2005, 08:41:39 PM
Glenn,

WOW! Thanks for all that info.  As I am not real familiar with all the building terms, it will take a while to absorb all that.  But that's a good thing for you. :)  If I am busy with that I won't have time for all these questions for you....LOL

Thank you for the link to potkettleblack, there are some good pic's there.  I just tried to email to Bruce & Cheryl (having lived in northern MN for a while I swear I have met them) to see where their house is and if I could visit, but the email address must be old, it was returned undeliverable.

Bummer, because being here in MN there is not a lot of alternative buildings to see.  Although there is a strawbale project just north of Brainard, MN that I hope to see this summer as I lucked out on my last visit to that area.  I have also tried to eamil a while back to people in Wisconsin that build/building a cordwood house with no success in getting a reply.

If I start to ask too many questions please let me know.  I don't want to be the only one asking, but it seems others are not speaking up as of yet. So please, let me know.  

I just love all this info and have determined this is the building technique I want to use on my MO land. There are no building codes/restrictions on my 2.5 ac with a steep slope. (purchased on the internet several years ago..not ebay..and hope to see it this summer)  

I am investigating a range that can be gas or solid fuel (wood, etc.) and will not only heat the house and cook, but will also heat water to use throught the house.  VERY spendy but this will be my only major expense for the inside of the house.

Thanks again,
Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 12, 2005, 08:58:08 PM
Glen,

P.S.....Being a Kitchen Designer with an amature interest in architectural drafting is what keeps me so inquisitive about all the details. ::)  (that and I'm anal retentive so I have to know all there is to know about a subject I'm interested in) So thanks for putting up with me!

Sharon  ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 12, 2005, 09:57:33 PM
There are a lot of others who are interested in this because they think I am crazy and they wouldn't do it for themselves, so they don't ask a lot of questions.   I appreciate their compliments-- it keeps me thinking of weirder and weirder ways to do stuff.  By the questions you ask I assume you are also crazy, so you want to learn about this method.  I am willing to teach you what little I know--should take a couple of minutes. ;D

Mike Oehler mentioned that a lot of people don't take him seriously because it doesn't cost enough to build.  That is why he is working on a book for a much more expensive underground house-- then maybe they will try it.

I am saying It can be done very cheaply as long as you don't count unnecessary things.  Electricity - running water - store bought doors are nice but not necessary for basic shelter -- a Bobcat -crane - cat -backhoe -sawmill etc. are not necessary to own but are nice to have-.  All the above and more money will allow you to more quickly build and increase the quality and size but are not required.  Salvaging, trading, barter, etc. can all be  used to do it cheaper.

Please feel free to keep asking questions -- maybe they'll recommend us both for the loonie bin. ;D

As to a gas- wood range - the one in our kitchen is combo propane and wood.  Some had a water heating unit - ours does not.  It is a 1935 Wedgewood.  4 gas burners and gas oven-2 wood burners.  No safety features as it is original -

Actually, of all the methods of getting an underground home that I have looked at, none have the thought, versatility and good reasons for doing things certain ways like this design method by Mike Oehler.  I have seen other designs and houses built by the concrete terrorist's -as Mike calls them-- that are smaller costing in the estimated range of $300,000 to over $1,000,000.  I make decent money but not to spend that way.  

Quoting Baldasare Forestiere again, "To make something with lots of money that is easy— But to make something out of nothing... now that is something."
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on November 12, 2005, 10:36:58 PM
Glenn

I saw a house once that was made of Railroad Ties... The guy would carry them home ones they were replacing...He would pick through them to get ones that were not rotten...

Talk about making something from nothing...

It is so awesome to recycle something. I have a wood stoveoil combo enterprise stove and I love it! I saved a few of them from the dump and accumulated enough parts to make one from several...All for nothing...Just a little of my time

Although it is not energy efficient one of the awesome things about building a camp is the sheer enjoyment from looking at it... going to a estate sale and buying 20-30 old barn windows...and re-using the old wooden windows in the camp

Turning what most see as junk into something useful.

Sidenote...Seeing that sidehill greenhouse gave me goosebumps...I barely slept the other night. I am craving more info and specs....

-Peter
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 12, 2005, 10:49:14 PM
Were you talking about mine or Mike Oehler's???

Note - Mike is not recommending Penta, CCA or Creosote as preservatives as they have been found in bloodstreams (referring to Penta) of people exposed to it.  Creosote stinks but could possibly be sealed behind earth and plastic.  I have a couple ties I put under the bedroom foundation that I will seal off when I get that far.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: danley on November 13, 2005, 03:20:24 PM
I visted with Mike Ohler a few months back. He is not living in any of his underground houses. He is living in a small old conventional above ground house hooked to the grid. It is at the base of his mountainside property where his underground houses including the original $50 house is located. He took me on a tour of each one and I would have to say the earth is reclaiming them. He has not lived in any of them in a very long time. Still some green stuff growing in his underground greenhouse. That says alot about hoe good his techniques, because I would say that he has not tended to the greenhouse in long while either. Mike has some ideas about some videos he wants to make and to sell l through satelite tv/internet services. Just needs some investors. Kind of interesting considering that one of the first opinions he expresses in his book is how he hates TV and it is one of the scourges on the world. I would say that Mike is living hand-to-mouth right now just like all the rest of the good ole boys and ex-hippies who have managed to hang on to their piece of North Idaho paradise. Always lookin for the next angle on how to make a buck. By the way I can vouch that he still hikes around in barefeet. Mike is still the real deal for the most part.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 13, 2005, 05:27:55 PM
Thanks for the update on Mike, danley.  I can see where mother nature could reclaim her territory if allowed to.  Even at that -it doesn't take as much work as paintng and keeping up a conventional house to keep her away from the door.  Then again - that was part of the idea- when it outlives it's  useful life let it go back to nature.

I'm glad he did the work on his system when he did.  I guess we can let him crawl up out of the ground now. ;D

Sharon-----  I thought of another thing you may want to study a little --French drains - you can get filter material that goes over perforated drain pipe - you don't even need rock around it--it can help to keep possible problem moisture areas dry.  Mike mentioned them also.  The black plastic coiled pipe is pretty cheap.  100 feet of filter sock cost about $22.00
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 13, 2005, 06:20:44 PM
Glenn,

Thanks, I'll check them out! (french drains)

Yep, I guess I am crazy.  But at least I will have a great home to live out my CRAZY life in... ;D

I am starting to plan the design of my house. (I know it will be a while till I build....since I haven't even seen the land...but I just want to start putting my ideas on paper.....then adjust to site later)  In the drawings that "DS" submitted, you mentioned that the offset room should also have an uphill patio..is that correct?  Could the offset room be 2-story with windows all around if the roof is slanted downhill and there is an uphill patio on the front?  Maybe I would need footings then, huh?  Just want a "lookout" reading/library area up a spiral staircase or ladder.  Any other idea that might work?

Thanks,
Sharon

(Hi Kathy.... 8)  hope you have recovered from the stucco project)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 13, 2005, 07:42:54 PM
Glenn,

I received a plesently surprising email from
Bruce (the man with the underground house you gave me the link for) and he pointed me to a website; Homestead.org where there is a good forum.

Here is the link to the discussion of his house and more photos to look at:  http://forums.homestead.org/forum_posts.asp?TID=1670&PN=4

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 13, 2005, 07:47:22 PM
The main reason for the uphill patio is to prevent water from getting trapped on the uphill side of the cabin- that's why I mentioned it.  If there is still a place you may have a problem with water a french drain under the problem area and draining to daylight downhill -sloped all the way can help.

You can do anything you want to do as far as design goes.  I have a frog pond on the top of my place and even a boat dock (salvaged) - it goes from one roof section to another.  If I can have a boat dock you can have a lighthouse.   When you get your plans firmed up I would be glad to look at them and check for problem areas and give you suggestions based on what I know-- as always - my advice is worth as much as you pay for it. ;D

Kathy will be back from work Tues.  She checks in at work during break sometimes but can't sign in.  I actually have to work in the morning -- a real job!!!
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 13, 2005, 07:48:36 PM
Thanks for the link, Sharon.  I'm checking it out.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 13, 2005, 08:44:07 PM
Glenn,

"...... even a boat dock (salvaged) - it goes from one roof section to another....)  So, THAT'S what is in the pics that is on top of your roof?   I would not have guessed....cool!  

I will definately get those plans to you.  I will, though, have to purchase the cable from the scanner to the pc so I can send them internet style vs. snail mail.

Hope you like the site.  I have been reading the forum posts, kinda fun.  Found out that the guy I bought my land from is in the Admin group for the forum....wow, life is so strange how it takes you to a new avenue and then you wind up where you started again.  (bought the land, got into opts. as to what to build on it, then found the forum supported by the land seller.....cool)

Have fun working your "real" job....obviously I can't wait to have that "fake" job you get to enjoy......LOL :D

Sharomnm
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 13, 2005, 08:47:18 PM
Whoa,  I just renamed myself in that last post.. :-[
Guess I need to learn to drink so I have something to blame it on.....

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 13, 2005, 08:58:59 PM
Yes - last pic on page 11 it shows behind the ladder - has the stove pipe from the bedroom Franklin fireplace in front of it-- I got about 30 or so of them free - had to justify using treated wood by convincing myself that nearly all the treatment had washed off into the lake over the years.  People drank it all -I am safe.

You can go back and edit your posts if you want to make us think you are a better typist--  ;D - We may have seen it already though. --- Kinda like when I post something --then think better of it and go back and take it a different direction--  ???  Don't want John to have to kick my hind end too often. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 14, 2005, 08:47:06 PM
Glenn,

If I do build the lookout on a second floor, will I need footings?  

Also, not sure if I got the answer to the question "is there sides to te uphill patio that go up to the roof"?

And last but not least for the questions of the day, if I plan to add in later, do I plan ahead and make openings or just cut tou the wall openings as I add on?

Thank you,
Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 14, 2005, 09:25:38 PM
Let me put it this way-- The little load you will be putting up there is nothing compared to the load that is already there, in fact if you don't put dirt on top the lookout- which I couldn't see you doing anyway - no place for runoff-- you are actually reducing the load as compared to the part that has dirt over it.  Insulate the roof to make up for lack of dirt.  I use 2 1/2" foam I got free from a cold storage remodel.

Speaking of loads - Mike recommended reducing the load from the design load of 2' of dirt and 1 foot of water to 1 1/2' of dirt -same allowable water .  I have places that are only 6".  I estimate Mikes design at 450 lbs per square foot.  In actuality, you will probably not get over 150 to 200 lbs per square foot.  Say 200 lbs per square foot x 64 square feet per center area post = 12800 lbs    My ground will handle it with nothing more then the  diameter of the post for support.  Engineers will probably have a cow but my ground is harder than the back of my head.  It has no problem with it.  Different ground can vary but many hillsides are very hard -that is why they are hillsides.  Soft ground will not take that much load-- in that case you could reduce the load and use foam board -membrane - then a lighter load of dirt - plants will grow with only a few inches of soil  - native - no problem usually - others -if you have water use drip irrigation.  The other site recommending going 8 feet out from  all sides of your cabin with the roof membrane where possible is a good idea.

My uphill patio is kind of captive but with the greenhouse is not much problem - steps up to the greenhouse.  Trails to sides would be good to drain of excess captured water.  I have a driveway above that serves as a continuous uphill patio or water drain off area also.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 14, 2005, 09:28:52 PM
You still didn't get an answer -- up the stairs to top ground level - now in the greenhouse - out the back greenhouse door to the shop - turn right around the batteries/power station and out the door onto the roof at the end of the greenhouse glass.

You can plan expansion now or later.  It is very little problem to add on anywhere at any time as all the framing is designed full strength as if it was loaded on both sides.  Just dig the dirt away - remove or cut boards after adding end support if necessary and continue on.  Build connecting rooms -offset rooms -secret rooms- secret passages - all kinds of fun things.  You are only limited by the imagination of you or any other interested parties who "get it" - they will many times offer things that they think are cool - you will know how to do it.

(http://tinypic.com/23uotu)

This picture shows the door from the greenhouse on the right - behind the wood on the left is the door to the roof -enter through tool room this side of the white ladder.  Greenery is roof garden - rooftop frog pond is last of the greenery with cattails.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 16, 2005, 07:51:42 PM
Glenn,

Well, snow has arrived...bummer!

OK, moving on from if there are sides on the uphill patio.  My land is level near the road and then slopes down (can't read the topography map, but I'm told it is fairly steep) toward the north.  So, if I want to take advantage of the southern exposure on the uphill patio side, how deep (from house away from house not deep into the ground)  can I go to get more sun?  I was thinking of doing more of the Earthship on that south side and then  Mike's way on the rest.  Don't know that I will use tires, but maybe cob with a tire foundation....except cob doesn't do alot of windows...so maybe the few rows of tires and then glass like Earthships.  I realy want to incorporate the inside planters and recycle the graywater.  I would slope the roof to match the slope of the hill the same as with Mike's ideas instead of the ES way. What do you think?

Thank you,
Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 16, 2005, 08:52:56 PM
If I picture this correctly, the sun will be to the south of your cabin so in the winter lots of glass  in the uphill patio should allow sunlight to shoot deeply into the cabin if not blocked by trees, etc.  Sun angles should help determine roof slopes too.

Maybe John's Sunkit would be a good tool to have along when you get to your property to help answer some of the questions about where the sun hits- angles of roofs etc.

You may want to start near the level area at the top to maximize the amount of sun you can get.  Possibly lowering the area in front of or stepping the uphill patio with an additional terrace will allow more light.  Mike also thinks you  should have light and views from at least the four points of the compass - not just sunlight.  He likes glass in most of the areas that are above ground.  Sun scoops , clerestories, Hollywood wings, Royer foyers gables can all get light into different areas of the cabin.

Insulation board could help quite a bit if it is super cold there in the winter.

I think Mikes methods and reasons for them make more sense than many of the other ideas out there.  It sounds like a good choice to me.  Modifying things the way you want and working it out are what makes it yours.  There is noting like the view you get while looking out the windows of your underground cabin.

http://www.countryplans.com/solarkit.htm
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 17, 2005, 03:26:31 PM
Glenn,

I don't know how cold it gets whre you are, but I was wondering what temps your house maintains?  Is it similar to the temps an earthship would get since they are both underground?

Thanks for the info,
Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 17, 2005, 06:12:05 PM
At this time I can tell you what temps I have but it should get better next year as I get more of the center section closed in.  Currently hot or cold air can flow through the center and out the open great room entrance or up and out the green house.  No closed walls in the center yet.

That said, it is still not bad in the area we use as a studio apartment - the 4'6" level.

When we are  around 100+ in the day and over 80 at night for a couple of months it has little choice but to get to about 80 in there.  Winter time around 30 outside at night usually doesn't get below 50 without a fire.  So temperature variation while not real comfortable isn't extreme.  In your case I would worry about freeze levels and I think I would add rigid insulation even under the dirt if you have long extremes.  

I have the front porch mostly enclosed then the inner door closed.  As was mentioned in the other thread -JRR's greenhouse theory--each place has a definite difference in temp.  That is why I say it should change as I close off the center section.

At any rate - wood heat  or fans easily change it to a fairly comfortable temp.  At this time my kitchen wall is mostly single glass above counter level so the center section can influence inside temp quite a bit.  That wall measures 11 feet high by 17 feet wide.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 20, 2005, 04:11:12 PM
Glenn,

How's the building going?  

I have been thinking that to start out maybe one of John's Victoria's Cottage (without the bedroom on the main floor) or the Builder's cottage would be a good idea to put on the land first to live in while building wouldn't be such a bad idea.  Then we would have a place for family to stay in when they come to visit.  I just don't want to put all our money into that and not have enough to put into the main house.  The cabin/cottage would just need to be finished enough to stay warm for the winter and would be finished as time goes on. Any input on that?  Don't know how far on the main house a person can get during a summer/early fall and be ready for winter, do you know?

Thanks again and say hi to Kathy for me!
Sharon

PS..ok, maybe after studying the $100,000 victoria cotage and builders cottage, the builders cottage itself may be more within the price range!! (yet still a lot of money since it is not the main house!!) Maybe just start on the main house and hope to have four walls and a roof by winter.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 20, 2005, 08:31:56 PM
There are a million ways to do things, Sharon.  Possibly if you wanted you could do something like The Builders Cottage  with the idea of it having a different use later.   It could be done with a slab floor and be a guest house or even -perish the thought- a shop or garage. A bathroom -and small kitchen could be plumbed back to back. Or if time permits as you say - you could start the main house.  

I think on these projects, if you worked straight - a couple months should put a serious dent in either project. :)

Kathy said Hi from work again - she's monitoring the forum when she gets a break at work.  We have a little fan club at the Veterans Hospital.

A big Hi from us to all of you out there in VA Hospital land. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jonseyhay on November 20, 2005, 08:51:02 PM
Glenn my man,
Just a thought on those hoop frames. I was thinking they could be laminated up out of 3/4 ply, maybe to a thickness of about 8" or so. Used as a support for a ferrocrete dome or even a ply cladding, you have a structure that could be buried What do you think, any merit in the idea.
jonesy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 20, 2005, 08:59:56 PM
Looks like it has possibilities- I wonder if 3/4 is too stiff - maybe multiple 1/4"to 1/2" would curve easier.  Strengthwise you may get to actually loading it to test and be sure of safety - unless you have an engineer buddy that could help figure loads.

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: queensvillekitten on November 21, 2005, 01:54:29 PM
Hi Glen

That place is really freaking cool!
Very pretty Hoosier too.
Elly
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 21, 2005, 06:21:07 PM
Hi Elly.  Glad you like it.  No fancy carpentry like your place, but rustic is cool too, I guess.

The Hoosier came from a local homestead.  I was going to refinish it and a friend said "You're going to what???  Don't even think of it."  So there it is, an old time worn Hoosier.  
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 27, 2005, 06:28:42 PM
Hi Glenn and Kathy,

Life has been way too busy to explore my new love of building, but just wanted to check in and see how your building process is coming along?

Hope your Thanksgiving was as fattening as mine was!

Sharon ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on November 27, 2005, 07:20:12 PM
Hi Sharon,

Glad you had a nice Thanksgiving, ours was nice... I had to leave for work right as everyone was sitting down to eat, but did manage to fix me a plate of food.  We always seem to have more to do than we have the energy or  initiative for.  I'm finally back at the cabin.  Had to do all the "organizing" things around here after Glenn had been bacheloring it for awhile  :P.  Today I did some more stucco & was the gofer for him while he was making the frame for the door that lets the bobcat into the "livingroom" :o.  He surprised me with new shelves & counter space he built while I was gone :).  We're trying to get a bunch of stuff done before we have our big holiday family/friends get-together up here (good way to get a lot of things done fast! ;D.)  

Kathy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 27, 2005, 08:45:49 PM
I really didn't notice anythng out of place. :o  

I went out and took a picture for you Sharon.  Gotta prove that at least I do something around here. :-/

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Picture008.jpg)

To the right you see Kathy's stucco work - base for earth plaster and making wall solid enough to backfill and landscape against.  There are also backer boards in the lower part of the wall but the upper section is only stucco lath - chicken wire with a light tarpaper and kraft paper front still visible in the upper left.  The rounded area is the bathroom exterior wall-- hoping to eventually bury part of it and blend it into the landscape.

The wall framing to the center is an 8'x8' appx section that swings out to allow the Bobcat to come in so that dirt work can be done later.  It is hinged at left top and bottom.

I also made the cabinet/shelves -small counter top so Kathy could have more counter and storage space.  I looked at a piece of Birch plywood I had for the back, but could not make myself use it.  Something about real boards - bug holes an all that I just like- it represents the way my granddad may have done it.  He had sawmills..  Plywood represents manufactured goods to me.  I got really fancy with this one - ran the boards through the planer- squared my table saw guide -used a planer on the edges too - cut with near precision then shot it all together with 2" brads- I don't have a finish air nailer- I ran the belt sander over the top which was too big for the planer- touched it up around the edges with the belt sander too.  It was about a 2 hour project-maybe 3.  Sorry PEG - I don't have the time or patience to do the fine cabinetry you do- I'm just a lazy rustic (excuse) sort of guy. :-/[smiley=2vrolijk_08.gif]

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Picture009.jpg)

So -there you have it -- a progress update. ;D

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 28, 2005, 06:40:56 AM
Glenn,

Don't know if you can help but maybe someone here can if you can not.

I found the link that describes my land and there is a topo map there, but I don't have a clue how to read it.  Thought maybe you have a clue.  The description says that the slope is to the east and that the road side is 80ft higher than the back. Does this mean it it quite steep or what?

Here is the link: http://www.ozarkland.com/hawthornebend/b/a.htm   oops...lot B is mine

Thank you to anyone that can help!! ;)

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jimmy_Cason on November 28, 2005, 08:49:22 AM
Whitewolf, hope this helps.

http://www.maps-gps-info.com/read-topo-maps.html
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on November 28, 2005, 04:28:43 PM
How wide is that lot?

Had friends once who bought a 6-acre lot in the Nashville area going from the road down to the river, the blessed thing wasn't but about 60 feet wide.  Since nobody else had laid claims to it, they put their garden on the adjoining lot.

What are those other nice folks doing with their land?  

I personally like my winter woods at least as much as the summer.  And no ticks either--although since Buster the much-lamented tick magnet died, I haven't seen many.



Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 28, 2005, 07:05:18 PM
The info book I got says the all the lots are at least 165ft on the road.   As far as I know no one lives there except one family on the E<F<G lot.  Would like to pick up A or C if I could.

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 28, 2005, 07:24:04 PM
Hi Sharon -- I just got to my motel with internet service- working San Jose again -tooooo many people.

I'll look at your link and see what I can see.  The closer lines are together on a topo map the steeper it is -as the lines get farther apart the land is leveler - lines show elevation change - . [smiley=vrolijk_26.gif]
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 28, 2005, 07:36:13 PM
That map doesn't have the contours so doesn't help much - do you have the lot size - so - many feet x so many feet - that would tell you a little- any street address? May find something that way. :-/

Calculating it out  if 165 wide then it would be about 650 ft deep round numbers -80' / 650 ' = about a little over 1 foot in 10 feet- but it is not necessarily an even slope.  Doesn't sound too bad though.  When you actually find out you can let me know if I'm crazy or not. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 28, 2005, 08:54:33 PM
Hey Sharon -me again

Judging from your map -

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/hawthorneMO.gif)

and the comparable picture-

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/HawthorneBendMO.jpg)

it looks to be a nice wooded area running from 650 to 720 or so feet elevation - I couldn't nail it down exactly where you were but should be very close (red dot at the end of the white distance line from Alton).
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on November 28, 2005, 09:25:20 PM
Glenn,

Thanks for the info.  Like I said earlier, I hope to see it this summer.  I didn't think by the map it was that steep of of drop, unless 1ft per 10ft is a steep slope?  

Loved your last photos. Looks like you and Kathy are getting a lot done.  Can't wait to see it some day.  I think it was on the Backwoods Home forum someone was talking about Mike's building method and mentioned termites as a potential problem, have you had any problems with this and how would one prevent termites?

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 28, 2005, 09:40:58 PM
To visualize the slope, get 10 feet from a wall - put your hand 1 foot off the floor - the imaginary line from your hand to the wall/floor intersection is a 1 in 10  or 10% slope - Most of my place is 3 or 4 to 10 -  or 30 to 40% slope.

Termites could be a problem in an area that is in contact with the ground where fungi can draw water from the ground- termites like water- I have used some wood that had a few termites in it when I cut it - they leave when it is too dry.  A worse problem is powder post beetles - they like dry wood.  Usually there are not many at once and a little wasp spray etc into the hole and treating the affected log with borate will eventually stop them.  Remember that nearly all your wood - logs - boards etc is accessable from your hole in the ground so you can take care of each specific problem as you see it.  There is an ocassional problem bug - not many- done properly the wood remains dry.  Probably more of a problem is some floor dampness in the winter around edges where a gopher has worked - etc.  Proper exterior drainage - uphill patio - regrading - french drain - sump etc are possible remedys.

Ocassionally we have some ants - but then so does any house around our area.  We feed them all the Terro ant food they want -they die- no problem.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on November 28, 2005, 09:46:45 PM
You will many times find that people who mention potential problems have very little or no experience with this type of building.  Actually the active layer of ground is the top 6 inches or so of soil- below that there is not a lot happening.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on December 11, 2005, 09:27:58 PM
Hi Glenn and Kathy  :D

Just had to check in on you kids and see how your latest project/s are going.  As for me, I am busy quilting for Christmas and haven't had time to get back to my bulding ideas.

Also wanted to know how much of this snow we have here in MN you wanted shipped to you? [smiley=2vrolijk_08.gif]

Sharon   [smiley=beer.gif]
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 11, 2005, 09:42:37 PM
Hi Sharon --we had a family and friends get together yesterday so had a great big push to get something done before they arrived as some only show up once a year.  Much progress but sometimes I feel as if I'm only digging myself deeper into a hole. :-/ ;D

24 guests if we counted right-- they all loved it and know that I'm not a good enough carpenter to do better than "rustic" --Okay - I'm too lazy to do better than rustic. ::)

I'll post some new pictures and information shortly.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jwv on December 12, 2005, 07:43:09 AM
Glenn,

Rustic is my favorite word!! I also like Organic..covers a multitude of sins! ;D

My kids even have it down "Yeah, it has that rustic look Mom likes!"

Judy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 12, 2005, 08:25:18 AM
Organic is also a good word - that is the way this place grows - depending on what I find-- the entrance was to be 16' long with a low roof - the log I found was 24' long at it's most optimum length and height had to be raised to about 12' to accomodate bumps in the log- therefore it is now a 24'long 15' wide 12'high entrance.  Glad I didn't have plans. ;D

The wall at the end swings out to make a 7'6" wide door so I can drive the Bobcat in for dirt work and carrying large objects.  It has a standard size door and sliding glass door glass window in it.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/PICT0020.jpg)

This next photo shows the levels looking at the bridge- bottom level 0"0" , bridge level 4'6" on right, bridge level 8'0" on left - way in the back up the adobe stairs is the 16' level -the floor inside the greenhouse above the uphill patio.  The batteries and inverters  are to the right in the greenhouse on the 16' level.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/7d9dac86.jpg)

More to come soon.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 12, 2005, 07:09:59 PM
Speaking of floors - copied from the old forum-

We are now doing an experimental floor a step beyond the CBRI light duty concrete floor - guess we need a cool name for our variation --- How about "Glenn and Kathy's cheap and easy light duty concrete floor" :-/  - OK - so a good name is hard to come up with.

Quote
Mike Oehler used an earth carpet floor system, he just graded and tamped the soil then put the plastic and carpet over that.    

The light duty concrete floor from India mentioned by Ken Kern, with the plunger posts is also durable and cheap to make - one inch thick concrete over Hessian or burlap.

http://www.countryplans.com/bbs/messages/7258.html

(http://www.countryplans.com/bbs/images/conc-flr-ld.jpg)

Based on the above CBRI floor, we made some experimental major modifications.  We used sacrificial wood forms to work the laundry and bathroom section of the floor we were ready to finish at this time.  The plunger piers will hold the floor even if the wood deteriorates.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05001.jpg)

The loose soil is filled to the top of the forms.  The last 1/4 inch or so is filled with sand and graded even. I set my finished level to be about 1/2 " above the top of the wood.  Sand fill stops at the top of the forms - the floor will be a form of  ferrocrete -similar to stucco but a stronger mix.  The advantage-- we used 4 small wheelbarrow loads of concrete mix to do about 90 square feet and less than one sack of cement. We added fibermesh to the mix for reinforcement.  Comparable standard construction would have used over 1 cubic yard of concrete and about 6 bags of cement.   We mixed cement with a fast setting anchoring cement called Rockite to speed up the set and for higher strength in the cool weather.  The holes are pounded as deep into the ground as the digging bar will go by repeatedly picking it up and forcing it down - appx 2 to 3' centers on the holes-- they varied in depth from 4" to 12".  They were made with the blunt end of the digging bar in the right foreground of the above photo.

Aquapex, waste lines and washer outlet box were installed along with romex as it was easier to do before the floor went in.  Water lines were tested before being covered also.  Aquapex can be installed directly in the soil.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05002.jpg)

A pine box will be built over the utility lines.  The bathroom walls will be wired, insulated and plastered as we wanted a rounded room.  The bathroom walls are non-bearing so framing was only used for the insulation cavity and to get the rounded shape.  The single thickness board walls have 2 1/2 inch foam board -foil covered on the outside of the wall.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05003.jpg)

There are many accessories available for Aquapex that make plumbing with it fast.  The angle stops go directly on the pex as does the washer box.

The entire bathroom floor is sloped to the shower drain from slightly to moderately in the shower itself.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05004.jpg)

To speed things up the plunger piers were filled with premixed dry ready mix and a little water then tamped - the concrete that is dry will set up from ambient moisture in the soil.  Posts and studs are set on rocks, drilled with a rotohammer and an anchor pin pr set  or 60d nail driven into the hole in the rock.  This  works similar to a post and pier foundation.  I put a French drain under the floor to keep moisture away from the wood.  Boards along the walls on the outside are to give backing to the stucco and earth plaster wall as backfill is installed and to give strength to the framing.  All construction is done in a manner that will allow settling or use of green boards without problem.  Typically the natural ground here is rock to near rock or claystone so does not have a settling problem.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05005.jpg)
Shower pan liner and aviary netting are now in place over the smoothed sand.  I used the aviary netting in place of the Hessian of the CBRI floor.  The concrete of the plunger piers joins the aviary netting and will be joined to the cement of the finished floor.  The concrete supplies compressive strength and firmly grips the aviary netting which I used for tensile strength.  Each square inch is tied to the other square inches of the netting with 8 wires - 1/2 inch weave - I assume this will be sufficient to support much more than 40 lbs. per square foot assuming each wire to have a breaking strength of at least 100 lbs -rough guess.  If I'm wrong and it breaks, I get dirt on my foot and fill the floor with more cement.  Add the tensile strength of the fibermesh - similar to hair added to old plaster and you get even more strength.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05006.jpg)

Boards span the sand and netting to prevent roughing up the smooth surface while finishing the ferrocement floor.  Note again---the soil under the netting is not compacted - in England they use a rototiller to loosen it- settling of this layer in the future is what gives the insulation space.  It is only solid enough to support spread out weight and the ferrocrete.


Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 12, 2005, 08:57:12 PM
As an alternative a fat man on a trowel for support on the left hand and troweling with a trowel in the right hand can also span the concrete, preventing damage to the sand and netting.  The troweled concrete plaster is about 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch thick on the average.  There will be a 1/4 to 1/2 inch color coat going over this.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05007.jpg)

The finished floor is now ready for the final color and strengthening coat.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-11-05009.jpg)

Will it work?   :-/  Who knows? ::)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 13, 2005, 08:21:35 AM
Look at what day it is---[timestamp=1134493857] and look at our flowers and garden.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/8481e673.jpg)
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/8e57243d.jpg)
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/bd921bcd.jpg)
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/6c47f17f.jpg)
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/f72e37eb.jpg)
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/3a3a32fc.jpg)

The advantage of our warm microclimate along with the horse manure on top of the underground cabin.  Note that in the valley appx. 800' elevation below us our neighbor said it had been down to 12F degrees already.  They are at about 2200 ft elevation - we are about 2910 elevation.  Cold air flows in the bottom of the valleys.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on December 13, 2005, 06:52:17 PM
Sitting here in the MN snow being very jealous of your warm weather and your beautifull plants!! [smiley=cry.gif]
Any extra space for another house on your property?:-? ;) ;D
  
Sharon (teeth chattering)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on December 13, 2005, 07:41:36 PM
All we got to do is build our sunspace and greenhouse and stuff.

We don't need to be jealous.  


Much.

It looks nice.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 13, 2005, 09:20:18 PM
We have room for an extra bunk in the corner-- have even thought of some cool places for a guest cabin on the hill side by some big ol' rocks--- come on over -- I think I can round up an extra pick and shovel. :)

Interesting thought, Amanda -- I've only lived on the west coast-- Oregon rain forest- San Joaquin winter fog hole- about 4 months of dense fog-- and here - heaven most of the time with a couple months that are hot as Hades- gives me a little chance to get prepared. :-/

What does the rest of the world do---?  Do green houses work well in really cold areas - Mike Oehler seemed to have a bit of luck with his underground ones.

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on December 14, 2005, 08:17:48 AM
I'm not in a REALLY cold area.  

Unheated greenhouses "up North" seem to be frequently used to extend the growing season.

The gal I buy plants from will start her thousands of tomatoes in a small greenhouse (two-layer polycarbonate, with phase-change solution in a couple of drums to spread the heat out, IIRC) attached to their house after Christmas.  In the winter they blow the excess heat from that into the house with a thermostatically operated blower--I've been in there on cold December days with the fan roaring.  Rarely if ever has to heat that greenhouse, although she may use heating pads under her flats.  Then after she starts transplanting them, the whole operation moves down to the big greenhouse (poly over hoops), which does have to be heated--all the dead trees on their property may go to that effort.  It uses many more times the effort and materials for heating that they put into their house (which in a mild year is nothing more than the blower into the spare bedroom and their rather aggressively south-oriented, earth sheltered location, and quite a bit of baking).

In the summer that greenhouse is pretty well opened up.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on December 14, 2005, 08:31:28 AM
Wish I had a greenhouse right now!  Had a snow day from work today as we are getting 6-8" of snow right now. :'(   Winter in MN does not allow for much sunshine and if we do get sun, it only means that it will be a lot colder outside.(the clouds keep the warmer air down)

I am hoping that in southern MO where my land is, that it is at least  more temperate and has more sun days than here in MN. [smiley=huh.gif]
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 14, 2005, 08:40:13 AM
Now that you mentioned it I remember that the last year in Oregon was in the Cascades in the snow - Mill City - I was so cold I had to warm my toes with a cutting torch flame -I'm tough-- I mean with my cold wet boots on--thats why I left the snow.  Here I can drive to it if I want to see it.  Right now I don't want to see it.  We usually get about 4" of snow a couple times a year.  That's plenty. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on December 14, 2005, 08:48:42 AM
Any land for sale near by you?  8-)  If not, I may have to learn to swing that pic and shovel. ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 14, 2005, 08:49:43 AM
Hi Sharon,

My mom was born & raised in Minnesota - so we visited my grandmother there at least once or twice a year, but it usually was in the summer when everything is green & beautiful (from what I can remember).  When my dad got transferred to Castle AFB in California (he was a B52 instructor pilot) my mom never wanted to live in a cold climate again!  (we'd also lived in Massachusettes & Ohio as well as other states-my dad was from Nebraska, so we visited relatives there also)  As a kid I loved the snow - sledding & ice skating, but didn't have to hassle with driving or shoveliing snow off driveways.  

We have another beautiful, sunny day up here  8-) although the valley is probably socked in with fog or at least hazy.  So what am I doing inside typing on my computer   :-? ?  If you get too tired of the cold & snow come on out for a visit!

Kathy

Hi, just saw your posting  before I got this done...  yes, there is a lot of land for sale, but can't say how reasonable they would go for!  I just bought another pick, so put your working gloves on  ;D
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 14, 2005, 08:54:39 AM
I know of one place belonging to a friend- hippy shack 10 acres + or -   -well-outhouse 189k IIRC - my neighbors place next to me is for sale 10 acres - well - part septic -home site -  rather expensive I think - I've heard about 250k  -  prices are going up around here.  There may be some cheaper stuff around -I haven't been looking.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on December 14, 2005, 09:30:14 AM
Glenn,  In previous post you said you are west of Yosemity(sp) National Park, but can you tell me the name of a town so I can do a search for land in that area? Sounds much better than even MO. But my kids may not like me that far away. They think I should stay here and that MO is too far. :-/

Kathy, That visit just may have to happen if we keep getting all this snow.  Would even LOVE to help with your projects for a week.  8-)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 14, 2005, 09:45:25 AM
Mariposa is our town-4 miles- Cathey's valley is about 10 miles - lower elevation- Bootjack 5 miles S. on 49 - Midpines is a tiny town 7 miles toward  Yosemite.  Bear Valley is North on 49 - Coulterville about 30  miles of crooked road North.  39 miles South on Hwy 49 is Oakhurst but it is becoming a mountain big city.

Please feel free to drop by - we always have lots of people dropping in.  Note that cost of living and taxes are quite high here compared to other places.    ----For the Black Chopper fans --- the more Constitutionally illegal and corrupt officials you have over you in a given area, the more it cost to live. (Even if our current White House resident calls The Constitution just a GD piece of paper, I still like it.)

http://www.capitolhillblue.com/artman/publish/article_7779.shtml
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 14, 2005, 11:11:41 AM
I guess I'll add some more fuel to the fire...  I've been converted from a staunch conservative Republican to a strict "constitutionalist" thanks to the DH  :o ....  most people probably already know about ECHELON but I came across this article recently that has extensive information on ECHELON - quite the eye opener!  I work with a nurse who said that he used to work in a "huge warehouse full of computers that recorded every keystroke made on anyone's computer, looking for specific keywords that they had specified" - this was while he was in the Navy in the early 90's.  So much for our constitutional right to "due process"  re:  the controversy in renewing the Patriot Act which would allow confiscation of property, arrest & incarceration without benefit of legal representation just because I might say or type something that might be on the suspect list.  It would behoove us all to familiarize ourselves with the Patriot Act if you haven't already done so.  The more "security" we request from government the more rights we give up.

BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING  :o  


http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/RANCHO/POLITICS/ECHELON/echelon.html

(sorry John, I will try to refrain from anything political in the future  :-X )

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on December 14, 2005, 11:23:55 AM
Sassy:

Thanks for the very interesting article about ECHELON.

Here are some other follow up links I found:

http://www.fas.org/irp/program/process/echelon.htm - lots of follow on articles.
http://www.echelonwatch.org/ - looks like a new site that isn't quite up and firing on all cylinders yet.

PS to Glenn - This thread has gotten huge and sprouted several branches. Should we split it up? (It takes quite a while to load for someone who doesn't have it in their cache.)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 14, 2005, 11:31:57 AM
That is fine with me-- I am so advanced here in the underground command center that I forget what it is like when I get to dial-up service.

Suggestions?  I see that now with the new forum on replies we only load the last 20 replies in summary with the option to load it all rather than the whole topic.  Even that can get heavy with lots of pics.  Can the number of replies loaded in summary be cut down or would that help?

Possibly some spinoff topics.

If we split it we will still load one page at a time as I see it - I'm not sure of other advantages.  Do you know of more?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on December 14, 2005, 07:20:54 PM
Actually, if I don't hit the "all" button it loads pretty fast.

Maybe we shouldn't worry about it unless others start to have issues. I wonder how many posts we could get before it blows up!?? :-?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 14, 2005, 07:59:19 PM
The all button is a new feature also - I just load the last page - I guess this should serve as a warning-- Hit the "all" button on this one and you're gonna' get dumped on. :-/  With the one page loading on replies etc it doesn't seem too bad - I noticed on the old forum that it took a bit- I just verified - the entire thread -all 14 pages loaded as summary to the reply starting at the first- now we load the last 20 replies going backward or have the option to load all-- a much better system for dial-up.

I'm not sure how many postings we can get here - Let's load 'er till she blows and see. :)  It's kind of nice to see anything remotely related to this topic all in one place.  [smiley=vrolijk_26.gif]
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: keyholefarmhouse(Guest) on December 15, 2005, 01:51:34 AM
Great.  I'm still wondering when Big brother is coming for me.  I did subscribe to Mother Earth News back in '79.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 15, 2005, 08:40:12 AM
keyholefarmhouse,

I'm afraid I was not guilty of subscribing then, but since then have been given bushels full of old copies-- most  clear up to the present I think and do subscribe currently, although it is more of an advertising rag now.

Maybe that did get our names on a list???
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/05/AR2005110501366_pf.html
http://www.newswithviews.com/your_govt/your_government60.htm
http://www.atsnn.com/story/179268.html

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: teripittman on December 16, 2005, 07:35:50 AM
Okay, so you've gotten me interested and I ordered the book. (Which came amazingly fast by the way) There is one thing that isn't mentioned in the book that does concern me. Can't afford the videos yet to know if it's addressed there.

The issue is snow. When I lived in Spokane, WA, we had a lot of blowing, drifting snow. I have this picture of the entry way being covered with snow and having to dig your way out. It may be that I'm picturing a smaller Uphill Patio than you actually put in. We've got a nice ledge on the new place, little money, and this might be do-able for us. Sure would be easy to heat.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 16, 2005, 07:50:40 AM
There are tons of ways to do this- you could cover your uphill patio extending high enough out of the ground for some windows to let in light - exit out the side through a walkway-- the uphill patio can be a secondary exit and exit at a lower level through a Royer Foyer to the side or even a gable on the low side with an extended cover - water flows off the roof to either side always onto solid ground and away.  The width of the water exit area on the low side does not have to be much if you want a bigger gable and windows -exit etc.

Your reasons are the same ones I had for doing this -very little money required for some kind of shelter if you are a good scrounger.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 17, 2005, 02:32:47 PM
Here is a method of moisture control for basements which I have already used in a couple of potential moisture problem areas in the Underground Cabin.  I didn't know that someone else was  doing it too.  Mine was able to gravity to the outside - this one uses a pump.

(http://www.jlconline.com/isroot/jlconline/ImagesOnline/images/htmlarticles/html/2005/0512/1205fool4.jpg)

http://www.jlconline.com/cgi-bin/jlconline.storefront/43a49b9c0017064027177f0000010570/UserTemplate/82?s=43a49b9c0017064027177f0000010570&c=f60ef3b7baef8c643c2e9369e7a9424d&p=1
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 31, 2005, 12:01:33 PM
Today is a great example of what good a wind generator is.  Stormy day - not enough solar to kick in the charge regulator, but we have sustained wind running between 15 and 35 mph.  On a day when I would normally be kicking the generator on, I have excess power and soon if this continues the water pump will turn on to burn off the extra power.

I have seen the 1000 watt Bergey XL1 putting out 60 amps at almost 30 volts today or near 1800 watts, on sustained gusts.
Title: General
Post by: Retread on December 31, 2005, 07:50:31 PM
Glen,

Thanks for everything.  You responded to my order so quickly I was shocked.  Noted that you were on line, so just wanted to say Happy New Year!

Retread
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 31, 2005, 07:53:27 PM
Time to continue on with the light duty concrete floor in the laundry area.  This time I am adding one more coat of concrete to the original coat.  I am adding 1/4 to 1/2 in giving me a total average thickness of 3/4 to 1".

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/6394.jpg)

After I have covered a reasonable area with concrete it is troweled snooth and rodded off to the desired thickness with a straight board.  Troweling alone leaves the surface too wavy.

Once leveled and troweled, color is added in sploches on top the concrete -different colors are added for a varigated look.  It is then troweled into the surface.  Too much troweling and it will all look the same.  Color can be purchased as a dry powder for coloring concrete but rather than mix it in the mixer where it would all be the same color, it is thrown on the top.  This technique can be used with concrete stamps also for a rock look.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/aa50.jpg)

Fibermesh is added to the mix to make a much stronger thin floor.  A large amount of concrete is saved and mixing can be easily done with a small mixer.  Fibermesh is available from the local concrete company for $6.50 per bag - 1lb I think - enough for 1Cu YD of concrete -we use one small handful per 4 shovels of sand.

Shown here is some of the mixer washout  held together with fibermesh -

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/5ca0.jpg)

Here is a photo of the troweled floor after color is worked in.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/21f2.jpg)

After all that - I was hungry so I went and bought a steak and barbecued it in the old Round Oak wood stove.  Yummy.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/3b7b.jpg)

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on December 31, 2005, 07:56:32 PM
Glad to see you here Retread.

John would be the quick one on the order, but we try to help with the questions and support.  A great place to share ideas and information thanks to John.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Daddymem on January 01, 2006, 08:11:54 AM
Quote
Today is a great example of what good a wind generator is.  Stormy day - not enough solar to kick in the charge regulator, but we have sustained wind running between 15 and 35 mph.  On a day when I would normally be kicking the generator on, I have excess power and soon if this continues the water pump will turn on to burn off the extra power.

I have seen the 1000 watt Bergey XL1 putting out 60 amps at almost 30 volts today or near 1800 watts, on sustained gusts.

Are these the Bergeys you also install for others? http://www.bergey.com/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 01, 2006, 08:35:40 AM
Same ones-- although I haven't actually put one up for anyone yet, because I'm my own worst enemy-- I won't sell one to someone who would be wasting their money expecting them to do something they won't.

I have one of the best areas around here for wind - if someone calls me from a marginal area I explain that to them, and tell them that I will be happy to sell one to them if they use it as supplemental - not primary power.

I need to get deeper into the solar stuff.  I put in a dealer app for panels etc. the other day --Around here the panels would be primary - wind supplemental.  In the valley where there is fog 4 months out of the year, that is because there is no significant wind during that period except storms once in a while.  That is from about 2000 ft elevation on down.

Even panels down there don't do much in the winter fog.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on January 01, 2006, 09:52:30 AM
Sometimes we don't see the sun for the first two weeks in January.

(probably true of most of the mid-section of the country--certainly happened when I lived in Southern Indiana)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 08, 2006, 08:49:02 PM
A new exciting multimedia experience comes to the Underground Cabin Update.

This is just a try out-  lets see what happens.

 What Does This Button Do? (http://www.bubbleshare.com/album/9044)

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on January 09, 2006, 04:46:23 PM
I feel all flushed! (with excitment, I suspect  :D)

And Glenn - Thanks for that helpful tutorial on doing thin slab colored concrete. You are building quite a library of helpful ideas and pictorial information. Maybe someday we can break this opus into chapters and you can lay claim to being an author.  ::) (Just don't start wearing a cape. I hate men in capes!)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 09, 2006, 08:28:03 PM
How about spandex tights?  Maybe a bicycle outfit.

I keep thinking about documenting some of this - but never quite get going on it.  Thanks for flushing for me, John :)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jwv on January 10, 2006, 02:31:48 PM
Hi Glenn,

Thanks for the concrete floor pics.  Have you seen the Building with Awareness DVD or site?  He poured his whole floor (approx 800 sq ft, I think) with a sm mixer and did some very interesting staining/sculpting techniques. I can't talk the DH into doing that (sm mixer for 1300 sq ft) but the stainig ideas will be fun to use. The Cool house site also has some good concrete staining techniques.

judy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 10, 2006, 04:15:57 PM
I've heard of the site and DVD  - glanced through it once but haven't spent much time on it - probably worth another look.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 14, 2006, 07:18:14 AM
Many people think of The Underground Cabin as a Hobbit House, although I'm much too big and ugly to be a Hobbit.

Here is a link to a person who built a Hobbit doll house that looks so real you'll have to look twice to see that it's not.  Also a good place to get ideas for your cabin.

Bilbo Baggins House (http://www.livejournal.com/community/little_world/39277.html?view=211565)

For background information about this project check here.

How it got started (http://www.livejournal.com/community/little_world/30571.html)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/12-23-0514.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Daddymem on January 14, 2006, 07:31:05 AM
Seen the mushroom house (http://www.themushroomhouse.com/pages/content.htm)?  Lotta inspiring things there and what a cool site too.
I remember seeing an actual Hobbit house built into the ground, round door and all, but darned if I can find that link again since the movies
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 14, 2006, 07:59:45 AM
Thanks for that link, Daddymemm.  That is a cool place.  Gives me too many ideas for my current level of energy. :)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 21, 2006, 10:15:07 PM
Here's a 360 view on the roof early last spring.

http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/OntoptheUndergroundHouse360.swf
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on January 22, 2006, 01:14:04 PM
cute--anyway to slow it down a little?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Daddymem on January 22, 2006, 01:33:14 PM
Use your cursor, you can manipulate speed and direction.  Another nice feature of photobucket.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 22, 2006, 06:55:54 PM
I have to hold down the left mouse button to stop or slide it back.  Another program I had would vary the speed and zoom but the browser doesn't have as much control - but I thought it would be something new and exciting. :) :-/

I had tried to do it once before but the old software crashed my computer.  Arcsoft came with my new camera -tried it with the same pictures and in about 2 minutes it was ready - it exported to swf, and I had previously noticed that the forum would handle swf -so --here it is.  It kind of eliminates guessing what is where on the roof - opposite the greenhouse you will see a bit of the frog pond on the porch roof.  A stitch occured on the 1926 Dodge so not much of it shows - it's black.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 27, 2006, 09:22:41 PM
I started building a nearly free garage a few days ago.  Since RV storage buildings don't require a permit, that is of course what it is. I think I'll start a new subject and link it here.

The Near Free  1/2 Underground Garage (http://www.countryplans.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1138433261)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 24, 2006, 06:48:03 PM
From Jimmy's Bridge link, I found a link that is appropriate here.

I have a lot of bug kill pine in my cabin - lumber industry doesn't much like it but as I have said -I don't see any problem with it -in fact it is very colorful.

 Blue Stain Wood (http://www.durable-wood.com/faqs/discolourations.php)

Wood Durability Information (http://www.durable-wood.com/index.php)


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Picture009.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Pam Saylor(Guest) on March 10, 2006, 10:27:54 AM
I'm new here and trying to read through the posts to see where or how your house began.  Is there a place (web site/blog or entry) where you have a summary of what you have done?    Where did you begin, and then what and what next.... It is hard to piece it together reading from post to post.

Thanks.  (It looks fantastic!)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2006, 11:22:28 AM
Hi Pam - welcome to the forum.

That's a hard question -back to the start.  I didn't document much until John invited me to join the Countryplans forum to answer questions about the Underground Cabin.  I found John searching for Ken Kern information.

A search of the original forum http://countryplans.master.com/texis/master/search/mysite.html?q=underground+cabin&order=r&n=0

will take you to the original postings -the very old forum- I made when I first got here.

I will post a chronology in a little bit.  Note that the man and boy in the first photo's with my wife are family friends - I am only in some of the later photos.  Too scary. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2006, 12:01:13 PM
A short chronology of the evolution of the Underground Cabin.


That should get you up to speed  on the start.  Feel free to ask questions.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on March 13, 2006, 07:54:39 PM
Glenn,

Can I borrow some of your story?  My story will be so boring.  
    
     *Got bored an found an internet site that sold me my 2.5 acres
     *Still waiting to see the land for the first time, despite I purchased it almost 4 years ago
     *Can't make up my mind what type of house to build so I will use them all in one house

Speaking of being bored and searching the internet, check out this land for sale if you love caves:   http://cgi.ebay.com/The-SALT-LICK-CAVERNS-W-streams-ponds-cliffs-homesites_W0QQitemZ4446002109QQcategoryZ15841QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

WOW....that link was longer than I thought!!! Hope it makes it on the post...and hope it works too

So, how are things coming along Glenn?  I've been hiding in the wings and haven't heard much about what is new with the two of you lately.

Sharon
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 13, 2006, 10:54:07 PM
Nice to hear from you again, Sharon.

Working out of town for 3 weeks in a row- too much snow to do much on the garage right now.  Not enough energy after working out of town -- we usually work daylight to dark or later sometimes just so we can go back home.

Ready to get started soon.  

Please feel free to take whatever you need of my story--plenty more drivel where that came from.

Salt lick caverns.  Reminds me of  the salt licks my uncle put out for his cattle :P.  We always licked in the bottom of the multiple depressions on the block when we were kids :P -- we figured the cows couldn't get their tongues in the holes.  :P We didn't figure out that the depressions were made by the cows tongues licking :P the blocks.  I knew I should have listened closer in school. :-/

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on March 14, 2006, 10:18:29 PM
I was just reading the story...  if it hadn't been for me, Glenn probably wouldn't have had to check out the 4WD on my "truck" & we wouldn't have found the property & he wouldn't have his "cave"   ;)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jimmy_Cason on March 16, 2006, 05:26:03 AM

Quote
I was just reading the story...  if it hadn't been for me, Glenn probably wouldn't have had to check out the 4WD on my "truck" & we wouldn't have found the property & he wouldn't have his "cave"   ;)

I have always been amazed at how the seemingly small choices in every day life can totally affect your life later on down the road.
In this story it starts with loaning someone a vehicle.  Now you have this amazing underground house.

Mine starts with being bored one day and typing in a google search for Country cottage
What would I have done with my weekends over the past year if I didnt do that search?

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 16, 2006, 07:10:04 AM
-------and there you have it --- the positive side of "Mood Swings"  --almost makes you want to go build one on the front porch. :)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: WinterStar(Guest) on April 11, 2006, 10:25:27 AM
NOt doing to well navigating this groups pages.....didn't think I was that computer illiterate!  
Registered in order to see the underground house photos [thinking only registered members could see them...], but no photos showed up.

Unable to directly email anyone back to ask questions [system keeps re-asking to register or sign in].    :-/
System assigned me a password, but then immediately reassigned another one--still attempting to enter my own password....{{sigh!}}

Does digest of list get emailed to me, or do I need to go hunting for it every time I want to look thru the posts?  


Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on April 11, 2006, 01:52:29 PM
Hi Winterstar,  I just wanted to welcome you & say sorry that you are having so many problems with the system.  
Wish I could help you, but haven't run into many problems & if I do, I just ask Glenn to figure it out.  I'm sure he or John will be able to help you later in the day.  Don't give up!  Sassy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on April 11, 2006, 02:52:42 PM
I don't know why you're not seeing pictures.  I'm on dial up  :'( so if things are going slowly (what's this if--now, now I usually have a fairly fast dial-up connection) I can only open a handful before I start getting red x's instead of pictures.  But I can usually get them to show one by one if I (windows explorer) right-click and then "show picture."

When you do get to the forum opening page (country plans design-build forum), you will see if there is anything new since the last time you opened that section.  And when you open the section, likewise if there's a topic or thread you haven't seen.  

Easier for me to deal with than a lively yahoo group digest where people often forget to snip, so you get either the entire digest and/or a thread going back for a week in your mailbox--even if the final reply is no more than "exactly" and it's on top.  

This version of YABB is pretty new, so there could be a few bugs left.

IIRC, you get a password sent to you.  At least the first time.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on April 11, 2006, 03:36:44 PM
Winterstar, are you trying to open "all"?  Go to each page individually, otherwise, it will take forever to load, especially if you are on dial-up.  That's the only other thing I can think of.  Kathy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 11, 2006, 07:05:26 PM
Hi Winterstar,

Also - you can get your lost password e-mailed to you from the forgot password dialogue  at sign-in.

After you get logged in again, bookmark or save the forum site to favorites, then you will always be logged in when you open the forum.

The pictures are public so you should be able to get them as a guest also.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Moonblink on April 18, 2006, 09:44:33 AM
Hey I am really interested in this type of building (I just ordered Mikes Book after reading through the posts).  However I was speaking with my father who is a General contrator and asked him his opinion about these types of homes.  He told me that they have a problem with humidity (being that they collect humid air inside) and that the resale value is next to nothing since no one wants to live underground.  Can anyone debunk his notions.  I also asked him when the last time he had ever seen one or thought about it and he replied about 30 years.   ;D  

What might be better is a pros and cons list; vs other types of energy efficient building.  :)

This is a great forum and an even better post, what awesome pictures Glenn!  So inpsiring!

Thanks again.

Brian.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on April 18, 2006, 07:03:45 PM
Glenn will probably be on-line in a bit.

But here are my 2 cents worth.

Resale value?  Remember that you only need one buyer.  AND something small and extremely energy efficient will do relatively better than the McMansions if there's a housing bust.  In general, though, you don't need to add stuff you hate just so somebody sometime might think it's not quite worth what you have in it.   ;)

Humidity.  Seems like these houses do a lot better if they are occupied pretty frequently.  If there are people around opening doors and windows and seeing to ventilation.

Mike's designs do let in a lot of light.  His exercise in workshops seems to be to have people put windows and doors to the outside on all sides of every room.

But it's not a good design for a swamp or a seasonal high water table.  An internet acquaintance from another list (several lists, actually) is trying to build a PAHS or more properly an AGS house in an area with a high seasonal water table.  For various reasons it might actually work in her area.

PAHS = Passive Annual Heat Storage  John Hait is the guru for this one--he's got a book or two.

AGS = Annualized Geo-Solar.  Don Stephens AFAIK, no book yet.

There have been threads on both--also Cool Tubes or Earth Tubes--a couple of times here.  The idea is to heat enough of the (insulated) underground area near the house in the summer to heat the house in the winter, and vice versa.  I don't know if there have actually been mold/mildew problems with this, or if everybody is just scared of them.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 18, 2006, 08:28:20 PM
I was not worried about resale value - I wanted it for myself.  I want to live underground.  I'm somebody. :-/ :)

Moisture can be a problem at times and as Amanda mentioned some places may have more problems that others.  Check out Lodestars place too.  I like his system also and the best of both can be used to make both better.  http://www.potkettleblack.com/natbild/lilacfarm.html

The wider umbrella he mentions is a good idea.  French drains can be put in - the more time you take and think it out, the better it will be.  Check out his postings here too. http://www.countryplans.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1143682957/12#12

A good wood fire helps keep the place dry.

It all comes down to what you want and will be more succesful if you are doing it for yourself without regard for resale value.  If your concern is resale value, I recommend conventional building.

We constanly monitor humidity and it is usually in the 40's.  Without the fire in the winter it may be higher.  If I had time from regular work and energy I could do things to greatly improve dryness.  I did not strictly follow Mike Oehler's rules ant the few problems I haveare in the creative areas.  A smaller cabin would also be much easier to keep lower humidity in.

For me - I don't think I will ever be able to live above ground permanently again.  

With the uphill patio and greenhouse above air will flow through the entire cabin quite redily if desired - also there are more windows than in a conventional house so they are another menas of ventilation.  Check out Mike's designs to see how he does it.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Moonblink on April 20, 2006, 07:27:58 AM
Thanks!  Now all I have to do is convince the wife!  I think we are 50% there.  Thanks again for the quick responses.

Brian
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jwv on April 21, 2006, 06:57:52 AM
As for resale value, if you build only to that you will never have what YOU want and as Amanda says-it only takes one buyer!  Many said it would take forever to sell our strawbale-it took about 6 weeks.  It helped that we built without a huge mortgage and were able to offer it at a reasonable price but it was still within the comps.

Judy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dustin on May 10, 2006, 11:10:32 AM
The biggest deal with Mike's designs is that you can spend so little money on the house that you don't need a bank loan (and it would probably be next to impossible to get one anyway). I wouldn't worry about resale unless you are going to sink a whole ton of money into the project or try to make it your primary residence.

You don't have to build a giant troglodyte palace like Glenn's either.

On my 20 acres in the woods, since we have an association (yeah I know, associations are usually bad news, but this one is worth it since it gets me access to 8000 shared acres and keeps the roads in repair), I technically have to get an approval from the board and a building permit from the county to build.
This is recreational property (unless we win the lotto and can retire right now), so I have no immediate plans to have a full-time residence with all the features that it requires.
I plan on building a very small conventional cabin to get approval to build. Then I want to use Mike's techniques to build a nice sturdy hobbit hole. I will tie their systems together, so that they both will be using the well, power systems, and septic tank.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 10, 2006, 05:25:56 PM
I think you've got the idea, Dustin.  No need for a mortgage if it doesn't cost much money.  Shouldn't be any tax on scooping a hole out in the ground and putting in a few timbers to keep it opened.  Mike's had the engineering done to keep it safe.  What more could you ask?   :)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: CostaRicaJones.com on May 12, 2006, 11:49:15 AM
Hi, Glenn!

Great job.  Really looks like it's coming together.

I'm planning on buying Mike's book.  But in the meantime, I'm wondering if you'd field a few lingering quesitons that I have about his building approach:

- I live in Costa Rica, and I'm planning on buying some land.  But what concerns me is that we're in a high-earthquake zone.  Mike's website claims that his contruction methods can "shelter your family from earthquakes."  But wouldn't a house without a foundation, built into a hill be more susceptible to earthquake damage?

- Would it be possible to build in hardwood flooring (or even Pergo, g-d forbid!) into an Oehler house?

- What do you figure you've invested in material costs so far, with your project?

Keep us updated... I love reading about your success!

- Adam.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dustin on May 12, 2006, 02:30:27 PM
You can put in a whatever floor you want but then you would need to spend the additional $$$ to build a subfloor to put it on (concrete, PT wood, etc).
If you're serious about building using Mike's methods, spend the $99 and get the DVD which has 6 hours of building details, some of which are not in the book. It's available on the web site.

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 12, 2006, 03:48:45 PM
I don't know about earthquakes.  (there was a 2.something about 25 miles from here a couple of weeks ago, scared all of us for days).  Gernot Minke had a pamphlet on the subject of earthen building for seismic areas--no longer available, although I think I have a copy on one of the computers.  

Start thinking how the earth shakes?  moderately flexible posts and shoring might work at least as well as anything else.

(nix on the pergo--especially if your sub-floor is carpet on the ground.  It won't be flexible enough--I'm highly prejudiced against the stuff because of an inappropriate commercial installation--and it might have been a cheap knock-off anyway)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 12, 2006, 10:20:42 PM
Hi CostaRicaJones.

Actually you can do any floor you want over the earth with plastic if you would like.  Mike put carpet over earth with a plastic vapor barrier.  I used mud and  sealed with linseed oil as the number one choice -very durable -- number two was adobe stabilized with cement then sealed over top- requires some repair at least annually.  Wood anchors - 4x4's etc can be set into the ground with plastic protecting them -- the active soil layer is the first 6" or so near the surface -- below the ground there is much less deteriorating activity if properly drained.  Note that I do have a couple of places that need a bit of attention but I consider it as a minor problem to repair a few things once in a while.  This is an experimental project and has been very successful in my opinion.

You could use plastic over dirt with a layer of particle board sub floor then the Pergo if you wanted.  You would want to be sure you had drainage under control if doing this.  Umbrella as Bruce mentioned would keep things dry.

These designs are very earthquake resistant as Frank Lloyd Wright did in Japan.  The posts (and house) are braced all around with the earth - they just roll with it.  Instructions for earthquake drills many times say to get under a beam or doorway in a conventional house-- this entire place is covered with beams.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 13, 2006, 02:36:10 PM
Another note about the earthquakes - above ground homes are probably more susceptable to damage -- the action of the earthquake tends to rip them off the foundation.  Earthquake bracing is an attempt to anchor the above ground building to the very point your below ground home is buried in.

I guess that would have the exception of-------unless you just happened to bury your house in the exact location where a giant gaping split appeared in the crust of the earth --- then you may become mincemeat but in this case the above ground house probably wouldn't fare much better. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: CostaRicaJones.com on May 13, 2006, 02:45:14 PM
Thanks for your replies.  

I just ordered the videos and the book.

I've still gotta decide whether I'm gonna stay in Costa Rica or buy land in Panama.  This sure is exciting!!!

There's so much construction going on (in both countries right now) that I think there's probably a lot that can be salvaged.  Maybe I can get an old elevator.  LOL.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 13, 2006, 04:19:15 PM
On costs --I look at this a couple of different ways.

The basic shelter structure - plastic sheeting - tarpaper -- logs -- etc I still consider that we are under $5000.

Unnecessary for survival items such as french doors, solar power system, pump, extra bathrooms add to that cost.  We scrounged enough free windows that we really wouldn't have had to buy any except for wanting better windows in some places.

What I am saying is that a basic shelter can be done easily for under $5000 if you are a good enough scrounge and don't have codes to meet.

I didn't include any of my equipment in that figure.  

My RV storage garage is a better example of what you could do for basic shelter cheap if you scrounge very good.  Under $200 for something that would take very little more to make a house out of - once again assuming you didn't have codes to meet.  

I am not saying unsafe building because of not having to meet codes.  I am saying not being forced to buy products from the government/corporate business lobbied protection and taxation racket.  There are many thousands of old homes built by master builders still standing that were built before the general forced use of highly taxed and protected products.  I am for codes protecting people from unscrupulous builders but not for them protecting an owner builder from himself.  Please let me kill myself any way I want to, thank you and get the hell out of my house. :-/  :)

Maybe some day I'll make a no cost shelter as the local Native Americans used to make using only things I can gather from the property - how about the assistance of machinery to speed things up a bit though?---I am very lazy and short on time -- and don't have a tribe to help me. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 14, 2006, 08:33:49 AM
Glad this gal doesn't live near my cabin.

http://www.nbc4.tv/news/9205105/detail.html

Yellow mud is her favorite. Her eating habits have caused problems for the family's next-door neighbor, who has a mud roof.

(http://images.ibsys.com/2006/0512/9205010_400X300.jpg)

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 14, 2006, 04:48:15 PM
pica (more general term) or geophagia--either causes horror in people or a "good they're getting their minerals"  

There was a vein of clay near where we lived in North Carolina that people ate.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: CostaRicaJones.com on May 15, 2006, 12:31:34 PM
What is the bug/insect situation like?  

Do you feel you get more bugs than a normal aboveground house gets?
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on May 15, 2006, 01:45:52 PM
CostaRicaJones, I'll answer that.   I am Glenn's wife & don't like most bugs!  I wouldn't say we have anymore bugs than we get in our stick built house in the valley.  We don't have screen doors & often leave the doors open, so have to deal with the bugs that fly in, but other than that, the daddy-long-legs spiders are the biggest problem at both places because they make spider webs & I'm always having to vacuum or use the duster to get rid of them.  Glenn just tells me "they aren't hurting anything, they'll eat the other bugs that might get into the house."  But I feel like a bad housekeeper if I have spider webs in site...  :-/  And I don't like them crawling on me, although I'm not afraid to pick them up... black widow spiders are another thing!  :o but we have them both places too... our neighbors live in a stick built custom house - they have more problems with scorpions & other bugs than we do.  We get ants at both places, sometimes, too.  So, I would say that we have the same problem with bugs that anyone else might have.    

I really like the underground cabin & am here more than at our other place.  Most of the time don't even realize that we have a garden on top of our heads!   ;D  Sassy
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: CostaRicaJones.com on May 19, 2006, 08:03:07 AM
Check out this underground house:

http://travel.discovery.com/fansites/fantasyliving/avh/photo/slide.html
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 19, 2006, 05:31:01 PM
You can rent that place--

http://www.rainbowhill.com/

And it looks a bit like the Hunter/Kiffmeyer Honey House

(here is a picture from the guy who did Asia Grace's web site--anybody who didn't see that the first time around has a treat in store):

http://www.kk.org/cooltools/archives/cat_dwelling.php

(http://www.kk.org/cooltools/archives/honey_house.jpg)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on May 19, 2006, 07:39:26 PM
another cat cob oven.  Not sure how to copy an individual picture here, this is to the slideshow.

http://earthedworld.co.uk/index.php?module=photoshare&func=showimages&fid=25
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on May 19, 2006, 07:57:49 PM
I guess you could do this, Amanda.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/ScreenShot011.jpg)

Cool or Hot as you prefer. :-/
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on June 07, 2006, 11:20:06 PM
Got a call from a lady named Rachel today - lives up in northern Calif.  Guess she had seen an article in Builder News Magazine called Extreme Custom Homes (http://www.buildernewsmag.com/viewnews.pl?id=231) in the July 2005 issue & had saved it... Glenn was interviewed & sent them some pics last spring for the article... he sounded quite the rebel  :o  we never heard back from them, figured they decided not to put anything about our underground cabin in the article - too extreme  :o.  She & her family are off grid on some property her grandfather owns & they've been hitting all sorts of roadblocks. I guess she got desperate & called information for our phone # to find out how we did it.  Anyway, looked up the magazine on the internet & sure 'nuf, found the article - didn't have any pictures in the on-line archives but thought it was pretty neat!   8-)

PS Told her about CountryPlans but they don't have the internet yet - she might try at the library...
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dustin on June 08, 2006, 10:37:11 AM
Too bad they couldn't mention Mike Oehler's book, or the Countryplans web site address. That would have given people a direction to go to.  Good press for you, unless someone from your county govt reads it and decides to take a little trip to your underground place and find the evil code violator.

Based on the other examples, I think they were assuming that you would just go with some super high priced contractor to build your "alternative" home. Good luck with that, folks. Just another "alernative" way to lighten your wallet.

Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 08, 2006, 08:47:58 PM
I tried to put a plug in for Mike but they edit pretty heavily and made most of the story with a very short interview.  I thought if anything came of it I would use the no tresspass sign and day use fee -- see if it works as some say it does. :)
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 20, 2006, 03:18:38 PM
No big rant today -- I just happened across this property rights information/court case ruling that I thought should be recorded here for interested individuals. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/courtorder-property.jpg)

Link to original if this is too small - http://www.landrights.com/court_order.htm
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on June 20, 2006, 05:46:12 PM
Interesting.

Of course the cops could have a warrant for the place across the street, and just come in.

Some things, like the restaurant inspector--which this might have been--are part of how you do business, though.
Title: Re: Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 20, 2006, 08:51:03 PM
The thing that I think is important about this is that it gives a bit of legal support for owner - builder  private property rights and gives us case references.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 10, 2006, 12:39:15 AM
Interesting article here offers a bit of insight into why we do it.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,1839404,00.html

(http://image.guardian.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2006/08/07/moleman372ready.jpg)

"William Lyttle, known locally as the Mole Man, outside his house in Hackney, London. Photograph: Sarah Lee/Guardian"
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 10, 2006, 12:36:38 PM
Found this link today

http://www.backwoodshome.com/forum/yabb/forum.pl?board=building;action=display;num=1153963833  Honorable mention

http://www.axwoodfarm.com/PAHS/UmbrellaHouse.html  Slightly different concept - used by Bruce -Lodestar, I think.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on August 10, 2006, 03:38:10 PM
Hey Glenn, that link at Backwoods Home is what led me here. I guess I have come full circle. I finally finished reading all of this thread and looking at your pictures. It took me a long time. Wow, is that ever a lot of information. My hat is off to you for all you have done with your underground cabin. I am still toying with the idea of doing something underground but I haven't decided just what yet. A lot of what you have done looks to be pretty labor intensive and I never seem to get to spend enough time at that mountain property to get too involved. That is going to change soon but the logistics are tough. I have an excavating business to run here in the desert and I want to live my dream 250 miles away. But if I am not here the wheels don't turn. I'll get it figured out.
Meanwhile, you have sure provided a lot of thought provoking material for my little pea brain to digest. Thank you.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 10, 2006, 03:52:29 PM
My pleasure, desdawg.  Glad you made it here.

Actually the labor is not that hard if you have a machine to help with the lifting and digging-- look at it this way -- a basic 8x8 module only requires 4 posts, 2 girders and 5 beams -- cover it with boards, plastic and dirt and you have a home --- OK - so I oversimplified it a bit --- then it gets bigger and I'm still not done, but it's fun. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on August 10, 2006, 04:13:39 PM
I have most of the ingredients including the lifters and diggers. The main item I seem to be lacking is the calendar days. That and I don't know diddly squat about cob, ferro cement and earth plaster. But that I can learn pretty quickly I bet. In fact let me ask, do you have some good reference material to recommend?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 10, 2006, 04:41:04 PM
All pretty simple, desdawg.  That's the whole idea.  For the cabin,  The $50 and Up Underground House" by Mike Oehler.  His videos also.  Check out the umbrella link above for a bit of possibly better or different similar information.  Combine them with Mikes design ideas for what I think will be best results.

Cob -- not required but a nice addition.  Becky Bee's Cob Builders Handbook - most of it is online.  Ferrocement is basicly stucco with a stronger cement mix - maybe 4 to 1 cement or stronger over stucco netting or even burlap or jute.  More wire can be added for strength.

Dirtcheapbuilders has much alternative info.  Most earth building is ideally 30% clay - 70% sand and aggregate - from there add straw for cob -- or 4 to 7% cement or asphalt emulsion to stabilize it - cement or AE or waterproof --AE.  There are a million variations but these are the basics.  

Here are a few links

http://www.undergroundhousing.com/
$50 and Up Underground House Book – Underground Housing and Shelter

http://store.yahoo.com/dirtcheapbuilderbooks/index.html
dirt cheap builderHome

http://www.deatech.com/natural/
DeaTech Research, Inc. Local Natural Building Links

http://www.papercrete.com/
papercrete.com

http://www.cpros.com/~sequoia/
Cob Building with Groundworks

http://www.weblife.org/cob/index.html
WebLife: Cob Builders Handbook: Contents

http://www.concretenetwork.com/index.html
Concrete Network

http://ferrocement.net/
Ferrocement Network

http://www.daycreek.com/
Daycreek Home Page
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on August 11, 2006, 06:23:42 AM
Thanks Glenn. That list will really help. I am trying to take a mental inventory of native materials that are available in the area. Lots of stone, nice flat topped reddish colored stone. Beautiful material. Stone has great potential.
Soil has a high clay content. Greasy, sticky stuff when wet. Sand, alas is almost non existent in that area. Rammed earth?
Trees, mostly Juniper and scrub pine. It would be very difficult to get any number of logs of any diameter and length. This makes cordwood construction the best option for utilizing the logs that are available. Or using Mike Oehlers methods, zipping the small logs in half with the Alaskan mill to produce one flat side and use more closely spaced poles. Quite a few dead trees still standing in the area.
Not So Native Materials:
I have a quantity of used power poles and occassionally am afforded the opportunity to get more here and there. I never seem to have my trailer along when opportunity knocks. :-/
Steel trusses: I was recently awarded custody of seven 40' steel trusses, some a little beat up. I had to cut them in half to get them home so I have fourteen 20' m/l steel bar joist type of trusses. Some need a little body & fender work but that is why God created torches and welders, both of which I happen to own. In a normal above ground building I would put them on 4' centers and add purlins. Underground, I don't know about the wisdom of that idea.
Beams: I have been packing around a 16" deep 20' gluelam for a while now knowing I would use it eventually. I also have several 4 X 6's X 20 footers looking for a home.
Given these resources my thought is running to a 20' deep X 40' wide excavation into the hillside + the uphill patio. I will probably hit bedrock at about 4' depth based on installing a water line down the hill a while back so if I can't get deep enough I may have to use the spoils to extend a pad. Won't know for sure until I dig. Use closely spaced poles at the perimeter with the 4" X 6"s above, use the gluelam down the center with wider spaced poles to create more open space. Install the steel bar joists and build a subfloor on top of them. Build one of my gambrell roof buildings above that, using 2 X 6 this time around. Might even hav to go to 2X8's. The majority of the load would be transfered to the two 20' long sidewalls. I would need another beam to support the loft. Infill could be accomplished using Becky Bees stone foundation topped with either stone or cordwood. All of this is of course subject to change at the slightest whim, fancy or as conditions dictate. My hillside faces north by the way. Any thoughts would be appreciated. I am just kicking this around.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 13, 2006, 10:23:21 PM
Good resources, desdawg.

One of the main reasons for a stone foundation is to keep moisture from moving up through the cob.  Same with rammed earth although the Chew Kee store eliminated the stone - rammed earth to the bottom and is still standing with a repair job a few years back.

Mike Oehler mentions using any of and all of the materials you mentioned including steel and rock if that is what you have to build with -- the only sure thing about that is his engineered tables for the logs or poles -- you are on your own for the steel.  Power poles could be used but the creosote ones would be best in a shop - stink a bit for a cabin.

Clay without sand can be used if you add quite a bit more straw - without sand or aggregate, shrinkage is greater - that's why they make bricks of it too but cob can still be done.

On another note -- I was visited by bandits tonight -- mamma and 3 babies --- bunch of rascally little trouble makers in the uphill patio.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000742.jpg)
                                                                     (http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000744.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000752.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on August 14, 2006, 05:16:13 PM
One of the few times those guys visited in Nashville, I was convinced that the pair of fairly young guys who came had been somebod's "pets" from the way that they were totally unafraid of me, just walked right up and said "feed me, feed me."  I was more than a little concerned about them, and not remotely friendly back.  Fortunately they never came back again.

But they're so cute, especially when they're young like that.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 14, 2006, 05:56:52 PM
We were both within about 6 feet of these guys-- the mama always growls at us.  There is not much fear there.  She raised these babies on top the straw bale wall of the greenhouse we think.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on August 14, 2006, 07:07:08 PM
That is about as neat as it gets Glenn. I see they even have their masks on so you won't recognize them.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 14, 2006, 07:13:55 PM
They are cute little guys -- like to come in the cat door I left open for my cat who couldn't use a real cat door, and help themselves to cat food or candy once in a while.  I think my little one eyed vagrant cat got ate by coyotes so I guess I can close the opening now.

Chased 2 or 3 coyotes away from the chicken pen this morning but they just love a nice feline dinner.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on August 15, 2006, 08:23:17 PM
I've worried about coyotes and feral dogs and even owls taking the outside cats.

Miss Cherty Pie Barker, fortunately, just loves to chase off every creature she doesn't think belongs here.  Sometimes we disagree about this, but she stays outside so she gets the last word.  She's indifferent to squirrels, but absolutely loathes snakes and armadillos.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 15, 2006, 08:40:12 PM
Just talked to our neighbor - he said he saw Tobey a couple days ago by his garage... hopefully it was him & he'll come back home.  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on August 15, 2006, 08:42:33 PM
Oh, good.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2006, 07:51:48 PM
Besides missing cats we have been losing chickens, and a couple days ago I chased a couple coyotes away from the pen.

This morning I heard the chickens making un-egg laying like noises and it woke me up -- I jumped up out of bed -- put on my boots and grabbed the 30.06 and headed quietly toward the chicken pen.  I could see the coyote chasing the chickens so I went to the top side of the pen to try to get a shot.  We have trees and it's on a steep slope so is a bit of a challenge.

I got my shot - he fell to the ground - the chicken was already dead.  He layed there for a few seconds then all of the sudden he got up, looked at me and started wandering around the pen trying to get out- I went for another shot but the second bullet jambed in the rifle, so by the time I got that straightened out he found his way out of the pen, under the fence and down the hill.  I decided to go in the house, get my .380 pistol and go after him -- he was leaving a few spots of blood to follow and there was no way I was going to go off down through the poison oak wearing only a pair of cowboy boots and packing a rifle.

I got dressed - got the pistol and made sure it was on safety so I didn't make a booboo with it in my pocket.  About 300 feet down the hill - around the trees and brush and across the lower road he came to his final resting place.

I told Fred, "Maybe that's why you shot me with the nail gun-- Pay back from the Coyote."  Fred said, "Did you really shoot him or did you scare him to death running around in just a pair of cowboy boots with a rifle."

I don't know --- maybe he laughed himself to death.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 24, 2006, 06:46:15 AM
Poor chickens didn't stand much of a chance - the same night after I got rid of the coyote, I caught a giant raccoon running from the pen after killing a chicken.  With their climbing abilities they are near impossible to keep out.  I blocked access to the chicken house and kept the last 2 chickens locked inside.  Down from 10 a year ago.

Maybe this is what is happening to our cats too.  They attacked Kathy's cat when she chased them.

http://www.theolympian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060821/NEWS/608210327
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 24, 2006, 02:32:52 PM
 Poor coyote , just tryin ta make a livin . And you go a shoot at um  :( :o Jessh your the invader here , the coon and coyote's is natural . You should be feed um , oh well,  you are! CHICKENS AND CATS!!!  ;D  ;D

 Was it just the 30 06 and [highlight]ONLY[/highlight] cowboy boots  :o :o Yikes that would be ugly :o ;D Little heavy on the lead fer coyotes EH :o
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 24, 2006, 05:49:55 PM
You are supposed to say "Poor chicken--- laying there doing the worm on the bottom of the pen. I feel so sorry for you I'll go get that bad coyote."

Yep -- boots and a gun--  Scary enough to kill nearly anything.  If I took time to get dressed he would have been gone.  Betcha never seen that kinda hunter before. ::)

I have smaller guns (the rifle), but I know my 30.06 is dead on and it makes nice large holes.  If you are out there trying to get an animal in your chicken pen --and he gets away and you may have to run past the neighbors chasing it in your cowboy boots you don't want to mess around with a gun that may do the job.  Note that we have lots of poison oak.

Oh -- just a minute -- had my ring on too. :-/ :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 24, 2006, 06:01:13 PM
Quote

Oh -- just a minute -- had my ring on too. :-/ :)

  Ok.  I thought you might have been naked ::) ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 24, 2006, 06:04:35 PM
Not me, PEG.  I wasn't going motorcycle riding. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 24, 2006, 06:07:21 PM
 I don't want to know  :o, do I  ;D   edited to add , TMI , TMI !
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 24, 2006, 06:12:58 PM
I was baiting you up --- maybe you should ask Sassy --- but then again --- she's at work so won't have much time to tell the story.

Just think --- two people on a Honda 70 riding off into the desert. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 27, 2006, 09:03:54 PM
New toy at the Underground Cabin.  I got a new (used) 1999 Dodge 300 HP 24 Valve Cummins 4x4 dually with a 9' flat bed and beefed up overloads and main springs.

What does this have to do with the Underground Cabin?  Lots.  The 4x4 part will get me up the hill in the winter when it snows and muds ...   or else get me stuck so bad I won't get it out until spring. :'(

This picture shows me welding -- thanks to a camera timer and the Gorilla Pod a friend gave me-- wrapped its little legs around a piece of steel and shot myself-a photo.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000796.jpg)

"What's significant about this?" you ask.  Well -- its welded, cut, fitted, bolted etc. using 100 percent solar power.  Not hooked to the grid and I can still do pretty heavy duty jobs with my own power.  I added four 40 watt panels today.  They didn't seem to be helping sitting on the ground by the side of the shop.

Today I am making the flatbed into a dump bed by adding a hoist --squeezing it in with only fractions of inches to spare.  This will dump loads of dirt, lumber, blacktop - nearly any thing I want to dump -- well --- maybe not those bad burritos I had the other day but everything else... :-/  The hoist is rated at 14000 lbs -- hope I don't overload it.  This thing will be handier than pockets in my underwear. :)

For others interested in this sort of thing, I bought a new saw the other day -- It cuts steel the way you would cut wood -- a few seconds slower but not much -- It cuts cold - the blade runs at 1300 RPM and will cut 4"x 6"  heavy steel tubing or anything smaller - does 45 degree miters on smaller stuff.  I cut 5" standard channel tonight.  A piece that I cut off is in the saw.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000801.jpg)

That's enough for now -- I think I heard something on the roof.  (At least it's not a black one. :-/)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000789.jpg)


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on August 28, 2006, 07:00:18 PM
Wow Glenn, I could sure ask a lot of questions but I will keep it brief. Is that a 110 volt wirefeed or do you have stacked inverters to give you 220 volts? What do you have for battery storage? Seems like a welder would draw it down fairly rapidly. OK, I will stop there for now.  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 28, 2006, 10:02:47 PM
No problem, desdawg.  Ask away.  It is a 110v wire feeder -Miller 135.  The miller 110v wirefeed is MUCH better than the Lincoln.  It welds on longer cords with less trouble and most important is the motor frame is aluminum -- Lincoln is plastic and it breaks -I broke 2 before I learned my lesson-- good thing - the Miller is so much better I consider the Lincoln a toy for people who don't know better.  I am doing 1/4 inch welds.  I used it for a couple hours last night.

I have 12 L16 batteries -375 amp hours at 6 volts each series/parallelled for 24 volt system.  I pump 600 gallons of water per day and run a freezer and refrigerator full time too plus everything else most places have.  Not totally camping out here.  I run 2 Trace 4000 watt sine wave inverters stacked together to make 220 also for my standard 1 1/2 HP pump pumping from 320 feet -Static water is 169' -draws down to 320 in about 40 minutes at about 10 gallons per minute rate.  Has to recover as well produces 1 gallon per minute.  I have a 1000 watt wind generator -seldom producing over a couple hundred watts or less, and about 2000 watts PV panels if I remember right.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on August 29, 2006, 03:41:30 AM
Sounds like you have a good system. I have a modular system you might say. I have four 75 watt panels and just four batteries (24v with a single inverter) for now since I am not there much. I will add storage first and additional pv as needed. I also have wind generator that I have never installed. I don't believe in my location it will contribute much. On a seperate system I have 4- 5 watt panels running a single 12 volt battery mainly just for for a few 12v lights. Refrigerator, water heater and space heater are propane.
Anyway I never considered running a welder on the solar electric system so I was surprised to see you welding. I have a little cheapie Harbor Freight wire feed that runs on 220v, 20 amp and I figured I would run it off the generator if I needed to weld something. It is good to see there are other options.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 29, 2006, 07:41:05 AM
Mine is all cobbled together by me, but I know how to expand it and do whatever I want to do with it.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on August 30, 2006, 09:21:09 PM
working on a farm in the summer when I was a teen ager there was always a 22 bolt action rifle loaded by the grain silo...You would get up to the parlor barn real quiet like at 5 am...Still dark....Slide the door open flick the light on all in one motion with the gun under your arm trying to shoot a racoon...They were there every night...You could usually get one if you were quiet.

We swept up the grain and tried to make sure no food was out for them...It did not matter....Lil bastards are smart and they figured out how to flick the switch on one night to run the grain chute....The only way you are going to keep racoons out of trash is to lock the lids with a padlock...They are smart enough to get just about any lid off

The only way to rid yourself of Racoons is to poison them to death....If you had all the time in the world you could shoot or trap them... but it would take a lot of effort...

Find out what their favorite food is and poison them....

I am not a big cat person....But I cannot say I would like to see the family pet as dinner for a Coyote or Racoon...

Glenn maybe you need you a good hunting dog...Something big enough that 2 or 3 coyotes will not mess with it....

Train it well and let it sleep outside...It will get hungry Coyotes...Especially if the Coyotes keep getting a whiff of chickens....The coyotes will keep coming back and you can let Rockford the Dog take care of them...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 30, 2006, 10:12:25 PM
At this point the raccoons are not too big a problem -- I locked the two chickens that are left in their pen - that will keep them from the coyotes and the raccoons.  I think the remaining cat learned her lesson the first time she attacked the raccoons - hasn't tried it again.  They seem to ignore her if she leaves them alone.  The coyotes are a different story -- they lay and wait then when the cat is hunting they swoop down on them and crunch their little heads.  I'm hoping the one dead one will be a warning to the others.  The coons are kind of comical as long as they don't get to being too much of a nuisance.

I tried a dog here but when I am gone for a week they tend to get into trouble looking for  company.  I've always had dogs since I was a kid, but with my work schedule it isn't fair to the dog.  Cats seem to be alright until they get eaten. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on August 31, 2006, 07:20:41 AM
Glenn

I find dogs stay home well enough if you have them Fixed...I have had a few male dogs with their equipment in tact....No way possible to keep them from roaming...

they get a whiff of a nearby female and they are long gone man...I learned the hard way with dogs...You have to really train them well when they are very young...Walk the proprty with them over and over with a pussy willow switch....when they approach the property line you know what to do..

Carrot and the stick approach...Reward them for learning... discipline them for not...Hopefully they take to it...And they will never walk off the property kind of like the Elephants that are tied up with string.....the Elephants could not break rope when they were babies so that have given up trying as adults...

I think we both know that one dead coyote will not make a bit of difference as long as they feel that there is easy pickings with chickens and cats...

You might as well scoop up some local roadkill bring it home and see if you can keep the Buzzards away...

I prefer a Black Lab for a dog... but be careful...Do not make it too much of a pet....They are very affectionate and I learned the hard way... if Signifigant other spoils dog you will never unlearn it of bad habits...

For example...I lived with a girl once...She came to live with me and my dog...She taught it all kinds of bad, bad things...I would be away at work she would get the dog up on the sofa and the bed.. >:(

So when I would come home he would run back to his bed... but I would have to endure hearing him wimper half the night because he was sad or lonely or whatever....

I dunno who is the softie between you and sassy....but it never pays to spoil the pets too much in my opinion
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 31, 2006, 08:11:19 AM
We usually get adult dogs - we got 3 dogs from a family that was moving - they live at our place in the valley - we just have one left (the other 2 were really old) Gypsy ran away for 3 days when we 1st got her but has never left since... she only likes me - everyone else she barks at.  We got an adult dog from a family for Mariposa, but he ran off all the time (he was fixed) & would be at the neighbors or the animal control would find him... finally brought him to the valley where he stayed because there was another dog - he liked a lot of attention but smelled so bad & shed like I've never seen a dog shed, besides, he had a very bad gas problem  :o - one pet with gas problems is enough  ;)  ::)

We aren't in one place long enough to train a puppy - that is the problem.  So don't have the time to train them.  My favorite dog was a huge Great Dane that my son brought home one time - black & white spotted, never saw a dog that big, but he was the sweetest thing - acted like he was a lap dog - so utterly stupid but I really loved him.  He'd scare the heck out of you if he didn't know you - his bark was so booming.  

I usually like cats - they are more independent - I like them to sit in my lap & let me pet them but not be totally dependent on me.  Our last couple cats were wonderful - Sheba, the cat we have now is pretty useless (doesn't hunt) & very persnikedy (sp) she only likes Glenn, she will put up with me when she wants to eat or when he isn't around  :-/ .  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on August 31, 2006, 05:49:40 PM
So glen is the animal softie....The cats only like him....

My wife wants a cat...I told her no....I rarely say no to her...so when I did she knew it was open for discussion...

I do not hate cats...Just that she has a 12 year old Spitz terrier mix and he is particular...He does not like new people...barked at me for months after I moved in here...Still does not like me... He expects to be a lap dog and wants all the attention...Another dog or cat would devastate the old fella...I tell my wife all the time to let the old guy have his day in the sun...And when he has lived his last we can think about another pet.... But because we both know he would not take well to another pet...It would be cruel to get another one while he is here.

I want another Black Lab....They are the best....Good with Kids...Protective...Big enough to scare away nasty things...Good hunting dogs...Good in the car...And not destrtuctive by nature....I could not have a dog that chewed and scratched all the time...

A buddy of mine has a Irish Setter...They have to be one of the least intelligent animals I have ever seen....They will lay in their own fecis... :-[

I would not mind having a jack russel...Another one of my friends has one and it is a incredible dog....Very smart, affectionate.. a little hyper but a lot of fun....Get the coarse hair one so they will not shed much
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 31, 2006, 09:11:34 PM
I've had a lot of different dogs but the one I would like to have another of is a German Shepherd.  I had one who was very smart- you would think he was human.  Just not enough time to give them the attention they need now.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on August 31, 2006, 09:31:51 PM
Glenn

That is all my dad has ever had..German Sheppard dogs...Good dogs...Very protective...And clean..Good choice..they shed something awful though

BTW I agree 100% on the welder...I recently bought a hobart and I like it...The lincoln welders are JUNK compared to the Miller...

welding in my dad's auto shop I learned on a Miller and they are pretty much the benchmark...Yes they are expensive...But worth every cent...Dad has a miller Cricket and it is 14 years old...Never spent a dime on it other than replacing worn out ceramic inserts for the nozzle
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2006, 09:23:04 PM
Well -- the truck was back together about a day or so after the last posting, but I had to work out of town so didn't show the rest of the story.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000829.jpg)(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000830.jpg)

The bed will go up to about 50 degrees - looks more like near straight to me.  Only part way up here to keep from dumping my tool box.

For any DIY's interested in doing this - it can also be done to a pickup.  The hoist comes as a drop in package with the pump and all parts except cables.  The installation was so clean I'd swear I thought someone else did it. :)  I made the frame rails to take care of the dip in the frame and misc. other steel parts as necessary.  About 30 to 40 hours time considering Fred helped me the last day.   The bed is about 1 inch higher and 2 inches back from the original location.  I moved it back as I thought it was too close to the cab before and it gave me room for latches later.

Happy dumping. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 24, 2006, 09:18:30 PM
Worked a bit on the house today.  

Tonight I heard a thump on the roof -- deer or those crazy racoons I thought.  Dang things are more destructive than a carload of cops in a donut shop.

Got the flash light -- yup -- orange eyes staring at me ..

They disappeared so I thought i would see where they went.  

Up into the shop and looking up on the straw bale wall I shined my light -- thump --- drop --- plop ---

Whatever it was fell to the ground  --I didn't see it but it landed about 5 feet from me --- gotcha this time you crazy raccoon --

I shined my light over at the little beast.   Tail up in the air - butt towards me.  Wait a minute ---

That's not a raccoon.

It's a SKUuuunnnnnNK-   Glad it wasn't facing me.

I just remembered I had something to do somewhere else. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on September 25, 2006, 07:51:44 PM
 ;D ;D ;D
"carload of cops in a donut shop"? That is good.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 25, 2006, 08:08:05 PM
I made that up :) --- they pulled a DUI checkpoint the other night ---  had me thinking about them.  

It is a bit invasive but the DUI part being for a good purpose is the excuse to check your seat belts - drivers license - and more revenue generating laws I guess.  I went through it anyway as I didn't have any reason to avoid it but you know how I am with authority types.

It just seems a bit like Germany in the early 40's --- "Papers Please"

You guys should be proud of me -- I didn't even make any wise remarks that would get me pulled over to the side and searched.

Guess I'm getting old --- I just rolled over. :-/  

The city of Oakland, California actually stopped doing it because the Latino (read  illegal alien) community protested highly.  Many don't have and can't get drivers licenses or insurance and said they were being discriminated against because they didn't have licenses.  They claimed they were otherwise law abiding citizens.  I wish I was kidding about this , but it's true.  Am I being discriminated against because I have a license and insurance?  :-/

Note that in one state I researched it is legal to turn off on a side street without them chasing to avoid the checkpoint if you do it in a safe manner.  I'm not saying that you will always get away with it - the police state being what it is.  

I don't mind them checking others but don't they know I'm special? ::)



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 25, 2006, 08:25:47 PM
It's twisted state , you guys let murders off scot free,don't hassle illegal aliens   but run down law abiding citizens with random traffic stops. Then you export trained Californicators to Washington state to riun our state  :(
Oh brother ::) ;D

  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 25, 2006, 09:20:32 PM
Sorry 'bout that PEG.   :-/

It just seems to me they keep moving the line farther over onto my property.  Soon we will all be begging them to monitor us on our computer microphones as they are talking about doing just in case we may have a notion of doing something wrong-- then we could leave the sound turned up on the computer and they could read us our rights without us ever having to leave the house --- "Stay right there with your hands in the air ---Enus will be over to haul you in in about a half hour."  

"You are still banking at the same bank, I see.  Would you like us to extend you our courtesy bail posting service from your account.  You do have just enough in the bank to cover it."  :o

 You didn't move up there from California did you, PEG? ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 26, 2006, 05:27:52 AM
NO I'm a native New Englander ,I do have one sister who lives in the Peoples Republic of Ca.  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 26, 2006, 05:31:35 AM
Great, PEG.  I was a bit worried about you there for a few minutes.

I'm a PNW'er turned traitor.  Never grew the web's between my toes. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 04, 2006, 09:38:55 PM
http://www.nps.gov/archive/petr/vc/sitebullitens/sbhornos.htm

Came across this information on using a clay oven per NPS while doing some research.  Here's ours.  We have roasted a couple turkeys - pizzas-bread - rolls etc.  An independant one outside would work better but I had to do something with the space.  Note that this was done early - maybe 3 years ago.

(http://members.sti.net/glennk/underground%20clay%20oven%20(2).jpg)


How to Use a Horno

      Depending on what the bread baking is for, family use or for an activity within the village, Pueblo women would be very busy making dough the day before the actual baking. Bread loaves are placed in pie pans or on cookie sheets and covered. These loaves of bread that are going to be baked can number from four to forty.

On the morning of the bread baking, gather cedar wood for the fire. Build the fire inside the horno, and monitor it so that it lasts for at least 45 minutes to 1 ½ hours. Allow the fire to die down, and use a shovel to remove the charcoal and a damp mop to sweep out the ash. Test the oven temperature (Pueblo women often used a quarter-sheet of newspaper or cornhusk). If it burns up quickly, use the damp mop again to cool down the inside floor, or leave it alone so that heat can escape on its own.

When the temperature is right, place each loaf of bread inside, beginning from back to front. Once all of the bread loaves are inside, cover the doorway with a homemade door or a sheet of galvanized steel. (In the old days, Pueblo women used to seal the doorway with adobe and rock each time they baked). Look and fell for any escaping heat, and cover leaking areas with a damp burlap sack.

After 30 minutes to 1 hour later, remove the door cover and carefully take out the baked goods. Bread is one of the many different food items that can be baked inside an outdoor oven. Cookies, corn for stew, meat, corn pudding and chile are other mouth watering examples of what can be baked in a horno.

More info at the NPS link above.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2006, 08:35:14 PM
If you follow Mike Oehler's revised  instructions and use EPDM or his simple shed roof structure you are not going to have too many problems, but if you get weird like me you may have an occasional problem creep up.  One thing I have noticed is that as Mike stated, the gophers don't seem to bother the plastic but they will scoot right along it merrily digging their trails.  They think that nice plastic floor feels good on the little ones feet, I guess.  In my case, there are a lot of rocks in the covering soil so inevitably, there are a few punctures in the plastic.  When the soil is tight against the plastic capillary action pulls the water away from the hole or at least keeps it from running through.  It just creeps in and out through the hole-- but get a gopher hole over a puncture and things get wetter.  

This year -- the 4th year, the little ravine where the lowest point of the twisted ribbon roof and the corkscrew roof come together had a leak.  My wife said I should fix it so I didn't look like a failure to all the people on CountryPlans.  She has this way of twisting the facts. :-/  Maybe she could get a job in Washington D.C.

So I did it.  I used the help of Fred - my associate in my various ventures.  You remember
Fred.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010021.jpg)

Fred and I dug fairly carefully down to the upper moisture barrier on the roof.  Here he is sticking Bituthane or Grace Vicor patches on the plastic where we punctured it digging out.  Yeah -- I know -- Vicor is a bit high tech but I didn't have much time and it was given to me free, so doesn't violate my policies.  Next we put a double reinforced poly membrane into place (read that we stapled a Costco tarp to the wall)  and we left it fairly loose then sealed the entire upper edge to the good existing moisture barrier on the roof with strips of Vicor.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010022.jpg)

On top of that we fastened jute erosion control fabric then plastered it with stucco to make a more permanent surface similar to the Indian light duty concrete floor.  If the UV is kept from the plastic it will stay for years -maybe hundreds.  Since this is an area we walk on it was more susceptible to damage.  Landscaping will make it look like a mountain stream bed and things underneath will stay dry.

Repair time was about one day.  I have a few more improvements I need to do before winter sets in.

Just checked it a few minutes ago and --- Yup - it's drier than a popcorn fart. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on October 17, 2006, 09:03:17 PM
(http:// http://www.duluthtrading.com/core/framework/scripts/image.asp?path=/media/images/departments/mens/longtail_shirts/longtail_april2006.gif&width=&height= )

  A forum collection could be taken for Fred ;D

  Along with these, (http:// http://www.duluthtrading.com/core/framework/scripts/image.asp?path=%2fmedia%2fimages%2fproducts%2f92992%2f92992.jpg&width=100&height=100 )

  ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on October 17, 2006, 09:10:18 PM
Fred's 6'8" tall...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2006, 09:11:39 PM
Butt he is so proud of it, PEG. ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on October 17, 2006, 09:23:35 PM
Quote
Fred's 6'8" tall...


 Ah so what ? He should shop for longer shirts  ;D Good thing he's not 6'11" ;DThere'd really be a bad moon risin , instaed of just crack a tow a east of jawa  :o

  Perhaps our intrepid camera man / poster / adminasstrator could use a , ah , different camera angle.  ;)  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2006, 10:06:37 PM
Wow -- change the camera angle-outstanding-the solution was right there in front of me and I couldn't see it- the thought never occurred to me. :-/

I guess that's why you get the big bucks, eh? PEG. ;D

I guess we really are smarter than all of us -- no -- wait -- you're smarter than any of us -- no, that's not it -- it's my face and your --- no that's not it -- it's your face and my ---no,  I'll never get it right --- nevermind. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on October 19, 2006, 07:29:32 AM
Glenn said:  "My wife said I should fix it so I didn't look like a failure to all the people on CountryPlans.  She has this way of twisting the facts.  :-/  Maybe she could get a job in Washington D.C. "

Well... that was the only statement I thought would really motivate him  ::) ... I was afraid of falling through the roof if the leak continued & kept the wood wet underneath  :-/ - I had just been up on that part of the roof, on the slick plastic that would slide when you walked on it - had to fix a window - it's very steep - that's the area I fell on while putting dirt on the roof originally - at that time there was a 12 ft drop to the ground  :-/ - & at the bottom of that area was where I had just fallen again  I guess it would be a good way to get rid of a wife...  ;)

So I guess either he wanted to keep me around or he didn't want to look like a failure to the CountryPlans members  :-? ...  ;)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on November 02, 2006, 05:03:00 PM
Well, I finished plastering the roof, also went over the areas I plastered yesterday - altogether, I made up 13 cement mixers full of cement & climbed up & down the roof at least 3x's that many as the only way I could carry the black plastic cement thingy up that slope was to break each mixer full iinto about 3 portiions... so got my exercise today!  :-/ I wasn't too sore from yesterday & wanted to finish it up - we had a light rain last night & it sprinkled on me a couple times while I was working, today.

Whew, glad to get that job out of the way for the time being - will do one more coat, sometime... gotta go to the valley tomorrow for a few days for my regular work.  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 30, 2006, 10:27:38 PM
Sassy made me work on her bathroom so I am posting a picture of what we did -- actually I wanted to get something done there too--- just the little problem of getting around to it.  I can't finish the walls till I finish the wiring, the plumbing, the floor etc-etc.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010265.jpg)

The floor is once again the India style plunger pier floor -jute reinforced 1" thick concrete- I added extra piers in the area of the legs of the tub although it would likely have not been necessary, but being one of those rush jobs where there is never time to do it right, I thought it would be prudent.  I put piers every 6 inches around the edges since the existing floor was not joined to this one.  

Color was added on  the top layer only- dump and smear technique -- rocks were simulated with the trowel.

The new floor is only in the area under the tub - it was originally going to be a shower but Sassy found a tub she wanted.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010268.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: bartholomew on November 30, 2006, 11:49:56 PM
That looks awesome (especially the paneling)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 01, 2006, 12:05:48 AM
Thanks, Bart.  The paneling is White Fir logs, sliced 3/8" thick and untrimmed both edges.  It is done board over board (one down- one up like board and batten) with enough lap to keep the underlying edges from showing.  They are nailed down with 1 3/4" brads and the seams are also kept tight with brads shot in as necessary.

The area around the tub is waterproofed with DEFY.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on December 01, 2006, 07:08:23 PM
That is a neat tub. Not everyone would have the right place to situate something like that. looks like you did well again!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 01, 2006, 07:47:19 PM
Sassy found it on the net at a reasonable price.  It is a reproduction .
Sassy decided that the best faucet was a nice brass hose bib - looks a bit old - couldn't do much about the shower valves without selling an arm or leg.  Besides - I already plumbed it for a shower.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on December 02, 2006, 03:57:45 PM
Cute tub.  Is it 4 feet long or (the much more common) 5?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 02, 2006, 04:22:34 PM
Amanda, it's the 5ft model - I wanted to be able to stretch out my legs - my feet just touch the other side so it's just right - any smaller, I'd have been cramped up.   :)  I'm really pleased with how the bathroom is turning out.   :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on December 02, 2006, 04:46:20 PM
I've been thinking I need a 4-foot one.  But maybe I'd better go sit in one!

;)

The five footers are less expensive.

And I like the idea of standard shower plumbing with a free-standing tub.  Let us know if it works well.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on December 03, 2006, 06:39:57 AM
Very handsome bath Glenn. I want to come down and sit in your tub... Looks like a good fit. I have my new bathrobe on even as we speak.

Miriam could sit in the rocking chair and scrub my back when it gets a little tingly.  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 03, 2006, 06:52:40 AM
It's Sassy's bath, John, but I don't think she'd have a problem with it as long as the two of you didn't try to get in it at once. :)

We could even send you in a cup of Mariposa Coffee Company coffee.  Maybe a glass of Mt Bullion Winery wine for Miriam.   ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on December 03, 2006, 07:13:05 AM
Ummmm, sounding better all the time.  :D

By the By.... so you are using the Indian jute plunger slab that Ken Kern talked about? Most interesting! Must use 2/3 less concrete than a conventional slab.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 03, 2006, 07:39:37 AM
Yes, John.  Plunger slab all the way in this room.  Actually uses about 1/4 the concrete of a conventional floor.  Nothing over 1" thick.  

Since this area was a cutout from the original slab, I added extra plunger piers around the outside edges, then a couple in the area of each tub leg.  The piers are from about 4" to 12" deep and about 1 1/4" diameter - made by repeatedly ramming a digging bar into the loose fill-- takes about 30 seconds per pier.  Piers are poured with grout before  doing the slab.  We used just a rich sand/cement  mix so we didn't have to deal with rock. Color was poured on top and smeared in with the trowel to give an uneven color to the top of the slab - better yet , put 2 colors on and don't overwork it .  Note that the loose fill only has enough compaction (near none) to support the plunger piers and the thin jute reinforced concrete floor.  The fill is expected to settle a bit in the next few months separating from the underside of the slab (about 1/2 inch sand just under the jute for final fill aids separation and embedment of jute into bottom of concrete).  

This separation forms a bit of a moisture break and insulating air gap under the slab.  In England it is common to rototill the earth fill about 8"deep before completing the slab.  I don't know how common it is there now but I read that somewhere.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on December 03, 2006, 11:36:23 AM
I think I need to draw up a detail of this so others can use it. (Something more than Ken's sketch  ;))

What about its use in wet cold soils? Do you find the floor is colder and damper in wintertime? And, I assume, this isn't carrying wall and roof loads. It is interior to any load bearing walls and done after the roof is on, right?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 03, 2006, 11:55:07 AM
Due to the air space, I would say not colder and damper.  If moisture gets under the slab it will cause the air gap to increase by causing the fill to settle more.  A vapor barrier could be added under the final sand layer if desired - I'd use 6 mil poly and not worry about the plunger pier penetrations going through it.  Moisture making it's way up would be minimal.  

Non bearing floor - yes - we used a rubble trench footing under the bearing walls or where we didn't want moisture coming through to get under the floor - we had a roof valley draining right outside behind the sink area across a walkway to the bedroom outside door.  As I recall, this floor was rated at 40 to 50 PSF but in practice had supported 250 lbs per foot.  It could be done before the roof is on but inside of the bearing foundation and ony if time was allowed for it to gain strength.  Normal foot traffic loads would be OK but concentrated loads would possibly break through in the first 4 weeks.  Heavy equipment - truck - forklift etc. would be a no-no.

The sand is necessary under the jute to allow the cement to flow around the jute causing it to reinforce the bottom of the thin slab.  Even a failure in this floor would be very easy to repair but I haven't had one yet so haven't done it.  The edges broke a little around the hole before we changed to a tub.  I just flowed the new floor into the cracked sections (appx 1"x 3" - 2 places) and worked the grooves out to match.  There has been no cracking and the floor is getting stronger every day.  Concrete gains most of its strength in the first 4 weeks then slowly continues to get harder.  

The only cracks in the original bathroom floor are where we went from fill to solid rock, but they are hairline fractures - nothing highly noticeable.

I would shoot for 1" of concrete + or - a little won't hurt.  I have always felt that a 4" slab in a house is way overkill and a waste of resources be it materials or money.  
4" of concrete is adequate for a big truck.  Most of us are just little 100 to 400 lb people. :)  

I would say that this floor will never be any colder than an on grade slab, and possibly warmer due to the air space.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 03, 2006, 02:11:37 PM
Quote
Very handsome bath Glenn. I want to come down and sit in your tub... Looks like a good fit. I have my new bathrobe on even as we speak.

Miriam could sit in the rocking chair and scrub my back when it gets a little tingly.  :)


About the tub, John.  I'm afraid I overstepped my authority.  I told Sassy you wanted to use it and I said one at a time--- she said, if you can both get in it, have at it.  No problem on her part. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on December 03, 2006, 05:08:04 PM
Gee, do you mean both me and Sassy!?

What was that address again?  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 03, 2006, 06:17:14 PM
I failed to make myself clear again, but must warn you that we used to frequent a lot of hot springs.  

 ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 03, 2006, 07:24:05 PM
A long day of work on the underground complex today.  It may not seem like I accomplished much but, I'm doing the work of at least 5 men- designer, engineer, architect, contractor, labor.

This makes for a lot of head scratching and hat changing.

Here's what I've got.  Sassy has given me a deadline of the December 16th barbecue and family/friends  get together (you are all invited BTW) to get something done on the cabin so it doesn't look the same as it did last year.  We don't want people to think I've been sitting on my bum for a year.  Her dad asked if I had it all closed in, so I thought that might be a good thing to work on before they make their pilgrimage to the underground command post.

This is the shortcut archway and door frame from the front main entrance of the cabin to the laundry room which is now in the lower level entryway.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010275.jpg)

I leveled the ground with a pick, shovel and my 4 foot long Big Johnson.  This was rather like work.  After putting down a vapor barrier I put the PT wood door frame down.  It was nailed directly to the hard clay with four 60d nails -6" long.  I tested the ground at over 200 psi with no problem - that works out to 28800 lbs per foot.  Who needs concrete?

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010276_edited.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010277_edited.jpg)

I wanted to try to leave the bark on the trunk but in case it comes off later, I am grooving it down to wood with the chain saw.  This is actually a tree that grew about 10 feet then got it's top broken toward the ground and it kept growing.  The leg on the right is actually the top of the tree.  It is about 6" dia.  The trunk is about 10" dia.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 03, 2006, 10:35:35 PM
Looks pretty cool, Sweetie - oops, forgot that I wasn't supposed to use endearments on a public forum, sorry, Baby...  ::)  Thank you for not keeping me in suspense for several days until I get back up to the underground command center - at least I will get some sleep instead of wondering what in the world you are doing... very Hobbity... I like!  

And John, you are most welcome to bathe in my tub...  if Mariam doesn't mind, maybe all 4 of us could try & fit...   :o  just kidding!!!   ;D  

And yes, we expect to see all you CP members on 12/16!  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 04, 2006, 06:11:25 AM
If we keep getting more people in that little tub, it may be best to go fill the hot tub.  Who knows how many more are going to want to jump in. :-/

....and quit calling me names. >:(

...and she wasn't kidding.....

...you know it's nearly impossible to shock a nurse....

... somewhere further back in this thread, I think there is a reference to the 3 carloads of old nudists who came to visit us at the underground complex.   Friends of friends but at this time they were just looking - we didn't have to figure out how to get them all into the tub. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 04, 2006, 09:22:34 PM
Sassy's working and demanded another update so she made me go out in the dark and take pictures.  She gets to look at break time and can't stand the suspense. :-/

Here's what happened today.


The roof sheathing got put on.  Full 1" plywood - I don't care for plywood but it was given to me free - pallets of half sheets - actually fruit bin bottoms near half a sheet in size.  Free makes me be within my guidelines of not being expensive or recycling. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010279.jpg)

The steps and landing are made out of it also.  I got treated wood from a cleanout sale at the lumberyard so used it under the plywood but still put plastic below it.  The entire stairs and landing is going to be covered with colored stucco.  Since I found out that stucco is an ancient art invented and used by the Romans, it is allowed also.  It minimizes materials used as far as concrete goes and is a pretty final solution.  Not much rework ever needed (ferrocrete if you don't want to call it stucco.)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010278.jpg)

Elevation was such that I either had to add another step or make a bit of a steep stair.  8 1/4" per step.  Steep stair it is - this is just an alternate way down to the laundry and great room.  If I can't do those steps I can go around. :)

There is a 12" or so diameter tree overhead as you go down the stairs -to the right that I had to allow clearance for plus get the person low enough to get under it without hitting their head.  Fred tried it out and it was a success.  He's about 6'6" and didn't hit his head - I have over 6'8" in all locations overhead.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 05, 2006, 09:58:35 PM
Well, Sassy's gonna be back home tomorrow so I figured I better make a bit more progress.

One of the first things I wanted to do was to make a French drain.  The rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain, but in Mariposa it must go down the drain or it will be a real pain when I have to explain to Sassy that she's in pain, cause I didn't make the drain and the ankle she did sprain --then would be my fault.  Hey --I guess I'll never be a rapper. :-/

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010280_edited.jpg)

Stupid --- but thats what came out. :(

The French drain will make and easy way away from the entrance rather than making it want to go under the floor and into the house.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010282_edited.jpg)

To make an easy job out of this, stucco lath was stapled over the entire landing, steps and walls.  

The first coat of stucco goes on - it is usually scratched for the second coat to adhere to --

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010283_edited.jpg)

Due to time constraints we rushed the second coat and added color to it --- it will probably get us through the party and who knows how much longer.  Normally you would do the second coat (brown coat) then the color coat.  I don't do a lot of stucco but can get by.  Never time to do it right but always time to do it over. :(  In this case we don't have to do anything over - just may require a bit more in places later.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010292_edited.jpg)

It gets easier as you gain experience.  Unfortunately Sassy isn't here to do it so I guess I will have to try.   :-/  We add Fibermesh to greatly increase strength and workability. $6.50 per bag - enough for 1 cubic yard.  We put about 1/2 hand full per 4 shovels of sand.

There will be a few places that want more but that can come later - if too much later, a quick coat of bonder will insure it's sticking.

I usually use a couple of colors to keep from having it look like concrete.  They can be mixed in the top coat in the mixer, or thrown directly on top and worked in with the trowel.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 06, 2006, 07:22:50 PM
Wow, I finally got to look at the new stuff today - I liked it in the pictures, but like it even better in person!  It's exactly what I would have wanted, if I could have thought of it myself!  Just knew I wanted more hobbity looking features on the house & this is great!  Good job, Sweetie  :) :-*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 06, 2006, 07:30:14 PM
Quit calling me names, >:(
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 08, 2006, 06:00:27 AM
I'm working on the door and putting rocks around both sides of the door frame now.  It's best if the rocks are just damp.

I put felt on the side of the frame to meet with the concrete.  The rocks are tied into the wood with old barb wire every foot or so.  A suggestion from Ken Kern's book.  You can see some of the Fibermesh sticking out of the mortar at the top. The rocks should sit in place by themselves.  Mortar is for filling and cementing - not for holding.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010293_edited.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010294_edited.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: bizzyPDXgal on December 08, 2006, 07:14:45 AM
Hello everyone!
Been looking for just the right land (2+yrs), and finally found it! A beautiful spot along the Columbia River halfway between Portland & Astoria OR. I very much appreciate all of your posts/questions/replies here - and especially thank Glenn for his wonderful series of photos... now I can actually show family/friends what I've been wanting to build all along! (got Mike's book).  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 08, 2006, 05:51:02 PM
Wow - a true Oregonian -- like me (formerly). :)

Lincoln City area.  I assumed you were from Oregon - to Me PDX means Portland Airport - never flew into it though.  Usually Salem, McMinnville, Aurora, or Lincoln City.

Glad to see you chose to pop in here on the Underground Cabin.  Check out the RV storage garage (http://www.countryplans.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1138433261) for more of my weird thinking and methods also. :)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on December 09, 2006, 05:12:19 AM
Wow Glenn, that Ever-ready rabbit has nothing on you. You just keep on ticking right along. I noticed your favorite handsaw from the other thread in one of the pictures. Laying right there next to your favorite hammer.  :) All of that and you still have time to write poetry....or rap music, whatever we are calling it this week. I too have noticed that free material will cause a certain relaxation of otherwise strict standards. That is as it should be. And I like the bent, once broken tree. That was a great find. That just set the mood for the entire project. Very Hobbitty as Sassy says. I wish I could travel to California on 12-16 but I just don't see that happening given the hectic pace of the workload around here. So once again I am grateful for this site and those pictures. This trip through the underground cabin has opened my mind to so many new possibilities. Keep on ticking!  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 09, 2006, 08:38:46 AM
You don't have to show up here on any set date, desdawg.  Show up any time you are around and can catch me.

I better get up off of my bum and do some more so I have something else to show you soon. :-/

I can do strict standards, but I like relaxed. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 15, 2006, 08:09:13 AM
We gain fame ---

Charmaine Taylor of
dirt cheap builder (http://store.yahoo.com/dirtcheapbuilderbooks/index.html) has made a PDF of our project with a link to CountryPlans to include in her CD on alternative building.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on December 15, 2006, 06:39:00 PM
How nice!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on December 16, 2006, 08:38:41 AM
Now your going to attract groupies to the " secret bunker"  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 16, 2006, 06:24:51 PM
I do seem to be rather --- shall we say ---  irresistible. :-/  It must be the house. :(

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on December 16, 2006, 08:49:26 PM
Quote
I do seem to be rather --- shall we say ---  irresistible. :-/  It must be the house. :(


Humm I was thinking more , AH irregular or maybe irrefragable  ;D ;D ;D  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 16, 2006, 09:09:19 PM
Sassy said yeah-- irresistible to her cat.  She has this cat with bad breath and very few teeth and she loves me - it was a one way street as she used to let me pet her then bite me with her worn out fangs.  She's better now but still a brat.

The rush is over -- guests have gone home and Sassy may let me rest a bit.  I'll update some pix pretty soon.  I've been busier than a cat covering up crap during her annual improvement drive so now maybe I can get with posting a few more photos.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on December 16, 2006, 09:12:27 PM
Quote

Sassy said yeah-- irresistible to her cat.  She has this cat with bad breath and very few teeth and she loves me - it was a one way street as she used to let me pet her then bite me with her worn out fangs.  She's better now but still a brat.


  Thats no way to talk about Sassy :o Maybe it's true but hey thats just not nice  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 16, 2006, 09:16:18 PM
I think you misunderstood PEG -- now you got me in trouble.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on December 16, 2006, 09:25:02 PM
Quote
I think you misunderstood PEG -- now you got me in trouble.


 My job here is finshed for the day then  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 17, 2006, 08:16:53 AM
PEG, I think you're the one in trouble...   ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on December 17, 2006, 08:55:10 AM
Quote
PEG, I think you're the one in trouble...   ;)

  Hummm Maybe I betta go reread what Glenn said  :o  Never was a very good reader :-[   ;D  

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 17, 2006, 07:00:40 PM
Aha-- she caught you instigating trouble, PEG. :)

Well -- she had the whip on me pretty hard leading up to the big party day.  Here are a few of the things I was able to accomplish in spite of the oppressive rule of Queen Sassy the 1st.

My stepson came up and did a lot of stucco on various places that protrude out of the ground.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010298_edited.jpg)

I got the door made and hung on the frame - it plugged the hole - I want to make some cool mechanism of some sort for a latch.  I put plastic over the unfinished spaces on the sides -- I think I'll put some sort of windows there so that corner is not too dark.

Trimmed up the Sun scoop logs and put a clear vinyl window up there to make the wind and rain stay outside.  It is above the roof from 12 to 14 feet appx and lets light into the central part of the cabin in the afternoon to evening.  It faces west and is also clear windowed on the north and south, joining the roof peak and sloping to the east with garden on top of it.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010302_edited.jpg)

We (Fred and I) got the corner dug out and compacted - mostly he dug - jack hammered - and I compacted with my Harbor Freight vibratory plate compactor.  It has a Briggs I/C engine so should hold up well.  We did a quick earth carpet floor for now ala Mike Oehler.  Plastic under the carpet.  Not permanent yet.  Worked out pretty good.  (http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010300_edited.jpg)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on December 18, 2006, 04:42:36 PM
That entrance is wonderful.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on December 18, 2006, 04:47:06 PM
Actually what I wanted to know is how horrendously heavy is that door?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on December 18, 2006, 05:29:10 PM
Glenn:

Nice work. You have sure picked up the ball on the underground house work -- we need to do a compilation of your techniques and photos. Perhaps that is what the PDF file you mentioned will do.

A lot of good stuff there - and you keep adding to the library of techniques and creative ideas.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 18, 2006, 06:16:50 PM
The PDF will just send people here.  I'm afraid that I will have to do some actual work to get this stuff all together. :)

I cheated on the new door, Amanda -- and this fits in with the new techniques John mentioned.  I wanted an easier way to make the door and still have the cool look.  I made a 2x4 frame, biscuit joined and screwed it together and fitted the first cut cedar slabs together and biscuit joined and glued them too.  Estimated weight - 100 lbs.

Think I may have mentioned it earlier, but the tree for the entry was one tree, broken off partially at about 12 feet.  The top fell to the ground but being still partially joined it continued growing making a nice strong "A" frame door opening frame.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 19, 2006, 07:34:06 AM
Glenn said:
Quote
Well -- she had the whip on me pretty hard leading up to the big party day.  Here are a few of the things I was able to accomplish in spite of the oppressive rule of Queen Sassy the 1st.
Don't tell anyone, but Glenn secretly likes the "whip"   ;) :D yes, we did get quite a bit done on the cabin - it sorta takes something like this to get a bunch done  :-/ - I was right there helping with everything & Glenn likes to bask in all the attention he gets  8-) when everyone sees the underground command center :)  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 19, 2006, 07:05:39 PM
Peter --- you better not touch that one--- the comment....

I have to talk to that girl. :-?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 24, 2006, 01:48:38 PM
Jonesy wanted to see a picture of how the cabin fits into the ground and asked me to climb a tree to take the photo.  What I got was not the greatest but here it is.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010348.jpg)

The forklift lost its prime so is stuck right in front of the cabin.  The garden is behind it and that is all that shows from that angle.  The greenhouse is directly over the uphill patio.  The cabin is under the garden starting at the left of the greenhouse glass and going 61 feet to the left under the garden.

After that I decided to do a little video so you would get a bit more of it.  This is around the inside  then out the front and up to the front of the RV garage.  We'll see how this goes then if you want more let me know.

I used a quick movie editor - it's a bit chopped up but you should get the idea.  The original movie was too long for photobucket.  Maybe I'll do a better one later-- after I figure out what I'm doing. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_UndergroundCabinReview-1.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=UndergroundCabinReview-1.flv)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jonsey/downunder on December 24, 2006, 02:45:02 PM
Hi Mate, thanks for doing that, although I was bit worried about you climbing that tree. I'll need to swap over to explorer to watch the video. I don't have flash with mozilla.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jonsey/downunder on December 24, 2006, 03:34:50 PM
I'm having a little trouble with the video, my connections not the best today but the photo is good. It gives a bit of an idea of how the house fits into the landscape. Thanks again for doing that and I'm happy to see you didn't fall out of the tree. (More poetry) ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 24, 2006, 04:58:48 PM
You're not missing much on the video --  next one will be better - That is the first time I even tried that movie program.  I shot it in one long one -- next one I'll take several and  stick them together.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on December 25, 2006, 03:55:34 AM
I like the chryscolla rock. Do you have some copper deposits in your neck of the woods? We have some around here. I used to have a couple of mining claims. We got some copper minerals from one. Chryscolla, turquoise, lapis azul are all gemmy stuff found in the oxydation zone of copper. The other claim had crystals. Amethyst crystals had formed, then a clear quartz crystal had formed around the amethyst. It is called a phantom crystal when you have a crystal within another crystal. Ever notice how I can get off any topic in a heartbeat?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 25, 2006, 05:14:34 AM
Good job on getting us off topic, desdawg.  I was getting a bit bored.

That rock is known as greenstone or green andesite.  It runs the length of the gold chain and I understand it id metamorphic basalt.  It is harder than the back of my head.  We have a few small copper mineral areas.  Had a copper mine near Fresno that I heard played out and one year a herd of cattle out here got anthrax.  They ran them into the mine shaft and sealed it up.  Don't know where I heard about that herd. :-/

There are a lot of minerals in this area - wish a had more time to go rockhounding.

We have areas with large quartz crystals near - I just got an old book that shows quartz crystals with 4' faces near here.  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on December 25, 2006, 05:31:53 AM
We were pretty active rockhounds for some time but life has a way of making you busy with other things. We still would enjoy it and have a hard time looking around a new area without staring at the ground for a while.
OK, you can go back to the topic now.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on December 25, 2006, 10:49:51 PM
The discussion on Rocket Stoves has been moved to [link=http://www.countryplans.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1167119392]Rocket Stove Project[/link]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 05, 2007, 09:24:12 AM
I did a few more things while Sassy was away at work.  I put in the window wall between the great room and the uphill patio, just to the right of the bridge as you walk out the French doors from the kitchen.  Slowed the winter winds that passed through from 10 mph to 2 mph.  Still more to seal up, but it's progress.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010395_edited.jpg)

Think of the center section where the great room and bridge are as the dogtrot - now it is getting closed off since Sassy's unrelenting drive to get something done before the family get together last 16th.  I thought that as long as I had gotten that far I may as well continue and get the window wall up.  It will keep the place warmer in winter and cooler in the summer.  It is 61 feet from the south entrance to the great room at the 3rd bathroom wall, to the window wall at the edge of the uphill patio.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010396_edited.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on January 05, 2007, 06:23:33 PM
You must have a great salvage yard or lots of friends that give you building supplies  :) And it's a good thing Sassy has that unrelenting drive or you'd be sittin a bar gettin drunk instead of building on the under gnd bunker  ;)

 Lookin good , eclectic , but still good  ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 05, 2007, 07:28:59 PM
I didn't spend any money as you well know.  The boards were given to me by a guy who owns the only wood recycling plant in San Jose.  He pulls all the good boards out for me to trade on a piece of equipment I have that he wants to buy at a reduced rate.  I told him I would take salvage lumber in trade for the balance.  I even got about 6 around 10x 16 gluelams.

The windows were free from the local glass company.  All tempered door glass panels - some dual pane.  I still have a truckload or so left.  He gave me 3 or more truckloads - I cant remember for sure. These were mostly leakers but the panels can be cut apart with a razor if they are bad enough that they need fixed or cleaned.  Each truckload was stacked about 18" deep - even broke a few -they were so heavy.  The small ones are 2'10" x 6'4"  big ones are 3'10"x 6'4".

People often watch out for things I may need and give me them.  I watch out too.  I'm a pretty fair scrounge.

I think I would be likely to be sitting at the computer on Countryplans if not for her drive.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on January 11, 2007, 05:09:55 PM
Was bracing for the big storm today & the sun ended up showing its face so thought I'd take some pictures  :)  The temp got up to about 43 degrees while the sun was shining, now back down to 33... quite a big difference from 70 degrees yesterday.  Oh, when the sun came out, Glenn's passive-agressive solar heater came on & was blowing air at 58 degrees (the room was 49) - still working like a champ!

(http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e44/kathykrn/PICT0015_edited.jpg)
Here's a picture of the master bath with the curtains & towel racks etc... only trouble - its been a bit too chilly in there to take a bath - think we'll still have to get a little propane heater to go in there...  :-/

(http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e44/kathykrn/PICT0012_edited.jpg)
The conversation pit (cob & rock) try & figure out what Glenn's sculptures are...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on January 12, 2007, 09:56:00 PM
Forget the sculptures. I am trying to figure out that log beam balanced precariously on the round rock. Is your insurance paid up Sassy?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 12, 2007, 10:16:20 PM
Everybody loves that rock. :)

It was what fit at the time- as I recall I just lifted the log and slipped the right sized rock under it.  5 years later it's still there.

It's actually not as bad as it looks.  Each beam has a 16" rebar spike jambed through it.  That rock couldn't get away if it wanted to.  At the left end of the beams is earth piled 7 feet high and undisturbed also, directly resisting letting that rock roll away.  It's good -- It's all good. ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on January 13, 2007, 06:50:39 AM
So let me understand this. Because of the rock you call it a conversation pit?  :D It works. It started a conversation with me.  8-)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 13, 2007, 03:48:04 PM
Not just the rock-- there are other things to talk about there. :)  How about the table?-- It was going to be a butterfly but there wasn't room for the wings.

....and did you see the little oxen holding the post in place???  He's under the table.  It's surprising what comes out of the mud. :)

There is another around 10,000 lb rock under the frog.  That's why there is a conversation pit there - some of the rocks were too big to move so I left them there for earthquake bracing and of course for a conversation pit area,  The cat clay oven is there also because  it is on top of not easily moved rocks.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on January 13, 2007, 04:41:36 PM
You could say "they don't build them like that anymore", but, of course, THEY never did build them this way.
You don't see a lot of this kind of thing in production housing.  :D

Quite the landscape of the mind.  ;)

And the spittoon, it looks to be well positioned... for the frog.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 13, 2007, 04:59:03 PM
Yeah-- I think about that once in a while, John.  I think - "My granddad had his own sawmill and I want to build my own house like he did, cut my own boards - design my own house and put it together."

Then I think again -- he never would have built anything this crazy. :)  

However he wasn't above keeping the revenuers distracted while grandma and others poured the illegal beer down the sink in the kitchen.  It drained out into the cow pasture below the house -- kind of a muddy swampy area.  The revenue agent went out into the mud and scooped up a bunch and took it to court as evidence against them.  The judge took a look at the evidence and laughed the agent out of the court.  I wonder if grandpa supplied beer to the judge?   At least that's the way I remember hearing the story. :)

Think I told it somewhere here once before, but it's all good -- as Bill would say. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on January 13, 2007, 08:19:26 PM
Yea it's crazy... crazy and creative. Whimsical inspired building that nobody else will ever do in the same way again. Yours is the kind of place the real estate agents won't know what to do with when you leave the planet.

They will either have to bulldoze the place or turn it into a museum or tourist attraction. Kind of a Watts Towers (http://www.arts.ufl.edu/art/rt_room/watts/tower2.html) only more magical in some ways.

What is history going to do with you, Glenn?

All I know is that we are all honored to be here helping in small ways to share the ride and watch the magic happen.  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 13, 2007, 09:17:28 PM
 I hope to make them wait a little while longer. :)

I once worked along side the tracks in Watts - hired a local boy there - a young kid to watch my tools and truck.  It was money well spent.  I picked him up another time to go help me with a job down there.  Never did see the Watts Towers though.

In the meantime-- I guess I'll just have to keep adding to their future confusion, and also -- It's great to have such a great group along for the ride. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on January 14, 2007, 05:02:04 AM
Now that I am not worried about that rock I have to say that is a neat little area. The creative juices were flowing pretty well when that was done. Very nice.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 14, 2007, 07:05:57 AM
Part of that area became necessary to build because the logs a friend gave me were 33' long.  Rather than cut the logs I decided to expand my thoughts of what I could do there.  If you take a Bobcat and mix up a couple thousand pounds of clay, sand and straw for cob, and start to make something with it, things just start to crawl out of the mud.  

...and, to answer your question, Peter, no, I did not find a ladies mud wrestling team in the mud. :-/ :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on January 14, 2007, 07:55:29 AM
Quote

...and, to answer your question, Peter, no, I did not find a ladies mud wrestling team in the mud. :-/ :)

 So who's that , ah , lady in the mud that formed up that table  :-/??  :oSassy?? :o Dolly?? ;D

 Need a better picture of the lil oxen , I can barely make it out now that you told me about it ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 14, 2007, 08:09:31 AM
Never did have anyone in mind when the table came out of the mud...  It was just there. :-/

The little oxen was just to fill a space between the rock and the post but due to the space and proportions he couldn't get any bigger.  Did you see the elephants foot-- to the right near the Christmas Cactus?  Wandering elephants occasionally leave there feet laying around I guess.  Actually I wanted a buttress there for some of the mud around the window and the elephants foot was in the mud. :)

The eagles foot was another buttress outside the front door on the bottom of a cob column.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010419.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on January 14, 2007, 08:17:55 AM
Quote

The eagles foot was another buttress outside the front door on the bottom of a cob column.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010419.jpg)

  I think I see a glaring  electrical code volation by the eagles foot :o :o ;D ;D

  So just the man's "ideal shaped "women Eh! ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 14, 2007, 09:45:11 AM
Well - it is fed off of a GFI and is sheltered - didn't bother looking up the rest. :) Cords need to be plugged in and removed quickly to avoid the black widow so that helps to prevent unwanted shocks. :)

I figured the table could also serve as a brace for the column -- nice buttress, eh?

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010447_edited.jpg)

There is the little ox under the table.  

Various other things came out of the mud.  Here is Sassy's energizer bunny.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010450_edited.jpg)


Here is the elephants foot - do they have toenails?  I heard they painted them red so they could hide in cherry trees.....  Ever see an elephant in a cherry tree?

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010449_edited.jpg)


Hide pretty good, don't they. :P

Of course the 300 lb frog has shown up in a few other places but he wanted a better photo.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010451_edited.jpg)

and Cobhead has been seen around - sorry -- he had a bad hair day today.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010452_edited.jpg)

When I was experimenting with the clay he came out of the first batch -- looks like he stuck together well.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on January 14, 2007, 12:12:23 PM
Very creative Glenn and Sassy :) Or who ever ;D

 Although I'm not much for playin with mud  ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 14, 2007, 12:16:52 PM
C'mon, PEG - it makes great cabinets. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on January 14, 2007, 07:32:41 PM
I like the cobhead best. Probably doubles as a watchdog. Any burglar that ran into that guy would probably start trying to remember where he had come in.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 14, 2007, 07:35:59 PM
He is cute and is directly in front of the outer front door.  I wonder what people think-- never thought of it much. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on January 14, 2007, 07:42:51 PM
Ah, don't worry about what people think.  ::) Welcome to suburbia. Good thing there is no HOA.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 14, 2007, 07:53:27 PM
I couldn't even consider an area with an HOA.  Heck - I can barely get along with real people. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on January 14, 2007, 09:21:39 PM
Quote
Cords need to be plugged in and removed quickly to avoid the black widow so that helps to prevent unwanted shocks.

Black widow's a piece of cake; it's the brown recluse that gives me pause.   :-/ :-?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 14, 2007, 10:01:59 PM
Yeah- they are supposed to be the baddies.  They are also not supposed to be in our area.  Sassy does not like the Widows and there are quite a few around but they leave that nice sticky tough web so are pretty easy to find.  We have California Brown Tarantulas also but they're just nice friendly little guys.

Here is all you ever wanted to know about Brown Recluse but were afraid to ask.  There is a range map there also.

http://www.uky.edu/Ag/Entomology/entfacts/struct/ef631.htm

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on January 14, 2007, 10:19:21 PM
We have black widows around home here as well. Used to see tarantulas and scorpions too, but they seem to have moved out as the neighbors got closer. Sometimes I'd prefer the old neighbors to the new ones.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on January 16, 2007, 04:11:17 AM
Quote
I couldn't even consider an area with an HOA.  Heck - I can barely get along with real people. :-/
We are on the same page!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 16, 2007, 05:23:46 AM
Somebody may be right and somebody may be wrong here, but I think that you and I are right and not too much else matters, desdawg. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 21, 2007, 05:06:56 PM
Today our Native American friends brought over 4 friends from the National Park Service cultural exchange with their sister park in Jiuzhaigou Valley in China.  One of the girls was from Tibet and others from Sichuan Province.  Very nice people and they are supposed to email me when they get back.  I hope so because with all of the activity showing the place I totally forgot to get out my camera and take some pictures.  If I get them I will post them here or maybe they will post them here.  They took pictures of everything to document it and take back with them. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jwv on January 24, 2007, 05:17:56 PM
Hadn't visited this conversation for awhile-love the conversation pit.

Judy
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 24, 2007, 05:35:11 PM
Thanks, Judy.  This is the hot spot for people to bring their out of town friends and relatives to, but we enjoy having them over so it's no problem.  Lots of pictures get taken of the conversation pit.  The friends from China were rather surprised that I knew the name of an underground dwelling in Chinese.  I had posted one in indigenous housing and my friend in China taught me how to say it - I'm not much good at it though.

The girl from Sichuan said this house needed a name -- it needed to be called the Magic House.  They were very nice people. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 28, 2007, 07:34:45 AM
Interesting that "The $50 and Up Underground House" book is listed used on Amazon for a range of prices from $25 to
$102, with the author, Mike Oehler being the cheapest for a brand new one.  It looks like some of the dealers recognize real value when they see it. :)

The $50 and Up Underground House (http://www.amazon.com/s/002-9770017-9938417?ie=UTF8&keywords=The%20Fifty%20Dollar%20and%20Up%20Underground%20House%20Book%20%20&tag=countryplanscom&index=books&Search=Search&link%5Fcode=qs)

Buying direct is even cheaper.

http://www.undergroundhousing.com/book.html
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on January 31, 2007, 10:19:57 PM
Things got way too crazy at the underground complex today.  I went to the lumberyard for a bag of duplex nails today and mentioned to the owner that I may want some concrete at my place soon.  Heavy machine shop tools to move from the other place require me to actually break loose with a few bucks for concrete in the underground headquarters shop.

I mentioned that the only time I had due to work schedule was either this afternoon or a week or two.  He said, "well, why don't I right something up for this afternoon just in case?"  I told him to put it on will call in case I couldn't get ready as nothing was filled, formed up and the French drain wasn't in.  I went home quick - It was about 12:30PM , called my buddy about 45 minutes up the road, called my renter for her boys, jumped on the Bobcat and busted out rock for the French drain, set up the laser - put up forms.  Al and his son showed up and cleaned out the ditch for the drain - I put the bucket on the Bobcat and brought rock and perf pipe for the drain - got fill and filled and compacted the floor - got bouncing Betty and compacted the edges and rechecked the floor packed by the Bobcat,

Next I went and got my permits and engineering - yeah -- right as Jonesy would say.  Note that I did get my exhaustive title documents this morning certified from the county recorder, and I can't find anyplace where the county has a legal interest in the land since the assignment of the legal patent claim from John C. Fremont to all the assignees all the way down the line completely to me.  This conveys the original patent rights to me through the complete chain from him.  I guess they lose their right to tell me what I can do unless they want to take it from me and pay me full value for it.

The concrete truck arrived and started pouring at 3:49PM.  (http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010495.jpg)

The crew was just us 3 at the start but soon the other two boys were off work and came to help out.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010496_edited.jpg)

By 5:19PM the mud was down and all that was left to do was the finishing as it hardened up.  Lee (one of my renters friends)  turned out to be a professional concrete finisher and he came back about 9PM and gave it a great hand troweled finish.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010497_edited.jpg)

My buddy, Al wanted more notice next time - he said at least another hour.  I haven't done that much work so fast in a long time.  Lee mentioned that it came out better than jobs that had taken days to set up.  It wasn't real big - about 16 x 17.  Still plenty of work for me. :)

Note:  Yes -- that roof has about a 16 foot cantilevered section sticking out there.  Been that way for 3 years.  Why do you think I was in such a hurry to get some concrete down there.  I need to get that other corner post fastened in place. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on February 03, 2007, 04:44:44 AM
Good job Glenn. I notice you didn't take any pictures of your washout box. I guess it was just off camera.  :D
What machines are you putting in there? I have been buying some of our steel back from China. I have a 15" planer and a table saw, neither one that I can lift without the forks on the Bobcat. They are all cast and relatively inexpensive. And once they get installed in the mountains it will take four people to steal one if anyone is so inclined.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 03, 2007, 10:32:52 AM
I had him washout by the stream --I didn't want that nasty stuff around my house. :-/

No - I told him to feel free to washout anywhere he wanted - once you enter my driveway it is patent protected land.  He chose a flat spot in dry clay soil.  Couldn't find a place that would do any damage. :-?

I just brought up my 66 ton iron worker -- it will shear off 1x6 steel - and 3/8x22 plate.  More to come.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on February 03, 2007, 08:25:49 PM
I think that stuff killed all of the fish around here. I been tramping this desert for over 20 years and I have yet to see a fish.
Sounds like you are going to do some serious welding/fabricating.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 03, 2007, 08:43:57 PM
I had it at our other place and my son is moving to LA, so since he won't be using it I'm moving it up here.  We fabbed a 2 story building a few years ago but now just occasional stuff.  I will use it fairly often up here on machinery repair - and building trailer parts, shop brackets, grizzly for earth - rock separation, Bobcat accessories, etc.  Just a handy shop tool to have around.  I have a 26 x 96 metal lathe, milling machine, 50 ton press, drill press etc.  May get a smaller lathe instead of bringing the monster up here, but hate to lose the ability to play with big stuff so I am not sure yet.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on February 03, 2007, 08:56:02 PM
Quote
I have a 26 x 96 metal lathe...
I can't even imagine how much that monster weighs!!   :o  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 03, 2007, 09:32:50 PM
I think it is around 6000 to 7000 lbs, based on looking at one that was a bit smaller.  The Iron Worker is 66 ton capacity rating of hydraulics but only weighs around 3000 I think.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on February 04, 2007, 04:15:00 AM
I guess you will be running a generator when that playtime arrives.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 04, 2007, 07:02:39 AM
For extended use I will probably kick on the generator to charge the batteries while running off the inverters, but I would estimate that 15 minutes to 1/2 hour at a time should be OK on the inverters.  I have a total of 35 amps 220 available.  In the summer I run the pump 15 minutes at a time 4 times per day pulling 10 amps without the generator assist, and solar panels are not optimized.  Just laying on the roof.  I will probably build the system up more to keep from having to run the generator often.  The big lathe has a 7 horsepower motor but I don't think I use much of it most of the time.  I guess it would be wise to take some running power readings before I decide whether to move it or not.  It also has some mechanical problem - probably not too serious though.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 05, 2007, 08:19:32 PM
Rude awakening time --- I tried to start the Ironworker and it just wants to buzz --- pulled the motor cover off and found a 7.5 HP single phase motor in there.  I have enough power for it running but not enough to start it yet.  Working on a solution.  I was thinking of a kick starter. (Kidding there.) :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on February 05, 2007, 09:16:12 PM
Quote
 


I tried to start the Ironworker and it just wants to buzz ---

  


 That's typical of all steel / iron workers I know ,  they just make a bunch of noise  >:(   ::)  ;D  HEEEHHEEE
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 05, 2007, 09:31:28 PM
PEG, you are much too humorous sometimes. :o

Why do you think they call us men of steel? :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on February 05, 2007, 09:47:17 PM
Cuz yer crooked :-?     ,,Steal  :-[ ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 05, 2007, 09:54:50 PM
Careful PEG - if your mind gets any sharper you'll be bleeding. :-/ :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on February 05, 2007, 09:57:23 PM
I was wondering  where that blood was coming from  :-? ;D Gad nite Glennbob ;)  :-*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 05, 2007, 10:00:19 PM
Salt will coagulate that.  G'nite PEG.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on February 06, 2007, 03:01:16 PM
I suppose you could run the genny to get er going then switch it over.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 06, 2007, 07:48:44 PM
Usually when I have something big going I kick the generator on to keep from pulling the batteries down anyway.  

A few bucks work of diesel or gas will keep it running a long time.


OK - here's what I got.  Fooled with the pump - disconnected it at the Lovejoy coupler.  Motor would start unloaded if I kick in the magnetic safety a bit extra manually.  OK - I can do that.  Twisted the pump by hand and noted that it built up a fair amount of back pressure going through the electric control valve, so from the conversation with my buddy, Al last night, I decided a bypass for starting was in order.

$25 and some tinkering later, the bypass is a success.  I have my 7 !/2HP  Ironworker motor up and running off of a 10KW welder generator.  It is a bit short on power on heavy stuff -  3 1/2 x 3 1/2 x 3/8 angle chokes it - kicks out the magnetic switch as voltage drops.  5/8" x 6" steel bar and 1/4 x1/4 x 4 angle  shears off just fine though.  I think it will do about 75% of what I want to do now so I will have time to aquire a bigger generator at my leisure.  Cheaper that way.  My network spies are looking also. :)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on February 06, 2007, 11:04:18 PM
network spies?

are they in cahoots with the black helicopter pilots?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 06, 2007, 11:10:29 PM
Naw - these are my redneck buddies  - I mention that I want something - word goes out - soon it appears at a reasonable price.  Legitimate of course.  My buddy, Al is always on the lookout for things I need.  In turn I supply him with things he needs, old diesel truck, equipment,  the occasional decent job or whatever.  We just lookout for our own up here in the mountains.  He tried to get me up here for years - I thought he was crazy until I got here.  Now everyone knows I am crazy. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on February 07, 2007, 03:11:10 AM
Glenn, I thought you were normal and the rest of the world was kind of well, you know, screwed up.  ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 07, 2007, 03:37:06 AM
WE are normal, desdawg. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on February 07, 2007, 07:00:33 AM
No

The world is screwed up...And who is to say what is normal....I am different I see it everyday when I talk to people and they all look at me like I have three heads

It is okay to be different....The problem is that society and government tells us that we cannot be different...That we have to drive a SUV like our neighbors and have debt....and live in a gated community etc.....

This is a homebuilding site....So they tell us we have to buy our logs back from the mill...paying them exorbent taes....We have to get certified tradesmen to do everything....We cannot design, work on or use anything of our own....

Everything is regulated to maximize taxation....Everything is regulated to ensure that we stay in debt for decades

And when one of us tries to break free from these Manacles....Then they use the smoke and mirror scre tactics on us telling us we are in violation and they will revoke our permits etc.... The problem is that we have allowed this nonsense to go on so long that people think they need a permit to build a dog house for the pets or a tree house for the kids

Sadly we are not normal....We used to be....So few of us have a single solitary original thought that when one of us decides to do something for ourselves, by ourselves we are seen as a crazy eccentric odd ball that has gone off his rocker....

People will say things like.....That fool built his house underground.....Or that idiot thinks he can live debt free.... They want to build their house themselves

And these things are said with the tone and intent which would lead others listening to think we were criminals or completely insane

We are just lucky that a few places like this exist so that a few of us can find each other out, gather and share information and experiences.

There are a lot of great members here and a lot of stories and info get shared every day....It might be plausible to think we are normal when surrounded by others who think like us somewhat....But we are a fastly fleeting minority.

It is not because people do not like to work outside in their own yards with their own hands...It is not because people no longer relish the feeling of accomplishment when they do something themselves....No

We are a fleeting minority because society, government , banks have brought up entire generations telling them that they have to do things a certian way...Making people totally dependant upon the bank, their job, the system for income, pension, retirement...

They tell them they offer security and the trade off is they have to live their entire lives in debt

Glenn started to touch on it when he said something about pavlovs dog and the school bells....

think about this scary fact....Kids used to be raised at home...By the mother...And the father was home at a decent hour and spent the evening with his kids... week-ends too....

Now the kids get dumped at daycare when they are a couple months old...You pick them up at suppertime or later and they go to bed when they get home....When they are 4 they go to Pre-School....And from the time they are 5 until they are 25 they go to school (counting university)

That child has been brainwashed since before they could crawl on their own....They are told from the time they could understand that they needed to go to school....Listen to a teacher at at any age and they all say you need to go to university... They preach more schooling...

Kind of like a scientist will almost always say in their study that more research is needed immediately (pretty self serving and unscientific)

The system is serving itself here....A self contained monster that is feeding on our young and is out of control.

So our kids are being raised by someone else...And we have no control or input on what is hammered into their brains...These kids grow up thinking that this go to school 33% of your lifetime pay debt for 90% of your lifetime live where they tell you in a house that they pick out for you...Is the only way to succeed.

Somewhere in the shuffle/ brainswashing...A generation has been raised where people think that they have the right to look over the fence onto others property and into their business....they not only think it is acceptable.. but their god given right

And that is why we hate our neighbors....that is why we have nasty threatening signs and that is why we hate everyone

It is funny...I try as hard as I can to learn how to do things...But I am half the man my Grandfather was....He was amazing...and I am sure that most people here on this board can look back and see people in their lives from a generation or two ago and realize that they could do anything with their hands....

I loved my grandpa was a good man...But like most people back then he had to do for himself or he did without.... And that likely was why he made boards with an axe splitting it lengthwise...I think it is called clapping? He showed me how to do this when I was 6....I saw him do it...I cannot do it....But my point is that his generation made their shingles for roofing...They dug their own wells by hand....If they wanted something they could have it...They just needed to work for it and go do it....

Today you just try to do something for yourself and you have half a dozen enighbors calling to complain or to rat you out to the county.... Today they tie you down with thousands of dollars in permits and fees to build something....or just say you are not allowed...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 07, 2007, 06:49:06 PM
Thats pretty well it, Peter

Children of the state, raised to the whims of the state and trained to jump when the whistle blows and run to the next state mandated choice of class.  

Parents are kept too busy making a living to be able to do the job they would like to do to properly raise their kids.  

Who's kids are they?  Who can be thrown in jail or fined for the kid missing school or missing a school/parent conference.  They even tried to force me to sign a contract to send my son to school when he was sick and had a cop in the room with his hand on his gun to impress me.  Sorry dude - you just as well pull the trigger - I'd rather die a martyr than be scared or impressed by you - you big overweight donut eater.  I walked out and told them to sign contract themselves as it wasn't a contract if I was forced to sign it.  I also told them that my son would be in school as much as possible as always.

Sorry but I will continue to think for myself - even if it's wrong. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on February 07, 2007, 11:03:46 PM
I sold a truck to a really nice guy, who was also a cop last week...He invited me to go fishing on his dad's 1000 acre pine tree farm in south Georgia...

But yes Glenn half the cops out there think they are tough because they have a gun....

I am not a gun person...I have never owned one...I can shoot...I can hit targets and even hit a duck or goose in the air...

But it seems the guys that have guns think they are tough...Or that theyshould be able to demand respect...

Respect is earned...A gun does not equal respect....That is what people fail to understand...

a 4 year old thinks if they stomp their feet they get respect and get their way.....They hopefully grow up and learn you have to earn it...

And in my experience most cops forget that they still have to earn our respect...

I am lucky I got married...Because I was having a little problem with authority....Challenged a few cops ..who tried that I have a gun routine...Yell at them.. go ahead and shoot me A** hole...I am unarmed.

I get scared when a cop reaches for a gun and my legs are water like...I do not like guns all that much and I do not like having a gun pointed at me....

But I am not going to kiss someone's rear end just because they have a gun...

Don't wanna get shot... but not going to let the A**hole cop know he has intimidated me either...

My wife and I are home schooling our kids....Screw the Schoolboard...I will have my kids working in the yard...Identifying flora and fauna....Telling time by the sun...Predicting weather by the direction of the wind....Stuff I learned on the farm growing up...

Math and science will get learned too...But the whole outside world is as good a classroom as you are ever going to find.

Thing is we as humans survived for ten thousand years+ without modern day universities and daycare...And we turned out pretty well...

This is just another case where they insist there is only ONE WAY to accomplish something

I hope you liked the previous rant Glenn...You sort of inspired it...I read it to my wife and she is starting to come around to my point of view...She still thinks I am paranoid...

At least I got her believing me about all the nasty chemicals in our food...She is going organic with me....No more poisoning ourselves at the dinner table
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 09, 2007, 03:57:26 AM
In fairness , I have met some good cops too.  One even helld a flashlight as I fixed a short in my tail light wiring.  I guess my rant above is about the out of control school system. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on February 09, 2007, 10:24:24 AM
i am schooling my kids at home....When they are old enough 16-17 and if they want to go to public school I will let them....But by then if I did my job as a parent the kids will have learned to think for themselves...And be responsible.

20 years from now an outspoken free thinking young adult will likely be called an extremist or terrorist by our government if things keep getting more restrictive
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 22, 2007, 07:10:19 PM
Snow today so we pulled my buddies old 1 ton dump bed into the shop and started tearing it apart to make a low cost dump bed trailer for hauling stuff around here - road rock - wood chips - road patch material etc.  This morning it was a working truck - by noon it was almost a trailer.

Also working on getting ready to pour concrete in the next section of the shop requiring walls, shelves and work benches.  The place is a disaster with all of the activity at once and snow and rain to boot.  It should start to get better though.  Note that this is a no cost shop.  All materials are left over from various jobs.  Retaining walls are boat docks.  The back one is 6 feet high as is the earth behind it.  I put the 5 foot steel sheeting above the retaining wall last night  for a total of about 11' high at the back.  So - the shop is part way underground.   :-/

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010517_edited.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 28, 2007, 07:30:30 AM
The truck is now a trailer - a not quite finished one but one that was good enough to pull out of the shop in preparation for the snow that came last night.

The underground complex is pretty well buried but the fire is still going in the wood stove so things are nice and warm. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Snow%20February%2028%202007/P1010521_edited.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Snow%20February%2028%202007/P1010519_edited.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on February 28, 2007, 07:49:39 AM
I noticed I had 2 similar pictures loaded to Photobucket so rather than waste them ---

The difference between a fair picture

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Snow%20February%2028%202007/P1010530_edited.jpg)

and

a good picture by moving about 2 feet and adding near objects into the frame.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Snow%20February%2028%202007/P1010531_edited.jpg)

Link to the album with more snow pix

http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Snow%20February%2028%202007/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on February 28, 2007, 12:00:12 PM
Pretty snow... when I don't have to shovel it   :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: HaydensMom on March 03, 2007, 07:12:31 PM
Glenn,
I just want to say your house is amazing. I love it!!! I have always been interesting in alternative building methods. And partically interesting in underground houses, I love everything about your home. I look at your photo album at least once a week when i have access to the net.........is that considered stalking???? ;) ;) Keep up the good work.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 03, 2007, 07:22:57 PM
Please stalk all you want.  We cater to stalkers and troglodytes.  This is a learn as you go thing with the safety of engineered log sizes thanks to Mike Oehler's work, so there are a few bugs to work out but all in all it is much more successful than I ever thought it would be.

When I first started it was with the idea that if it didn't work I wasn't out much.   So far we have been here 5 years.  Hey -- that's almost a 10th of my life - that's pretty successful if you ask me.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Judy on March 09, 2007, 02:32:59 PM
Glenn--good grief!  That is incredible!  I looked at all 143 pictures, and your soil must be much different there than here.  No way that would stay together in this area.  But looks like it is working great there, and you have some really cute inside pictures.  I nearly had a nervous breakdown just looking at some of the pictures-expecting them to fall right out of my computer screen!   What is rammed earth??  and cobbed earth??  Is it some sort of clay?  Anyway, amazing.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 09, 2007, 07:40:18 PM
Thanks, Judy.  Glad you liked it.  It is also mostly salvage materials - the logs were weeds that were thinned so the rest of the trees could grow bigger - or salvage or down logs.  Glass was mostly given to me.

Cob is like adobe but not made into bricks 30%clay 70% aggregate including any in the clay - straw to taste per Becky Bee - water - then just build it in place rather than making bricks.  The traditional way is to squish it with your toes but I like to use my Bobcat - faster.  The clay is from the excavation and sand with pea gravel is added to it.  Try to use locally available stuff - if too much clay add more straw.

Here is an online book by Becky Bee - for the full book you can order it from her.  http://www.weblife.org/cob/index.html

Becky's book to order -http://www.cpros.com/~sequoia/

Rammed earth - the previous pictures in the album is similar with the exception of the straw and about 7% cement is mixed in.  For a better explanation check out my $200 RV storage garage.  (I salvaged a bridge, boat docks and corrugated iron for this one.)  http://www.countryplans.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1138433261

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on March 09, 2007, 09:11:02 PM
Glenn has evolved a way of building that is uniquely appropriate to his climate, site and soil conditions. He has made optimum use of the natural and free materials available close to his projects. When you build this way your structures naturally fit into the landscape and seem like they belong there.

Most people reading this will not have the same set of conditions nor the same materials that are available to Glenn. Much of the U.S. has either too much rain or the air is too humid to make cob and adobe long term solutions (at least without turning them into concrete).

Over 68,000 visitors to this thread attest to the interest Glenn's underground house project has created. Perhaps someday he will write the definitive follow-up to "The $50 and Up Underground House Book"!

In the mean time, perhaps the best lesson to learn from Glenn's ever evolving swirl of projects is not how to build just as he does (or to copy Mike Oehler or Ken Kern) but to capture the same interest in gaining an understanding of how to work with the local climate, conditions and materials. Then you can use these materials to "dance" a project into reality with the same sense of experimental/fun/work that Glenn seems to have.

Many creative builders like Glenn and Ken Kern talk about never finishing a project. My house too is not yet finished. I think it has something to do with not wanting the dance to end.  ;) To finish something creative like this means the end of a relationship - not just the completion of a goal or a check mark on a to-do list.

Save that kind of building for the folks who pay you!

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 09, 2007, 10:11:19 PM
That was a beauty of a posting, John.  I always enjoy your comments.  I guess that is why you are the master and I am but a lowly student. :)  Very deep thought there.  At least it made me think.

The first thing I do in any situation is to survey my natural (and or unnatural) resources.  I got the truck stuck turning around on a dead end road the other night -sitting on the front axle and the back bumper - soft ground had given way under the rear axle.  I surveyed the area  - boards by an old barn - rocks in a ditch - jack under the seat - air under the rear axle, dump bed on the truck. :(

I put the rock under the trailer hitch - raised the bed and lifted the truck part way up to get the jack under the axle.  I took the jack and raised the axle high enough to get the boards under it, lowered on the boards, then backed the truck out.  The other
option was to walk a couple miles out and get a tow truck.

The point is not about the truck.  It's about surveying your resources -- What do you have?  What can you get?  What can you afford? What is free?  What can you get away with? Who can help?  

Do you have money?  Do you not?  Is it possible to build with your soil? Rocks? Clay? Sand? Straw?  Conventional? Code? Alternative? Who knows what to do if you don't?  Can they teach you?  Can you learn? Where can you study it?  Will you make yourself study?  

Get to know your area, your soil, your trees, your sand , your rocks.  Learn about your area history, neighbors, businesses, sawmills, hardware stores, craftsmen, retired craftsmen, truckers, farmers, day workers, glass shops with take-outs, kids looking for a few bucks (use discretion on some of this).  This is what I mean by resources.

Will you try?  Will you fail?  Will you learn and try again?  Will you succeed?


Thanks for the thoughts, John. :)



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 10, 2007, 06:20:08 AM
Glenn was case study / type cast for the McGeiver show , or how ever you speel McGiever :-/

 Resourseful guy,  ole Glenn ;) Good guy to have around , knows a lot about a lot! And ain't afraid to experiement/ share what he knows.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on March 10, 2007, 06:50:04 AM
PEG's right!

(MacGyver--they had to get complicated--there are people with basically the same name who spell it differently)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2007, 08:21:38 AM
PEG, Amanda, you're making me blush.   :-[ :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on March 10, 2007, 10:26:03 AM
Not quite as good for your skin as, say, a steam bath, but it will do in a pinch!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on March 10, 2007, 12:45:31 PM
I should point out that there is a very practical side to my philosophic post about Glenn's creative building. It is one Glenn and I, at least, will find useful. You are welcome to subscribe as well.

When a spouse or relative asks, "Why the &*#@ haven't you finished the (fill-in-the-blank) project?" You can answer, "I'm still dancing it into reality".  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jonseyhay on March 10, 2007, 01:27:21 PM
That sounds like we should find you a nice tutu as well. Maybe we could get Amanda to knit you one, seeing as it's so cold in your neck of the woods. Any color preference?  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 10, 2007, 01:33:37 PM
Maybe a kilt would do if a tutu is well... not manly enough.  :-[
Is there a Kangiser clan tartan?   :-?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Amanda_931 on March 10, 2007, 06:47:49 PM
The woman working for me can at least knit a cap.  You wouldn't want anything I'd knit.  Maybe something crocheted.

My contribution to those outside in cold weather this year was out of polyester fleece--a little beanie-shaped hat--with or without a fringe, and a neck warmer.  The ones with the fringe were easier, but took a bit more material.

Neck warmers--just a tube about the size of the hat--in both dimensions, open on both ends, no hems.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2007, 07:30:57 PM
Quote
Maybe a kilt would do if a tutu is well... not manly enough.  :-[
Is there a Kangiser clan tartan?   :-?


Sorry Don.  We were forced to give up wearing Kilts due to modern building construction practices.  Street ventilation exhausts are a real killer.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/kilts_doing_a_marilyn.jpg)

..and who ever heard of a Lithuanian in a kilt? :-?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2007, 07:37:11 PM
Quote
I should point out that there is a very practical side to my philosophic post about Glenn's creative building. It is one Glenn and I, at least, will find useful. You are welcome to subscribe as well.

When a spouse or relative asks, "Why the &*#@ haven't you finished the (fill-in-the-blank) project?" You can answer, "I'm still dancing it into reality".  :D

I have been working on perfecting different versions of this excuse for years, John.  I'm not finished yet though...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2007, 07:48:48 PM
I think my grandmother may have had ancestors in Scotland -- she was a Mann.  People sometimes don't believe me when I tell them that my grandmother was a Mann.

Old Family photo?

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/austin1_fatbastard_photo_02_dp.jpg)

I just don't see any of my family wearing kilts.  Sorry. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 10, 2007, 08:12:57 PM
I don't think I'd be caught dead in one either. I don't think much of bagpipes either. Nor Haggis.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2007, 08:25:27 PM
Don, I've eaten a lot of weird things, but Haggis isn't one of them, nor is it likely to ever be. :P
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 10, 2007, 08:41:31 PM
I sampled some in Scotland.  Before the trip I swore to try a traditional food from each country visited as well as their national drink. I didn't like the haggis all that much, but then I'm not an oatmeal fan (there's a lot of oatmeal in traditional Haggis). I did find that accompanying the haggis with equal parts of the national drink (Scotch - single malt is the best) made the haggis more palatable.  ;)

I liked most of the foods and most of the drinks. (could never acquire a taste for Greek retsina though... tastes like turpentine to me.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 10, 2007, 09:22:42 PM
Quote
ret·si·na Pronunciation (rts-n, rt-sn)
n.
A Greek white or rosé wine flavored with pine resin.
[Modern Greek, probably from Italian resina, resin, from Latin rsna; see resin.]

Well - that explains the taste.

The native Americans here used to chew pine tree resin - pitch as a gum.  I tried it - also taste lit turpentine.  

You may not want to try this at home, kids.  I also ate poison oak -just a little at a time. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 11, 2007, 05:42:48 PM
Quote
Quote

  I also ate poison oak -just a little at a time. :-/


 That explains  alot  ;D :o
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 11, 2007, 05:44:08 PM
Gimme a break, PEG.  I'm not that crazy. :o
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 11, 2007, 06:19:49 PM
I never gave that statement much credence Glenn. If you did eat it it wouldn't kill you. But you would have a rash all over your lips and inside your mouth. That wouldn't be too pleasant. And I think you're too smart for that.  :)

I've never met anyone who would have even thought of eating it,   :-/  till now.

Stay above 5000 feet and you virtually completely safe from exposure to it. BTW don't burn it... the oil that causes the reaction can be spread thru smoke.

I can vouch for its unpleasantness. Mildly put... itches like the Devil   :'(  I think I got it from my dog; they don't get the rash but can spread the oils from their fur to you. I don't think he meant it.  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Judy on March 11, 2007, 06:45:40 PM
I can certainly agree that poison Ivy is very miserable.  However, there are people who don't have any response to it.  I went to school with a boy who showed me that he could rub it all over him, and he chewed on a piece, etc (showing off) and nothing happened.  Have known a few others who can't catch it.  Unortunately, I am not one of them. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 11, 2007, 10:15:44 PM
I was serious. :-/  I got it pretty good when  we first moved here.  Big ol' itchy scratchy splotches.

I read about the Indians eating it to get immune to it.  Didn't know if it would work so tried it gently.   No guarantees.

I ate first a quarter leaf then a week or two later a half leaf then a couple weeks later a bit more.  I don't get it now - maybe I avoid it better, but after I ate it I gave Sassy a little smooch and she got it on the lips. :'(

I do occasionally get brushed by it or break some out of the way.  I don't seem to be affected by it.

I can't avoid it, Don -- I farm it.  We live at 2910 feet elevation -property goes from about 2560 to 2975 elev.

Note that I never did get a rash inside my mouth - or even an itch,  YMMV eh, PEG. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 12, 2007, 06:42:38 AM
Wow! That's most interesting and good for you. I've had it twice, many years ago as a kid. Never since but don't know why for sure. As you said being more careful may help. Or maybe I'm just too high  :o now to run into it.

I read something years ago about immunity maybe building up in some people, but IIRC, it's an immunity that decreases over time. Not sure tho'.

BTW, how did it taste?  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 12, 2007, 07:16:01 AM
I don't remember the taste but if you want, I will eat some more and tell you. :)

It is just sprouting now.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 12, 2007, 12:00:36 PM
Don't go out of your way just for me.  :o If you figure that you might need a "Booster Chew", okay.   :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 12, 2007, 03:02:33 PM
Do you want video? :-?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 12, 2007, 03:40:44 PM
Seems some people really get it good so I would say if you have questions, don't do what I do.

Found this:

Quote
Regarding Native Americans and Poison Oak sensitivity: From a justice standpoint I like the speculation about telling the whites they should smoke it. However, at least in parts of California, the people did not avoid poison oak. Baskets (including food baskets) were made with the stems by several peoples in Central California. The Karok (and probably others in northwestern CA) used the twigs as spits for smoking salmon steaks, and the leaves for covering bulbs being cooked in an earth oven.

The Karok claim that they are not affected by it. According to the Yuki, full-blooded Indians are immune, but half-white folks are not.

References:
Curtin, Leonora Scott. 1957. "Some Plants Used by the Yuki Indians of Round Valley, Northern California." Masterkey. 31: 40-8, 85-94.

Merrill, Ruth E. 1923. "Plants Used in Basketry by the California Indians." Univ. of Cal. Publ. in Am. Archaeology and Ethnography. 20: 235.

Schenck, Sara M. and E.W. Gifford. 1911?. "Karok Ethnobotany." Anthropological Records. 13: 385.

Some of the Karok would eat a small leaf each year to confer immunity, but this may be a post-contact development, and might only refer to people of mixed blood. The informant who gave this information agreed with Schenk and Gifford's other informant that the Karok were not sensitive to it.

> But I'll update the site to include this info, that the Karok and Yuki Indians
> were immune in general.

Or claimed to be. It is possible that the immunity is exaggerated in the telling as one of the things that separates the "strong, healthy" (and proud of it) full-blooded Californians vs. the "weak, sickly" half-blooded. It does seem clear that the sensitivity was lower than that of most of us, though.

> I bet *some* of them weren't so lucky though, but
> I have no idea.)

My feeling, too. I'm guessing that the percentage of California natives sensitive to urushiol is drastically lower than Euro-americans, but not zero. I came across figures somewhere that approximately 80% of "people" were sensitive from first exposure, and that about 90% of the rest of us who start out immune eventually develop sensitivity.

Here: http://www.knoledge.org/oak/

More from above:

Quote
ETIQUETTE

Because Poison Oak is one of the worst afflictions mankind must suffer, there must be rules of etiquette for dealing with it.

IF YOU HAVE NEVER HAD POISON OAK:

    * You may not joke about it.

    * You cannot say, "Don't you know what it looks like?"

    * You may not offer your advice on how to treat it.

    * You must show nothing but sympathy, and if it is feigned it must seem genuine.

    * Absolutely no smirking!

    * You are not allowed to intimate that the person who has Poison Oak deserved it, or is afflicted due to incompetence on their part.

IF YOU ARE IMMUNE:

    * All the above rules apply to you.

    * You may never boast of your immunity, and especially never touch poison oak to demonstrate your immunity. I heard of a man who ate a poison oak leaf to show off. This is a justifiable motive for homicide.

    * If you cannot follow the above guidelines, please kill yourself now.

IF YOU HAVE HAD POISON OAK:

    * You must show sympathy, and tell anecdotes about how bad you had it.

    * You may joke and laugh, as long as you make it known that you feel very deep sorrow at the affliction.

    * Feel free to imply that all immune people should be exterminated off the face of the earth.


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 12, 2007, 04:50:17 PM
1. You don't really need to eat any more just for the rest of us... but if you do, why not a video?   :o

2. I can easily believe that some people, because of genetics, are immune to poison oak. There are many things that can be found to afflict (or not) certain groups of people that can be traced to genetics.   :)

3. I Love the Etiquette Rules.   (LOL)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 12, 2007, 06:06:58 PM
Quote
1. You don't really need to eat any more just for the rest of us... but if you do, why not a video?   :o

2. I can easily believe that some people, because of genetics, are immune to poison oak. There are many things that can be found to afflict (or not) certain groups of people that can be traced to genetics.   :)

 

 #1:  Sure he does ! Provide photo's  for proof ;D

 #2: Glenn doesn't have genetics, he really from space , Uranis I think ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jonseyhay on March 12, 2007, 06:27:41 PM
Watch out PEG, if those guys are wrong about global warming, Glenn is going to want to move in with you. He will probably bring his bobcat so he can dig a batcave in your front lawn. ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 12, 2007, 07:52:31 PM
Hey Mate , hows it goin fer you!!

 Global what???  ;D   Glenn can move up here any time the wenniy thinks he can take the weather , again ::), he was from Or"o"gon ya know , or so he sez ::) I'm still thinkin uranus  ;D

  He just might wanta dig up my front yard ifin he ever gets up this way :o Better duck,,,, he may use some of those super Admin powers on me  :o :o

  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jonseyhay on March 12, 2007, 08:03:49 PM
Hi PEG,
Things are fine down here. We are settling into the new house and I'm slowly knocking the rough edges off. I have decided though, that the next move I make, there will only be one box, and it'll be me in it.  ;)
Keep an ear open for the sound of that bobcat mate, and be ready to duck. He told me he was digging a tunnel so watch out he may be coming underground ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 12, 2007, 08:38:57 PM
Quote
Hi PEG,

  #1:  I have decided though, that the next move I make, there will only be one box, and it'll be me in it.  ;)


 #2:   Keep an ear open for the sound of that bobcat mate, and be ready to duck. He told me he was digging a tunnel so watch out he may be coming underground ;D


 #1: Well let's hope that some years off , EH! :)

 #2: He could be , aparently there are 100's of tunnels come from Canada , BC . Down this way, maybe Glenn wants to "link up" with some of those Nob's , eh! ;D

  Good to hear things are OK dwn under, is it still really dry?? Hows the garden ?? I gotta get mine turned over soon , this three weeks early day light savings time should help with that, although it is sort of wierd to spring forward when it's still winter, offically ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 12, 2007, 09:00:50 PM
Man -- a guy can't leave this forum unattended to get some work done for two minutes.  All of the sudden I come back and PEG and Jonesy are tearing up my thread. :o

PEG -- I'll have you know, I'm a troglodyte, (http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/35181897.jpg)





---- not a Klingon from Uranus.





(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/klingon-lady.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 12, 2007, 09:04:26 PM
Now you nearly made me forget about the poison oak.

OK - yeah PEG -- with pix and or video.  Do I have to take a bath first? :-?

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 12, 2007, 09:08:16 PM
Jonesy - progress is going well on the tunnel from the shop over toward the sawmill.  I'll try to remember to get pix tomorrow.  This is being done open top and will be covered when done with an earth covered roof.  

At this point it is planned  be 8 to 12 feet wide most of the way I think and who knows what will happen if I hit a giant rock? :o
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 12, 2007, 09:35:19 PM
Quote

 Man -- a guy can't leave this forum unattended to get some work done for two minutes.  All of the sudden I come back and PEG and Jonesy are tearing up my thread. :o



 Just chauk it up to thread drift, some one once told me it was a good  thing ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 12, 2007, 10:14:02 PM
I guess you are right -- we wouldn't have got to see that cute Klingon chick if it wasn't for that. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on March 14, 2007, 03:50:13 AM
I think we are past drift here. This is more like the Tsunami effect.
Glenn, I heard you live in an underground house. Any truth to that rumor?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 14, 2007, 06:11:20 AM
I used to desdawg, but I barely know where I am right now.  I think I need more sleep.

Lets see --- I need to eat poison oak.  

I need to do the video so PEG will know I really am crazy.   :-/

... of course poison oak is part of the Underground Cabin culture.  We watch for it every time we are above ground.  I just don't worry about it as much as Sassy, but then if it gets on my clothes then goes through the washing machine, I guess it's a free for all.

Concrete is coming today for the shop - at least part underground shop.  Guess I have plenty to do.



Are you getting ready to fire up the sawmill yet, desdawg? :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 14, 2007, 04:17:56 PM
Quote

 Lets see --- I need to eat poison oak.  

I need to do the video so PEG will know I really am crazy.   :-/

quote]

 Oh no need for futher proof Glenn there are ample case in points in the misc. section. ;D ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 14, 2007, 06:45:54 PM
I see I still haven't convinced you yet, PEG.  I must try harder.   :-/

I know-- You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink.  :'(

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 14, 2007, 07:34:19 PM
Quote

 I see I still haven't convinced you yet, PEG.  I must try harder.   :-/




 Oh I'm pretty well convinced of something ;D No need to try harder :o
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 14, 2007, 09:13:17 PM
OK PEG -- you're picking on me again.   :)

Back to more insanity.

Jonesy - you wanted to see the start of the tunnel out of the Underground Complex shop -  I think we are going to make the shop disappear a bit more in the future - stick it a bit more underground. :)

The tunnel will be open topped as it is excavated then have a bridge over part of it for the Bobcat - the rest will be covered as it goes to the North shop near the sawmill - about 75 feet away.  It will be a curving tunnel because I don't want visitors to be able to see the other end - it will look too short. :(

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010548_edited.jpg)

It will also allow me to keep all of my oak trees.  I don't like to cut them.  

The last 1 1/2 days we got ready for the concrete pour in the shop.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010546_edited.jpg)

Actually 1/2 day yesterday and 1/2 today and poured it this afternoon.  It measures about 32' x 34'

I am considering plastering the straw bales at least partway up while everything is away from the wall.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010550_edited.jpg)

And finished this about 7 PM tonight.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010552_edited.jpg)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on March 14, 2007, 09:37:02 PM
Just trying to give you the attention you deserve buddy :)

 Late night pours aways look better at night ;D

  What time did the truck show up??  

 Oh ya nice trench ;) Under ground escape route ??  :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 14, 2007, 09:44:43 PM
I put him on "will call" for PM so got him here about 1:30.  We were finished by 7pm but it was a lot of work for three guys.  All in all it came out pretty good.  Seems we are always flatter with hand finishing than we are with the trowel machine.  This job was too small for the trowel machine anyway.

It didn't help any that I decided to the whole 3 sections today rather than the 2 I originally planned, but we finished it pretty easily and now the whole thing is done rather than having to set up another pour day.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 14, 2007, 10:01:27 PM
Missed part of that PEG.

I want lots of underground escape routes. :)

This is just a tunnel for a shortcut from one shop to another on the other side of the mountain. and room for more storage along the side of it.
Title: question about design
Post by: homemom1fl on March 15, 2007, 05:34:26 PM
Gee Glenn, great site!  Stumbled on it after reading Mike's book and I am really excited.  I plan on ordering the dvds as I am not very good at looking at individual pictures and putting it all together in my mind (thankfully dh is).  I was wondering how much of your house is actually underground, how many are offset rooms, what did you use the strawbales for, etc.  I am so intrigued by what you have done and I also have to buy one of the signs like you have on your property!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on March 15, 2007, 07:02:22 PM
Quote
I see I still haven't convinced you yet, PEG.  I must try harder.   :-/

I know-- You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink.  :'(

My buddy Bob in Texas is kind of a big guy. He used to say that. "You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink, but you can darn sure make him wish he would have."
Haven't had any time to get things moved to the mountains yet Glenn. Took a 10 day trip to Montana to visit my failing mother. Was back for a week and had to make another trip to attend her funeral. So I have been MIA from normal life. I am back now and the AZ weather is heating up so I suspect after a little rest I will be back to where I left off in the mountains.
Looks like you are making some good progress in the underground world! Keep it up!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 15, 2007, 08:41:56 PM
Sorry to hear about your mom, desdawg.  We missed you here but some things are more important than a forum.  

I forgot if you had any internet available in the mountains, but hope that you will check in with us here every so often. :)

I got the saw cuts made in the slab tonight as we didn't have time to get any crack control joints in it yesterday.  What an improvement for shop working conditions though -- no more rolling around in the dirt.  I may have to go out and do it once in a while just to remember what it is like.  Actually with equipment there will still be plenty of opportunities to do that. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 15, 2007, 09:13:28 PM
Quote
Gee Glenn, great site!  Stumbled on it after reading Mike's book and I am really excited.  I plan on ordering the dvds as I am not very good at looking at individual pictures and putting it all together in my mind (thankfully dh is).  I was wondering how much of your house is actually underground, how many are offset rooms, what did you use the strawbales for, etc.  I am so intrigued by what you have done and I also have to buy one of the signs like you have on your property!

Welcome to the forum homemom1fl.  Glad you like the site.  We have lots of good helpful members here.

Lets say it's all under dirt except the entrance to the great room and front 4 feet of the great room. It pops out of it in several places.  The North side is against the mountain and roof level peaks even with the driveway that goes into the shop we concreted in the pictures above.  The greenhouse goes up about 15 feet above ground. The house goes 15 feet below ground from that point but the peak is level with the greenhouse floor, and it slopes in various directions from there.  The bedroom roof pops up another 4 feet but the bottom of it is 4 feet below ground level.  All roofs have 6 inches to 1 1/2 feet of dirt on them except the porch is about 2" of cob. and the entrance area and front 4 feet of the great room have roll roofing at this point.  Probably going to a couple inches of soil and succulents as suggested by Ken Kern.  

Are you thoroughly confused now? :-?  

I know I am. ::)

The shop roof is salvage steel decking.  

The strawbales are for insulation of the back wall of the greenhouse and pop up portion of bedroom wall- It must be near 100F in the greenhouse in the day now.  No green except plants right now.

Here is a link to the sign - Copy the picture then print it and have it laminated.  I think I blew it up to full page size.  A copy place could do that.  Check out the rest of Bill Munro's site also.

http://www.landrights.com/NoTrespassing.htm

http://www.landrights.com/
LANDRIGHTS.COM

Bedroom is offset - 2 bathrooms are offset - front porch is offset - entries are offset.  Then much of it is on different elevations also.  Floor elevations = entry is -6" great room is 0'0" , studio apt type area is 4'6" - bridge is 4'6" to 8' to bedroom at 8' - down to master bathroom at 6' greenhouse and shop are at 16' .  Ceilings vary from 6' in storage area to 15' in the great room - 10'6 inches in the kitchen - 12' in the bedroom high side (high side on most measurements mentioned).  It is near 30 feet from the great room floor to the top of the greenhouse above the uphill patio.  You can see all the way up in the window under the bridge.

Sunscoop is about 16 feet to the top from great room floor..  Hollywood wing in bathroom is about 12 feet to the top from bathroom floor.






Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 25, 2007, 11:47:29 AM
So -- what do you do if you have a problem in the underground complex. :-?

While nearly none of the posts supporting the roof have any problems where they are pinned above the ground surface, sitting on a thin vapor barrier and a couple inches of concrete, there are 3 posts that do have a problem.  

In trying to stay away from preservatives, Mike suggested charing the bottoms of the posts and putting plastic garbage bags around them to preserve them.  This may have worked without the bag, but it will get a break in it and once it does water can enter or the water in the log will drain to the bottom and wet the bag inside.  This begins an apparently long cycle of decay as the moisture can't leave and more enters staying in the bag.

In 5 years I noticed the doors at that post begin having alignment problems.  My first thought was diagonal bracing and that I didn't have enough, but that wasn't it.  The post was decaying in the bag and getting shorter - I would estimate about 3/4 of an inch in 5 years although I think this loss will start increasing  soon.  With the design of the Underground complex repair is not a problem.  Only the affected post(s) need be repaired.  The rest of the entire structure is hinged through the rebar pins holding the logs together so can move up or down freely.  Mis-alignment does not show in the garden on the roof as it would in conventional housing.

The post can either be jacked up and the footing repaired or replaced.  Only the bottom is damaged so I chose to jack it up and repair the footing.  I welded up a bracket to support a sufficient amount of the post and allow the repair work to be done.  I used a Harbor Freight 20 ton air assisted jack ($69.00 on sale) but used it manually as there was only about 8 to 10000 lbs on the post and I didn't have far to go up.  Total time so far is about 1 hour.  Probably a couple more to complete the repair.  The post went right up and the doors are back in alignment.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010624_edited.jpg)

Note that this post is in the corner under the bridge near the kitchen.  Doors affected were 1 French door and the door going from the kitchen to the uphill patio.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on March 25, 2007, 01:08:53 PM
Water's always the devil.   >:(   Handy little lift bracket there. Slot by chain saw? I'm waiting to see what you do about the bottom end/support.

(gotta go back outside and do more painting. )
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 25, 2007, 03:33:25 PM
Yup - I extended the plate into the wood a couple inches to get plenty of meat in case the lag bolts wanted to stress the wood fiber more than it wanted to be stressed.

I made a similar bracket with a 1" jackscrew and put it on the near side.  I think I will probably end up concreting around the bottom and building the post into a rock foundation.  I think I will try to support it from both sides after the jack is out and separate any fungal growth from it's source of moisture - It will then dry out and remain solid above the damaged area.  After it is stable i will put a reinforced footing under it.  It will have to bridge the original hole.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on March 27, 2007, 07:06:10 PM
Hay gang!! Long time no see. Just started "stalking" the site again yesterday. Alot of nice pics going on here!
Me, I'm still dreaming  :'(  Recently moved to Wisconsin....don't ask me why....must be love, sure isn't money!
Haven't been on the internet much looking at all the alternative building sites. May be buying a house for the time being. Looking into buying an old barn and turning it into a house. New boyfriend is into all the same things I am, so it is great. Not sure he is convinced of some of my ideas, but at least he listens.

Well, good to see you all again. I will be more attentive to my forum....I promise...  8-)

Sharon
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 27, 2007, 07:27:26 PM
Great to hear from you again, Sharon.  Just be sure to look us up once in a while - :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: whitewolf on March 27, 2007, 07:33:44 PM
Don't worry, I will be here often. How else can I get back in your good graces, so I can come and see your
place in person.... 8-)......sucking up going on here....


So, tell me, exactly how many people did you end up getting into that tub?  


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 27, 2007, 08:29:28 PM
Didn't get to the big tub party yet --
BTW - you are welcome to drop by any time - even if you have been ignoring us for a while. :'(
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on March 31, 2007, 08:03:53 PM
Sassy made me work today. :-?

We made rock garden walls approximately 10 feet x 12 feet in an oval 18" high and another one about 15 feet long.  Average weight was about 200 to 300 lbs per lineal foot so how many lbs did I place by hand?  Looks like it works out to 10000 to 15000 lbs.

Good thing I had the Bobcat there to get them close. :)

Sassy and I then shoveled in around 5 yards of topsoil mixed 50% with horse manure compost.  She has part of it planted already.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 01, 2007, 07:33:04 AM
Suns up so got pictures to prove I actually did some work.   It was dark on completion last night.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010686_edited.jpg)

Sassy wanted walkways and raised beds so here is the walkway.  Wall on the right is about 24" to 30"  tall.

I used a timber peavy on the biggest 5 or so rocks to help roll them or stand them in place.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010685_edited.jpg)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: homemom1fl on April 01, 2007, 10:38:52 AM
Forgive my ignorance but I have a question.  What did you cover your uphill patio with and what are the dimensions?  I read Mike's book and see that there is a variety of material that you can use.  I think you have made some really intelligent choices and am not one for reinventing the wheel, especially when others more knowledgeable have gone before me!  Do you get rain coming down your stairway and into the kitchen?  When time allows, could you post more pics of your outdoor patio?  I sure love this site!  Thanks for sharing it with us so we may glean from your experience.  I always wished Mike's book and site had many more pics.  I will get the videos when I can.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 01, 2007, 04:27:17 PM
No problem on the questions.  The uphill patio is approximately 12x30 and has a greenhouse over the entire area.  I used tempered door glass that the local glass shop pulled out because the dual panes were leaking - we separated them then used the single panes over a 2x6 frame at about a 60 degree slope.  Even the stairs into the kitchen is under the greenhouse.  No water into the patio except when I need to recaulk the glass.  Glazed surface is approximately 15' x 34'.

I'll try to get some more pix for you.

Here is one that shows the greenhouse with the uphill patio below..

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/6c47f17f.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: homemom1fl on April 01, 2007, 06:06:18 PM
 :-[

Glenn, I am so sorry.  I have been going back through the many pages here and see that I have made you repeat yourself regarding the glass and dimensions.  You are a patient man, I sure appreciate that!  I will try to re-read everything before I ask anymore questions!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 01, 2007, 07:19:00 PM
No Problem.  Some of it takes a couple of times to sink in.  Heres a little video from the bottom of the stairs looking around and up. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1010687.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1010687.flv)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: homemom1fl on April 02, 2007, 06:28:21 AM
Wow, thanks Glenn!  The video certainly helped, I appreciate it>
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 02, 2007, 06:50:28 AM
My pleasure.  It's hard for people who are visiting here sometimes to figure out where they are.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 07:20:35 PM
This picture shows  some of my solar panels lying on the roof of the green house.  There are more farther back - 5 feet or so on the shop roof.  I know they would do better properly oriented but I just bought more rather than do it right so I would have more of a buffer when i really need it -- then I'll do it a bit better.

(http://img511.imageshack.us/img511/7233/glenn37la.png)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 07:23:46 PM
Here is a rather poor shot of the inverters from the above video clip.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 07:30:01 PM
The white blob to the left of the inverters is the controller for the Bergey XL1 - 1000 watt wind generator.  The batteries are under the controller for the wind generator - haven't found the pix yet but there are 12 - L16's -- 375 amp hour 6 volts  series'd in 3 groups of 4 to make 24 volts at 1125 amp hours  - so about half of that usable on drawdown.

I have most of the solar panels on a Trace 45 amp controller.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 08:00:34 PM
Here is a bit better shot of the inverters

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000865.jpg)

2 - 4024 Trace sine wave inverters stacked for 220 v - about 35 amps so I can run my pump which pulls 220 @ 10 amps , a small wire feed or stick welder and whatever else I feel like within reason. :)

Here is the Trace PWM controller.  There are better controllers out there.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000864.jpg)


This is my relay setup using 2 Ford car relays in series to get a 24 v coil then they control another 110 v relay that can be triggered from either the overcharge dump load on the wind generator or from a cheap 15 minute increment timer to turn the pump on and pump water to the storage tank.  We pump about 500 gallons per day for the garden drip irrigation system and a sprinkler.  This uses excess power for pumping rather than burning it off with a heater and wasting it.  The wind generator cannot be taken offline or it will over speed  - excess power must be used or burned off.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000866.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on April 07, 2007, 09:01:44 PM
The first set was more interesting , sort of a Startrek jumble of space junk that Kirk would have to squeese Enterprise thru.

 Maxium sheild's Suelew, steady helm!! Etc etc  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 09:05:29 PM
I have avoided showing you the real jumble of space junk that keeps this place operating, PEG.  Really messy and I didn't want to scare you.  It is really interesting though and you would wonder how I ever keep it working without the whole thing going up in flames. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on April 07, 2007, 09:09:05 PM
Quote
I have avoided showing you the real jumble of space junk that keeps this place operating, PEG.  Really messy and I didn't want to scare you.  It is really interesting though and you would wonder how I ever keep it working without the whole thing going up in flames. :)


  
  Humm lets hope Sassy miss's this post eh :'( ;D  

  I'm sure that would not be very reassuring to have in the back of the mind as she falls asleep :-[
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 09:11:55 PM
I'm not really too worried about it -- she doesn't worry about it because she doesn't understand it. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 07, 2007, 09:15:26 PM
Quote
The first set was more interesting , sort of a Startrek jumble of space junk
The first set was definitely more interesting to view... Looked like a garage sale.  ::) Reminded me of a four-wheeling buddies old Scout 4x4. There's bits of aluminum foil wrapped around fuses here and there. Wires that appear to be jury-rigged (they really are) but they're permanent jury rigs. But whenever something stops working he always knows what piece of foil needs renewing or whatever. Disreputable looking vehicle, but quite capable on the trails.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: peg_688 on April 07, 2007, 09:15:32 PM
She might now that she's seen it in print and your admitting it. You could just tell her you typed it for the shock / joke value  ;) Like it really wasn't unsafe / shakie at best , opps there goes yer way out :o  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 09:27:27 PM
I don't think it's unsafe unless someone throws a small child across the terminals.  ::)  Even that wouldn't hurt much --- maybe a steel bar thrown in there would do some damage - but then it would in a regular electric panel too.  I guess it is time I rework it though.  Add some plaster walls and doors etc.

 I do plan to upgrade the battery room in the near future and will add more safeguards at that time.  This system grew as I needed it to because I didn't really know where it was going and hadn't planned it to be this big originally.  It's just that everything is so much better when it is big enough that you don't have to fool with it all the time.  No generator or charging to worry about  for 6 to 8 months  at a time.  Irrigation system is there also - timers for drip -etc.  It's kind of a regular utility center all in one place. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 07, 2007, 09:35:05 PM
Quote
...and will add more safeguards at that time...
That sign out front may be your best safeguard! !  You really don't want any county inspector poking into that... well if he did maybe that would serve him right.   :o
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 09:41:23 PM
My understanding is that they are not real interested in the low voltage stuff around here.  After it comes out of the inverter- maybe.  I assume as more people get it they will have more interest.

I know the real local solar installer wasn't too worried on the job he did - taped the conduits in with black electrical tape.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 07, 2007, 10:18:13 PM
The electrical inspector here was a real hard case. I'd used red and black wiring in the DC section and he flipped out (& red-tagged) it. Plus I had the disconnect switch 2 inches higher than code, so he red-tagged that as well. The disconnect was an easy fix; the colors required heat shrink tubing over all exposed wire ends.  ::) Now it all looks like the AC wiring; except for where the heat shrink got scraped off somehow.  :-? Good thing I never had the batteries installed at that time. Mind you he's the only unfriendly I've seen around here. The guy who inspected my first permitted job was cool; his first trip out was the last of the day and I showed him my home brew setup and we sampled a couple different brews out in the yard.  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 10:27:07 PM
So far I haven't prostrated myself to them.  Don't want to scratch up my knees.  Guess I better get out my land patent protection signs too.   :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on April 07, 2007, 10:38:33 PM
The only place   covenants, reservations, conditions and conditions can be put on the land is in the land patent. All others are a collateral attack on the patent. "U.S. v Coronado Beach. 255 U.S. 472. ( Decided March 28, 1921)

Our land has an early patent signed by Abe Lincoln.

http://www.landrights.com/patents.htm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Timwarner on May 03, 2007, 11:20:23 AM
Following this thread is really great.  But before I built a Mike Oehler-type house I would like to figure out how best to integrate John Hait's and Don Stephens's ideas: i.e., thermal umbrella and earth tubes.  The problem is that these ideas take you in different directions. For example, if you're going to use the house walls and floor to heat the thermal mass under the umbrella they can't be insulated.  Has anyone resolved these design issues? Recommendations??

BTW I'll try to use a lamella roof, like the one I built for my workshop.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on May 03, 2007, 01:20:06 PM
What an impressive bit of framing. :o I can see that Tim is not afraid of working out a new theoretical idea.

I haven't followed the earth umbrella concept, but would have this one caution. Almost every attempt at storing heat in the earth that I have seen is workable in only a narrow range of soil and climate conditions, yet it is usually tauted as the "next big thing" in earth responsive architecture.

I like to let other people do their work on the low serial numbers. If a concept sticks around 10 or 20 years and has worked successfully in many different environments then it might be something to try.

Just my opinion of course, and perhaps not worth 2¢ ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on May 03, 2007, 02:06:27 PM
That's a beautiful looking roof/ceiling! It desrves a big WOW1   :)  What's the rests of that building look like, Tim?

The Brown Derby in CA is a well known example, as is the Atrodome
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 03, 2007, 06:17:16 PM
Great looking roof, Tim.  Welcome to the forum.

I haven't tried John Hait's concept yet.  I read a little about it but don't have that book -- I have his Rust Battery book- I like his concepts.

Bruce - Lodestar - our member - did a great project in Montana I think- and it worked great for him.  You could search his postings here.

http://www.countryplans.com/search.html
SEARCH

If that doesn't get it try his member name.

Jonesy has been experimenting with the earth tubes.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on May 08, 2007, 09:10:55 PM
It's raining and my two, mostly decorative for most of the year, rainwater collection urns are running over. Then I realized that you Glenn, have the near ideal rainwater collection system.   ::)  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 08, 2007, 09:40:51 PM
Works great in the winter - garden collects the rain and it grows.   :)

Other than that - I have about 1000 square feet of tin roof on the shop that would collect a lot if I wasn't so lazy and think that it is easier to pump fresh water from the well with solar.   :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on May 08, 2007, 09:52:15 PM
It is easier, and so what. The rain falling on the ground, soaking in and all should be counted as a good thing. You seem to be pretty green anyways. No grid tie is a carbon credit if we're going to look at things that way. Growing food with a drip system is more efficient than many other ways. You even feed the animals,  ::) that's more than your average suburban American can lay claim to.  :)  

Eating the wildlife must count as a credit also if it means you buy less methane producing beef. If I'm lucky I'll be blessed with an Elk this fall. We saw them or traces of them last summer and fall and a few weeks ago up in the mtns, on or near our land.  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 08, 2007, 09:58:44 PM
I am wanting to do water collection ponds on the side of the mountain, and started this year but the first thing I ran into was a telephone cable that was several feet over from the sign line.  - Maybe next year but they won't tone it to locate it when we ask -- always some excuse- sore foot - no equipment etc.

There was a story here somewhere about the guy in China who greened up his whole mountain.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on May 08, 2007, 10:00:28 PM
and - except for our garden - the green part of the year is almost gone except oaks and other native plants - and we start the beautiful brown fire season. :-/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on May 08, 2007, 10:04:59 PM
Our Mtn. property has a lot of sloping ground and one thing I'd thought of was to terrace or sculpt a few areas to hold water rather than let it run off. It's a longer range project tho', won't be this year for sure. I know for certain there's no telephone or other cables in the way.  ;D  
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on May 08, 2007, 10:06:55 PM
And good luck on brown/red fire season. We have a little time to go before we get into prime fire season this year. But ya never know.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on June 25, 2007, 08:48:14 PM
Got out tonight on the side of the mountain with the Bobcat - 30 to 40% slopes and cleared off a fire trail about 30 feet wide and 300 feet or so long (horizontally).  Took down a bunch of brush and a few small trees that would easily link to others with crown fires.  Over 220 houses burned in the Tahoe area in the last couple days.  We have lots of dry tall grass, greasy desert type brush and Oak trees down the hill.  There is a housing project "Ranches" below us about a quarter mile and I don't want to trust that many people too much.  It takes only an hour or two -maybe less under the right conditions - for a fire to make it from bottom to top.

While the underground complex is safer than other places around, it could still catch in a few areas and have a toasty good time. :o

They recommend weed eating for a hundred feet around the area, and I did some but what is left will still burn.  Dirt won't burn - always a chance of it jumping a line but the airport is below us about 2 miles as the black chopper flies.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on June 30, 2007, 08:17:45 AM
Note -

With Yahoo Photos closing in September I had to move and rearrange my photos,  I put them on Photobucket - Yahoo was a very inferior service not allowing posting to our site anyway.  Photobucket has mad it much easier to deal with the photos so I have moved in many that were missing and moved the RV Garage ones out.  At the first entry - page one of this thread is a link to the new grouping and I am including a link here also. Order may be off but most are labeled.  You may post questions here about any you may want to know more about.

http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on June 30, 2007, 08:36:05 AM
I put together an early framing and construction slideshow.

http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/?action=view&current=3bd6d9b8.pbw
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on June 30, 2007, 04:13:05 PM
Nice way to document the project. It seems to get easier to do this show and tell every year. 8-)

(We're all becoming photographers and movie makers... or at least "content providers"!)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: fourx on June 30, 2007, 08:04:12 PM
Quote
Got out tonight on the side of the mountain with the Bobcat - 30 to 40% slopes and cleared off a fire trail about 30 feet wide and 300 feet or so long (horizontally).  Took down a bunch of brush and a few small trees that would easily link to others with crown fires.  Over 220 houses burned in the Tahoe area in the last couple days.  We have lots of dry tall grass, greasy desert type brush and Oak trees down the hill.  There is a housing project "Ranches" below us about a quarter mile and I don't want to trust that many people too much.  It takes only an hour or two -maybe less under the right conditions - for a fire to make it from bottom to top.

While the underground complex is safer than other places around, it could still catch in a few areas and have a toasty good time. :o

They recommend weed eating for a hundred feet around the area, and I did some but what is left will still burn.  Dirt won't burn - always a chance of it jumping a line but the airport is below us about 2 miles as the black chopper flies.

What happens if, God forbid, there is a fire? Is there a seperate rural fire service ( funded by a levy of home insurance here ) which fights the fire, or does the local town brigade respond to fire calls in rural areas?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on June 30, 2007, 09:15:29 PM
Quote
What happens if, God forbid, there is a fire? Is there a seperate rural fire service ( funded by a levy of home insurance here ) which fights the fire, or does the local town brigade respond to fire calls in rural areas?
In my neck of the woods the fire fighting is done by the US Forest Service and/or the local Volunteer Fire dept. (supported by the county). It's based in a small development a couple miles down the trail from us. There is such an entanglement of private and public (National Forest) lands that fortunately they don't worry about whose jurisdiction the fire may be in. They just all get out there and do something about it.

A couple of weeks ago there was a small (12 acre) lightning caused fire that they took care of overnight. The fire hazard rating ranges from High to Extreme right now. There's still lots of green grass around... it'll start to dry soon, unless it rains. In the last week we've had rain go around us but not enough fall on us to warrant going inside.  :'(

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on June 30, 2007, 09:29:56 PM
We are at the ridge on the mountain - so we will get it from both sides, but we are 4 road miles from the airport and fire station there, and we are 3 road miles from another fire station and we are 4 road miles from another fire station  then there are more near by.  Choppers are stationed at the Airport during fire season - we are about 2 miles line of sight from them.

I'm not too worried.  Next mountain over had a fire last year - heres pix from my mountain.  I like to have the extra buffers between me and the lower part of the hill - driveways and fire trails on the back and fire trail and new clear area on the front.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010197_edited.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010192_edited.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on June 30, 2007, 09:34:08 PM
Quote
Nice way to document the project. It seems to get easier to do this show and tell every year. 8-)

(We're all becoming photographers and movie makers... or at least "content providers"!)

Content providing -- keeps the interest and learning level up. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on July 01, 2007, 05:49:44 PM
Went by my friend, Doyal's place today.  He saw me down town at the hardware store and said he had a little rock crusher to give me.  I went up and got it and while there asked permission on to take a picture of his rock wall.  It was the inspiration for the rock wall around our garden area.

He mentioned that it is not as hard as it looks - he started with a 2' x 2' corner post and it kept growing.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000227-1.jpg)

Doyal's Wall


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000198.jpg)

Our Wall's
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on July 04, 2007, 10:13:00 PM
I did this earlier but was not satisfied with the quality so 86'ed it.

Here is one that I think is quite a bit better.

Join me for a walk through the garden, on the roof of and around the grounds of the Underground Complex.  :)
[size=20]
A Walk Through The Garden[/size]




(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/ScreenShot.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=FlowersandCrittersWeb-1.flv)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on July 07, 2007, 07:48:19 AM
Changed the link in my previous posting so it was easier to find.  

Here is if you missed it before.  Same video - just not hidden by the picture.

Note that there seems to be a bit of a delay before Photobucket will play it full size but after it fully loads it will play.

Youtube does a much better job with the full size option so changed the below link to Youtube..


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/ScreenShot.jpg) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxVcEnXkaXM)

The new garden is growing so fast and big now that it is necessary to make more space somewhere in order to plant more things for the later part of the year and winter.  Looking for another flat spot with deer fence around it and water nearby....    :-/

This video was done entirely with the hand held Lumix TZ1 with image stabilization and  up to 50x zoom. Zoom is usable even in video.  I'm not sure if digital zoom is available in video but I think it is.  (Refurbished $148.00 from Amazon)


Lumix TZ1
http://www.kk.org/cooltools/archives/001340.php

If you haven't seen the video, take a look if your resources permit -- it's much better than the first crappy one I posted.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on July 08, 2007, 02:20:43 PM
I like Mr. Owl. Could be Mrs. Owl for owl I know.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Cody on July 17, 2007, 11:26:38 AM
Hello from Kansas,
We are almost done with our 20x30 1 story project. drywall is up and ready for mud and trim, but it is summer and Im ready to start another project.  We have out grown our little one bedroom with crawl in loft before we have evan moved in, now expecting our third child. Our site is a flat hilltop and I would like to build an earth berm on grade. I have pouring over the internet trying to find anything I can on waterproofing and berming a pole barn style house. 12 foot  4x6 or 6x6 posts 4' in the ground, 8' out.  sheithed with foundation grade plywood. the post span would probebly be every 4 feet. water proofed and backfilled 3 1/2 - 4 feet above grade. I know the idea of using home depot pressure treated lumber is not exactly great but to use local materials would be nothing more than cow pies and corn stalks and neither hold up to tornadoes very well.
 we were going to just build another house on a pole foundation like the casons texas two story. but being on a hill with really bad winds we wanted some wind protection. The reason we thought of a pole barn style is  to avoild the huge cost of 4' deep footings of concrete.
if you think this would work could you please tell me your thoughts on how to waterproof and provide drainage to your footings when they are only square post. Thank You so much for any ideas
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on July 17, 2007, 05:55:46 PM
Hi Cody - nice to see you here again.

I think we can put together enough information to get you going.  I assume no codes to meet.  The $50 and Up Underground House Book http://www.farmersmarketonline.com/UnderGroundHousing.htm has rule of thumb engineering tables in the back and tons of ideas.  Mike also covers the type of  on grade burmed construction you are considering.  Same idea - just burm it above ground.  Don't use the plastic barrier idea around the wood -- it didn't work -- treated should be fine but be sure to protect yourself from it by sealing it off from the living space.  Try to use a safer type treating and with the drains and umbrella it should be good.

Based on that 18" max earth cover on roof - 7" posts on 8' centers - The 4x6's should work fine on 4' centers and are necessary to keep 1" side boards from bowing from the backfill.  Are you covering the roof with earth?

From Bruces (member with underground house also) postings and suggested verbally by Mike Oehler, I would suggest an EPDM membrane (like pond liner) over the entire building and extending an extra 10 feet all around.  under the extended area I would put french drains under gravel with drain to daylight down hill.  I suggest looking the book over if possible - lots of reasons and ideas there I may not get covered.  It also tells you how to get light all around - 4 sides and roof if necessary.  I will be glad to answer any questions I can.  Drainage and grading are keys to success also.  As PEG says -- think like rain-- water always wants to go down and spread -- also think of things that can cause water to back up and go in.

Looking forward to helping you with this.  Glenn
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Cody on July 18, 2007, 10:29:35 AM
Thank you so much for your response. I am going to get the book before I get started, as of yesterday I didn't evan know it was an option to berm above ground with wood post and planks (or 3/4 inch plywood) rather than concrete. We want to only berm about 4 to 4 1/2 feet up from grade onto the sidewalls. Than put up a low pitched super insulated roof. at this point it will look like a squatty 1000sf rambler poking out above a berm. We have extreme summer heat and humidity and the cross ventalation is very important to us.  One of the stipulations to building another house is it needs to be more labor friendly. My husband just deployed for another year and with two, soon to be three kids I just dont have the energy I had with the last place. To be honest if I could put up a single wide I would but I dont think my family would last one spring wind storm or peak oil. I dont want to sound foolish but this is what I gathered from your response please correct me where I am wrong. I would put in a french drain, than attach EPDM to the wall down to the gravel covering the drain. extend it out from the wall over top the drain about 10 feet? Than start the berm So how deep do I put the drain? maybe under where the bottom of the floor will be? or on grade? Is ther any way to berm so that permeable gravel is against the wall rather than the heavy soil?
I hope you are enjoying your summer and thanks again for your time.
-Cody Bergman
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on July 18, 2007, 10:45:25 AM
I'll make you a quick sketch to show what I mean based on hat you describe that you want.  The primary drainage would be off of the liner to 10 feet away.  Secondary would be the French drain.for anything that may want to get past the liner membrane.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jraabe on July 18, 2007, 11:22:28 AM
Hi Cody:

You might consider a bermed wall as Glenn is suggesting and then have a 2x12 low-slope single rafter shed roof. You could insulate that to R-38 or higher, put down a roll roofing or an EPDM membrane and a few inches of sod. That would keep the house quiet and well cooled.

Good to hear from you again.

John
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn-k on July 18, 2007, 11:29:07 AM
Here is a pix of my suggestions -- they are only that.  

No guarantees that this is not labor intensive either - depends on resources and equipment.  Note successive drainage layers and being on a hill - water wants to go down and spread.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 18, 2007, 11:30:15 AM
Quote
Hi Cody:

You might consider a bermed wall as Glenn is suggesting and then have a 2x12 low-slope single rafter shed roof. You could insulate that to R-38 or higher, put down a roll roofing or an EPDM membrane and a few inches of sod. That would keep the house quiet and well cooled.

Good to hear from you again.

John

I really like that idea too.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Cody on July 18, 2007, 03:20:29 PM
Thank you both so much for your input. I thought that the liner follwed the wall strait down and then curved almost 90degrees away from the house, over the drain. I guess I need the book more than I thought. I will get pictures of the 20x30 up very soon, within a few days. Just to warn you though nothing real exciting to show off. Have a good night - Cody Bergman
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: tj4orange on July 18, 2007, 05:22:07 PM
I would love to see interior and exterior pics of codys' 20 x 30 place! :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 18, 2007, 07:15:27 PM
Basing the liner on the original type underground house - Mike wanted the water to run off onto solid ground and be directed away from the structure.  John Hait went even farther with the umbrella technique to keep more dry.

The sloped soil moves most of the rain away - the sloped EPDM will move what gets through away - the French drain - briefly mentioned by Mike Oehler and verbally talked about to me on the phone by Mike, will take the rest of it away.  The whole thing is about how to move water farther away sooner.  Also the top needs extra so as not to tear when lightly backfilling then after backfilling attach and trim the top then flash over it .  Flashing is an adaptation to your use that I suggested - it will not be covered in the book as Mike went completely covered.  You can cover more and use gables and other means to get windows and light into the covered structure.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 18, 2007, 07:21:45 PM
Following the wall straight down then turning would give you a big puddle of water and mud underground at that point just looking for a slipup in your waterproofing scheme.  Sloping out moves it away and gives you a buffer for any accidental leak.  Even getting most of it away is good so the ground can take care for the small stuff - then next line of defense is the French drain.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 22, 2008, 05:28:45 PM
Well -- haven't done much around here for a while -- this year is the year of the prospector...but I decided that I wanted to work on keeping the shop a little drier in the storms as I have projects that could be done in there if the wind wasn't blowing through 60 miles an hour carrying rain halfway across the shop.

Shop floor is even with the peak of the roof of the kitchen area, then its about 16 feet down to the floor of the great room.

My point of posting this is that I made a door for the shop today - worked a bit on it yesterday.  Yeah -- it looks like crap but it was free.  Sheeting was left over from a building job cleanup.  6x2 1/2"x 12 ga. angle was from a medical building floor.  Pipe was pulled out of a water well. Screws left over from a job. 

The door measures 12'4 x 12' with the top cut at a 1 1/4" / 12" pitch to match the roof.  The pipe at the top is a torque rod to keep the far end from tipping in or out.  The entire left vertical 1 1/4" pipe is a hinge - pivots on a spacer over a 1" pipe- set on a plate for easy removal if repairs are ever needed.  The top pivot is a 1" pipe welded to a plate.  I shot a laser to the top from the bottom pivot point for center linup.  The bottom mount is welded to a concrete stake driven into the claystone and a 1/2" wedge anchor into the concrete.  It is very light -  everything supports everything else.  Sheeting is used as a diaphragm to keep the door square.  Corners etc are welded.  Sheeting stiffens the triangle brace to the bottom and the ribs in the sheeting transfer the strength to the top frame member. 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000792.jpg)

1 1/4" .065 tube steel makes a great hanging sliding door frame and would have worked on this but I didn't want to buy anything, and there was no room for a slider.  Framing could have been the same though.

There are strawberries growing on the sloped roof behind the door.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Torched on February 09, 2008, 08:40:53 PM
I never thought I'd find a forum with a stickied "underground house" thread. ever. thank God I did, I thought I was alone.

I'm going the earthbag route.

http://www.greenhomebuilding.com/earthbag.htm (http://www.greenhomebuilding.com/earthbag.htm)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 09, 2008, 08:58:08 PM
There you are.   :)

Yup -- we have it all.  d*

John invited me here to answer a few questions about the Underground Complex.

Now he can't shut me up.

Mike Oehler last recommended EPDM rather than plastic for a membrane.  Much more durable.  What are your waterproofing plans?

I would recommend French drains to daylight if you can.  Please tell us more about your project.  Here is fine to keep underground info together or you can start a new thread if you like.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Torched on February 09, 2008, 09:42:01 PM
I think you have a good thing going, let's keep it all in here.

I've been reading a lot recently about how epdm is all the rage. one of my main concerns is waterproofing of course. I'm going to try to tackle the majority of that by proper location (hillside). I think that due to the natural shape of the dome, the water will be easier to divert away when it washes over. meaning that it won't hit a flat wall, but go around it splitstream style. not that I won't be skipping any waterproofing steps or french drains, just that it'll be that much more likely to have minimal problems.

I have a ton of questions to ask. I guess I'll start with the easiest. How did you dig your hole?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: carla on February 20, 2008, 07:33:49 PM
I made my way through this entire topic over a period of time. I have to say that for being underground based your place has a certain charm and warmth about it, even though the idea is certainly a strange one when you first think about it. At least it seemed strange to me. There's more light than I would have thought.

I especially like the front door.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on February 20, 2008, 07:46:40 PM
Torched, Sorry I missed your posting, but Carla got me back here.  I'll start with yours.

First, I would say -- don't start until you have read Mike Oehler's book - The $50 and up Underground House. www.undergroundhousing.com

Uphill patio and uphill drainage is very important.  Get rid of te uphill water before it gets to you.  I highly recommend French Drains to daylight - down hill -- they could hae saved me a bit of trouble in a couple areas.

My ground is so hard I dug it with a backhoe and a jackhammer - and the usual hand tools, shovel, pick, bar, Bobcat.


Carla -- not even I have read through this whole topic.  Congratulations. :)

There is more light here than most regular houses due to Mike Oehler's designs and methods.  He has very good reasons for the way he has designed things and his ideas work.

Front door was my idea.  I was out at the sawmill one day and saw this nice big cedar butt, -- the center one along with several others.  They were too neat to not make a door or some item of interest out of.  Cedar seems to commonly have a large piece of offset wood to be cut off at the bottom of each butt section.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 06:10:34 PM
Now -- the moment we have all been waiting for-- Glenn fixes something on the house.   ::)

We have talked a few times about the problems I encountered trying the new suggestion 6 years ago of charring (to prevent bugs) and putting plastic around the bottom of the posts on the underground cabin.  The charring may have been successful -- I didn't notice termites but fungal growth did what the termites didn't.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010126.jpg)

Yup -- that's a fungus growing there -- I think it's edible.

Fortunately the ground was so hard here that I only tried this on three posts.  The rest are placed on rebar pin, a plastic vapor barrier and a couple inches of concrete on top of the ground. Bracing is accomplished by diagonal braces inside  and earth berms outside.

Over 6 years, we have experienced slow deterioration of the 3 posts inside the plastic "protection" wrap, causing misalignment of the French doors between the kitchen, bedroom and suspended bridge between them.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010125.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 06:38:23 PM
Note -- check the previous posting if you haven't already -- this starts on the previous page.

I began the repair project by measuring the distance from the bottom of the roof beam log to the ground and finding a suitable timber to temporarily jack up the roof with.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010127.jpg)

Normal load per post would be around 16000 lbs but this is an edge at the uphill patio so I estimated about 1/2 load and also knew the soil on the roof was not full depth here.  At a fiber stress of 1000 lbs psi or less, I wanted at least a full 4x6 or so due to height of 14 feet less the jack and blocking so I needed about 12' tall.  I found a scrap 4x12 that would work great and cut it to length then slipped it up under the beam and put in a block footing and block to protect the log and spread the weight.  I put in a steel plate to spread the point load of the jack and not split the wood.  All of this was scrap from my various resource piles.  :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010130.jpg)

Once well supported I began jacking with the 20 ton jack until the door came back into alignment.  That accomplished I noted that the post was still about 3/4 inch low so needed to be jacked to meet the beam.  I took my Ryobi 18V chainsaw with my NEW Lithium battery and cut the post about 2/3 of the way through to inspect the damage and make room for the new support and jack.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010131.jpg)

As can be seen rot and dry rot are there with only a few bug holes.  The plastic is still like new. hmm

I just happened to bring back some 3/8 wall 5x5 steel tube I removed from 2 columns on a job so one of them became then new foundation for this column.  I took my other jack and pushed the post up a bit above its needed position for settling allowance then cut a 3x3 angle proper length to fit around the jack so it could be removed.  I cut one more for a wedge fit after the jack was removed and installed  it.  The whole assembly can now be welded in place under the post for added strength and stability.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010132.jpg)


The question is, will it? hmm

New inspector -- tenacious as a bulldog passed it so I guess I'm in good shape.  Center post to go yet -- same manner --  The first one was fixed a year or so ago -- similar manner but more complicated as I couldn't get a post in there for temp support.  ::)


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010124.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 12, 2008, 07:01:12 PM
I've wondered from time to time how that first post job went.  ???  I don't recall seeing it finished. But then nothing around there ever is.  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on April 12, 2008, 07:08:05 PM

The question is, will it?


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010124.jpg)



 The next question is will it WHAT? Pass inspection of said bulldog? Pass the "Sassy " does it look good inspection??

 So just what was / is the question is my question ???  ???

 Those French door  could have just used a lil chainsaw trimming don't cha think Glenn  heh  All this work for a lil out of alignment on some doors  [shocked]

   rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 07:09:37 PM
It was a bit harder to get to -- I made an angle plate to slip steel under the post in a slot with an offset braced plate for the jack.  It worked but was very marginal as far as strength with multiple lag bolts into the post -- large ones as I only had access from one side.

I put an adjustable setup under that one but thought of better ways to do this one since I had better access.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 12, 2008, 07:14:18 PM
Those French door  could have just used a lil chainsaw trimming don't cha think Glenn  heh  All this work for a lil out of alignment on some doors  [shocked]

   rofl     rofl     rofl     rofl   rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 07:16:22 PM
Good evening, PEG.   :)

The question is, will I ever weld it all together. It's all sitting great right now.   ::)

I could have trimmed the doors with the chainsaw, but the post was slowly continuing to settle as the bottom rotted off -- maybe an 1/8" per month. 

Thought I might go it one better and fix it before it shrunk far enough to lock me out of the bedroom and made Sassy lonely.   [slap]

It was a excessive major effort to fix a couple mis-aligned doors.

I can't argue with you there, PEG.  When you are right you are right.  You know that and I know it.  d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 07:20:47 PM
How it looks can be covered with a rock wall, fish pond etc.  This is in the unfinished section of the house.  What a great excuse.  [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on April 12, 2008, 07:36:32 PM


Good evening, PEG.   :)

The question is, will I ever weld it all together. It's all sitting great right now.   ::)


 Evenin Glenn  c*

 Think ( small) earthquake , maybe that will make it seem important enough, if in it's a bigin MTL wouldn't matter much either way eh  [shocked]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on April 12, 2008, 07:39:29 PM


  This is in the unfinished section of the house. 


 Whoa   n*  ,   hold on    [frus], YOU MEAN THERE ARE sections of houses of guys like us THAT ARE FINISHED  [shocked]   rofl [noidea'

 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 12, 2008, 07:43:50 PM
You are in good shape tonight Paul.
Or is it simply that Glenn's leaving doors open all over the place.

 ;D ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on April 12, 2008, 07:59:12 PM


 Details are my business / strong point, details will kill a cabinet job / well any job in building for that matter , so I notice little things.

 I also think Glenn leaves little "trailers / bait " out to stimulate discussion  ;) 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 08:14:50 PM
Do you have anything on your house that is unfinished, PEG? hmm

Somehow I just can't see that happening.  You are rather ... shall we say ... ahh ... detail oriented. [rofl2]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 12, 2008, 08:18:18 PM
I think he has a steel door that he's never painted over the factory paint, IIRC.

Same as me!!



Probably why I remember... makes me feel good/better. K doesn't mind. In fact she never realized it was supposed to be painted until one day in a fit of madness I said something about it.   But she likes the color the way it is!!  Life is great!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 08:24:01 PM
I hope he has at least that.  It will make me feel a bit better ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 12, 2008, 08:31:32 PM
I have paint for it. It's made for spraying metal, ya' no, the thin as water stuff. I used it on the steel security door I installed on the front, oh... 12 years ago, and havie been meaning to paint the rear ever since. I think it's all the masking for the window... or the removing of the window framing (to look like a multi-pane door.... it's just an overlay... that's held me back.  It would look nice, match the remainder of the house.   :-\

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on April 12, 2008, 08:44:40 PM


Do you have anything on your house that is unfinished, PEG? hmm

Somehow I just can't see that happening.  You are rather ... shall we say ... ahh ... detail oriented. [rofl2]



 Of course I do , lots of things , nothing major , well at least to me  :-[   :)

 On jobs ever T gets crossed , ever I dotted , or in this case I guess it's a line if it's a capital letter  :-\

 I have one bathroom to go as far as remodeling goes , I still waiting for my furnace guy to get to my new furnace install , we talked about that this week when I was in checking on a gas fireplace trim kit they need for one of the paying jobs , he said we'd get it this summer  :( I sure hope so , I sick of feeding the wood stove  >:(

 But yes I have plenty of honey do's that have not been done , the primer doors being just the tip of the iceberg , but we do like the color so it's OK .

 Jeesh now that this is out no one will respect me in the morning  d*   rofl

 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on April 12, 2008, 08:45:51 PM


I think he has a steel door that he's never painted over the factory paint, IIRC.

Same as me!!



Probably why I remember... makes me feel good/better. K doesn't mind. In fact she never realized it was supposed to be painted until one day in a fit of madness I said something about it.   But she likes the color the way it is!!  Life is great!



 Thanks a lot Mtn D  :(  Just kidding  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 08:49:51 PM
Wow -- he is human. 

Somehow, PEG, I always looked at you as... well... much bigger than that. d*

You are still our hero here on CP though. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on April 12, 2008, 09:05:15 PM
My son just took off for NYC and his own work. But while he was here he badgered me enough that we finished up an exposed bit of a broken concrete block wall that was in the center of the main living and eating area (it's a fireproof back of the stove surround).

I've been thinking about exactly how to do this since we moved into the house in 1983  :-[. It has greeted every visitor that has come to the house in that time although most don't seem to notice because they have their own owner-built house with their own list of unfinished projects.

Don't rush yourself. One of my neighbors says that if you ever really get the house done there is really no more reason to live and you have to die.  :P

We don't want that do we?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 12, 2008, 09:33:27 PM
You got it, John.  See how things just fell together so nicely after thinking about it for a few years. ::)

Very wise neighbor and that is actually a quote from an old Chinese Proverb.  I am quite familiar with it as I have to quote it to Sassy every so often.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on April 13, 2008, 04:40:19 AM
I sure am glad that I am not the only person to have a factory primed door that hasn't been finished. In fact my front entry door has been like that since 1996.  But it is covered by a porch and glass storm door so it really doesn't get the weather.  I must confess that I have another 3 or 4 the same way.  I hate to paint.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 13, 2008, 08:13:13 AM
We have one here, and one painted and one unpainted at the other house.  Looks like I'm the only one who owns a painted one. d* 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on April 13, 2008, 08:24:01 AM
Looks like I'm the only one who owns a painted one.
n* n* We were talking about UNpainted. Don't go confusing the issue. We have a perfectly fine looking painted front steel door; different color inside than out.  :D  Painted several times over the past 23 years.

The unpainted one is in the rear where it's no seen as much.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 13, 2008, 08:25:46 AM
[scared] Sorry.  [rofl2]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 13, 2008, 07:15:00 PM
OK dudes -- I finished the second post repair today, carried the welder down the stairs and welded both foundation conglomerations together and let the weight off the temporary support to put full weight on both of the repaired posts.  All is well.

I didn't take the 4x12 out of the room yet as I didn't want Sassy to think I was going to completely start finishing things I started. d*

A man has to have his standards, and I did it for you.  Yes -- you other guys.  If I started finishing things completely, you all would feel like you were obligated to do the same.  I just didn't want to be blamed for that. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: teripittman on April 28, 2008, 05:07:08 PM
I've got a question about the uphill patio. I've been re-reading the book and it seems a bit skimpy on actually making the uphill patio. We've got a location that seems like it would be great, already dug out a bit. And, I guess the other question is; if you had it to do over, would you still go underground?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Willy on April 28, 2008, 05:13:58 PM
OK dudes -- I finished the second post repair today, carried the welder down the stairs and welded both foundation conglomerations together and let the weight off the temporary support to put full weight on both of the repaired posts.  All is well.

I didn't take the 4x12 out of the room yet as I didn't want Sassy to think I was going to completely start finishing things I started. d*

A man has to have his standards, and I did it for you.  Yes -- you other guys.  If I started finishing things completely, you all would feel like you were obligated to do the same.  I just didn't want to be blamed for that. [crz]

I don't mean to get you guys in trouble putting up my cabin shell in 17 days. I just have to be ready for fire season and then I get to lay around on the couch waiting for the phone to ring all summer. So my relax time is coming soon unless a big fire happens then it will be winter before I get another 5-6 months off. Mark
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on April 28, 2008, 05:17:52 PM
Yeah, Yeah, Yeah.  I thought you were a "one man habitat crew".  Understand your point.  Too bad the weather wouldn't have let you start earlier. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 28, 2008, 08:05:38 PM
I've got a question about the uphill patio. I've been re-reading the book and it seems a bit skimpy on actually making the uphill patio. We've got a location that seems like it would be great, already dug out a bit. And, I guess the other question is; if you had it to do over, would you still go underground?

The uphill patio can be a bit variable depending on what you want.  A couple of key things you want from it is a back egress from the cabin, and a way to catch the last bit of water you haven't diverted higher up the hill and drain it away before it joins you in the cabin.  So it will be a cut up the hill where water will drain toward the back of the ledge and also angle to a exit cut and drain away.  You could also put a greenhouse up there over it. 

Another thing you want is a way for light to enter the cabin from the high side and the uphill patio does this.  It also gives you a high side for a chimney to exit from.  Check the fascia/dirt retaining board detail on the high side well also.  It is a drip board also, so water that hits it will drip to the ground in the uphill patio, and not run down the slanted girders and into the cabin.

Would I do it again?  I will never build above ground for shelter for me again. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 28, 2008, 08:08:06 PM
The uphill patio does not need to go down to the level  of the main house either.  Make it multi level if you want stepping down into the house.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 28, 2008, 08:09:52 PM
Mark, you definitely got off on the wrong foot, but when you left the inside unfinished for someone else to do, I kind of twisted that around a bit to save myself. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Willy on April 28, 2008, 08:24:53 PM
Mark, you definitely got off on the wrong foot, but when you left the inside unfinished for someone else to do, I kind of twisted that around a bit to save myself. d*

I kind of blew it for myself also! My wife now has this idea that painting our 2 story 1680 sq ft home, 1152 sq ft shop will be easy and I should get on it right after I am done with the cabin. I have to figure a right way to tell her it is not fun working on our home anymore. I have painted it once allready. In fact I wired it, plumbed it, did the kitchen and bath room cabnits, deck, interior trim ect. The list goes on and it isn't fun anymore and I don't realy want to!! Mark
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 28, 2008, 08:27:17 PM
I start having second thoughts on finishing the cabin...s l o w l y.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Willy on April 28, 2008, 08:31:38 PM
I start having second thoughts on finishing the cabin...s l o w l y.

OK then if I get this right I should blend the cabin into fire season very carefuly so as not draw attention to it happening at a much slower pace. Mark
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 28, 2008, 09:45:52 PM
Unfortunately with your decision to finish the cabin and the coming fire season, you will probably not quite be able to get to the house painting but you will keep it first thing on your mind should something change. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: BiggKidd on April 29, 2008, 07:39:56 AM
Glenn,

  I am now 25 pages into this thread wow. You have some truly one of a kind designs here. Can't wait to finish reading.

Larry
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 29, 2008, 07:39:18 PM
Glad you are enjoying it Larry.

I am s l o w l y getting more done around here.

I took the original ideas,  followed them,  then changed some and added my own-- some for better, some for worse, but a very interesting experiment, now starting our 7th year.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: teripittman on April 30, 2008, 09:52:09 AM
Quote
The uphill patio can be a bit variable depending on what you want.  A couple of key things you want from it is a back egress from the cabin, and a way to catch the last bit of water you haven't diverted higher up the hill and drain it away before it joins you in the cabin.  So it will be a cut up the hill where water will drain toward the back of the ledge and also angle to a exit cut and drain away.  You could also put a greenhouse up there over it. 

Another thing you want is a way for light to enter the cabin from the high side and the uphill patio does this.  It also gives you a high side for a chimney to exit from.  Check the fascia/dirt retaining board detail on the high side well also.  It is a drip board also, so water that hits it will drip to the ground in the uphill patio, and not run down the slanted girders and into the cabin.

Would I do it again?  I will never build above ground for shelter for me again. [crz]


I've been thinking it over and I think we could use earthbags (aka sandbags). They could be used to stablize the bank and also to build the structure. I can still use poles to support the roof and a pool liner so I can still use an earth cover on the structure.  I think it would work out. It's a wet climate and this spot is over on the side where the water does drain down. I've got to make sure I have a good way for water to drain (which is why I'm not going with an earthen floor too.)

There's an old shed roof cabin out in this area, that's been empty since we first came into the area in the 70s. The roof is now completely covered with ferns. That's what I'm shooting for here. We thought about building up on the top of the hill, but I just think the wind is going to make life unpleasant up there.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: BiggKidd on April 30, 2008, 06:22:38 PM
WOW Finally read all the way through. Just like gone with the wind its a work in progress. Ok I don't really remember Gone with the wind but it sounded good as I sit here sipping some high dollar hooch a friend left here.

 Larry
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on April 30, 2008, 06:35:12 PM
Glad you enjoyed it, Larry.  Soon I'll have to add more to it so you'll have reading material.  Too bad it's on the Computer and not Sears and Roebuck Catalog style.  hmm

Then it would really be useful. ;D

Terri, I would suggest French drains in a wetter area draining to downhill and extend the pond liner about 10 feet past the sides.  There is a place in Oregon I think that has EPDM about 1/2 price of Home Depot and all sizes.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 10:36:19 AM
Sassy wants a pool.  ::)

So it is our latest expansion at the underground complex.  The pool is above ground though and will actually provide more camo for the shop and greenhouse area as you come into the driveway.  Dirt is courtesy of the shop expansion tunnel at the back.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1010430.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1010430.flv)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on June 25, 2008, 10:42:14 AM
And they wonder why we never finish what we start. ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 10:52:37 AM
I know ---absolutely. 

Before the pool 45' of 4' rock wall and 50 yards of fill - pool is mostly on solid ground then finish the smaller walls because I cant get the Bobcat in there after the pool is in and on and on and on.... ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on June 25, 2008, 11:01:21 AM
I do that quite often.  They do not understand the stages of doing things.  Just like you I will do things because I know later on that I will not be able to reach it when something is built in the way.  I think for the most part mens minds ( some exceptions) do not operate in the same fashion as womens do.  I guess that is the real reason they are referred to as the "opposite sex". 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 11:12:17 AM
Exceptions.  hmm ..... Ah... you would be speaking of the man driver with a woman's brain my dad used to speak of. 

...yes, and they do not understand why we do not automatically immediately respond when they submit an added or unrelated question. 

They do not know that our mind is hopelessly entrenched in thinking of building the pool and the required water lines, power lines - added solar panels, salt water chlorination device etc, and we must shift gears and come out of that trance before we can answer when we are going to put a latch on the door to the utility room. 

We must simply stand there with a dumb look like a deer in the headlights for a minute or two before we can think of getting the skill saw, a drill, screw driver, latch, power cord etc. while we stop thinking of the pool and all of it's related problems, difficulties and requirements.

 [noidea'     d*

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on June 25, 2008, 11:17:07 AM
I am glad that it wasn't just me thinking out loud to myself. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 11:19:57 AM
I see a clarification is needed here.

It was my dad's thoughts I posted, ladies.  Not mine.

I would never have such a thought. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 11:22:36 AM
I am glad that it wasn't just me thinking out loud to myself. 

This happens to you too, John?  hmm

I thought maybe I was unique or had some kind of a slow thought system or something. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on June 25, 2008, 11:32:25 AM
Not to change the subject.  Well we had better or we both will be building a dog house to crawl into.  How is your other project going with the shop extension?

Today I am taking a little breather. Parged a foundation wall this AM. Mowed the yard, went and picked up fuel for the truck, tractor and mower :( ($240).  Can't lay stone until AM after it has time to set up.  Just took a few minuted to get my money's worth out of the new puter.  Can't believe the difference. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 11:42:13 AM
Cool on the new computer-- today's programs are pretty processor intensive.

The shop extension was going pretty good but I had to stop for the pool.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010420.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on June 25, 2008, 11:51:46 AM
Not enough hours in the day huh.  Well you have three more hours of daylight there than I have. ;D.  I wondered as you hadn't made any new post on the shop extension lately.  I figured you were either busy on "paying jobs" or had gotten distracted. 

 I managed to get the XP Windows as I had heard so much trouble with Vista that I was tired of problems with puters.  Got a faster processer and another GB of memory. 

I hated to high jack your thread but I said shoot one more won't hurt as it had gotten a little off track in the past. 

Weather here is Purrfect for working.  Mid 70's this past week an a half with a slight wind.  Don't even work up a sweat ( well a little when I stand in the sun). 

Had to take off early yesterday to run the boys 4-H pig to town to get it tagged for the fair.  Spent $20 worth of fuel for a $.10 ear tag.  But you know one of those things you just got to do.

I'll jump off for now got to get cleaned up some.  Week long music festival that he is playing in and tonight is "wild game" cookout.  Can't miss that.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on June 25, 2008, 11:54:11 AM
Glen you musta been a gofer in another life. My wife wants a pool too. It's not like building the house is enough.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 11:57:40 AM
Note -- it is impossible to hijack my thread.  The simple act of posting is considered continuity by me. d*

I love the underground stuff and digging in the dirt, Scott, but I think my wife really likes me not because I am part gopher, but because I have a dirty mind. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on June 25, 2008, 12:03:47 PM
Whine, whine, whine...  Men...  Glenn didn't realize it, but he was fixing my anniversary present...  he's not into celebrating any special days - figures any day can be special & we give ourselves stuff all the time...   ::) :-*  (besides, when he was growing up, the JW's didn't celebrate holidays - it's so ingrained that he still thinks its a good excuse  ::)  :D )

I helped pick up lots of rocks, ran up & down the hill several times to give DH sustenance - iced tea, food, moral support - I have to always be thinking "what can I do for my dear husband now...  :-* "
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 12:13:18 PM
I'm a simple machine.  Just add food and water. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on June 25, 2008, 07:18:41 PM
Hmm.  ??? You have an underground house and now you're going to have an above ground pool. When I look around my neighborhood here in the 'burbs it seems backwards.  ???
 ;D
How big's that pool going to be? Brand?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 25, 2008, 09:36:26 PM
It will keep the deer, children and dogs out - being above ground, Don.

I am rather backward -- some say to the stone age. hmm

We just got the 16 foot x  48" pool from Costco.  It has a double thick (35mil)  reinforced liner.  We don't have enough excess water to keep a bigger one going or power to maintain a bigger one either.  This one is big enough for Sassy to swim in circles in so it should be fine.  We are doing the saltwater thing with the plug in chlorine maker - makes it from the salt.

 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on June 27, 2008, 07:30:38 AM
If anyone is interested in doing dry stack stone walls, I found this online book to be a help.

http://handbooks.btcv.org.uk/handbooks/index/book/61
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 20, 2008, 11:15:11 PM
Glenn

 you sound Canadian...Well sort of like a surfer dude that used to be from Canada.

I caught the Eh at the start of the video... classic man

you must have a lot of free time.. the Rock wall looks like it was a lot of work
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 21, 2008, 05:40:22 AM

 Where's the pictures ,  ???  :(
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 21, 2008, 06:59:31 AM
My ex-daughter in laws family was Canadian and I used to hang out with them, eh.  Plus Strange Brew was my favorite movie.  I think it may have been the strange Brew influence to make it a bit more entertaining. :)

The rock wall was about 2 days work out of about 4 days for the major part of the job.  It gets easier after you have done a few.

I didn't really have free time but took time so Sassy could get swimming.

PEG - I guess I'll have to run up and take some. It looks quite a bit different since the video.  Still lots of dirt around - added a water line there day before yesterday. 

I keep running out of energy lately....more coffee? hmm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on July 21, 2008, 09:42:55 AM
The rock walls look wonderful & I am thoroughly enjoying the pool - I must mention,  Glenn swims, or I should say "floats" in it everyday - it is very refreshing when the temp outside is over 100 degrees - we usually take our last dip in the late evening - the pool is usually around 90 degrees.  It is so relaxing, I love it  :) 

Poor DH - he stays up until midnite, then wakes up at 6am & can't sleep - so never gets more than 5-6 hrs a night... 

PEG, we'll have to get some pix taken....
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 21, 2008, 09:52:24 AM
strange brew is a great movie... SCTV was great when I was a kid... Great white north.... Take off eh...

We have a pool... but the liner is garbage there is 4 inches of something thick murky and green in the bottom of it...And it has not been used cleaned or serviced in like 6-8 years.

No money for a new liner until next year...I might get a knife and cut what is left of the old liner out and clean it up in there a bit before the new liner is installed. The pool is in ground but kind of small.... There is a  privacy fence around the property so...I do not feel like we will have a lot of critters in the pool...I hate the thought of using bleach in the pool...I wonder if there are any natural non toxic ways to keep the water half clean... maybe some kind of epson salts or something?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on July 21, 2008, 10:10:32 AM
We got the salt water chlorinator - you still have to make sure the ph is right & you have to initially put chlorine in it, when it is at the proper level, you put the salt in & start the sat water chlorinator going.  Our pool liner is 35 mil - which is as thick as the whitewater rafts that people take down the rivers - so pretty tough.  You do have to monitor the levels of chlorine, stabilizer, etc everyday so that it doesn't get away from you & you end up with algae.  But it sure is nice to be able to take a dip whenever you want  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on July 21, 2008, 12:53:58 PM
No Skinny Dippin. Bet I am too late on that one. ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 21, 2008, 02:51:12 PM
I don't even own a bathing suit, John.  Neither does Sassy.  ::)

But we did put up courtesy shades for the neighbors to cut down on the glare, even though they said they didn't mind. [crz]

Here are the pix PEG requested -- dang - where did that one of us skinny dippin' go. hmm

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/pool1.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/pool2.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/pool3.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/pool4.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/pool5.jpg)

OK -- Sassy has one for when company comes over --- unless they wear less than we do. ::)

...and I have a pair of boxers --- gotta watch that fly though.  Problem is I need to lose some weight before I can see it.... and I look kinda weird if I keep reachin' down there to check. d*



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 21, 2008, 07:03:08 PM
Glenn

Remind me not to swim at your place... i think bathing suits will be mandatory at our pool ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 21, 2008, 07:10:36 PM
Peter, it is possible for a bathing suit to be more soiled than a nude.  ::) 

Bad burrito, eh? Peter?  hmm

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 21, 2008, 07:50:59 PM
I can pretend I understand what you are talking about ???

Soiled burritos.... What?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 21, 2008, 07:54:13 PM
Just talking about a soiled bathing suit being dirtier than a clean person. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 21, 2008, 08:05:37 PM
Sorry man did not get it

Luckily my mother taught me to wipe and wash and the like... I may be ugly, but usually I am pretty clean
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 21, 2008, 08:13:50 PM

 Glenn doesn't sound like a "Nob",  at least not in person  ;) The video's pretty good sound quailty I will say.   

 Now I was thinkin you'd dug a hole and filled it with water , I didn't figure in the plastic pool thing. d*   d*

 Nice view, eh ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 21, 2008, 08:21:50 PM
Still say he sounded canadian...

Everyone wants to be a Canadian... some just don't know it yet ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 21, 2008, 08:39:44 PM
Thanks, PEG.  Yeah - the plastic pool was the only thing I could do in the allotted time. ::)

It is the 35 mil Costco one with a steel frame and the water guy who was busy with fires said they are great and he has delivered to some for 5 years or so.  It is guaranteed for 15 years.

Yeah - the view is great day or night. 

To dig a hole 5 feet deep there requires a jackhammer or dynamite.  The left side is just above rock - the right side about a foot and a half of fill so I left it a bit high to compensate for settling or if it doesn't it will never be worse than about 1 1/2 inches high there, which is within tolerances.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 22, 2008, 12:08:57 AM
i like the fence around the pool looks like the old weaven beach blankets we used as kids... unrolled and turned on their sides
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: brianand on July 22, 2008, 03:06:02 AM
The Pool looks great, must be brilliant to just go and cool off when ever you want.... [cool]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 22, 2008, 07:30:21 AM
Thanks brianand.  I have to give my wife credit for motivating me with her left foot.  She's left footed. d* 

It is kind of nice on a hot day to jump in and let it suck the heat out of you for a while.

Home Depot had the fencing in 6 x 16' lengths fairly reasonable, Sassy said.  Light duty but changes the space quickly.

Since it is lightly compacted fill with rocks I drove steel fence posts where I wanted then made the 2x4 frame to support and brace the fence.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 26, 2008, 10:17:00 PM
Fire on the mountain.

I am currently standing in the yard of my prospecting buddy, Keith about a mile east of the underground complex with our 3 dogs and cat.  Sassy is working. 

The Telegraph Fire came within 2 miles of the underground complex. The wind shifted and brought it up our valley.  (He firefighters held it off at the gap so far.  Currently 16000 acres.

All authorities IHave had contact with have been great. No power trip problems. :)

Posted via Blackberry - All OK so far.

What a great excuse for a remodel if need be. GK d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 26, 2008, 10:30:21 PM


 Did you or where you able to cut any fire line around the place with the bobcat , or is that either illegal or impossible?

 Good luck buddy!!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 26, 2008, 10:51:38 PM
Bobcat is broke but did pretty good earlier plus all my excavating dirt.

-t changed too fast to do more than grab the animals and computers and truck and make sure all of the neighbors got out OK

All is well at this time - they knocked it down for now.

Here's hoping all the people fighting this monster get out alive.  This is my prospecting area- I know it well...It's treacherous, rough, steep and dangerous.  Pix when I can. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on July 27, 2008, 04:12:15 AM
Back here on the East Cost they were reporting that the last fire in that area was in 1987.  Also said that they think it started from people target practicing.  Glenn you weren't plinking around were you?   Hope it stays far enough away that you are not in any real danger. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 27, 2008, 06:18:14 AM
It's cool and raining lightly here on Whidbey island - no wind.

Wish I could send a few of these helpful clouds down there...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 27, 2008, 01:27:36 PM


 No rain here yet , feels like it's coming.


 I'm not liking this long silence out of Glenn , bump this with a update eh Glenn! Hope all is well or at least some what OK! Check in please. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 28, 2008, 07:07:24 AM
Just saw this news (Monday AM) on Glenn's hometown...

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gwSSrT7-LciDlr1tYmyE9e19oX9QD926SL4G0
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: gandalfthegrey on July 28, 2008, 08:55:04 AM
you can get an update at :  http://activefiremaps.fs.fed.us/# (http://activefiremaps.fs.fed.us/#)

If you have Google Earth  select download KMZ file near bottom right of page.

Keep the faith Sassy and Glenn.

John (Gandalfthegrey) Knickerbocker
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 28, 2008, 09:59:31 AM
Hello all,

I spoke with Glenn early this morning, and he's tired but otherwise ok after a 22 hour stint of equipment repair, brush clearing, and general fire prevention. He's cut down dozens of his trees, cleared 3-4 acres around the house, and set sprinklers as a precaution, even though the fire has not approached closely so far.

He told me he worked his way up to the neighbor's fence, and went through to see what was needed to protect their nice new little cabin, when he encountered a fire captain. The captain immediately demanded, in a very authoritarian tone of voice "Just what do you think you're doing?" Glenn stopped the tractor and stood up, making visible the holstered .380 on his belt. He replied "Why, I'm cutting a fire break. Do you guys need any help?" The captain's tone of voice changed strangely as he said "Oh good, yes, good job, that's fine!" and went on about his business. Exactly what inspired that instantaneous attitude adjustment remains a matter for speculation, but we have our theories...........

Our place is up the ridge from Glenn and Sassy's, separated by the cabin mentioned above. Apparently it was used as an operations base to backfire the mountain above to stop the fire's progress toward town. This leaves us somewhat optimistic about our losses. Time will tell..........

I wrote a long and detailed account of our experiences of the last several days as related to the fire, and as I was making some small changes, the reply window suddenly defaulted into overtype mode. Ie no idea what caused that to happen, but I never, ever use overtype mode and if someone would tell me how to avoid similar problems in the future, I would be grateful. I lost the whole thing in the process of trying to get rid of overtype before I could finish and post, so this will be it for now.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 28, 2008, 11:26:23 AM
Harry:

Thanks very much for the update on the area there where you and Glenn are.

RE: losing your work on a long forum post - there are two things that I've learned that might help
• Post and then edit (modify). You can save and then overwrite different versions of the same post. Saving often will keep something online that is close to what you want.
• Write in a program on your computer that autosaves and then paste the text into the forum post when done.

Here's what I heard from Glenn this (Monday) morning:

"First time online since the start of the fire.  Worked 22 hours yesterday clearing grass and brush with my John Deere tracklayer (after 2 hours sleep the night before in the front seat of my truck).  I am fine. Got most of what I can do done -- all set up - watching - the fire is about 1/2 to 1 mile away. I'll check later and if time I will show up at the forum."



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 28, 2008, 11:33:45 AM
Thanks, John. I'll put your good advice to use next time I post!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 28, 2008, 12:22:57 PM
Can't read the posts now - gotta check the fire - OK for now.  Glenn
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 28, 2008, 01:35:17 PM
No target practice for me there, John.  26000 acres and growing.  I'm the only one around with power from what I understand.  Wish I was on the grid as solar is not reliable enough - a joke for the wise s county building department lady.  If I won't take care of myself the state will take care of me per her - I must hook to the grid.  I hope her freezer full of steaks is rotting - mine are good so far. - no power outage for me.  Water is pumping to my tank as soon as it appears in the well via the pump safety device.

I have hoses strung all over to critical areas.

They ran me out of here Saturday afternoon - I made sure the neighbor ladies got out OK as both of their husbands were out of town - then rather than go through the road block and being permanently banished from the underground complex, I stopped at my prospecting buddy's place to think it over.  He went to town to his in laws and I stayed at his place with my animals after he took me back up to get my truck.  We took the jeep in case I had to take the neighbor ladies out but I was lost with out my truck so he took me back to get it. 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/3dogs-catsomewhereinthejeep.jpg)

3 dogs and a cat somewhere in the Jeep

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/suzyandspikegofordogbiscuits.jpg)

I let Suzy and Spike run into town for some Emergency Dog Biscuits.  She is very smart.

The Sheriff had previously forced us to drive out in front of him.  I later learned that they imply you must go but if you know your rights you can refuse.

About 2 AM I went to sleep until 4 AM.  I woke up and thought of something Peternap said.  "The ones with the lead control the gold."  Seemed that would control who stayed and went too and I knew I could secure my place much better.  It felt like I was in prison and that wasn't cutting it.  I felt forced to rely on the state - a position I decided not to accept.  Enter "Super hero" who doesn't give a shit about authority and decided no matter what he would do as he pleased.  :o

A fireman I got a dog from a couple years ago wa checking on me today.  I told him I had my own power and water - cleared the hill and felt safe.  He toured our house a couple years ago.  He said " Knowing you I wouldn't expect any less."  I always check unknown vehicles arriving etc with the Mossberg on my shoulder.  we did have a looter running around up here Saturday.  Little doper trash and his girlfriend on a motorcycle thing we were already evacuated.   They got away but the police were keeping an eye out for them.

So 4 am - I went up the hill right past the sleeping fire captain guarding my road.  Straight to the weapons cache at the underground complex.  I loaded 8 rounds into the Mossberg 12 guage shotgun and the .380 holds 13 rounds.  I set the safety on the 12 guage, put a strap on it and wore it or kept it nearby as I worked and made my rounds.  All of the Fire people were real nice and never bothered asking me to leave. 

I acted like a semi-normal person - (but one with 2 guns) and showed them around - showed them the pool for water and the cabin.  The only one with an attitude was the one Harry told you about but as Harry said -- he got friendly fast.  The second group asked for a tour and they were totally amazed.  I told them I felt I still had some Constitutional rights and would do what I wanted to do.  The main one I was talking to said "Good for you, " in a way that I knew he genuinely meant it.  The guys were all great to deal with.  Attitudes seem to be for those with a bit more power.

I never did threaten any of them -- It seemed they just naturally wanted me to like them.  They were nice. ?)

About an hour later one asked me why I packed the rifle -(shotgun) did I do it all the time.  I said I haerd animals we running form the fire and I though a bear might show up.  He then asked about mountain lions of which I had seen one a few months ago.  He said he felt a lot safer with me around- at least that was the story. rofl.

Note that the intimidation and threats from them are real as another neighbor in view of my place told me they did exactly what I expected of them to him.  They threatened him with jail - etc.  They told his helper contractor he was gone - a dead out lie as he was bringing in his generator.  It seems the attitude adjusters were well within order from his story.

A fireman came back to see that I was staying and a Sheriff came to tell me he couldn't make me leave but he wished I would -- that's what I like -- a bit of honesty.  He took my name to let whoever know that I refused to leave.  He said no gurantees - I said no problem..... but then again - are there ever?

My attitude was that I would do whatever it took to show them that I was not their little subject - a ward of the state and I would do as I pleased whatever the outcome.  I'm sure they could see that and none even bothered to question it.  Their authority over me was gone.

I put the fuel pump on the dozer  - dropped the backhoe off and became a one man wrecking crew until I got to bed about 2 AM this morning - 3 hours sleep and I was up again checking things out.

Time to check fire location again.  It was being held around Harry's place yet.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 28, 2008, 02:47:05 PM
The story above that John linked has some wrong math in it.  26000 acres over a square mile - true

26000 acre = 40.625 mi²
OR 40 mi² and 17424000.0 ft²

About the above - I realize that they think that they are doing it for my good, but they will not do it at the expense of my rights or property and a foot of dirt overhead should hold the fire off for a while -- maybe a bit of singed boards around the edges but I would have time to take care of that.  I have reduced the fuel around here to where it should not be a lot of a problem to take care of.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on July 28, 2008, 03:05:42 PM
Lots of luck genn. You're doing the right thing. We're thinking about you.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 28, 2008, 03:35:41 PM
Thanks, Scott.  I wanted to get in here to update you guys but 22 hours was non-stop work.  A neighbor I met the night before at Keith's about a mile away, showed up in the morning with a back pack - half gallon of ice water, refills and a asparagus quiche thing his wife made.  Said they had been thinking of me.

He said - "You didn't eat did you."   It was really great.  He then asked what he could do -- looked around and said he would take all the brush away from my water tank -- that was a big job.  Now I don't have to worry about it burning.  It was all handwork due to massive rocks.  Great neighbors.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/watertank.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John_C on July 28, 2008, 03:53:48 PM
Good work!  and good luck!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 28, 2008, 04:52:51 PM
Yep, this is the type of situation where you discover your real neighbors. The more self-reliant the neighborhood the more likely they will overcome the problem together.

Hang in there Glenn and keep the home fires burning... no, wait. That's NOT the right metaphor! d*

PS - The state and federal emergency folks are not used to you and the kinds of neighbors you have, Glenn. And that's completely understandable. They are trying not to have a Katrina type debacle where people who couldn't take care of themselves died. Government gets heat when it does too little and heat when it does too much. To the credit of the fellow you met on the dozer, he rather quickly recognized you were part of the solution and not part of the problem.

You're all doing a great job down there and I hope everyone stays safe #1, and #2 lets hope not many structures are lost and lives turned upside down. But number one is number one. Both you and the Feds should agree on that. So stay safe and don't get too exhausted. Even a smart guy can do something stupid when pushed past his limits.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 28, 2008, 04:55:25 PM

  Thanks for the update Glenn , good  luck!


 John , that very rational of you about the Govt. / FEMA etc. Pretty much right IMO the blame game is all to common today.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 28, 2008, 05:23:39 PM
I've been trying to locate Glenn's place on Google Earth. Here is what I think is right.

(http://i56.photobucket.com/albums/g166/jraabe/glenn-ge.jpg)

Of course, if this is the right place the picture is still a year or so old. (My house has pictures of a car in the driveway we no longer own.)
Probably, in the not too distant future we will have something closer to live satellite feed.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: TBA on July 28, 2008, 06:36:37 PM
My thoughts and other things are with you Glenn and Sassy. We were in the same situation a few years ago and it's a very difficult and exhaustive place to be.

Wish there was some way I could help.

Good luck.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on July 28, 2008, 08:16:07 PM
It's amazing that you can keep the communications open.  I'm glad, I have come to enjoy your wry observations.  Keep us posted if you can.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 28, 2008, 10:00:00 PM
I thought rye was whiskey, Considerations. d*

Thanks, TBA.  The wife and children want to also - but no way will they let them in.

I have my own electricity and the phone with DSL is the only outside line.  If the grid goes down it's down - many are or were out of power here.  If my power goes down I will know why.  Communications remain open for me.

You got the right place this time John.  That pix still has the motor home where the garden went in last year.  I made one last effort tonight - grabbed the chainsaw, tore down the fence and cleared out about 50 feet of trees below and to the left of the cabin and around the chicken pen.  So tonight I saved the chickens.

Praise the lord.  :)

Previously they would probably have been sacrificed. 

I fell the trees yesterday but the John Deere transmisson was slipping.  I checked and it was low on oil again.  I assume because I have been running it as steep  as it will go many times -- 40% grades and more sometimes if I get up on a rock or something.  Nearly tipped it over yesterday but I leaned to the high side and carefully lowered the bucket and it settled back down.  Nothing like riding your dozer like a bicycle, eh? rofl

I made a roll of trees and limbs about 6 feet in diameter and 40 feet long and pushed it down the hill -- more defensible space (fireman talk for get off your s and clear the frikken brush around your place).

A fireman dropped by tonight and thought the place was easily defended if the need came.

I put the new fuel injection pump on the John Deere yesterday morning.  It has enough fuel now to when you open the throttle it belches black smoke like a freight train.  The fire truck showed up tonight because they saw smoke and I said - Oh just the John Deere.  They were glad that is all it was - I told them I just pushed them aout an new road and moved the trees.  The Captain introduced himself - I forgot to introduce my self -but that just adds to the mystery.  It seems they already knew my story.  I'm sure the crazy guy on the hill with the dozer and the guns is known by now.

All except the one who changed his attitude quickly have been very nice.  No problems once they knew I intended to stay and get things as ready as I can.  I would guess if you asked me I would say what I have done would normally take me a month.

My new friend that cleared around my water tank and his wife were worried about me so they came up to check on me and brought me a quart of Trappist ale.  I'm sucking it down now.  Soon it will be sleepy time.  Konings Hoeven Dubbel - Netherlands.  What a great new neighbor.

People all pull together up here in the mountains.

I'm still doing well,  PEG.  Too dang ornery to be otherwise.

Did I mention I fell off the roof yesterday? hmm  No ?--that had to look stupid.

I was up on the patio roof above the steam engine.  I forgot that the last foot was unsupported when going to remove leaves and acorns that would catch fire and burn the RV garage down. 

I stepped out on that corrugated tin and it started folding.  I made 3 or 4 quick steps in succession and it just kept folding for about 3 feet.   

I looked like Jesus walking on water--- except it finally decided to quit holding me and I tumbled to the ground.  Luckily it was only a short roof - only 8 feet so after crashing through the deer gate and tearing it up, I only got a sprained ankle and a few other aches and pains -- nothing 600 milligrams of Motrin wouldn't cure for a bit. Stupid I say - stupid. d*


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: BiggKidd on July 29, 2008, 04:36:38 AM
Glenn,

 Sounds like quite an adventure your having. Nothing like fire to get you in gear to get some work done. Its an amazingly brave thing you are / have done there saving your home. The true spirit of our land shows in times like these and you should be proud of yourself. Thanks for letting us know you are ok. I've got to get to work I have a meeting this AM looking at another job.

 Keep up the good work and stay safe.

Larry
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 06:29:52 AM
July 29, 2008, 07:28:16  and all is well.   Pumped extra water.  Going to check things out.  Thanks for your concern, Larry and everyone.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 06:47:46 AM
Update per Harry's call last night - he went to the fire meeting.  I will not leave the underground command center due to the risk of getting shut out.

Minimum 24 houses burned and who knows how many that they currently cannot get back into.

I still haven't had time to check into other sites on containment etc. [crz]

A backfire got away from them yesterday about 1/2 mile away on or near Harry's place.  I understand from the fire fighter that they were happy with the recovery, but it looked like a war zone here for a bit.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Woodswalker on July 29, 2008, 07:27:42 AM
Have been following your accounts of the fire war you're fighting right now at your place with admiration.  I've always enjoyed folks who know how to get things done in emergenies.  I worked for FEMA for two years and MN Emergency Mgmt for 3 yrs, dealing with everything from floods, to blizzards, tornados, and large-scale timber blow-downs.  We funded projects to enable folks living in wildfire hazzard areas to install sprinklers on their structures, drawing water from lakes, using generators, which is something you or neighbors might want to consider.

We have fires going up here too.  There is considerable smoke in the Curlew Valley, where my cabin is located.  Two firefighters from WA have already died in the fight down there.  Be as careful as you can Glenn.

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: CWhite on July 29, 2008, 07:34:05 AM
I've been thinking about you guys out there, checking each morning to see how you are, and wish you all success against that fire monster.  Be safe. 
Christina
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 29, 2008, 07:35:23 AM
Boy! What an adventure! I thought one of the advantages of an underground house was that it was way harder to fall off the roof. 8) But then I've seen the pictures - the RV garage is hardly underground. And, if I remember right, there are ways you could have fallen off that roof that would have been an even more exciting "adventure".

Here we have an independent cuss like Glenn out in the backwoods protecting his homestead with a well cleared fire break, his own solar generated power and perhaps the only working water pump for miles. And as long as the phone line stays live he can not only fight fires in a way others cannot, but he can keep us up to date with stories and pictures. Petty damn amazing, I'd say.

Here's to Glenn and Sassy. 8) 8) 8) ::) ::) ::) (boy are we making stories to tell the grandkids, or what?)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: apaknad on July 29, 2008, 07:42:59 AM
Dang Glen,

 this whole fire thing is starting to get scary. i thought initially that you pretty much had it under control with all the equipment and knowledge that you have but it's making me nervous for you. the lack of sleep can be caught up on later but i guess you are doing this by yourself and can't be everywhere at once. if you didn't live so far away i'd help you(if i could get by the lines). i'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

dan
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 09:39:10 AM
Thanks, everybody.  Things look better here this morning.  I got about 6 hours sleep then Spike came over and punched me around with his nose and said - hey you lazy oaf - times a wasting --- get your lazy s out of bed, so I rolled out of bed --lurched on over to the sink and grabbed my coffee cup.  Two teaspoons of instant Caffeinated Folgers in a half a glass of cold water.  I don't drink it because it tastes good.  I just need the caffeine.  Choke it down - nuke a tamale -- not my idea of a great breakfast but it's semi- instant.  Choked it down too then prepared for two hours of indigestion.  Time for Ice Cream -- that'll cure it.

I think Suzy may have got under the wheels of the ATV or hit by a tree I was pushing with the John Deere.  Limping a bit but she seems OK.  No baby aspirin or buffered here per the vet so they said just to keep her quiet.  I can't leave or can't get back in without a major fight so looks like rest will have to do.

Went up the hill and checked the fire line today.  Looks good below Harry's with just a few wisps of smoke and a couple bombers either on that one or nearby , so I think it's under control for now.

While up there I noticed the newest neighbors garden was wilting.  I checked and grid power was still out there.  I went back to the house and loaded 30 gallons of water from my well and took it up there to water everything.  Upon looking around a bit I noticed their tanks were elevated enough to give me water at a couple pounds pressure so I finished watering everything with their water.  They probably won't get in for quite a while so what the heck- we take care of our own up here.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/neighborscabin.jpg)

They built a nice little Countryplans style cabin.  They see the value of a garden.  I barely know them but I like their values, so will look out for them. ::)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/neighborsplants.jpg)

Sassy reminded me that our renters have a garden too so I'll check their place and the other neighbors also.

Hey - I'm still King of the mountain so I may as well take care of my loyal subjects, eh. :)

Here's a little video from yesterday afternoon.  Not the best quality but, hey , this isn't Hollywood and I ain't Spielberg.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1010589.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1010589.flv)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on July 29, 2008, 09:59:25 AM
If it isn't bad enough to almost get burned out of your own house and then to have to drink instant coffee on top of that.  ;D  Stay safe.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 29, 2008, 10:07:49 AM
Here's a link to a map of the fire area. It updates at least every 24 hours and shows pretty good detail if you zoom in far enough.

http://geomac.usgs.gov/viewer/viewer.htm

Here's a link to the most up-to-date source of fire info I've found so far:

 http://www.wildlandfire.com/hotlist/showthread.php?t=5948&page=11

One interesting thing they mentioned at the meeting last night was that the fire burned 18,000 of the approx. 30,000 so far consumed on Saturday alone. That's scary, but there was a fire near here in 1961 that burned 20,000 acres in TWO HOURS!

http://www.mariposaresearch.net/HARLOWFIRE.html
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 10:13:14 AM
Thanks, John.  I have real coffee beans to grind and make real coffee.  Didn't have the time before I check fireline status but maybe I'll go brew a pot for later.  :)

Headed off to the renters and other neighbors - taking the 12 gauge in case I meet unfriendly forces. It always makes me friends. rofl.

Looks like Harry's back.

I saw a fire truck coming out of his place again today so they are still there.  Hopefully all is well there.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 29, 2008, 10:32:52 AM
Thanks to Harry and Glenn for the update.

Here are a couple of maps that will try to pinpoint the fire update with the Google Earth map.

(http://i56.photobucket.com/albums/g166/jraabe/gln-fire-2.jpg)

(http://i56.photobucket.com/albums/g166/jraabe/gln-fire-1.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 29, 2008, 11:20:52 AM
Hey Glenn,

Thanks so much for taking care of our place and watering our garden!  Please feel free to pick and eat anything you want from it - the tomatoes and bell peppers have to be better than tamales and instant coffee for breakfast!!  I can't tell you how comforting it was to see pictures of our place posted, without black char everywhere!  Although I keep telling my friends, if we do burn, "you know, black is always in style!".  But, when this is all over, I will make you some great tamales or anything else you want (you missed a good lamb dinner we had with harry the other day). 

One other note - don't be alarmed by my email address. I am NOT with the IRS. I do consulting for corporate treasury departments and we dislike the IRS as much as anyone!

Thanks again!!!!

Jeanne & Bob
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 12:51:01 PM
Jeanne - thanks for signing on and warning me -- are you an enrolled agent? hmm

-- you never know when I may need services and I do file annually -- like a year late or so in order to get my wifes withholding back.  I always lose enough being self employed to get most of it back.

For sure we must have a barbecue when we get together.  In case I am the barbecue, before then, I suggest lots of sauce and the meat is likely to be very tough.  Sorry about that - I couldn't resist [crz] 

I need to take it easy on you until you get to figure out that I am totally crazy. [crz]

I went to water the renters and other neighbors gardens.  At the cul-de-sac I found a new posting by officials.  I am now officially "Refusal" so I decided to come back and update my sign and post a notice there so there are no misunderstandings - along with a guest book for them to sign and comment in.  I like to keep them guessing. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/refusal.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/refualandnotrespass.jpg)

I like the way they posted it by my Constitutional no trespassing sign.

I made them a fresh copy along with the permission notice.

(http://tinypic.com/1iicr9)

Permission - but still - it avoids confusion.  My No Trespass sign isn't the most friendly and I do want them here.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/authorizedpersonnel.jpg)

Guesst book for - who knows  hmm -- I'm really a friendly guy. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/guestbook.jpg)



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 01:06:22 PM
My friend, TJ from the steel company called me to check up.  I told him the story and referred him here.  He said I'm just like his dad- black choppers and all. [crz] rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 02:38:21 PM
Another Map

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/firemap.jpg)

hmm - looks like I'm in mandatory evac- Oh well. I have to remember to look that word up some day.  d* 

Looks like they are not expecting containment soon enough to comment on it- but I think I'm in the 10% that is under control.  It was looking decent here but like the entrance to Hell over the mountain earlier.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 29, 2008, 03:35:10 PM
You are too much. NO I am not an enrolled agent, and I am not affiliated in any way with the IRS.  Corporate treasury does things like get credit lines from banks for companies and arrange for insurance and help find ways to get cash flow moving better through a company.  I am as afraid of the IRS as the next guy!

Jeanne
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 29, 2008, 03:42:35 PM
Regarding your comment "in case you are the barbecue", I have been researching some recipes. I found a great sauce recipe using Jack Daniels - I think that would be fitting.  Haha - hope you don't find this in "bad taste"! ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 05:18:52 PM
...and  hope I don't taste bad. [crz]  Hey Jeanne, try the ribs. :)

...and Jeanne, I am not afraid of the IRS.  I view fighting with them as recreation, and it is also tax deductible.   I won't make a public scene like the Browns -- that will get you steam roller despite laws to the contrary.  The Browns are right but could not be allowed to prevail -- Ed said show me the law.  They wouldn't do it because there is no law without using implication and intimidation.  Ed was right but they could not allow him to win -- then everybody would want to do it.

I refused audit a few years ago because I didn't want to and didn't have time.  We fought for about a year and a half and I finally hired an enrolled agent who got the ball rolling again.   I talked to the IRS auditor who used the pseudonym "Haskel Cape" (not his real name, but the one he gave me).  I don't have to give my financial information to a person who will not identify himself legally to me do I?  I finally recreated my invoices for him-- he got them -- put "Accepted as filed" and left me alone.   He wanted no more to do with me. I received threats from every IRS office n the state and was yelled at by the guy in the Department of Justice in Washington DC when I called them -- he told me just to give them what they want like I should.  heh

I do not fear death by the hand of authority - that would make me a martyr and further my cause.  Jeesh -- I guess I should have been a Muslim, eh? [rofl2]

On another note-- this is funny.  I posted the new signs

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/newsigns.jpg)

My thought was it would remove any question about my motive or trouble with me.  Seems it worked.

In about an hour or so a new crew from Station 2, Yuma Arizona arrived. 

They said, "We read your signs down there and decided we had to go meet this guy."  They introduced themselves and shook my hand - toured the underground complex - used the facilities as necessary with my invitation and blessing. :) 

They were working hotspots and said they will return.  How could I ask these young people to put their lives on the line for my property without doing all and more than the state would allow me to do.

My new friends from Yuma , Arizona at the Underground Command Center. The crew who was not afraid of the crazy guy.  Thank you, my friends.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Station2Yuma.jpg)


They invited me to drop into the station if I am ever down in Yuma.





Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 29, 2008, 06:22:58 PM


 Glenn's excellent adventure rolls on  8)  c*

 Thats a nice cabin the neighbors have , Jeannie's place I take it . :-\

 It looks like they have enough clearing around it to be some what safe from fire , maybe thats not true . Hard to tell from the photo IF theres weak places / dry stuff to close.

 So whats the situation like now? How close did it get , the fire and was that a good thing in that it burned most of the fuel off then stopped?

  That fire gear looks HOT! But I guess / know they need it to get in range to fight the fire , way different than the gear I had back in the 70's when I was a young volunteer firemen back in R.I.

  Stay safe , eh! :) 

 G/L PEG
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 29, 2008, 06:51:13 PM
Peg, the fire was within about 1/4 mile of Jeanne's & Bob's cabin, up in my meadow. I'm directly up the ridge from Jeanne & Bob, and they in turn are the next parcel up from Glenn. (Saw the exhaust from the John Deere this afternoon, figured Glenn was at it again!) The fire in that area was one of a series of backfires set in order to stop the fire as it came south from the river canyon on the other side of Mt. Bullion. There are hand crews, dozers, and fire engines all over our side of the mountain at my elevation and higher. Earlier this morning, they were apparently afraid the backfires were going to get too close to the airport and interfere with operations there, hence the concentration of activity. Our situation looks better as we are able to see more. Cautious optimisim is the current mode of thought.

Unfortunately, the fire has reportedly jumped the Hwy 140 near the infamous Ferguson rockslide. That is a major setback, as miles and miles of fresh fuel are now available to the blaze. There are also reports that the fire has revisited the Mosher rd area in Midpines. We see an ominous black pall of smoke to the north. Hoping for the best.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 29, 2008, 07:30:45 PM
Hi there Harry!  Glad to hear all is temporarily well!  We are very optimistic at this point.

And Peg, you are correct, the cabin is cleared very well on all sides. We really weren't worried about it too much, but I just didn't want to have all my trees and land charred.  Selfish I guess considering what others have lost but what can I say?  The cabin is made of cement fiberboard faux painted to look like older wood, so we were also pretty sure it could stand up to the heat.  We have another structure - a child's playhouse made of plywood which is nestled in the trees on Harry's side of the hill and that was pretty much at risk. And we have a sea container full of junk including some gas cans which always fume the place up, so possibly that could have gotten hot enought to explode or at least melt the stuff inside. The container has trees on the back and sides of it towards Harry's property.

But I am being positive - I think the worst has passed us.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on July 29, 2008, 08:30:04 PM
Dang it Glenn! I go away for a week, never turn on the TV or radio and look what happened.  :o Crimoney! I truly hope you and your property are still okay.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on July 29, 2008, 08:52:08 PM
Yeah, its kept me sitting on the edge of my seat!  Thanks for all the kind words, prayers & wishes.

I've been stuck in the valley - had to go back to work Friday so left Mariposa Thursday afternoon, drove to Doctors Hospital in Modesto to see my brother who had just been re-admitted for a bad infection (quadruple bypass surgery 1 mo ago).  He was discharged today, doing much better - very thankful for that.

I 1st read on CountryPlans (at work) around 1130pm that everyone on our mountain had been evacuated - 1st thing I knew about that, was able to talk to Glenn on my way home... then when I was finally able to get ahold of him Sunday I didn't know whether we'd have anything left, just glad that he was ok...  its been a roller coaster few days.  Plus I don't have computer access at our house in the valley, don't have TV...  most of the time couldn't get a hold of Glenn...  not knowing, not being able to go back there & help...  worrying about his safety, worrying about my brother - they had thought they might have to do surgery & re-open him up...  worked 12 hr Sat.  was off Sun & Mon, working 12 hr today...  don't think I'd have been much use at work Sun & Mon anyway.  Been praying like crazy...

So thankful that Glenn is ok, that our place is safe, glad Harry's place is ok...  you just never think you will have to go through something like this...  I feel bad about the others who've lost their places...  you just never know what a day will bring - so many people have been affected by the fires & floods around the nation this year...

Glenn, my husband, the crazy mountain man  ;)  ya done good!     8)  Just take care of yourself, eat some decent food, drink lots of fluids & get your sleep!  I love you  :-*

Sassy
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on July 29, 2008, 09:30:32 PM
Well, just talked to Glenn.  He's been out "shooting the bull" with the firefighters - how great, we have our own fire truck & fire fighters  :)  Everything is ok at this time - Glenn said he'd update you guys later & post some more pics.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 29, 2008, 11:54:51 PM
Hi everybody.

Yup - the adventure continues, PEG. 

I just fired up the John Deere for a little bit Tuesday, Harry as the turn in front where  I have been moving dirt was too tight for the big fire truck to easily negotiate.  I told the firefighters I would get that crap out of there for them.

I went on patrol to check things out and they were down at the cul-de-sac a bit later.  Their Commander told them to find a spot to watch for the night.  They were fixing to get set up and I told them that I had widened the road for them and I was the only place around with power and water - lights - tables- restroom,  pool, etc.  While they didn't have time to use it it is a good place to watch the area from.  A great view of all of the surrounding area.  The restroom made points with Andrea.  They call her "the princess" as she prefers a real restroom to going out in the poison oak like they can.

I also schooled them on what poison Oak was --- like --- you're standing in it.  We went over identification of it pretty thoroughly.

I got them to sign my guest book and leave e-mail addresses so I can send them a link although some may have already passed the Countryplans address on.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/guestbooksigs.jpg)

I took them for a tour of all the defensible space around our place - took them up the hill to Jeanne and Bob's place so they could see the fire lines and other places they had been in order to let them get their bearings and situational awareness.  I have lived here long enough to know that it is easy to get turned around and not know what is where.  Schmidt's place is over the hill but only about 600 feet from the underground complex.  A 600 foot walk gaining about 90 feet in elevation, but it is nearly 3 miles by road.

We returned to the underground complex where they paused for a few seconds for a few photos at the front door.  (http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Station2Crew-Yuma.jpg)

Suzy couldn't resist kissing the fireman in appreciation for their services.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Station2atthedoor.jpg)

I asked Andrea for a pix too as she took the other photos.  You will note that I was wearing my holy T shirt also.  With everybody praying for me I felt it was only proper.               

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/GlennandthePrincess.jpg)

Glenn and the princess.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on July 30, 2008, 12:33:17 AM
good looking pup with the patch of black over his eye... looks like a pirate
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Alasdair on July 30, 2008, 04:44:33 AM
Wow! :o What an adventure!
We have had some sleepless nights fighting hill fires with the auxilliary fire brigade here on Knoydart.
Good luck Glenn and Sassy.
Hope you're safe and sound.
Al
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on July 30, 2008, 06:29:46 AM
Well, I just have to give thanks and a great sigh of relief for what looks to be working out as well as anyone could have hoped... at least for the neighborhood of Glenn & Sassy, Harry and Jeanneschmidt.

I feel honored and a bit amazed that our little home building forum was able to serve as a fire communication center to keep people updated and in contact with neighbors and loved ones.

Here's to ALL the firefighters and their local chief of the knob, Glenn the mountain dozer guy! :D :D :D  ;D ;D ;D  :-* :-* :-*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 07:31:40 AM
Good morning everybody.  8:30 and all is well.

My friends from the Yuma Arizona Station 2 Strike Team just left the Underground Command Center to go out and do what they can to save more places from burning.  Be safe, my friends.

Pictures and updates to follow after my morning rounds.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 30, 2008, 07:50:23 AM
Thanks to all for the good thoughts and prayers. They are appreciated!

Here's a link to some good pics of the fire burning at various locations, including our (Glenn & Sassy's, Jeanne & Bob's, and Harry & Jenny's) area of Mt. Bullion:

http://www.goldrushcam.com/discus/messages/2104/2220.html?1217337257
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: auntrambo on July 30, 2008, 08:09:34 AM
Good morning everybody.  8:30 and all is well.

My friends from the Yuma Arizona Station 2 Strike Team just left the Underground Command Center to go out and do what they can to save more places from burning.  Be safe, my friends.

Pictures and updates to follow after my morning rounds.



HEY GLENN, HEARD FROM THE NEIGHBORS ABOVE YOU THAT YOU WERE TRYING TO KEEP MY GARDEN WATERED. THANKS A MILLION. HOPE ALLS GOING WELL. IF YOU NEED US, I'M BACK AT WORK. JUST CALL 209-966-7772 OR YOU MIGHT BE ABLE TO REACH US AT MY BROTHERS 209-966-6035. THANKS AGAIN GLENN. STAY SAFE.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 10:44:57 AM
Thanks , John for being here for us.  

This too is a part of the community of friends you need to safely build, have, maintain and survive when you take that step out, to think for yourself-- to be able to survive while the rest sit back and accept the prescribed standard life that is handed to them.

These people have left their families, children, friends behind 12 hours away to come up here and lay their lives on the line for us.  I felt the least I could do is try to make their stay a little better.  

Spike woke me up this morning - 0400 hours -- get out of bed - you lazy oaf.  Crank up the generator for pumping extra water.  Our friends will be getting up soon and we must prevent them from eating MRE's for breakfast.

I decided it would be steak and eggs for breakfast for them.  I pulled a bunch of steaks out of the freezer -- started the barbecue outside -- as flames leaped into the sky from the burning oak wood I wondered if I would be spotted cooking breakfast.  No problem -- the Yuma Station 2 Strike Team was parked by the pool on the other side of the Underground Complex.  I hosed everything nearby down with water- no need to embarrass my self unnecessarily. [crz]

I went out to the garden - found one of the nice red onions Sassy said were there and washed it diced it up and started sauteing it in butter -

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010612.jpg)

pulled bacon out of the freezer and sliced it into pieces.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010611.jpg)

I love the smell of that combination as the onions and bacon start to get well cooked.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010613.jpg)

Next I added the eggs and scrambled  them, while in the meantime, the steaks were sprinkled with Montreal Steak seasoning and ready to go as soon as the flames subsided in the barbecue.

Shortly the team arrived after their night of broken sleep alternating their watch and trying to catch a few Z's between tours of duty.  No chance for a flareup within their watch to get away without being noticed.  

Suzy stayed up there with them and protected the Princess, Andrea from bears, snakes and hungry mountain lions, never allowing the chance for her to be dinner of one of the wild beasts.

We allowed Princess Andrea to visit the Royal throne room and then the strike team members presented themselves for breakfast.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010614.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010615.jpg)

We dropped the big table down from the post and scrounged up enough chairs from an undisclosed location in the underground command center to get room for everybody to eat-- OK - so I missed one but we found it soon.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010618.jpg)

Make the guys at the station jealous kicks in as they sit and take pictures of their breakfast to send off on their cell phones, all the time saying the other guys are never going to believe this.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010619.jpg)

They even helped clean off the table.   I said I would take care of it, but they said they had to clean up after themselves at the station and would do it here too.

Ready time at 0715 and off to duty at 0730.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010620.jpg)

A few creature comforts on the mighty Fire Truck as these heroes ready to go off to battle, doing their part to save the property of the people in the monstrous Telegraph fire.  Yes -- the supervisors who pat each other on the back and brag on each other at the fire meetings are necessary to keep the ball rolling,  but it's these people - the fire fighters and strike teams out in the midst of the danger who are the real heroes in my opinion.  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010626.jpg)

A couple short videos of my friends who have unselfishly come here to do all they can to battle the flames devouring California.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1010623-1.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1010623-1.flv)

...and off to war....

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1010628-1.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1010628-1.flv)


Godspeed, my friends.  Come back safely please.  It is an honor to have made your acquaintance.






Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 30, 2008, 11:19:54 AM
Glenn, you really are the best!  I am sure that CHP who is guarding the entrance to whitlock off hwy 49 wishes he could be up at your place too enjoying the hospitality!  Be sure to tell the Yuma team how much we appreciate all they are doing! wish we could be there to tell them personnally -


 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 11:32:00 AM
The Yuma Strike team members have our address at Countryplans and I hope that after this is over they have time to come back and tell us how things went.

I know their families are checking in here for news of their loved ones.  Hopefully they will pop in and say hi. 

Feel free to comment to them - I also have their e-mail and will send a link to them when they get home..
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 11:34:06 AM
Note -- I had a problem with one video and added it above after I got it reloaded.  Check it out.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 11:41:08 AM
Sassy has been a bit nervous checking in on me as often as she can.  I am doing just great though and , thanks to her there are enough supplies here for me to keep going for several months. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 11:46:03 AM
Good morning everybody.  8:30 and all is well.

My friends from the Yuma Arizona Station 2 Strike Team just left the Underground Command Center to go out and do what they can to save more places from burning.  Be safe, my friends.

Pictures and updates to follow after my morning rounds.



HEY GLENN, HEARD FROM THE NEIGHBORS ABOVE YOU THAT YOU WERE TRYING TO KEEP MY GARDEN WATERED. THANKS A MILLION. HOPE ALLS GOING WELL. IF YOU NEED US, I'M BACK AT WORK. JUST CALL 209-966-7772 OR YOU MIGHT BE ABLE TO REACH US AT MY BROTHERS 209-966-6035. THANKS AGAIN GLENN. STAY SAFE.

Rhonda, everything is taken care of as well as possible for now - I watered yesterday.  Will get back up there later today.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on July 30, 2008, 11:59:06 AM
Glenn: Here is a little email from one of your fire fighter friends.  I copied one of the emails off of the picture of the sign you posted:

"Thank you very much for the support. We really enjoyed visiting with Glen, and are hoping that we can get a handle on this mess soon! We will continue to stop by and check on him as long as we are assigned to this part of the fire. Be safe, Steve Legros"

Hah! the circle is complete!

Now we can check on you if your communications go down....
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 12:00:21 PM
Dang it Glenn! I go away for a week, never turn on the TV or radio and look what happened.  :o Crimoney! I truly hope you and your property are still okay.

You snooze, you lose, Don.  Doing well here for now.  Thanks for checking in.

TV is so bland, flatscreen and unreal.  I'm a 3-D action figure.  d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 12:06:12 PM
Glenn: Here is a little email from one of your fire fighter friends.  I copied one of the emails off of the picture of the sign you posted:

"Thank you very much for the support. We really enjoyed visiting with Glen, and are hoping that we can get a handle on this mess soon! We will continue to stop by and check on him as long as we are assigned to this part of the fire. Be safe, Steve Legros"

Hah! the circle is complete!

Now we can check on you if your communications go down....



Thanks, Considerations.  I think they will all end up being Countryplans members before we are through.

That's one e-mail we won't lose.  Hopefully they get back here soon.  I know the Princess will miss her throne.  (Hate to see her come down with a bad case of poison oak).
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 12:58:29 PM


 Glenn's excellent adventure rolls on  8)  c*

 Thats a nice cabin the neighbors have , Jeannie's place I take it . :-\

 It looks like they have enough clearing around it to be some what safe from fire , maybe thats not true . Hard to tell from the photo IF theres weak places / dry stuff to close.

 So whats the situation like now? How close did it get , the fire and was that a good thing in that it burned most of the fuel off then stopped?

  That fire gear looks HOT! But I guess / know they need it to get in range to fight the fire , way different than the gear I had back in the 70's when I was a young volunteer firemen back in R.I.

  Stay safe , eh! :) 

 G/L PEG

Hey PEG - hopping around like a fart in a skillet here.  Still plenty to do but things are looking better on this end.  I still haven't gotten down to the lower end of our property.  I heard there was fire or back burning down there.  Maybe later.

Thanks for checking in on me. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 30, 2008, 01:26:18 PM
Here's the latest as of 7/30/08 2:25PM:

Mariposa, CA -- The 32,063 acre Telegraph Fire has reached 20 percent containment as of 6am today.

According to Sierra National Forest Public Information Officer Sue Exline the fire is moving in a northwest-northeasterly direction into the Stanislaus National Forest. Its thrust toward Yosemite has been halted with the fire now 10 miles from the Park.

The fire is essentially burning away from structures. A top priority for the Incident Command staff is to return residents to their homes as soon as possible and that could take place this week.

The number of resources continues to increase with the use of 12 air tankers, 15 helicopters, 74 hand crews, 443 engines, 38 water tenders and 66 dozers. Cost is now estimated at $13.9 million.

Hwy 140 is closed to public traffic during daylight hours to allow crews to stage equipment in the area. In addition helicopters are flying low to draw water from the Merced River.


so ops news & notes 7/30 1100 hrs

Telegraph (CA-MMU-9779) the fire has burned 32,063 acres and s 20 % contained North end of the fire is a running surface fire with occasional single tree torching. The remainder of the incident is experiencing moderate fire behavior. The communities of Mariposa, Midpines Mt. Bullion and John C Freemont Hospital are threatened. The communities of Mariposa, Midpines, Greeley Hill, Coulterville, and Bear Valley are under an evacuation advisory. Various roads between Mariposa, Midpines and Greeley Hill are under an evacuation order. Communication towers for television, radio and repeater sites are threatened. Hwy 140 will have various restrictions East of Mariposa. The sole source watershed for 2,000 Mariposa residents is being compromised. The fire will threaten the Yosemite National Park and the communities of Coulterville, Greeley Hill, El Portal, and Boot Jack. The fire threatens the wild and scenic Merced River, which is habitat for the threatened and endangered Limestone Salamander. The Merced group of Giant Sequoia Redwoods will be threatened. Road restrictions on Hwy 140 East of Mariposa may effect access to Yosemite National Park. The Communities of Lushmeadows and Jerseydale could be threatened.
Beginng today ICT#8(IC Rambo) will assume command of the Southern half of this incident. ICT#6 (IC Hodson) will assume command of the Northern half of this incident with the dividing line being the Merced River on both side of the fire.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 30, 2008, 04:50:50 PM


 This thread should be mandatory reading for all the world, well at least world leaders, who seem to have issues with simple day to day living.


 Talk about self reliance  coupled with good will. 8) They'll be back , if they can swing it I bet. You'll be a legend at that fire house Glenn. 

  Great job Glenn  8) 

 Stay safe buddy!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 30, 2008, 06:20:51 PM
Hey Glenn, I think we should start a little pool to see when they will let us back in.  I am hoping Friday, what do you think? 

Jeanne
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 07:49:28 PM
Crimoney Jeanne.  I thought you were going to start a pool on what temperature I was going to roast to.  Careful where you poke that tender timer. heh

Friday could be a maybe but I heard depending on the fire behavior it could be 2 weeks or more.  Nobody is committing but it s supposed to be a priority.  There are still hotspots and crews going into Harry's even as of tonight.  I was just up to your place about an hour ago.

I surprised 2 Fresno county sheriffs in my cul-de-sac this afternoon.  They were nice enough but at first glance at least one of them thought about giving me attitude.  We talked a bit about some of the people that  were made to leave and my returning and the sheriff  mentioned that some of the people who wanted to stay had no business being there as they didn't have a clue what it was like - they just wanted to stay. 

I guess if you grow big enough huevos to overcome their intimidation then they figure you might be capable of staying.

I told them I was patrolling and taking care of our places and wouldn't be leaving until the roadblock was lifted to avoid bothering them.  I guess the fire guys report suspicious activity to them also.

As soon as I turned around I noticed the most unfriendly officer reach in his car and pull out his bullet proof vest and put it on.  I guess John is right.  They aren't used to mountain people who can take care of themselves.  I never did threaten them or anybody else, but I have been told I can look a bit intimidating if I try.  Probably just that 12 gauge in the gun rack making him nervous - up there it shouldn't be a threat.  I imagine it's a bit unnerving to think of being at the mercy of a crazy guy who really doesn't give a damn.   rofl

All in all most are great guys and doing a job that is necessary but unpleasant for the displaced people.  I agree - I wouldn't have wanted to be responsible for even one more persons life in the middle of that firestorm.

I took you up on your offer of picking the ripe tomatoes and I picked Rhonda's ripe squash when watering there.  I figured that way if another crew showed up needing a place to stay and observe fire for the night, at least I could make fresh tomato soup and squash -- stretch the supplies a bit. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 08:11:46 PM


 This thread should be mandatory reading for all the world, well at least world leaders, who seem to have issues with simple day to day living.


 Talk about self reliance  coupled with good will. 8) They'll be back , if they can swing it I bet. You'll be a legend at that fire house Glenn. 

  Great job Glenn  8) 

 Stay safe buddy!

I almost feel like this bunch is like my kids out there.  I'm sure there are tons of others that are the same but when you meet a group like this who makes it a point to come introduce themselves  and tell you they are honored to meet you, it is special.

They did get that a bit wrong though -- the honor was in meeting them.  I hope they are safe tonight.  Wildland fires are just about the roughest there are.

Note that a lot of the stuff that will grow here in the hot dry summer is very oily, dry and super hot burning.  I've watched these trees with piles of pine needles below them explode just like a tank of gas.  A giant torch.  I really wouldn't want to be close to it.

Thanks for the good wishes, PEG and everyone.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on July 30, 2008, 08:22:38 PM


  Ya those wild fires can really move as well.

 So your place must be a bit like Tahoe , I can see why after last years visit there , fires move so fast , fuel is every where thats for sure.

 Some one mentioned it I think here , two Washington state FF have been killed down there , one at your fire, a 18 YO Port Townsend kid , just graduated HS this year. The other was from down by Tacoma , a Chief , he was burned / over ran by fire I think . The kid had a tree fall on him.  :(

 
 Keep your head on swivel , try to get some rest and drink plenty of water , all things easy to say but hard in ways to do.

 Thanks for the phone #'s 


 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on July 30, 2008, 08:49:47 PM
1. Washington state firefighter Andrew Jackson Palmer, 18, died Friday after a tree fell on him. The federal firefighter from Olympic National Park in Port Angeles, Wash., suffered multiple injuries and died en route to the hospital.

2. A Washington state firefighter who died Saturday scouting the Panther Fire in Siskiyou County had sought cover from a fiery blow-over under his personal emergency fire shelter, fire officials said Monday.

His fellow scouting partner apparently did not use his own shelter, and escaped with minor injuries and no hospitalization, U.S. Forest Service public affairs officer Davida Carnahan said Monday. Few details were available.

Fire is scary, and unpredictable.   :-[

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 08:55:41 PM
Yup, PEG.  These things are serious business.  We've lost others down here.

From prospecting this country I can say that this terrain is rough without a fire nipping at your heels.

They said some was 10 feet a minute.  I have watched the flames leap 30 feet or more in a split second.  So hot the other night that all the gasses in the wood seemed to release immediately in a giant flaming ball as it hit a dry tree.  I was on the hill by the pool watching.  The fire was about a half mile to a mile or so away- close enough.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 30, 2008, 09:19:04 PM
For the record, the loss of Firefighter Palmer occured on a fire up in the Redding area, not down here. We have suffered 12 minor injuries and no major ones or fatalities on this effort so far. Needless to say, our prayers are with those at risk on the fire lines.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 10:00:29 PM
A note on the Validity of my  Constitutional No Trespassing sign for your future reference (courtesy www.landrights.com)

It apparently has some teeth.  When I slipped up on the two Sheriffs on my property today I was explaining why I had the attitude I do.  I asked them if they read my sign.  They immediately answered, No.

At the time I was a bit confused -- how could they not - you saw the picture.  If it was a snake it would have bit them.

By reading the sign they would have possibly made themselves subject to its terms and ignored it, so the only answer they could give was that they had not.  The reason I knew he had read it was in a minute or two he asked if I was Glenn.  I had only introduced myself as Mr. Refused earlier.  That didn't make sense either until I thought about it -- he just verified the validity of the laws posted and the day use fee.

Note that I had no problem with them and had exempted them from it as Emergency Personnel.  I  personally invited them to come up if there was anything they needed, even water. 

All I have a problem with is the attitude.  I guess in most situations it works well for them.  They didn't realize they were dealing with the King of the Mountain.  d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: angieb123 on July 30, 2008, 10:13:21 PM
Crimoney Jeanne.  I thought you were going to start a pool on what temperature I was going to roast to.  Careful where you poke that tender timer. heh

Friday could be a maybe but I heard depending on the fire behavior it could be 2 weeks or more.  Nobody is committing but it s supposed to be a priority.  There are still hotspots and crews going into Harry's even as of tonight.  I was just up to your place about an hour ago.

I surprised 2 Fresno county sheriffs in my cul-de-sac this afternoon.  They were nice enough but at first glance at least one of them thought about giving me attitude.  We talked a bit about some of the people that  were made to leave and my returning and the sheriff  mentioned that some of the people who wanted to stay had no business being there as they didn't have a clue what it was like - they just wanted to stay. 

I guess if you grow big enough huevos to overcome their intimidation then they figure you might be capable of staying.

I told them I was patrolling and taking care of our places and wouldn't be leaving until the roadblock was lifted to avoid bothering them.  I guess the fire guys report suspicious activity to them also.

As soon as I turned around I noticed the most unfriendly officer reach in his car and pull out his bullet proof vest and put it on.  I guess John is right.  They aren't used to mountain people who can take care of themselves.  I never did threaten them or anybody else, but I have been told I can look a bit intimidating if I try.  Probably just that 12 gauge in the gun rack making him nervous - up there it shouldn't be a threat.  I imagine it's a bit unnerving to think of being at the mercy of a crazy guy who really doesn't give a damn.   rofl

All in all most are great guys and doing a job that is necessary but unpleasant for the displaced people.  I agree - I wouldn't have wanted to be responsible for even one more persons life in the middle of that firestorm.

I took you up on your offer of picking the ripe tomatoes and I picked Rhonda's ripe squash when watering there.  I figured that way if another crew showed up needing a place to stay and observe fire for the night, at least I could make fresh tomato soup and squash -- stretch the supplies a bit. :)
Hey pop just wanted to make sure that you are not making tomato soup in the microwave.........Just take a hike and cook it over the fire  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 30, 2008, 10:15:53 PM
That fire is so hot, it would burn all my cloths off - then everybody would lose their appetite. [crz]

Thanks for the comment though, Angie--my DD
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: angieb123 on July 30, 2008, 10:41:22 PM
LOL is DD darling daughter or dumb daughter? Yes stay away from the fire if it will burn off the clothes, or else I might see a new documentary by cryptozoologists saying they had found the elusive bigfoot in the Mariposa mountains.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: NM_Shooter on July 30, 2008, 10:56:13 PM
Glenn, I've been watching this carefully and am very sorry your area has been burning.  I am hoping that your prpperty, neighbors and views have been spared. 

Stay safe.

-f-
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 06:55:23 AM
0730 and all is well.

Take your pick, Angie - --Darling Daughter of course.  Who would know the cave dweller better than you. hmm

Thanks, Frank.  I and nearest neighbors are safe.  Hopefully Harry's shop is safe - It is kind of being used as a command center for this fire line area - very busy there.  I found out my miner friend didn't burn out -great, and he and wife are staying with Carla - ex-CHP with the biggest badge - Sheriff tried but couldn't run her off either. 

Good thing - these out of town firefighters are lost here in the bush.  I also direct a lot of them around.  She directed them to all the back roads - trails and shortcuts in French Camp as well as owning and being able to direct them to the best water sources down there.

I am not sure how the views will go but a lot of the back burns only seemed to have burned the grass from the distance - Many of the Oaks especially may survive or recover.  Much of this brush is thick and near water can be pure jungle.

The neighbor's dog, Dolly, seems to have disappeared.  Maybe scared off by the big fires -- it's not like her to not be around when there is dog food.  I called her to feed her but not around.

Off to my rounds.

Thanks for the well wishes everybody.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 31, 2008, 10:00:35 AM
Mariposa, CA- Incident Commanders for the Telegraph Fire have announced that as of
5:00 pm today (7/30/08), the following areas will open for residents to re-enter. The areas openings include:

Re-entry into the evacuated areas that are unaffected by the Telegraph Fire Northwest of Hwy 49 North.

Areas to include Mount Bullion Access Road from Highway 49 North to the CDC Camp.

Mykleoaks from Highway 49 North to and including Bear Trap Road.

Fournier Road and French Camp Road.

Re-Entry into the evacuated areas that are unaffected by the Telegraph Fire that are located West of Highway 140.

Areas to include Grosjean, Avoca Vale, Serpentine and Lake View.

East Whitlock closing at Colorado Road. Oak Road, Yosemite Oak, Crystal Aire including all spur roads.

Colorado Road to Rancheria Creek Road.

Rancheria Creek Road will remain closed at this time.
All of the above recommendations will be modified based on fire behavior and movement.
Residents will be required to show identification of residency in order to re-enter which can include a valid driver’s license or utility bill. Residents are cautioned to drive slowly as fire vehicles are still working in the area.


 :( I noticed that all the streets near us are open, except ours.

Hope you enjoyed the tomatoes. How are the bird house gourds looking?  Are there any pumpkins which have not shriveled up? 

I am trying to remember what we had in the refrigerator.... And I guess the tequila I left in the freezer will still be good when I get back!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 31, 2008, 10:20:29 AM
West Whitlock is the main access to the Mosher Rd. area hardest hit by the fire, plus the entire east and south sides of Mt. Bullion. They're likely not going to allow public traffic until they're pretty well mopped up, which may take a while. There were 10 engines staged at 49N and West Whitlock this morning, and they all went in on Whitlock, exactly where to we don't know. I'm hoping they'll let property owners in sometime soon, as there are not that many between 49N and the Whitlock Gap near Mosher, etc. Those returning to the nearby roads reopened to residents only are required to have proof of residency or ownership to get past the roadblock. I'm going to the phone co. office later to get a copy of a bill for that purpose, if they'll oblige. If not, there's always the county tax collector's office or the recorder's office.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 31, 2008, 10:34:45 AM
Harry I can fax you a PGE bill if you need it to get past the gatekeepers.  It was for a whopping $4.00 last month.

Jeanne
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on July 31, 2008, 10:41:26 AM
Thanks, Jeanne, if I can't come up with something, I'll let you know! You likely have the info line number 209.966.1133, where they're making the announcements about reentry, etc. As of this moment, no update since yesterday afternoon.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 04:38:50 PM
From link supplied by  Fire Captain Eric Ballard, Murrieta, California.

http://wildfire.cr.usgs.gov/calfireplan/viewer.htm

http://www.firescope.org/

Use this straight to info

http://www.fire.ca.gov/index_incidents_telegraph.php

Openings to return - current update-

http://www.fire.ca.gov/downloads/incidents/TelepgraphFire_release.pdf



Captian Eric and the crew check the Underground complex for fire safety... :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010630.jpg)

Video to follow

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 05:26:29 PM
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1010632.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1010632.flv)

Current Map

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/telegraphmap1.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 05:31:45 PM
Al just listened to the phone message on our road and Blue Oak Ridge is now open -- possibly need ID for proof of residence - Power Bill - DL etc. (I'm, not sure on that - It was mentioned elsewhere. gk)

209-966-1133 recorded message

W. Whitlock open to the Gap - Harry can go  home.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 05:41:28 PM
Also listen to the message if you were unfortunate enough to have been on grid and have spoiled food as power was out so long.  There are going to be dumpters for it.

With us being off grid on reliable solar and wind with a backup generator, we lost nothing.

Jeanne, your power came on today as I was watering.  I ate some of the small tomatoes and saved the bigger ones in case I can cook a meal for one of several crews who may camp out here if possible.  We'll have stewed tomatoes and squash from Rhonda's along with steak or burgers.

Rhonda, your power came on earlier.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on July 31, 2008, 05:57:46 PM
That's great news, Glenn!  Thanks again for being our eyes and ears!  You might want to throw some of the jalapenos, tarragon, or basil in with your tomatoes and squash!  I don't think I had too much in the frig - maybe some mayo and a jar of peppers.  Now that power is back on, our outdoor shower should work with hot water; let the fire guys know they are welcome to use it if they like and they of course can camp at our place if they like, although there is no accessible bathroom.  But then, Princess is gone I guess, so that is not as much of an issue!  The trampoline makes a great bed - very soft and comfy!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 06:10:23 PM
Thanks, Jeanne.  I know I have 2 or 3 crews and trucks that may want to show up here, but I bet they get moved to the hotspots as this fire is so big.  Amazingly they are getting a handle on it.  Working on over 40% currently unless things go wild which they can easily do.


About the above video--

Al Clawson - the guy who told me of the road openings, worked with me off and on since 1976.  He lives in Greeley Hill, above the fire.

Back around 1990 Al and I were in Temecula as they were building Murrieta.  

We worked all day putting roll bars or slopers on machines and one of Al's favorite things was to eat at local Barbecues.  

There was a great little barbecue in old town Temecula.  The sidewalk in front of it didn't have a curb -- just a gutter formed in the asphalt, then curving smoothly into the sidewalk.

We went in to the barbecue and ordered our meal while this obnoxious loud mouth drunk was in there doing what they do best.  Being obnoxious and loud.  d*

We finished our meal and just as we were walking out a siren went off.  Mr Obnoxious ran out into the street waiting for the fire truck and tried to flag it into the barbecue --- where there was no fire.

Al was driving my Cabover Peterbilt 10 wheeler crane truck and I had no idea what he was up to.

He had lost his tolerance for Mr Obnoxious.  He started jambing gears on the Pete, went down to a wide spot and made a "U"y ---(How do you spell that? U turn) .  By this time Mr Obnoxious was in the street traffic lane in front of the barbecue trying to wrongly  and illegally flag the fire truck to the Barbecue.  

Al crossed the center line of the street stomped the throttle of the Pete - black smoke boiling out the stack, and drove clear up onto the sidewalk chasing that drunk all the way back into the Barbecue.  

I was sitting in the right seat going - "What the hell?"  hmm

Al continued driving off of the sidewalk back across the street into our lane.  He never did stop.  He never did even slow down.  

I said, "Al, I think we better get out of town before he calls the cops."

Al said, "I'll teach that drunk what happens when you screw with the fire truck."

Al was funny like that.

Glad he's my buddy.  He calls nearly every day or two and I do likewise - just to make sure we're OK. :)





Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 06:54:29 PM
From: glenn kangiser
Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2008 8:00 AM
To: Web Contact YFD Yuma Fire Department
Subject: Wonderful Crew


Dear Yuma Fire Admin,

Thanks for sending your great strike team from Station 2 up here to help out. They are special to us and we hope all goes well for them without injury or loss. I had the honor of having them camped at my place watching for flareups and hotspots.

After a bit of misunderstanding with the Sheriff trying to evacuate me I returned - cleared several acres of my land giving them more defensible space and did all I could to help the firefighters. Your crew read my notice and came up to introduce themselves to me. I set them up with the best view of the fire area on my property and did what I could to orient them. Our area is rough.

I am forum admin on www.countryplans.com and we have a thread there I thought may interest you.

Glenn's Underground Cabin Update

Thanks again - please keep us updated on the welfare of the team.

Please tell Princess Andrea, Paco, Steve and the rest they are in our thoughts, please be safe.

You can even sign in free on the forum and update there if you like. If not time for that e-mail to me would be appreciated.

Glenn Kangiser




Mr. Kangiser,

On behalf of Chief McArthur and all the men and women of the Yuma Fire Department we would like to thank you for the kind words for our crew currently helping out to contain the Telegraph fire.  It is very rewarding to hear these sorts of appreciation from the public we serve whether in our local area or elsewhere in this fine nation of ours. As is usually the case there will be many stories to be told upon their return and no doubt yours will be one of them.

It did take me a few minutes to navigate through the forum but it was comforting to view the photo of them up in your neck of the woods.

Again, thanks so much for offering these positive comments and hopefully there is a return to normalcy in the immediate future.

Sincerely, 

Dennis B. Light
Assistant Chief for Operations
City of Yuma Fire Department
One City Plaza, Box 13013
Yuma, AZ 85366-3013
(928) 373-4850 Office
(928) 373-4851 Fax
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 07:13:10 PM
Some more of the great engines and people who have come to save our bacon...from being extra crispy.

The Murrieta Engine

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010634.jpg)



The Riverside Team

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010637-1.jpg)

The Riverside Engine


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010639.jpg)


What an honor to have all of these great men and women visit and tour the Underground Complex while checking for threats from the fire less than a half mile away.


Notice to firefighters and other emergency personnel - if you   (or your admin happen to find this please relay to your team members)

209-742-5725 - cell 559-906-9049

Our place is fully functional - I and neighbors wanted you to know that we have

Water

Food -we'll cook you a meal if you need it

DSL Wireless internet and a computer w/printer to use if needed

Showers
 
A place to park and sleep -bunks - mats if needed

Pool if you get a break and are stuck here


and we will try to provide anything else you may need.

Sincerely,

Glenn and the West Whitlock, Mariposa Community



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 08:23:27 PM
Wildland Fire info useful to all Countryplans members in rural areas.

Courtesy Murrieta Fire Website.

http://www.murrieta.org/datapages/datafull.asp?id=79

Common sense stuff from them - I did all of this including moved my acetylene and small propane bottles down the hill to a clear space where they would be safe or not kill someone if they exploded.

What to do DURING a wildland fire:

 

    * Turn on a battery operated radio to get latest emergency information.
    * If you have a ladder, prop it against the house so you and firefighters have access to roof.
    * If hoses and adequate water are available set them up. Fill buckets with water.
    * Remove combustible material from the area surrounding the house (lawnchairs, tables, etc.).
    * Turn a light on in each room for visibility in case of smoke.
    * Close all doors and windows, but do not lock them.
    * Open or take down flammable drapes and curtains.
    * Close all venetian blinds and non-flammable window coverings.
    * Move upholstered furniture away from windows and sliding glass doors.
    * Be ready to evacuate all family members and pets when requested to do so.
    * Turn off air conditioning/air circulation systems.
    * Detach electrical garage doors.  Back in your car and leave the keys in the ignition.
    * Secure your pets if possible.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 09:05:03 PM
To: Glenn
Subject: How are you doing with the fire?
Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2008 21:28:10 -0400
From: Mark
Hi Glenn,

   Is the fire near you?  Is the Bug Hostel in the path?  I told everybody you are underground but we are worried about the smoke.  And they cook potatoes in the ground too.  I hope they don't run some Caterpillar cutting fire trails over your roof.  Let us know if Smokey the Bear has been by again.

Cousin Mark

-----Original Message-----
From: glenn kangiser
To: Mark
Sent: Thu, 31 Jul 2008 7:45 pm
Subject: RE: How are you doing with the fire?

Hi Mark and Sue -

Yes - the fire is about 1/4 to 1/2 mile from me.  I refused to evacuate because there was way too much I could do to assist the firefighters and help myself to save my place if it got here.

The Sheriff ran me out but at 4AM I returned and loaded up my attitude adjusters - a Mossberg 12 gauge with 8 rounds  and a .380 auto. pistol.  I found that all contacts with authority figures with attitude problems became friendly encounters.  I never did threaten anybody.  It seems just the presence of something they understood was enough to make them reasonably nice.  I had 2 w/ attitudes --- one very brief when he saw I was packing, and the other was pissed looking all the time but held his attitude back.  He was on my property and I kind of slipped up on them on my ATV before they figured out what was going on.  I had no problem with them unless they had a power trip to show me.

I noticed that as I drove away he went and put his bulletproof vest on - even though I didn't threaten him -- probably was feeling a bit vulnerable.

All the details -- or some anyway - membership is free if you want to comment -- you could give me a character reference so they know I'm not really crazy.

Glenn's Underground Cabin Update

Catch you later
Cousin Glenn

To: glenn-k
Subject: Re: How are you doing with the fire?
Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2008 23:32:37 -0400
From: Mark

Glenn

    We had a guy shot up here just because he looked like you.  Maybe you need to get one of them there bullet proof vest, pants, shirt and hat.

     Up here I am building houses for protection when the Lizard People come from outerspace.  Shirley McClaine the actress is part of that group.  12" thick concrete walls with concrete roofs and submarine doors for entry.  If you put Copper on your roof I guess they will leave you alone but I guess the reinforced concrete walls are just for extra assurance.  I guess that somebody that traveled light years to get here can not figure out how to get through a concrete wall.  Lizard people will look at it as Lobster " shell is hard but the meat inside is tasty".

                                                                                                Cousin Mark



Dang family.....I jus' can't get no respec'







                                                                                               
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 10:57:02 PM

Hope you enjoyed the tomatoes. How are the bird house gourds looking?  Are there any pumpkins which have not shriveled up? 

I am trying to remember what we had in the refrigerator.... And I guess the tequila I left in the freezer will still be good when I get back!

The gourds looked pretty good - some of the other vines had the tips burned a bit but for the most part its all pretty decent.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on July 31, 2008, 11:12:41 PM
Well, just got back to the Underground Cabin @ 2230 7/31...  Glenn didn't look too singed, the dogs were safe - couldn't see much of the landscaping Glenn did with the backhoe...  but good to be home.  Thanks for everyone's thoughts & prayers.

And a special thanks to all the fire crews!  You guys (and gals) are awesome!!!   [cool] 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 11:15:50 PM
Wow! :o What an adventure!
We have had some sleepless nights fighting hill fires with the auxilliary fire brigade here on Knoydart.
Good luck Glenn and Sassy.
Hope you're safe and sound.
Al


Thanks for the well wishes, Al.  Fire is another of the universal languages.

Restrictions off for us, they let Sassy back in tonight so things may go back to semi-normal here soon.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on July 31, 2008, 11:20:17 PM
Well, just got back to the Underground Cabin @ 2230 7/31...  Glenn didn't look too singed, the dogs were safe - couldn't see much of the landscaping Glenn did with the backhoe...  but good to be home.  Thanks for everyone's thoughts & prayers.

And a special thanks to all the fire crews!  You guys (and gals) are awesome!!!   [cool] 

Sassy probably wouldn't have minded if it gave me just a little beard trimming singe, but I'm trying to look like an old sourdough miner, so am letting it grow.  Boy - I hope I don't get it stuck in any rotating machinery.  Talk about defacing private property. hmm [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: benevolance on August 01, 2008, 03:30:11 AM
at least if it gets damaged it is not anything of value ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 01, 2008, 04:26:05 AM
Thanks, Peter.  I needed that. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: harry51 on August 01, 2008, 05:40:47 AM
Got back in last night after the fire info meeting. Very happy to report no damage of consequence. Fire burnt all around us, and we still had two engines and crews at the top, and two more with a water tender at the shooting range. Feeling very relieved and grateful. Will post some pics later.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 01, 2008, 05:50:46 AM
That is great, Harry. 

These guys are just a great example of what this country is supposed to be about.  If only the rest of government could be as good as this sector.

New Fire Map

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/telegraphmap2.jpg)

Old one for comparison

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/telegraphmap1.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Telegraphfactsheet7-31-08.jpg)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: OldDog on August 01, 2008, 06:50:09 AM
Glenn,

As an ex rural area 20 year firefighter I can tell you that the "Majority" of the firefighters appreciate the help and hospitality you have given them.

GOOD JOB!

I hope nothing "Else" happened to your "Holy Shirt" [cool]

Bruce
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 01, 2008, 07:03:32 AM
Thanks Bruce.  All of the firefighters except one Chief who immediately got friendly were super.  The bureaucrats displayed their godly attitudes at the first fire meeting - our people didn't care how much they wanted to kiss each others s's.  They just wanted to know if they were burned out but, they were grateful for what was being done.  That was not the place foIr 45 minutes of s kissing IMO-- they should have done a press release for that.

The real workers - the guys doing hand lines, the strike teams, the guys back burning in the fiery hell are the real heroes but it also does take the supervision, coordinating and planning to get it all done.

I also met many supervisors who were great so I can't put them all down -- not fair.

I am a welder and the t shirts tend to get holes from welding -- that one had a really rough day and had a few extra ones plus the rest seemed to have doubled in size -- to the rag bag with it next wash I guess.

Man, I loved that shirt.  :(

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on August 01, 2008, 09:18:02 AM
Glad to see this is working out in your favor Glenn and Sassy. I bet you can use some rest after this past weeks excitment. We've had many fires around here over the years so I know how trying these things can be.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on August 01, 2008, 01:39:54 PM
Glenn:

Got a call from Kelia (SP?) at the Yuma fire station about wanting to use some of your fire team photos in their newsletter. I gave her your contact information.

John
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 01, 2008, 02:00:20 PM
I took a good nap yesterday afternoon.  Our town is filled with firemen.  Today is the first day I've been out since last Friday.  About to fall asleep again. d*

Thanks Scott.  Things could change but look pretty good for us right now.


Great, John.  I have higher res ones I can send and extra ones also.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 01, 2008, 04:44:45 PM
Received this this afternoon.

Subject: Yuma Firefighters
Date: Fri, 1 Aug 2008 12:06:56 -0700
From: Kayla.Holiman
To: glenn-k


Hello Mr. Kangiser!
My name is Kayla, and I am a fire inspector with the City of Yuma Fire Department. I am a 'stand in' public information officer when our real PIO is out of town. He happens to be out of town right now, so I am in charge of the press releases! Our Assistant Chief forwarded your kind words out to everyone on the department, and we have all been watching your blog! I really enjoyed seeing the photos of the guys, and hearing some of the things they have been doing. I sent out a press release this morning to the media to let them know our guys were on their way home. I attached two of the photos from your blog, and told them they were courtesy of Glenn Kangiser.

Our local newspaper has online access, and since you seem to be very handy when it comes to the internet, I thought I would attach a link to their website with the story. They even featured two of your photographs! We have a lot of local support for our guys, and I know it makes me feel great to know they have it from you guys when they are away from home!

Thank you again for the updates! I hope all is well on your end. PS - your dogs are now celebrities in Yuma :-)

http://www.yumasun.com/news/fire_43363___article.html/firefighters_yuma.html

Sincerely,
Kayla Holiman
Fire Inspector
City of Yuma Fire Department


RE: Yuma Firefighters‏
From:    glenn kangiser (glenn-k)
Sent:    Fri 8/01/08 5:19 PM
To:    Holiman, Kayla - Fire Inspector (kayla.holiman); Kathy Kangiser (kathyk-rn)
Security scan upon download    Virus scanning provided by Trend Micro ®
Attachments: Princess ...bmp (1008.6 KB), Yuma, AZ ...pdf (9.4 MB)
Hi, Kayla,

Thanks for the letter and informing us that our favorite team is on their way home.  We have been thinking of them.

It is great that you are using the Internet the way it was meant to be used.  I'm glad you found the photos and info useful.

I would have been happy to have the team back again for more time here but I used to work on Caterpillars all over the state and I know how hard a road trip to a remote unknown location can be, especially doing the kind of work they are doing.  I'm glad they are on their way home.  Send them our love and best wishes from me and the the members of Countryplans.

All of the neighbors are so grateful to them and the other firefighters, in fact there are signs all over town.  I am sitting here with donated vegetables from the gardens of neighbors your team was helping to protect.  I was collecting them up to cook them a fresh meal if they did manage to get back here.  I figured they would probably not get back as this fire was spreading so fast.

I was pretty sure they would be assigned to a different area.  They were special to us because they sat right here on one of the worst nights and assured the safety of this very spot.   I was happy to have the honor of getting to spend time talking to them and getting to know a bit about them.

Sorry I wasn't dressed better in the pix.  That shirt had a real rough day.

My dogs loved your fire fighters.

Suzy - the mostly white and black one made a special effort to guard Princess Andrea from any wild bears and mountain lions that may have been wandering hungrily through the night.  Spike loved Paco.  Princess (not to be confused with Princess Andrea), our mostly black dog, so wanted to kiss a firefighter and thank him for helping.

As promised, I have named the Royal Throne Room after Princess Andrea.

I hope to hear from them after their safe return and a bit of rest.

Thanks again.

Glenn Kangiser
Troglodyte and Countryplans Administrator

Note - the Princess Andrea story was because she preferred the Royal Throne at the Underground Complex to the poison oak in the California bush country. Her team mates were teasing her a little about it. 

I don't blame her a bit but couldn't resist getting in on the joke a little.  She seems very good natured.  I told her I was going to name the Royal Throne room in her honor and you know I'm a man of my word...  ::)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/PrincessAndreathroneroom.jpg)

...and to think that the Yuma Fire Department made Spike, Suzy and Princess world famous in a major paper.  So much good coming out of this encounter.  They may all get jobs in a movie or something.  [cool]




Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: BiggKidd on August 01, 2008, 04:46:48 PM
Glenn,

 Glad to see you made it through the fire unscathed.(sp) Sounds like you met some real good people and a few of the others. I bet you are glad things are calming down.

 So I've got a question for you. Is the underground complex your main residence? Least ways when your not selling your body.........?

 I sure bet those fire fighters were glad to see a friendly face and calm place to rest once and a while. I am still amazed at what all you got done in such a short time.

Keep the spirit.

Larry
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 01, 2008, 04:59:46 PM
Things are very slowly returning back to normal around here, Larry.  I was able to get into town to stock up on shells and supplies and much more.  Some Congressman's wife was down there when I was telling my story.  They like to be where the action is whenever a great group of government worker bees are doing their job.  I call it good show by association.  :)

Actually she was a nice lady, a bit taken aback by the guns part of the story but said she loved it up here and wouldn't mind living in the area.  Nobody named names so I am still remaining anonymous.  [scared]  They'll never know it was me- shhh - nobody tell.  Probably should have used a pseudonym... hmm

I am very much into selling my body for money, Larry.  I guess that will never change.  I stay here full time except when working the streets.  Sassy works in the big city and goes to the other house in the valley for several days every other week.

Yes, Larry.  I am a professional man of the streets going to the valley to pillage and plunder until I can get away from whatever job I have contracted and back to the relative safety of the mountains.

Note: Glenn is a professional welder, ironworker, contractor, mechanic, equipment operator, former well driller, pilot, all around super hero and BSer.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 01, 2008, 07:22:17 PM


Note: Glenn is a professional welder, ironworker, contractor, mechanic, equipment operator, former well driller, pilot, all around super hero and BSer.



 And breakfast cook  :) as the F/Fighters can attest to.

  It ain't B/S-in IF you can do it right ;) 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on August 01, 2008, 07:27:26 PM
Glenn, I am sorry I missed you today, but I was able to meet Sassy (I kind of surprised her in the pool!) and after reading all the posts, I felt like I knew her before she even said Hi.  She gave my daughter and me the grand tour of your place - all I could say was WOW!  I want one!  I loved the floors especially! And the doors and all the cool beams.  We will have to talk when I am ready to build.  !  Of course, after this fire, all the ideas I had are shot because I am now no longer interested in nestling the house in the trees!

And Sassy, thanks for the flower seeds!  I can't wait to plant them

After looking around our place, what impressed me in particular was the great care the firefighters (and you!) took of our place - all kinds of brush, tree limbs, and grass cleared near our propane and water tanks, and items gathered from the sides of our shed, container, and playhouse and neatly stacked out of harm's way.  I felt pretty bad thinking we should have done this work ahead of time, and here these crews were away from their families, doing my chores for me to make sure our homes and structures survived. I cannot say thank you enough to all those who worked on stopping the damage from this fire!

We drove the rhino up the hill to Harry's and looked around - looked like the fire got really hot up there, lots of thick white ash in some sections.  We had a chance to talk with the great crews from the Palomar Hot Shots, the Orange County fire dept, and a couple guys from the Kings County/Fresno area who were taking some R & R under the shade of some semi burned trees off Harry's road.  

We also visited with the Rose's who were equally thankful for the great work the firefighters did.  We all feel very blessed to have had such great people helping us.

The Roses reiterated your idea that a neighborhood party is definitely in order.  We will be whitewater rafting in Oregon for a week but when we return, let's please put something together!!  My people will call your people....

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 01, 2008, 07:47:10 PM
Cool, Jeanne.  I heard about the surprise in the pool.  rofl 

I think she scared a few helicopter pilots too.  She figured if she turned her back and didn't look, they wouldn't be able to see her. [rofl2]

Jeanne, your problem is that you have failed to realize that the house goes in the ground. d*

I guess Harry's shooting range is where we missed you as we went up the hill on the Bush Hog to Harrys and saw the fire fighters but didn't stop.

The party sounds good.  We have several fair flat areas and the pool so maybe we can do it at our place.  Maybe Yuma can send a strike team up to keep the steaks from burning.  That would be cool.

Looking forward to your call.

We'll go up and check on the firefighters at Harry's tomorrow and see if any want to go for a swim if off on some R&R.

The chief I first met on the John Deere had his crew come up and clear the grass as well as back burn to protect the cabin when I told him I was clearing fire trail and checking on your place.  I think they are also the ones who fed and watered Dave's dog the first time.  That was before I had time to meet the crews who came to help out so I do not know who to thank for that.  They were all great though.

I think I'll jump on the Bush Hog and see what's up with the fire fighters at Harry's -- I assumed they may have been busy today and didn't stop.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 02, 2008, 01:19:48 PM


Note: Glenn is a professional welder, ironworker, contractor, mechanic, equipment operator, former well driller, pilot, all around super hero and BSer.



 And breakfast cook  :) as the F/Fighters can attest to.

  It ain't B/S-in IF you can do it right ;) 

I can but don't tell Sassy, PEG....shhhhh.


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 02, 2008, 01:45:17 PM
Notice Blue Oak Ridge - Telegraph Fire and associated neighbors, emergency personnel  and friends.

Potluck barbecue here Saturday - the 16th starting Mid Morning going to....?  Currently working out details.  209-742-5725

I figure it's past time the locals on this end of the mountain get together, exchange phone numbers, get to know one another and be better prepared for emergencies.

I am also inviting others in the area nearby that were effected by the fire.  We will have a guest book for names, addresses, emails and phone numbers.

From the information we collect we can at least put together a contact list for any emergency our friends or neighbors may have.

By doing it potluck style, we will be able to handle many guests and have enough food.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 02, 2008, 03:51:13 PM
Up to 80% now barring any unforseen circumstances.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/latest80.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 02, 2008, 08:56:58 PM
New piece of information.   The lady I was talking to about the Sheriffs excessive coercion who was with the assemblyman's wife was none other than Diane Fritz, supervisor District 4.

Frank - my renter says --"Now we weren't naming any names." to her.  I didn't know at the time. d*

I looked her up and I think I'm still OK.

Quote
I believe in the rights of property owners and that we need less Government in our daily lives.

I hope she lives by that quote.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 06:45:28 AM
I was just thinking ---

If you were slipped up on by a mountain man looking guy with a death wish, a 12 ga. Mossberg, a .380, a Camo Bushhog 4x4, a 90 lb. American Bull Dog and 2 other 40 to 50 lb dogs, would you consider that to be intimidating?  Opinions please.

Just trying to figure out what type of image I projected to someone I had never met before.

Could have got me shot?  That wasn't a problem to me - I had no fear of that.

My fight was to help save the neighbors - maybe town and against abuse by authority- I reserve all rights.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 07:04:51 AM
Spike went missing for a few hours last night.  He and Suzy had eaten some spoiled food thrown out by the on grid people and thrown up.   I was afraid he had food poisoning and had wandered off to die.  I called the Sheriff's Animal Control to see if they had seen him.

(estimated cost of food thrown out by on grid people who lost electricity -my estimate- 2000 people x $500= $1,000,000.00   ...We would have lost $1000.00 or so had we been on grid - We now have 2 freezers and 2 electric fridges).

In an hour or so we heard the neighbor dog barking and they were together visiting the firemen at the camp up the mountain by Harry's.  He's Mr. Sociable and never one to be left out where there is lots of attention and handouts.  Sheriff Animal Control dispatch officer  laughed when I told her where he was.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on August 03, 2008, 07:14:07 AM
Glenn I would not have been intimidated in such a situation since where you live having a gun and dogs would not be unusual. If it happened in town that would be different. My experience with authorties is that is you seem competent and sure of yourself they won't hassle you as much as if you seem scared or uneasy around them. I once chewed out a state trooper for delaying me at a road block for no reason in 100+ heat ( I had no A/C in my truck). He backed off quick and sent me on my way without the full papers check they where giving the others they stopped. Only glanced at my licence to see it was valid and where I lived I guess.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 07:34:47 AM
I was hoping that was the way it came off, but after I got to thinking about it I was going hmm. 

When I have my gun prospecting and encounter law enforcement or BLM they never seem alarmed.  It was said that this fire ruined millions of dollars worth of this years marijuana crop.  That's my regular reason for packing it.  Never know when you may slip up on an unfriendly farmer.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 09:06:45 AM
A good look at the fire I found.  I could see the smoke and hear the roar but not see the flames as good as this video until later in the day.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7R-HDf0G_lM&feature=related
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jumpinfrog on August 03, 2008, 10:18:28 AM
Hey Glenn,
I bet all this has been such an ordeal with the fires. You know while I have been building this summer and breathin' the smoke and lookin' around at all the dead brush(you know same kind of country as yours up here). I realized that we really needed to clear more defensible space. After reading your fire report,  I am working out a deal with the neighbor who has a dozer to help him put up fencing in exchange for clearing around our 5 acres and new structure. As far as unfriendly farmers with particular crops go, have to be just as careful around here not to wander off to far, always keep the sidearm available.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 06:02:39 PM
Yup - I had cleaned out pretty good but when this thing got going I got to thinking more about the extra space I wanted between tree tops and the grass down to the dirt etc.  I have places I didn't want it to spread to.   The north side is too steep for the cat so cleaned out three horizontal roads I had there.

If you haven't seen the video posted above look at it if you can and you will really want to clear out some brush.  I kept trees for landscape reasonably close to the cabin but made a 50 foot treetop clearance or so space all around that.  I also took out dead trees that were hear the shop.  After the fire gets there may be too late.

I heard of one person who some how got in with his wife after a friend called him--- fiddled around getting gas in his generator - it was empty - he was pouring gas as the sparks were falling.  The generator powered his pump - he was out of water- then they went around putting out small fires on their house with buckets of water.  Very scary.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 06:10:06 PM
Speaking of scary- Rhonda said she had a big devil's head in one of her pix in the cloud.  I told her that was weird as I did too.  If it wasn't him, it may have been his brother.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010526_edited.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 06:44:44 PM
We hit more papers - Sierra Sun Times/Goldrushcam  (electronic local paper) -does the Yuma story.

http://www.goldrushcam.com/2008/mariposa%20news/mariposa_news%20305.htm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 03, 2008, 07:46:59 PM


 This thread rocks Glenn  8)  Good job. Cn't hurt John's plan sales either with more folks 'lookin in' to check out friends and family.

 Who'd-a- thunk a big fire would bring all this on.  8)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 08:06:52 PM
Thanks, PEG.  It was just a nice easy meeting place for everyone involved in the type of country life and friends this forum is about.

It gave a view of what to expect - how to overcome obstacles and how to support your friends, take care of those who help you (and they will take care of you)...

I did the road trip thing for years - never quite made Yuma, but made Los Angeles, San Diego, the Bay area and Sacramento pretty much alternating every week installing roll bars on Cats.  I did make Yuma trucking a couple times in the early 80's.

I remember how nice it was to have friends I could rely on to help in emergency in those far away places.  Yuma is farther.  Yesterday I saw people from Wisconsin.  I couldn't take them all in and schedules wouldn't allow that, but it was nice to be able to do what I could to help make the stay of a few a little better.  Sometimes you have to jump on the opportunity when it arises or it will be gone.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 03, 2008, 09:57:18 PM
One of my favorite Fire Choppers passes overhead  Sikorsky (EricksonAircrane later ?) Skycrane 8100 horsepower.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1010635.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1010635.flv)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: jeanneschmidt on August 04, 2008, 07:54:36 AM
Hi Glenn,

We will be there on the 16th.  Thom Rose who lives below us is in a wheelchair - maybe we can work out some plywood ramps so he can get around outside?  Let us know if you want us to bring up some lumber -- I think we may have some lying around.  Or perhaps we could do dessert and cards at their place in the evening. Any suggestions?

Jeanne & Bob
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 04, 2008, 04:33:21 PM
We will get him taken care of - I have half sheets of plywood we can lay out - and a nice flat area around the garden.  wouldn't want him to miss out.  Also Larry Arnold is in a wheel chair but gets around pretty well - I think he will be here also.  No problem. 

We're thinking mid morning until whenever at night.  Should be fun.  I hope to get a bunch of this place straightened up before then....but will it happen? hmm

Pretty well one hundred percent contained now I think with crews to watch for flareups - many hotspots yet out itn the middle... and road fixing etc. by the fire crews is supposed to take a bit too I heard.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 07, 2008, 10:46:10 PM
We are doing a variation of the light duty concrete floor around the pool-- I compacted the clay with a half inch of sand or so on top of it.  I am expecting some settling on the fill but am not too worried about it.  The area is too dusty right now especially when the dogs come up.

I started with chicken wire over the compacted soil but soon switched to jute erosion control fabric.  I put the first 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch of mortar/stucco over the fabric tonight.  I added fibermesh for extra strength - hoping is is ready for the Fire Barbecue next week.   It will be used ready or not.  I'm hoping it will have a bit of flex to settle with the ground without breaking up.  Just did about 200 square feet tonight.

Just another crazy experiment.[crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 07, 2008, 11:35:59 PM
Al Golub Telegraph Fire pix.

http://www.golubphoto.com/slides/Telegraph/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on August 08, 2008, 06:34:22 AM
Great photos. I didn't realize that jets (DC-10) could be used on fires.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 08, 2008, 06:48:30 AM
They are set up special for it.  They can't drop into the canyons as close but they are really awesome to watch.  I think they came out of LA area.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 09, 2008, 11:11:35 AM
Work continues on Sassy's pool project -- the pool patio with the experimental floor getting it's second coat and some color today -- no pictures in case it's a failure. rofl d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 09, 2008, 07:11:57 PM
OK - I took pix anyway --- good or bad. [crz]

I compacted the clay with my vibratory plate compactor - (Harbor freight - so far very good)--- in this case and eliminated the plunger piers as I have used previously.  I want this pool patio floor to slope away from the pool a slight bit and take the water down to the side without eroding the surface much.  I also want it to keep the dust down when the dogs get to horsing around by the pool.

Since the floor is only about 1/2 inch thick I added fibermesh to it - about 6.50 per pound. 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00114.jpg)

I am not really concerned about cracking as long as it remains reasonably smooth and together.  It is placed on dampened sand under jute erosion control netting.  The jute becomes the reinforcing  If over years the jute deteriorates, the concrete should be stronger and the fibermesh should hold it together.

The tiles were at the SPCA yard sale so they were legal for me to use for this project. d*

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00115.jpg)

What do I think about it?

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00116.jpg)

One heck of a lot of work for a dust free area using minimal materials and resources.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00117_edited.jpg)

If I had a crew it wouldn't have been as bad but all I had for a crew was one old ornery Lithuanian and some dogs who were no help at all.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00104_edited.jpg)

Phone pix - sorry about the quality --I was too burned out to go get a real camera. :-\
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 10, 2008, 10:43:24 PM
A miner friend brought his wife over tonight to tour the complex and after that we did a little practice barbecue around the new pool area - steak, beans, fresh stewed tomatoes and ice cream for desert.

The new area seem to be working out just great.  We'll see how it goes when we get what I think will turn t to be the biggest group we have ever had here for the Telegraph Fire Party on the 16th.

OK - it was my idea but Sassy always seems to get me to do some work around here before these semi-major events. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on August 11, 2008, 05:50:27 AM
Very nice patio slab Glenn...

I'm sure it was a lot of work but it has great character and an instant patina :D. (That's a good thing, I think.)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 11, 2008, 06:34:26 AM

 Looks good  8), that may work down there where it's dry most of the time. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: apaknad on August 11, 2008, 07:01:14 AM
hi glen,

 i posted this earlier but it did not take. i was thinking it would be great if you could make this B_B_Q an annual thing so people from out of town and elsewheres could meet. i could come out early and help you set up. it would be cool to meet the forumites(?). [cool]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 11, 2008, 07:42:59 AM
Very nice patio slab Glenn...

I'm sure it was a lot of work but it has great character and an instant patina :D. (That's a good thing, I think.)

Thanks, John. 

I like the way it came out - It i basically a flat stucco wall you can walk on - with the fibermesh and jute it has a bit of give but still stays together.  It may firm up a bit more in the next week.  The ground under it is currently a bit damp from spraying it down to keep from drying out the  mortar plaster too fast. 

I used bagged mortar mix on this for speed and freedom from dealing with rocks at the expense of being cheaper (18 sixty lb bags total).  I added about 1 shovel  Portland cement per 60 lb bag to make it stronger.

I put a coat of sealer over it yesterday to keep the color better and prevent water from passing through it and softening the substrate.

I used 3 colors - charcoal - brown and tan to keep earth tones that hopefully will not show as much dirt.  The mortar is plastered on like a stucco wall then the color sprinkled over the top and sprayed with water then troweled in lightly to smear the colors.  Learned the technique from my brother who used to work with his BIL on Bomanite stamped concrete.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 11, 2008, 07:52:26 AM

 Looks good  8), that may work down there where it's dry most of the time. 

That factor did enter into the equation, PEG.  Part of the reason I did this this way was to cut down on the amount of rain that would soak into the fill under it.  Our clay actually stops a lot of the soaking itself as it seals off pretty well as the first foot or so gets damp. 

This stuff has an interesting feel to it.  Firm but a bit of give - like a concrete carpet.  On the projects I did in the house, we have never broken through it.  I didn't use the plunger piers as I want it to follow the ground as it settles but from many years of experience here I dont expect it to settle more than about 1/2 to 1 inch - especially as I have drained it well and compacted it pretty good dry.  I didn't have enough water to compact it wet.

We'll know in a year or so - that's the cool thing about experiments-- delayed failure. :)  I don't really expect problems and it is easy to repair.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 11, 2008, 08:09:01 AM
hi glen,

 i posted this earlier but it did not take. i was thinking it would be great if you could make this B_B_Q an annual thing so people from out of town and elsewheres could meet. i could come out early and help you set up. it would be cool to meet the forumites(?). [cool]


That is a good idea.  I hadn't thought about it, but it could raise awareness especially since this fire occurred early in the season- maybe move it up a little for that reason, and I do have to work around Sassy's work schedule.

It is open to forum members and friends of friends of the fire - quite a few forum members will be here- so it could get big hence the potluck idea - one dish per family so if more show there will be more food for all.

I have purposely not supplied alcohol for liability purposes - the local sheriff's are known to sit and watch parties and bars to catch the ones who they can write a ticket.  Hopefully if some bring their own they will be responsible and I still didn't supply it.  Due to my dealings with the sheriff durng the start of the fire they may not be the most Glenn friendly people in the world --- and then again they may view it as all in a days work.  For the most part they did a great job and I am sure they prevented some loss of life and many problems.  I just prefer not to  be a dependent of the state.

I feel the community does need to know each other.  This is the only way they can help each other in times of emergency, and just because I haven't met someone, it doesn't mean that they are not worth knowing and helping or receiving help from.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 11, 2008, 03:18:20 PM
Response to the Telegraph Fire Party this Saturday is overwhelming.  It seems everyone is interested.

I just met a great new neighbor and her granddaughter today who is interested in coming.  They came back after the fire passed - sheriff escorted them in then told them to leave.  They said they would stay as everyone else was returning - official blessing of the public servant authorities had not yet been passed though.  The sheriff was miffed to say the least - pointed his finger gun (made with his hand ) at the grand daughter - clicked his finger trigger  at her and told her he would get her.  She gave him a finger back and he left. 

The grandmother described it as Badge Fever I believe. Hope I got all of that right - failed to take notes so going from memory.

See - It was not just my paranoia -- it was real and it was rampant. d*

If they don't make it, I promised to check in on them occasionally and gave them my contact numbers. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 11, 2008, 03:29:34 PM
I like this -- helping the state take care of us by helping ourselves and our neighbors-- what do you think about it?

http://www.constitution.org/col/5508_col.htm

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on August 11, 2008, 04:16:00 PM
Great ideals Glenn. IMO the OKC bombing was a mini 9/11 to kill the militia movment that was taking hold back then. It worked very well as the movment quickly went underground.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on August 11, 2008, 06:18:16 PM
Glenn all I can say is tht you have a bunch of as*&%#*^ for police officers.  Must be that it is in CA.  I would have sent mine down the road clapping their hands if I ever got a complaint like those.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 11, 2008, 10:35:07 PM
We have no internal affairs department to complain to.  Been that way forever.  My neighbor who is retired LAPD mentioned that fact recently.  They are or were tied into the Octopus that goes clear from Sacramento  to DC - shipped out of here in the Iran Contra thing from the very airport below me and in the old days ran the meth labs on the Indian reservations.   Air shipments totally verified by an old mining friend with a telescopic camera.  One of their own mysteriously sunk to the bottom of the lake when he tried to straighten it out in '80.  Found him in '90.

Here's the old local story - I have posted a link to it before. 

http://www.lycaeum.org/books/books/last_circle/0.htm 

Never solved or investigated to conclusion.

OK -- here's the new plan.  Talked to my buddy who is always trying to talk sense into me. d*  Good Luck, Al. (Yes - he is the same one who was chasing the drunk down the sidewalk with the Peterbilt in Temecula).

Due to the negative connotations of the two words Constitution, and Militia (even a legal benevolent one), he advised me to be P/C and just start a Neighborhood Watch which most law officers think is just peachy and have hunters safety training for the friends and neighbors and encourage then to have a gun for hunting and their own protection.

Thanks, John.  My neighbor said he eventually turned into a good one also, but did the power trip thing for a while until one day he looked in the mirror and said - - "What the Hell am I doing."  We get along great.  I know most of them are decent guys.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 12, 2008, 06:55:31 AM
I found some fairly generic Neighborhood watch forms from NY state.  While a lot of this stuff applies to the city more than country it is a starting place.  http://www.oag.state.ny.us/crime/neighborhood_watch/sample_forms_intro.html

For our area we will likely just have an informal contact list rather than going all out to start.  Most crime around here tends to be more with the types of people we don't hang out with anyway.

Note that I do not condone snitchy little groups of people or HOA's made to restrict others freedom.  We all tolerate each others parties etc. around here and are thankful for the ability of people to enjoy their property, but we all respect each others rights pretty well around here too.

If we form a group here it will be more for helping each other and watching enough to see to it that outsiders don't come in and rip our friends and neighbors off.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on August 12, 2008, 04:29:31 PM
We have a Block Watch here. You are right, the sheriff loves us, knows most of us are packing and the "formalization" of our already "tight" community helped us get rid of a 50 person plus hobo camp, drug dealers, a meth house and of course the theft quit then as well. 

We are all very independent in this little part of the woods, but when the chips are down, we all know each other now, and all have a list of phone numbers, names, pets, livestock and family members, so when there is a big problem (storm, earthquake, etc) we can do roll call and make sure everyone is ok.

This is not a list that the sheriff's department gets, its just ours.

There is also a map we made of the road, where the houses are, where the propane and water valves are, etc (ad nauseum), and a big sign for the front window, says OK on one side and HELP on the other.  The assumption being that if OK is in the window, no one will try to come in looking for you.

Most houses are not visible to the neighbors, with long drives back into the woods to each one, so this saves a lot of time when we need to know everyone is ok. 

Anyway, we hope it will.  I take some comfort in knowing my neighbors. We don't spend huge amounts of time interacting on a normal basis, pretty much busy with our own lives.  But we had a bad thing happen out here in March, and everyone was johnny on the spot to help out.  The phone lists and getting acquainted ahead of time helped a lot.  [cool]



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 12, 2008, 05:23:45 PM
Sounds good - something like that is what we're looking for.

We also don't interfere with each other much - but if we want to get together once or twice a year it is great. 

One of the neighbors and I go prospecting every week or two but that is by choice.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: OldDog on August 13, 2008, 05:16:02 AM
Once a year, Saturday of Labor Day Weekend, we bar -b-q a #250 pig for the whole area and ice down a keg!

That is the one time a year we see everyone in the area.  Since 75% of us are part-timers we all keep a close eye on everyones property when they are absent.

So Far--So Good!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 13, 2008, 10:53:06 PM
Everybody I have talked to thinks it's a good idea, so it will probably turn into a minimum of an annual thing if all goes well.  With two husbands on our road that were out of state during this fire, it seems like it will be very beneficial to improve lines of communication and getting to know others we don't know so they can call in case of emergency.

Looking like it will be around 40  to 50 at this point.  I'm still trying to find enough parking spaces but the cul-de-sac is 1/4 mile and we could shuttle if necessary.  Just trying to avoid that.

Sassy arrived this evening and approved the work around the pool - the concrete carpet.  This barbecue will be the test.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 13, 2008, 11:05:48 PM
Yes, it looks really nice - actually looks a lot better than the pictures  :)  We went swimming tonite & it's so nice to not have all the fine clay dust all over!  The patina is nice - looks like it's been there for years - or like how people do their acid wash cement floors - doesn't look like cement.  I like it  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 15, 2008, 08:36:03 PM
Continuing the tradition of fine quality craftsmanship I have become famous for, I have now created a fine quality masterpiece bench for Sassy's pool area.  It is a bit over 14 feet long and will seat 12 medium or 8 large,

This work of art was started by slicing a few boards off of a White Fir log on the sawmill, then taking the remaining slab, knots and all and very carefully cutting it to length with a precision chain saw.  Corners and edges were precisely machined to shape with the fine touch of the sawyers sharp chain.

To prevent the ladies from snagging their finest hosiery on the edges or our nudist friends from getting a splinter, the perifery was skillfully sanded by the master bench builder with the light but firm touch of a belt sander with a 50 grit belt.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010667_edited.jpg)

Legs were carefully but skillfully chosen from the Blue Oak trees sacrificed for safety from the Telegraph fire.  Masterfully trimmed to length with the chainsaw, they were next firmly fastened to the underside of the bench with the Porter Cable air nailer and 10d screw nails facenailed and overdriven about 1/8 inch to hide the heads (large dadoes previously cut with the chainsaw).

Corners were trimmed with the chainsaw, all carefully sanded out and 2 coats of the finest spar urethane applied by our professional finishing crew. 

Fine furniture as skillfully built as this cannot be rushed.  This took nearly an hour. d*  [crz]

My finely skilled furniture is only surpassed by that of PEG - our master craftsman. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on August 16, 2008, 04:52:19 AM
was skillfully sanded by the master bench builder with the light but firm touch of a belt sander with a 50 grit belt.

Must have taken an age to get that finish with a 50 belt :P

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 16, 2008, 05:43:13 AM
The trick is to continue to use the belt until it is completely plugged up for that fine spit polish shine, Steve.  w* to the forum. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 16, 2008, 07:31:35 PM


The trick is to continue to use the belt until it is completely plugged up for that fine spit polish shine,



 Ah,  that would be pitch clogging the belt Glenn  ;). Sassy better have some cushions or some old towels , table cloths to  cover those. Or was the BBQ Today? [noidea' 

 And Steve  w* to the forum. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 16, 2008, 08:30:25 PM
PEG - dude --- I was hoping to get your fine constructive comments on this project. rofl

Yes the barbecue was today and it was an overwhelming success. 

Our friends were over and -- you guessed it --- no splinters.  A great job if I must say so myself.  We ended up moving most of the tables and chairs down to the garden so the bench was the main seating in the pool area and it was nice to go up there and see it covered with towels and clothes and being put to good use.

I was all over the place and thanks to all of my good friends who always come through, Sassy and I had enough time to take tons of people through the underground complex.  There were in the area of 40 to 50 people there.  We even had friends and our renter and neighbor conducting tours also -- they know the routine.  It was like being on a guided tour at a major attraction-- we had tour guides meeting other tour guides with groups of people coming and going in different rooms and areas.

One of the highlights of my day was when I heard that there were stories going around town about a crazy guy with guns  on a tractor on the mountain.  Heard it from the clerk at the Mariposa Shipping who is married to a friend who went to school with Sassy.

I went -- hey --- cool --- that was me. :) d*

It was cool the last time I went to buy bullets at the hardware store.  The gal that runs it goes, I don't know if we can sell shells to Glenn.  He's got guns and a reputation. [crz]

Pix to follow.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 16, 2008, 08:39:43 PM
Quote
;) Sassy better have some cushions or some old towels , table cloths to  cover those. Or was the BBQ Today?

Peg, I told Sassy she had to get out of bed early today because we needed the sheet for the table.  heh
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 17, 2008, 07:23:02 AM
"
Peg, I told Sassy she had to get out of bed early today because we needed the sheet for the table.  heh


d* d* d* c*  I even sat on the bench while in my bathing suit & didn't get any splinters!  Worked out well - doesn't take up hardly any space but gives you lots of room to sit or put towels & stuff on it. 

Yes, we had a great time, good turnout, tons of food... one of my friends had not seen the cabin for 3 years - we were out in the garden area near the RV garage - she asked, "now where's the house?"   rofl   She was all mixed up because the RV garage, garden area & deck were not there the last time she was here - she brought her friend - I took him into the house - he just looked around in amazement - and said "I love this house!"  We get used to it but it's fun to watch the expressions on other people's faces & hear their comments... 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 07:27:19 AM
My buddy, Al and his wife, Kathy, brought fresh rolls (which I missed out on)  and tri-tip down on their Harley.  Al came to barbecue so I could tour guide.  He knew what would happen - always does, and I can count on him to help.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010668.jpg)

LAPD ret., meets CHP ret.  Imagine me hanging out with this group.  d*

Dave is my nearest neighbor and good friend, and Carla has the vineyard in the valley to the North and sends me lots of work from ranches she manages and her friends and relatives.  She is one the Sheriffs tried to kick out and she told them "If we're comparing badge sizes, mines bigger than yours."  

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010681.jpg)

She stayed, and directed fire fighters to the best backroads and places to stop the fire in her valley.  She is also a big promoter of people in the local area getting to know each other to help out in times of problems.

It is an honor to have such great people as neighbors.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 07:45:57 AM
My mining buddies - Miner Matt and Keith and their families - both area residents on my end of the mountain and both showed up.

Miner Matt was giving me a bad time about taking his photo --- said he was a wanted man.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/miningbuddies.jpg)

I'm sure he was just kidding -- there are lots of people who look like him around here. hmm

Matt also stayed and fought fire around his place and assisted the firefighters in any way he could.  He felt the same as I and mentioned the same thing to me. "If these firefighters will come from all over the state to lay their lives on the line for us, why should we sit back and do nothing."   It would be different if we were not capable of helping.

He mentioned that he was not as ready as he should have been before the fire.  I also could have done more but you don't think about that until the threat becomes real sometimes.

Just for fun -- think how you would feel if a 35000 acre fire was burning within a few hundred feet of your house.  Would you want to do anything different?   Are you in a fire danger area?  It may seem like paranoia --- until it actually arrives, then it may be too late.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on August 17, 2008, 11:26:12 AM
The trick is to continue to use the belt until it is completely plugged up for that fine spit polish shine, Steve.  w* to the forum. :)

Glen and Peg.
Hello from England ! I wouldn't miss this  thread for the world now - been lurking for a few weeks. Good to see how you guys fight and play together.

My wife and I have bought some land in New Mexico, for a longterm holiday and eventual retirement project - still waaaay off - our kids are only 10 and 8 ! The plan is to build something, well, like you have I think. Assuming you ever finish it  ;)
Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on August 17, 2008, 11:45:06 AM
Hey Steve.  w*

Where in New Mexico is the property? There are a couple of us transplanted resident New Mexicans here.  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 17, 2008, 11:46:14 AM


 #1: Glen and Peg.
Hello from England ! I wouldn't miss this  thread for the world now - been lurking for a few weeks. Good to see how you guys fight and play together.

  #2: The plan is to build something, well, like you have I think. Assuming you ever finish it   ;)


 #1: We're buddies , heck we've even had lunch together and a nice drive :o ( just kidding Glenn's  a good driver when he's not taking photos  ;) )  around  in the Lake Tahoe area,


   (http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b299/PEG688/July8thGlennandSassyvisit1.jpg)

 (http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b299/PEG688/July8thGlennandSassyvisit11.jpg)

 I'm the good lookin young guy  rofl

 Part of Glenn and my stik/ banter is to show how friendly and safe it is for folks like you to chime  , sometimes it even works  :o We got you to post right! :)

 #2: The finishing part , well let me tell you shipmate  , you never finish, till they plant ya anyway!

   
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 12:43:03 PM
Glad you came back for more, Steve. :)

Old Chinese proverb: “Man finish house, man die.”  I often repeat that to Sassy when she tries to get me to complete something around  here. d*

We did do lunch and a bit of the Tahoe area together.  PEG probably did get a bit nervous when I let go of the steering wheel to take pictures as I was driving, but I was still hanging onto the steering wheel with my knees.

Yeah -- PEG is the good looking young guy--- I'm the wise old guy. ::)

Great to hear you will be one of our New Mexicans. 

I also drag my knuckles when I walk but that's another story. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on August 17, 2008, 01:12:20 PM
I also drag my knuckles when I walk but that's another story. [crz]

Can't help it as it is probably hereditary or from living in a cave all these years.  Glenn do you like bananas on your cereal?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 01:16:50 PM
Ahhhh - yes bananas -- also produce copious amounts of gas especially with that high fiber cereal.....not necessarily the safest substance in the underground command center though.  [crz] d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on August 17, 2008, 01:18:15 PM
Sassy my hat's off to you.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 01:21:39 PM
She is the one who supplies the high fiber cereal. d*

I would suggest....hats off....mask on. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 17, 2008, 01:29:14 PM
You may remember Glenn talking about making a wood gasifier all the time - I told him we really didn't need one we had the "Glenna$$ifier"   rofl    BTW, he won't even eat high fiber cereal - he says "it's too healthy"  d* d* d*   Thanks for the condolences, Red! 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 01:30:26 PM
No help needed. d*

hmm Hmm, this thread is cramping me up. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 17, 2008, 01:37:23 PM


We did do lunch and a bit of the Tahoe area together.  PEG probably did get a bit nervous when I let go of the steering wheel to take pictures as I was driving, but I was still hanging onto the steering wheel with my knees.



 Nah it was resultant swerving toward the guard rail and 400 foot drop that would have happened had you not corrected in time :o  Other than that, she was cherry ;)   rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 17, 2008, 01:42:56 PM
You should have been riding shotgun in the Cessna when he'd open the window, fly in tight circles hanging out the window taking aerial pictures!   :o :o  I guess that's about as close as I want to get to any type of acrobatic flying...  ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 17, 2008, 02:38:53 PM


You should have been riding shotgun in the Cessna when he'd open the window, fly in tight circles hanging out the window taking aerial pictures!   :o :o  I guess that's about as close as I want to get to any type of acrobatic flying...  ::)



 I'm sure that was a adventure but the guard rail and the ground where a little further away than the guard rail above Lk Tahoe
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 03:11:11 PM
You guys crack me up.  d*

PEG...crimoney -- you were on an aircraft carrier with jets landing at your feet and I made you nervous driving with my knees?

Sassy --- you were in the hands of the Lord with all that praying you were doing as I was flying.  What's wrong with this picture? hmm  Oh ye of little faith.  [rofl2]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 17, 2008, 05:08:17 PM


 #1: You guys crack me up.  d*

  #2: PEG...crimoney -- you were on an aircraft carrier with jets landing at your feet and I made you nervous driving with my knees?

  #3: Sassy --- you were in the hands of the Lord with all that praying you were doing as I was flying.  What's wrong with this picture? hmm  Oh ye of little faith.  [rofl2]

 

 #1: Good that my job here, well that and good advise. :)

 #2: Ya weird huh! I never have liked riding in car with anyone BUT my sister Barbara , and she taught me how to drive mainly so that may be why. [noidea'

 #3: Ah you may be mixing WHO her true faith is in Glenn. Wing and a prayer air lines or the Redeemer, different kinds of faith eh ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 17, 2008, 05:18:22 PM
Well -- she was still OK -- it was nearly 10,000 feet to the ground - unless I got blown 2000 feet into the side of the mountain. d*  I had lots of room for correction. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on August 18, 2008, 12:36:50 PM
Hey Steve.  w*

Where in New Mexico is the property? There are a couple of us transplanted resident New Mexicans here.  :)

DEEP south western NM - in the boot heel ? Not far from Portal AZ. - Rodeo NM.

You're going to ask why next aren't you ?

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on August 18, 2008, 01:16:22 PM
 :o  Yes, much more south and you'd be in Mexico. We have property in the Jemez and NM_Shooter is so far north in NM he has to drive into CO to get to his place.  ;D

I'm trying to restrain myself on the "why?" question.............   [slap]

 [noidea'


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 18, 2008, 03:57:00 PM
Better bring it on, Steve.  The suspense may kill us if you don't. d*



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Bishopknight on August 20, 2008, 08:58:00 AM
Glenn,

I love what you're doing!

I personally feel a whole new forum section should be devoted to alternative house building discussion ( strawbale, cordwood, underground, cob, ect ) done by owner-builders :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 20, 2008, 10:07:20 AM
Thanks BK.

We're a bit of a minority but welcome postings from others doing similar.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 20, 2008, 10:17:24 AM
A miner friend just left, and he had brought his native American friend (81 or 84 YO - and sharp as a tack) from Sonora who brought a whole trailer load of 32 -4'4" x 8'6" appx size insulated panels from solar water heaters.  They seem to have pretty good structural strength - covered with plastic and fiberglass, so will likely become the roof of the tunnel from the shop through the mountainside - or maybe even something else.  He had removed the copper from them.

I offered to pay for some gas but he said - no - he was just glad to find someone who had a good use for them.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on August 21, 2008, 04:23:18 AM
Better bring it on, Steve.  The suspense may kill us if you don't. d*

Its very, very dark - pretty well the darkest place in the world anywhere near anything civilised- and one of my major interests is astronomy. Its so dark, you can read a newspaper by the light of the Milky Way !

Using an Earth sheltered house will KEEP it good and dark, if we're careful.

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on August 21, 2008, 04:55:52 AM
When we lived in the city I got to where I missed the darkness.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 21, 2008, 06:22:20 AM
During the fire, Andrea of the Yuma firefighters mentioned how it was dark here at night and how there were so many stars.

Suzy - our watch dog felt it necessary to stand by and make sure the wild animals didn't drag her off into the night. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on August 21, 2008, 09:12:51 AM
When we lived in the city I got to where I missed the darkness.

It just AIN't dark in the UK anymore, unless you try really hard. And nothing comes close to this site in NM.

Much as we would love to emigrate, it isn't possible with our business and family at the moment, so the NM project will be a holiday home until we retire in the distant future. We are allowed a three month total stay in any 12 months on our visas.

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on August 21, 2008, 09:25:05 AM
There are a few other spaces in the American West where one can experience true natural darkness. The area between Blanding and Lake Powell in SE Utah is one. I believe one can truly class it as being in the middle of nowhere.


The next question Steve is "how in the world did you decide the boot heel was the darkest place"? It's also dang hot. But then so is much of the SW in summer.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on August 21, 2008, 12:41:24 PM
I don't know but when the sun goes down here it is dark.  No illumination by major cities to light up the sky.  My wife had a friend visit from Chicago a few years back.  She said it was totally dark at our house and she couldn't sleep.  I have lived close to other major cities ( Baltimore & District of Columbia) some 45-50 miles away and at night it really never got dark at the house. Maybe the mountains block more than I give it credit for.  The nearby National Radio Observatory picked this place for a reason.  Although I don't think light really affects their reception but the absence of the airplanes in the radio free zone makes it peaceful.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 21, 2008, 12:55:38 PM
During fires - with choppers and planes and the airport about a mile by air - in the fire season this place is as close to a war zone as you could ever find, but I like it and we bought the place to be near the airport for that reason.  At night though - North side of the ridge really gets dark on a moonless night --- except now Sassy's solar leds and solar yard light really light things up pretty well.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on August 21, 2008, 10:41:37 PM
Interesting.  I don't sleep well in towns and cities, they never shut up.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on August 22, 2008, 03:34:22 AM
The next question Steve is "how in the world did you decide the boot heel was the darkest place"? It's also dang hot. But then so is much of the SW in summer.

There is another development, "Arizona Sky Village" in Portal Az about 9 miles from our bit, which is well known in the astronomy community. This is a new settlement on the same idea.

The climate is NOT, to our surprise as hot as the SW is notorious for, we have a bit of elevation (2000 ft) which helps I suppose. We're expecting mid 90's in June - but it ain't dark in June, so we won't be there...

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 22, 2008, 07:22:56 AM
Interesting.  I don't sleep well in towns and cities, they never shut up.



When the fires are not going - which is most of the time, it is very quiet around here.  Easy to hear voices on the mountain top 1/2 mile away or cars in the valley below - not many though.  Quiet for the most part.  No constant city hum or drone.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 22, 2008, 09:51:11 PM
People keep asking me about my power supply --- OK - granted - not totally code but it hasn't caught fire yet.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010688.jpg)

It works. d*

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010687-1.jpg)

Most of my batteries.  Can you find the 2 desulfators? hmm

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010689.jpg)

My double Ford relay (24v coil that way wired in series) pump controller box. [crz]

Don't everyone yell out, "That's beautiful, Glenn," at once.  You'll make me go deaf. d*

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on August 23, 2008, 01:10:24 AM
Where is the garlic bread?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on August 23, 2008, 06:09:24 AM
Well, there IS a cover on that box at least.

 rofl rofl rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 07:04:10 AM
Don't forget the willow sticks and hot dogs, John. rofl

Had to put the cover, Don.  I was afraid if I didn't I would stick my fingers in the 110....and I needed a place to draw my schematic and to warn the wife that it was not a place to plug in her hair drier.

The tape I taped the two relays together with was UL approved though. d*

OK - It's like this --- It started small then kept growing as the pressure of power demands and desires of the material world kept growing. [crz]

The first two sets of batteries have 2/0 cable - copper --all with soldered ends by me - (2004).  I have no loose ones - no internal corrosion or any problems.  They each feed 2 positive and 2 negative 2/0 cables going to each inverter with a set of equalizing jumpers at the inverters. 

The third set of batteries was added in '05.  They are tied in with 8 gauge solid wire under the theory that they will slowly equalize with the 2 main sets that are direct wired to the inverters.  I have checked for heating - no burned fingers -no scars anyway..... no - really - no heat problem. [crz]

There is an axe in the woodshed for quick disconnect. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 07:09:27 AM
I knew you guys would do this to me.   Why do you think I haven't posted full pix before. hmm

I may get to doing my upgrade and improve it some this winter. d*

May not.... it's still working.

Note the water hose hanging over the handrail in the first pix.  If careful the fire could be put out with that --- watch for stray voltage. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on August 23, 2008, 07:33:26 AM

 WOW  :o  First we had Goldberg , as in Rube Goldberg , then TV had Mcgiver (sp) and here we have Glenn  Kangiser electrical genius , or idiot savant  :-\   rofl 


  I don't see a garden hose ???, maybe I missed it as there so much to look at  [noidea' , a twisted wreckage of tangled wires, hooked to batteries in series awaiting thermal run-away :o

 Is that tree limb alive? Or is it a prop /  wire management tool? If the latter,   management may need some golden parachute pruning :)

 But like ya said it works  ;) just keep the grand-kids out of the power house eh! 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: gandalfthegrey on August 23, 2008, 09:36:45 AM
Love wiring job,  looks like the network cabling at the last place I worked.    I did notice that your control boxes are very carefully placed at eye level for easy viewing.  I see you have your spare wiring and tools all neatly stacked on the shelving in the back. ( pic 1)

I figure the tree limb is an attempt at a classic Daniel Mack chair?? [cool]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 10:16:54 AM
d* You guys. ::)

The tree limb is the top guard rail around the stairs - set to code elevation of course. ::)

PEG  - I love your description --- I thought it was more like the control room of the Starship Enterprise. [crz]

The shelves in the back are the start  of organization. Things are getting moved to that side of the back room then the batteries will get a sheetrock wall on this side where the meters - controllers etc are hanging.  Maybe. d*

Garden hose is a white one hanging one loop over the gaurd rail - tree limb.

I had to go shopping for the limbs to fit.  I drew out the rail measurements then went to the woods to cut the proper ones.   Oak trees grow in all sorts of code rail configurations.  I am currently cutting long sections from the trees I downed for the fire.  More interesting structures coming up. hmm

It's the top part of this (http://img511.imageshack.us/img511/453/glenn19np.png)



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 10:20:20 AM
Well, there IS a cover on that box at least.

 rofl rofl rofl

Note that the screw slots line up just like my old dead uncle taught me too. :)

Precision and uniformity...the keys to success. d*

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010689.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on August 23, 2008, 01:53:20 PM
Glen that's a rural masterpiece.  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 02:54:44 PM
Thanks, Scott.  I love those positive comments.  ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on August 23, 2008, 04:16:45 PM
Remember, the root word of "funky" is functional.  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 04:28:04 PM
Thanks, John. 

I can't help the way it grew. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 23, 2008, 04:38:46 PM
Love wiring job,  looks like the network cabling at the last place I worked.    I did notice that your control boxes are very carefully placed at eye level for easy viewing.  I see you have your spare wiring and tools all neatly stacked on the shelving in the back. ( pic 1)

I figure the tree limb is an attempt at a classic Daniel Mack chair?? [cool]

Under the nurses' station counter at work - the wires are all over the place for computers, phones, monitors, computer towers, etc  every-so-often, we pull out a wire with our feet or bump the tower & turn off the power to a computer...   ::)  We have a safety module we have to do every year - one question has us look at a picture & identify all the dangerous things in the room - the "dangerous" wiring in the pic doesn't look as bad as the wiring under our counter, lol...  and we're Federal Gov't!   d* d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 05:12:01 PM
...and I know what every one of them does...

Well - OK - so after a few years it get's blurry, but I can pull off a cover and figure it out.[crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on August 23, 2008, 06:00:35 PM
Sassy all I can say is to not let Glenn come to work with you to straighten out & organize the wiring. ;D  If he does have him bring the sauce ,sprinkle cheese and a spoon if he is into twirling his pasta rather than cutting. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 06:32:49 PM
hmm ...and I thought itwas all about getting juice from point A to point B.

That's probably where I went wrong. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on August 23, 2008, 06:41:08 PM
Sassy all I can say is to not let Glenn come to work with you to straighten out & organize the wiring. ;D  If he does have him bring the sauce ,sprinkle cheese and a spoon if he is into twirling his pasta rather than cutting. :)

 rofl rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 23, 2008, 09:04:44 PM
While taking the pix of the power generation plant of the underground complex, for your viewing pleasure, I also took a couple pix down the filler holes of the desulfated 2004 battery - about 1 month on desulfator, and the undesulfated 2005 battery.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010684.jpg)

It seems there is a noticable fuzzyness on the undesulfated battery.  The plates of the desulfated battery appear to be cleaner (#1)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010685.jpg)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on August 25, 2008, 04:36:42 PM
They can laugh all they want Glenn, but your power stayed on all through the recent fire. 

You can laugh all the way to your still stocked freezer.

Also, you said you had a propane clothes dryer?  What kind?  I'm considering a change, but would like some input from a "user".
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on August 25, 2008, 04:36:56 PM
It seems there is a noticable fuzzyness on the undesulfated battery.  The plates of the desulfated battery appear to be cleaner (#1)


The key is have you been able to discern any improvement in performance?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 25, 2008, 08:17:09 PM
They can laugh all they want Glenn, but your power stayed on all through the recent fire. 

You can laugh all the way to your still stocked freezer.

Also, you said you had a propane clothes dryer?  What kind?  I'm considering a change, but would like some input from a "user".

Yup - it does work and keep working, considerations.

We happen to have a Kenmore because it is what was in our rental house and we moved it over here.  The only new machine I had trouble with and our renter sent theirs back, last week, was a Maytag.  Lowes wouldn't make it good (2 repair trips by what I assume was an unqualified Lowes technician from the story I got) but Maytag actually sent a new one right out to the renter.  They bought a new one so they would not have trouble with it. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 25, 2008, 08:27:25 PM
It seems there is a noticable fuzzyness on the undesulfated battery.  The plates of the desulfated battery appear to be cleaner (#1)



The key is have you been able to discern any improvement in performance?

The short answer is yes....but I did several things at the same time so a bit unscientific.  We were short on power at night with the new fridge and pool so I started tweaking things -- I ran the new MPPT controller up to 28.9 volts before cutoff so it will charge the batteries better.  It was dropping off early in the day when the sun was high and system voltage was up however in reality the batteries needed more charge.

I was losing charge in my forklift battery so put a charge and desulfator on it- no more problem at this time.  More testing is required but what I have seen so far agrees with the testimonials/feedback on the Ebay site.  I read 3 pages of them before I was convinced that these cheap desulfators would work.  I noticed the cleaner plates on the first set of batteries I tried them on too - as opposed to the newer batteries.  Many places on the net claim up to 3 times the life of the batteries - so 15 years instead of 5? Sounds good to me.

We are no longer short on power at night unless there is a good reason for it - such as excess use during the day.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on August 25, 2008, 08:54:50 PM
Maybe I ought to add them to my (lengthy) list of things to get for the cabin. Why wait.    ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 25, 2008, 09:11:28 PM
They use very little power as they take it but they put it back in a pulse.  I haven't noticed any draw down from them and run then on one set full time.  I'm ready to buy 5 more for me (4 for the other batts and a spare for other individual batteries) and one for a friend when my ship comes in.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 26, 2008, 06:41:30 AM
Digging continues sporadically on the area for the shop.  I got a dump trailer from a friend and am started moving dirt from the new entrance excavation down the hill to a spot where we need a wider turn area (below the RV garage). 

Tried to tip it over last night with 4 yards and a slight angled dump area.  Maybe 3 next trip. d* d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 26, 2008, 05:48:03 PM
Here are a couple pix of the digging.  Some of the rock is so hard it just wears the tip off  the end of the jackhammer without going anywhere.  [frus]

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010713.jpg)

Why do I bother?  Because I need to keep my reputation as the crazy man on the mountain with guns and a tractor.  [crz]

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010714.jpg)

How many hundred yards?  Not a clue - but each yard dug loose seems to make about 3 to haul out.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on August 27, 2008, 11:44:47 AM
Hi Glen,
Did you ever get the layout of your place drawn up ? I see by looking at the forum that you put a floorplan on paper,  but you have done clever things with levels too haven't you ? I'd really like to see how it all works !

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 27, 2008, 12:31:12 PM
I didn't get elevations done Steve and have to head out for another job now but will try to figure out a way to do that -maybe tonight.  It's hard to get this place on paper.  Don't know if I can handle  or have time for a 3d.

Briefly -Lower entry - utility Bath 3 are at -6" -

Great room 0'0" High ceiling there at 15'

Studio Apt -kitchen area- bath 1 - 1/2 bridge to bedroom -front porch except conversation pit 4'6" (conv pit floor   3'0")

Second half bridge and bedroom 8'0" -

Master BR bath room - 6'0"

Shop - roof top 16'0"

Top of green house 29'0"
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 27, 2008, 09:05:23 PM
Here is the floor plan again

(http://tinypic.com/1ys64h)

Note that the great room is no longer the front of the house.  There is a 24' long entry that we added and moved the utility room down there as well as added a future third bathroom.

That makes it 61 feet from the front of the lower entry to the back wall of the great room--- need to get back to work on that some day.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on August 30, 2008, 09:34:52 PM
New tire on the Bobcat today -- $300 down the drain but the tracks fit right now so hopefully won't damage the drive train again.

I rebuilt the jack hammer point - extended it to 26 inches again - was worn to 16 - normal about 24.  I used 2" solid pump shaft and it seems to be holding up well -- I hard faced the end of it too.  I think I have the east entrance to the back part of the shop nearly dug out now so maybe I can start the roof again. 

I have been kicking it around in my head -- lucky there is nothing there that can get hurt.... [crz] ...and for what I have to work with, I think I will reverse the slope  - maybe 1/12 pitch to the original gutter then cover with metal - that way I could use it for rainwater collection if I ever get that together.  The roof framing will be 4' x 18' foot boat docks with 4 foot wide 1 inch plywood in the 4' space I will leave between.  Gotta use low cost or free stuff here you know. 

The reverse slope will let me get light from the north but still keep it pretty well underground.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 01, 2008, 08:43:12 AM
Last day of vacation, I have to make a move on the shop roof over the new excavated area.  I have dug out the entire major area on this side near the shop leaving some of the exit to the other side of the mountain area for later.  It is down around 5 feet but in hard rock so I figured the first section and getting a roof over it is a priority.

The boat dock sitting on the roof will be part of the roof section to go over the area going torard the exit tunnel.  It is 26 feet long x 6 feet wide.   The rest of the docks are 4 feet x 18 feet.  They will go over the room area to the east of the tunnel.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010726.jpg)

The 6 inch channels near the top are outriggers from existing framing to support the docks.  I will add additional supports on this side of the existing columns.  The docks will be spaced 4 feet with purlins on 2' centers to fasten metal roofing to.  4x10 beams of the docks will be  4 feet apart.  4x4 angle will support the port end of the docks being welded to the channels.  :)

The gutter you see will be a common gutter draining the old roof and the new roof.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 01, 2008, 08:35:18 PM
Got quite a bit done today.  Decided to use power poles - had a lot of good cedar and treated ones here and don't have much big steel so wood it is.

Here I am taking in the beam that will support the boat dock roof.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010727.jpg)

It's nice having a little forklift to help with the light work.

The space where the forklift is sitting was a bit of a hill even with the strawberries on the left and the base of the tree on the right.  If the tree dies I will remove it and widen the room a bit more.  I think I may want to turn it into the bat cave.  [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 02, 2008, 07:16:29 AM
I stood the post up on a 3/4 pin drilled into the rock with a rotohammer and a matching hole drilled - loose fit into the bottom of the post.  I had long 3/4 all thread so used it for a pin.  The Bobcat bucket here was being used for a scaffold. 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010740.jpg)

I also put about a 2 foot all thread pin through the beam into the top of the post. 

I put braces from the claystone walls to the post using 60d nails and the palm nailer.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010739.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 02, 2008, 08:44:10 PM
I got three boat docks installed on the roof and beam today.  Two are welded to the support angle.  All 3 are pinned to the beam log with 3/4 x 16" spikes.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1010748_edited.jpg)

As I am putting this together I keep getting different Ideas of how I will seal off the sides, tie it into the ground, camouflage it so it blends into the scenery without being noticeable and where it goes from here.  I was up on the top today looking at the way the tunnel turns as it goes through the mountain -- I think it will turn out pretty cool.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: dra on September 02, 2008, 09:30:42 PM
It's taken me three evenings off and on, but I finally read through the past several years of your project. I have to say, I'm very impressed. Both with your house, your amazing tool collection, your frankly, unbelievable staying power, and how you handled that fire. It does me good to see someone stand up for their rights as written, in so many varied ways in one go. Just...be glad you didn't run into those officers OFF of your property with that weapon loaded. State law being what it is, and all. Constitution or not...The open carry law is rather irksome in this state.

I've wanted to build something rather like your home since I was..six? I think. Maybe younger. I've always had a obsession with living underground, even before I ran the Tolkien Novels. I'm planning on building a even more troglodyte home on the family land sometime hopefully soon in Nevada county. I rather seriously want to have a lower level that is completely buried bellow the ground, bellow the upper level that has windows to the outside, and not have the upper levels be as spread out...and I'm no where near as creative as you are with supplies or sculpture, so it will be a lot less pretty.


I know this is a rather...odd first question, but as I've been reading this I can't help but be curious about how you deal with your plumbing problems. Are your bathrooms at/above the surface point of your home? Or do you have long sewer and gray water pipes at a angle through the ground and out the lower end?

I've got most of my homes problems figured out, and I plan on using a variety of composting toilet, but I still need to figure out how to deal with gray water from showers and sinks.  Any advice on this would be most helpful.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 02, 2008, 10:34:46 PM
Hi dra.  w* to the forum.

Carrying guns around here is pretty common and I have come in contact with lots of people wearing my gun when prospecting.  None I have encountered so far have even thought twice about it.  We have lots of dope growers and wild animals so as long as it is in the open it's not a problem here.  So far.  Mariposa has long been a bit of a wild wild West area.

From Wikipedia and agrees with my findings California is an

"Anomalous Open Carry States - In these states, open carry is generally lawful, but the state may lack preemption or there may be other significant restrictions.

Disclaimer: While state law may not prohibit the open carry of loaded firearms, it is not uncommon for law enforcement to be unaware of this fact. Especially in states with highly restrictive laws regarding firearms ownership, open carry, even though legal, could result in serious negative consequences.

Only the states of California, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, and New York have no mention at all of the keeping or bearing of arms in their state constitutions."

Everybody has guns around here.

Thanks for the compliments.  Staying power .....call it bull headedness and I had no fear of death.  One look and they didn't even bother to ask.  I sometimes get this intimidating air about me to where they know that hassling me is out of the question unless they are prepared to fight and they knew they were out of place.  It just took a little thinking before I decided that they were out of place and decided to let them know that they were.  I finally remembered that they were the public servants and I really didn't even have to threaten them.  I just gave them the look. [crz]

I really got a kick out of the girl from the Mail Boxes Etc. telling me the story going around about the crazy man on the mountain with guns and a tractor.  That made my day. :)  At least I would have died doing what I wanted to do. rofl

I had a fire fighter doing recon on Sunday looking for a road (Harry's) that needed water.  He read my signs and said - Hey , I want to sign your guest book too.  He loved it.

If you make mud and work with it the creativity will come out on it's own.  It's just fun to play in a whole Bobcat bucket or several full of mud.

All plumbing is conventional (sh-- runs down hill) plumbing -- the nearest to it would be a conventional slab on grade house.  I have my 1/4" per foot waste lines and separate gray water lines.   We use a normal septic tank and leach field chambers.  The south side of the cabin is open on the low level and the waste main line runs pretty well down the center and out.

Bathrooms are on the -6" (future but plumbed in) level, 4'6" level (apartment area) and 6' level (master bedroom).

The septic tank is at about the -2' level and the leach field is at about the -5' level.

My gray water is handled by the trees near the outlet.  Never an odor problem or unsightly water.  There are various ways to do it -- the county in thing is some kind of treatment area, but I haven't had a problem.  I plan on putting in a grease trap and then using the water for a flower garden later.  Grease traps are pretty easy to make.

Hey, thanks for taking the time to read my blathering. :)


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 02, 2008, 10:42:47 PM
Note that I would rather be in debt for tools and big toys than have to pay taxes on profits. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 03, 2008, 11:17:28 PM
I had to go pick up blow pipe today as Harry has a well we need to try to clean out.

To make the trip to our other place worth while -- where the pipe was, I decided to pick up my lathe and a few other things.  This is the reason I am expanding the shop -- It is a bit large and I needed to get the wood tools out of there.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00136.jpg)

It weighs somewhere around 8000 lbs, rough guess.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00138.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jackalope Hunter on September 03, 2008, 11:25:39 PM
 :) :) Think some of those toys can be relocated to North Dakota..... :) :)

Glenn. Thanks for building this home... you are an inspiration.... Now when can I see it in real life....

Thanks for all that u Do.

Richard
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 03, 2008, 11:41:45 PM
Richard, thanks for the compliment -- please feel free to drop in when you are in California.   The toys -- I am building to have the most toys when I die so I can win --- sorry -- they have to stay... [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Jackalope Hunter on September 03, 2008, 11:58:53 PM
 :)Careful what ya ask for..... as for the Toys my wife says I already have to many....... I have been asked if I plan on starting a machine shop... last time I had to move my shop........

Have you ever done a section drawing of your house that we can relate to the plan.... i understand all the datum elev... would like to see how the levels connect... Ramps, Stairs what..... I know when we do ours .. we will use ramps planning for the future... curved ramps like spiral staircases dont take up much room.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 12:14:54 AM
I replied but sent it into outer space somehow.

I haven't done section drawings and it's pretty complicated for 3D programs.  I may do some sections pretty soon.  They would be easier.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 04, 2008, 06:17:01 AM

 What ya gonna turn on that? Thats a big lathe  :o

 Anyting you want right! rofl


 Did you put some air in the trailer tires? They look a might low, you know what Obama siad aout tire pressure rofl


 I don't think may lathe's quite as heavy,

  (http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b299/PEG688/steadyrestonlathe.jpg)

 :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on September 04, 2008, 06:34:15 AM
 :o :o

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: apaknad on September 04, 2008, 07:06:14 AM
hi glen,
 man.. you are somethin' else. i have never seen someone with so many diff [coolerent large tools/toys. you make norm abrams look like a peewee football leaguer. i hope i get to meet you some day and we can play with some of that stuff. are you still panning on an annual B-B-Q to celebrate the end of the fire? [cool]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 07:51:21 AM

 What ya gonna turn on that? Thats a big lathe  :o

 Anyting you want right! rofl


 Did you put some air in the trailer tires? They look a might low, you know what Obama siad aout tire pressure rofl


 I don't think may lathe's quite as heavy,

  (http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b299/PEG688/steadyrestonlathe.jpg)

 :)

rofl [rofl2]   PEG, I think I'll throw  log in it and turn it for you.   I always get in a hurry and if the load is not real heavy I just kick all of the tires -- they got kicked all around for this one but that is only about 1/3 of the load I have had on that trailer - you are right - some could have used some air but I was carrying the spare so I knew I wouldn't blow one.  I only lose tires when I forget the spare. :)

That lathe will turn 26"dia x 96" inches long between centers (20" dia over carriage), however with a steady rest on the end I have turned 20" dia pipe 20 feet long for water well conductor casing.  Normal was 8 to 16" dia 4 to 5 feet long to trim ends and keep the well straight as pipe was added on. 

A key or something sheared inside so I have to fix that - someone used it in my absence or it just wore out but I'm pretty sure it's nothing major. d* 

Just had to get it up here.  I will likely convert it to a gas engine or overhead lineshaft drive like in the old days.  Short on power for a 7 horse 3 phase.  I may be able to get it running on my welder generator - not sure.  I have a home-made rotary converter but didn't bring it - out of room this trip.

I forgot about Osama's tire pressure remark -- he's right but - since it was him I think I will go let some more out. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 07:58:12 AM
hi glen,
 man.. you are somethin' else. i have never seen someone with so many diff [coolerent large tools/toys. you make norm abrams look like a peewee football leaguer. i hope i get to meet you some day and we can play with some of that stuff. are you still panning on an annual B-B-Q to celebrate the end of the fire? [cool]

We will likely have an annual event for community awareness of the fire danger and recognition of the firefighters, so I will expect you to come and play with the toys, Dan. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 07:59:44 AM
:o :o



[rofl2]  That's right, Don -- I have a big one.  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on September 04, 2008, 09:04:03 AM
The only downside if there is one that the bigger the toy the more it cost to fix them.  I try to keep it simple and when it breaks just throw it away and buy another one.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 09:12:34 AM
You don't have to remind me of that one, John.  Bobcat chain - $310, Labor assistance -trade rent $500 -- Bobcat tire $300 changed by myself.  I do most of my own repairs but sometimes call in help to get things moving.

The upside to this is not a lot have them and being a contractor I can pick up jobs with them.

The lathe - I have owned it for about 20 years and was considering buying a new smaller one  - with nothing to pay for it with - so decided just to bring the big one up and make it work - it is still very accurate.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 04, 2008, 10:05:06 AM
 

   Did you load and unload it with that boom truck?

   So now you have to get a motor or way to get-er fired up , D cells won't cut it eh  rofl :-X [frus]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 10:13:26 AM
Guess I failed to include the loading picture.  The crane would load it, but I have 2 of these forklifts - one at the place in Kerman - in the valley and one at the cabin- 75 miles apart.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00137.jpg)

I don't think all of my power supply in Mariposa has enough to spin that thing over.  Fortunately it is belt driven from the motor so a change won't be too hard.

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 04, 2008, 10:24:28 AM

 You may die a happy man , so many toys , ahhhh,ahhhhhhhh,  I mean TOOLS!   [cool] You DA man Glenn [cool]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 10:26:59 AM
I didn't post it before as I was trying to keep from showing off. d*

Kinda looks like a freight train there doesn't it. hmm rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 10:28:57 AM
Note that all of my toys are older junk. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on September 04, 2008, 11:16:43 AM
Sanford & Sons?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 11:23:21 AM
You don't even want to see my acre of stuff in the back at Kerman.  It includes 5 drilling rigs - one very antique one.

Not safe for CP viewing. rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: dra on September 04, 2008, 04:29:28 PM
Quoted from http://californiaopencarry.org

Loaded Open Carry is only legal in your home, temporary residence or campsite (but not in a State Park or National Park), place of business, private property (with the owner's permission), and in remote areas of unincorporated territory where shooting is not prohibited.

So yeah...I assume where you live could be considered "unincorporated".


I also highly doubt any of us wouldn't love to see that yard of equipment.

What method are you going to use to try to clean out that well? Our well has been putting out sand. We raised the pump ten feet, and still get occasional spurts. I've read that a good air compressor and a lot of pipe could blow the sand out, is that what you plan to do? If so, have you done it before with success?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on September 04, 2008, 05:28:59 PM
Any thing Antique I am up for it,
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 04, 2008, 05:45:13 PM
There you are, dra.  Yup -- our county does not have one incorporated city in it.  Not even the town of Mariposa.  We are totally unincorporated.  I guess that is why we are way cool. d*

Many old law officers, spooks etc. come up here to retire -- people who like guns and like to shoot and don't like people to mess with them.  1700 people in town and 17000 in the entire county appx.

It is really a mess of old equipment and junk - I suppose I could take pix of some of the choice pieces.  I have 2 Speed Star 71's and a Speed Star 72 plus a parts rig for the 71's.  I also have one old home made rig and  an antique one with some wooden parts on it.  2 McCormick Deering 10-20 Wheel tractors in pieces and a 10-20 track layer also.  I brought a Fairbanks Morse Z engine up with me yesterday also.

Blowing the well --- I am probably the best around on that stuff and had my own methods.  I am probably the best because I learned from the best - Henry Kozera - long gone now but he taught me a lot and I expanded on what he taught me.

The well we are going to blow out is old with very little water left in it and it also is filled with sand.  I scrounged a bunch of my old blow pipe to get enough to put a small rig together. I sold a lot of my stuff to a guy and his wife who drill now and used to work for me.

We use thin wall 3" (4 on bigger wells) pipe to the bottom.  At the bottom is a manifold tightly made with a 1" pipe turned into the side of the 3" (a check valve here a foot or so up the 1" is great to prevent sand from returning up the air line and plugging it).  

A cable from a winch with lots of cable hooks to the manifold to support the pipe.  It is lowered into the well and joints screwed on until it reaches the surface plus 5 feet or so.  It is important not to stick it in the mud and plug it.  We will have a 185 cfm compressor hooked to the small line and an elbow on the big one to direct the flow.  

This will dredge the sand from the bottom as we blow it out and add on 5' increments of pipe.  This is called surging and air lift pumping.  As the water gets clean you shut off the air - build it up in the tank then turn it on and shake up the well.  

The well we are trying to repair is old and we may destroy trying to repair it, but there is no real loss as it is almost out of water and the only other option is to drill a new one.  The casing is old - it may cave in.  Not as likely with double pipe.  We could blow straight up the casing but much more chance of destroying it and we don't at this point have enough submergence to get it to the top.  As we clean it out that could change but we will decide on that if conditions warrant.  We could plug the 3" and send the air and water up the casing.

As submergence gets to be 1 to 1, you get about 1 gpm per cfm of air still limited by conditions, and at 2 to 1 you get 2 gpm per cfm of air.  All rule of thumb stuff varying by conditions. 

This well is going to be starting out at about 3 to 75 or 1 to 25 submergence hence the requirement for double pipe to limit casing volume and raise uphill velocity of the air to carry out the solids - sand, mud, etc.

Any thing Antique I am up for it,

John, Would you like a picture of Sassy and me? hmm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on September 05, 2008, 02:35:12 AM
Someone once said there is a difference in Antique's and just Old stuff. Hard to tell the difference sometimes.  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 05, 2008, 06:26:02 AM
My drilling rigs are from the 50's but I don't so much consider them antiques as old stuff.  They are still usable with work.  The one that has the wood I consider an antique.

Sassy and I are from the 50's and still usable with work---sometimes.  I guess she is old stuff and I am just old. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on September 05, 2008, 07:01:33 AM
My definition of old keeps getting changed from year to year for me.  What I considered old when I was young is now not that old at all. heh heh
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 05, 2008, 07:17:14 AM
I know what you mean.  Some of these kids think 50's cars are old -- they seem like yesterday to me.  Heck - I still have a forklift with a Chevy 235 that I upgraded from a 216 and it doesn't look old.  Old is my 1919 Dodge and 1926 Dodge. 

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 05, 2008, 08:09:11 AM

 Youth is wasted on the young [toilet]

 50's stuff ain't old,  almost vintage , but NOT old! :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 05, 2008, 10:31:54 PM
There you go PEG.  Still good for something. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on September 06, 2008, 06:51:26 AM
Hey Glen,
Is this anything at all like it ?
(http://sketchup.google.com/3dwarehouse/download?mid=82fb6400b68dbac55124d9d6025e83b9&rtyp=lt&ctyp=other&ts=1220712241000)

There are, ahem, a fair few omissions....
Its just the basic floorplan worked over in Sketchup, and I'm trying to follow your notes on elevations.

How on earth your roof works, I can't imagine !

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 06, 2008, 07:08:09 AM
Very much so, Steve.  The center blue section goes to 16' feet in the middle and the entry part of it is reasonably level at 12'

The roof is impossible I think.  the center blue section mentioned above rotates on a 12' axis with corners being diagonally at 8' and 16 feet.  A hyperbolic-paraboloid.

(http://virtualmathmuseum.org/Surface/hyperbolic-paraboloid/hyperbolic-paraboloid.png)

http://virtualmathmuseum.org/Surface/hyperbolic-paraboloid/hyperbolic-paraboloid.html

The lower left on the image above would meet up with the corkscrew roof that goes around and up to finish over top of the bedroom.

The light colored section, lower front stops back about 20 feet or so.  It is about 42' long over all -

The greenhouse is about 14 feet above ground to the top- the house about 16 feet below ground to the bottom with the driveway being the reference point or another way - great room 0', top of great room roof 16', top of green house 29 feet

Nice work, Steve.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on September 06, 2008, 07:16:58 AM

The lower left on the image above would meet up with the corkscrew roof that goes around and up to finish over top of the bedroom.

You're a sadist aren't  you ?   d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 06, 2008, 07:21:10 AM
I'll never tell... [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on September 06, 2008, 07:28:34 AM
I'll never tell... [crz]

Like the emoticon !
OK, now I've put the great room framing up....
(http://sketchup.google.com/3dwarehouse/download?mid=82fb6400b68dbac55124d9d6025e83b9&rtyp=lt&ctyp=other&ts=1220714746000)

Is there now an entry in front of the conversation pit bit ?

If you're OK with it, I'll open up my Sketchup account for folks to download the model ?

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 06, 2008, 07:39:43 AM
There is a shortcut from the front porch door across a few feet of yard to the door and stairs leading down to the laundry in the entry area - front section of the great room.

There is currently a small fish pond on top of the conversation pit area roof but I am going to remove it soon and change the roof.  It was on a platform and raccoons got under it.  I don't know if they made the roof leak a bit there or if me shooting them made it leak.  No humans were harmed in the war on coon terror.

No problem with the model, Steve.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 06, 2008, 07:43:32 AM
The corkscrew roof on the bedroom actually goes to about 20' agl on the high side where the bedroom pops out of the ground looking toward the west.  It's about 4 feet underground and 7 1/2 feet out of the ground for a 11.5 foot ceiling on the high side - about 8' on the low side - straw bale wall on the popup and about a foot of dirt and garden on top.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: desdawg on September 06, 2008, 02:30:29 PM
Wow Glenn, you have been busy since the last time I visited this thread.   [cool] Darn dial up connection just wears out loading all of the pictures. I used to think I was a pretty good recycler but I see now I don't hold a candle.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 06, 2008, 02:45:08 PM
Thanks, des.  I know you have some good junk too though.

Now I have to get up there and do something else so I can give you something else to look at. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 06, 2008, 02:48:21 PM
Steve, there is a used door in front of the conversation pit to the left as you enter - $40 yard sale door w/frame, but it does not change the footprint.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 07, 2008, 08:17:28 AM
I placed the boat docks 47.5 inches apart to fit the plywood Mikey B. gave me.  I put ledgers of reject 2x4's along the sides of the docks spaced down an inch to make the plywood infill level with the tops of the docks.  This will all be sheathing for the salvaged metal roofing I have tons of - left over from jobs and given to me by friends.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000010.jpg)

Since it will not be heated or cooled for the most part I am dispensing with the vapor barrier.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 07, 2008, 09:49:07 PM
Got a beam across the front of the 26' boat dock today - in preparation for making a bit of a turn on the corner and covering the tunnel. 

Another of the trees decided I took too many roots, so I guess the room will get a bit bigger.  It is a smaller one that is just to the right of the forklift in the above picture.  I needed more room there anyway.  I'm not that much of a tree hugger. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 10, 2008, 08:10:02 PM
A short bit of work this afternoon.  I got a couple joists in from the docks to the extension of the long dock.  Tomorrow I will be able to put the plywood sheathing over them.  Too dark to get a pix of them.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00141.jpg)

They are fastened with 60d spikes.  I put the RR tie post down to the RR tie on a rock below.  This corner is near solid rock with just enough soil for what used to be an Oak tree.  Kept dry it looks like it could be earthquake bracing for the next 20 years or so.  d*

I will frame in windows for light from up here - clerestory anyone? hmm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 10, 2008, 08:19:19 PM
(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/IMG00139.jpg)

Spike was supposed to be helping dad, but sunburned the family jewels so thought he'd cool it a bit in the gold panning trough. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on September 10, 2008, 08:36:35 PM
Better get Spike some briefs.  Poor boy, look at all that fair skin!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 10, 2008, 08:40:56 PM
That sounds like an idea.  He really does sunburn them-- along with the two females we have, thinking they are fair game in a play dog fight.

He is really good natured about it though.  I don't recall ever seeing any other breed of dog with those things placed where they can sunburn so easily.  d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on September 11, 2008, 06:00:54 PM
Well its either briefs or SPF.....ummm ok, we won't go there.  :-X
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 11, 2008, 08:07:20 PM
I'm not gonna touch that one.... rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 11, 2008, 08:20:06 PM


I'm not gonna touch that one.... rofl



 Spike might not be that trusting and I'm sure he'd concur that you shouldn't rofl

 Now whats Spruce Pine Fir/ SPF got to do with it there considerations ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 11, 2008, 09:09:56 PM
I think she was going to suggest that I....perish the thought....rub sun block on them? hmm

Like SPF 15 (Sun Protection Factor) ...I don't rightly think so..... [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 11, 2008, 09:14:21 PM
Got some more of the 1" sheathing on between the boat docks on the roof tonight.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000075_edited.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 11, 2008, 09:17:13 PM


 Ya I know the Spruce Pine Fir line was a bit of a joke.

 On another subject has the dogs being around helped with the coon and deer raids on the garden? I think with those meat eater running around the wild critters would be kept away , or at least have to sneak in only at night. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 11, 2008, 09:19:59 PM

 Where'd ya score that 1" stuff? Is it wider than 4' ? It looks that way in the photo's maybe close to 54" wide, might be the camera angle.

 Is that the new one? Camera that is.   
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 11, 2008, 09:28:30 PM


 Ya I know the Spruce Pine Fir line was a bit of a joke.

 On another subject has the dogs being around helped with the coon and deer raids on the garden? I think with those meat eater running around the wild critters would be kept away , or at least have to sneak in only at night. 

Yup-- the dogs keep the critters away from the place but.... Sassy put a bunch of our newly arrived Alpaca Poo on the garden and the dogs got into the center section and flattened everything rolling in and eating the tasty morsels while we were gone.   

Grrrrr ..... they knew I was mad and stayed totally out of sight for about a half hour or more while I spoke their praises to the heavens as I went around fixing all of the gates and fences. ::)

Not a meaner animal alive than a mad troglodyte.  [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 11, 2008, 09:33:21 PM

 Humm seems you traded one issue for another! Bet they smell real good as well  rofl

 Think of there actions as  pre- tilling  ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 11, 2008, 09:34:22 PM

 Where'd ya score that 1" stuff? Is it wider than 4' ? It looks that way in the photo's maybe close to 54" wide, might be the camera angle.

 Is that the new one? Camera that is.   

Mike told me I could take what I needed - it is the same stuff we used on the forms for his basement.  Used fruit bin plywood.  It is heavy enough I don't need other framing for the 4 foot span.

The pieces are 47" wide by 39" or a bit less than hlf a sheet, but the work fine for my purpose.  It's getting big out there.  About 27' x 22 feet so far and growing.  A nice additional space -- then the tunnel has to continue out the back to the other side of the mountain - maybe 60 feet or so.  It has a turn in it so you can't see from one side to the other.  Coolness, eh? :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 11, 2008, 09:39:00 PM

 Humm seems you traded one issue for another! Bet they smell real good as well  rofl

 Think of there actions as  pre- tilling  ;)

The can't smell real good....all that rutting around in the manure and dirt seems to have plugged their sinuses. ::) [rofl2]

I think they may have tried to get the gophers too.  The area is already full of new winter vegetable plants coming up all over.   Not too bad I guess.  We let lots of everything go to seed so we have tons of volunteer plants.  It works great and saves hundreds of dollars in seed - at least for the amount we get.  I would say one carrot has the equivalent of 20 packs of seeds when it goes to seed.  That would work out to about $40 worth of packets.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 11, 2008, 09:46:02 PM

The pieces are 47" wide by 39" or a bit less than hlf a sheet, but the work fine for my purpose.  


 Ah, it is the camera angle , they look wider than they are long  in the pictures.

 I had a Chessy that loved to roll in poop, just about any "strange" poop would do >:(   
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 11, 2008, 09:57:57 PM
Forgot -- that is the new camera but it was a bit dark.   I have some better pix - will post veggies in garden thread.

Yeah -- they are wider than long - 47 1/2  (near 48) between the docks as the sheets are 47 wide.  39 long I think.

Hmm - just looked - it does look the other way in the pix but its not.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 13, 2008, 07:21:28 PM
I got the final boat dock of the main room put up today.  I finished the right side with conventional framing on top of a railroad tie for foundation and from there I will be figuring out how I want to bring the roof down to the ground and camouflage it so it blends into the surrounding scenery -- the pool is a short distance away from the part that sticks up about 4 feet.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000081.jpg)

The post base on the left was rotohammered into the rock under the base plate and 3/4" all thread set in Pourstone.

I will also have to figure out how I want the entrance to look in the  area right where the forklift is sitting.  I want to do the batcave look I think somehow - still thinking on that one. ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on September 13, 2008, 07:45:41 PM


  I want to do the batcave look I think somehow - still thinking on that one. ???



 Scronge up a old over head door , and hang some pots or planter boxes on it. You'd have to get a stronger motor to lift it than a standard overhead door I'd think.

 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 13, 2008, 08:10:48 PM
I have been thinking of something like that -- Maybe a overhead door counterbalanced over the roof with landscape rocks etc and dirt on it then some lower swing open - maybe double doors to swing out - just raise the top door and landscape when I need the clearance. hmm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 14, 2008, 11:57:26 AM
I got the area filled in between the last two docks today and got the docks welded down to the angle framing at the common gutter.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000083.jpg)

This gives me approximately 19 1/2' x 30' in the main area addition with the extended section going to 26' toward the tunnel exit.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on September 14, 2008, 12:13:11 PM
Glenn you're not planning on building a batmobile to go with this batcave look are you?  8)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 14, 2008, 12:20:55 PM
Very interesting thought there, Scott.  Perhaps some black plastic wings on the Bushhog? hmm 

I think I may do that.

I think it is only appropriate that Batgirl appear here now.
 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/56070.jpg)


Sassy hates it when I bring her into the forum..... d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PureCountry on September 14, 2008, 07:39:04 PM
Does she run around all day like that while you work on the house?  ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 14, 2008, 08:11:36 PM
The reason Sassy hates it is that that is not a pix of her, although her beauty rivals that of Batgirl. ::)

Jeesh -- hope I talked my way out of that one. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on September 14, 2008, 09:47:34 PM
Don't fret too much Glenn, flattery will get you almost anywhere.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 14, 2008, 09:59:33 PM
I keep trying.... ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Bishopknight on September 15, 2008, 05:28:29 AM
Hey Glenn or anyone willing to help,

After reading Mikes book several times and reading about your amazing progress, I'm considering building a PSP house myself on my land ( pictured below ). However, everyone I know thinks this is a bad idea. A terrible idea in fact. But I'm still highly considering it. I've never been one to follow with conventional thinking.

(http://lh4.ggpht.com/seanjgildea/SMRMAJJfWxI/AAAAAAAACDo/B25MJMuXEa8/s640/Picture%20005.jpg)

Maybe you can allay some of my primary concerns about building the Ridge design featured in his book.

1. Does my post installation method sound ok? I would dig a 3-4' footer hole for each post, lay and level 2 solid concrete blocks, then wrap the buried part of the post with polyethelene, lower it in with the backhoe and backfill it. ( I did this with my entry gates this weekend and you would have thought I cemented them in, theyre rock solid! )

(http://lh4.ggpht.com/seanjgildea/SM0W51JXnCI/AAAAAAAACGs/cR7wMuoS6S8/s800/Picture%20001.jpg)

2. Moisture... I leveled my lot against a south sloping hill. I have a feeling if I make a moat per-se on the north hill side around the house and drain it all down hill, I shouldnt have any moisture problems as long as I shed rainfall away from the house as well. Do you agree?

3. Frost Heave: If I started before the end of the year, could the posts I plant possibly be frost heaved? That may make me hold off if its the case.

4. Cold floor: Putting carpet ( on top of poly ) right on an earthern floor doesnt seem like it will be very warm. What do you think of the idea of putting 2 inches of dow blueboard then 2 inches of dirt or sand on top of it?

5. Seasoning the wood: I just cut some 30' , 12" hemlock that could be used as a girder. Do I need to let it season or could I use it before years end without too much risk?

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 15, 2008, 06:01:19 AM
I forget where you are at, BK.

You will not find many who think it is a good idea because most of them know nothing about it and have never done it.  They are just going from their own gut reactions gained from conventional building knowledge which is not worth much when applied to the PSP method.

1.  I found that the poly wrapping the post at the bottom and buried keeps moisture in the wood drawing big hungry bugs and decay.  The bottom area about 6 inches above and below gtound will be attacked at a minimum.  Fungus sends out tendrils and actually draws moisture into the wood to decay it.

I know Mike O. recommended it but I found that in practice it only lasts a few years on untreated wood.  I would say I started noticing problems in about 3 years.  Hemlock is usually pretty fast to decay.

2. Mike now recommends an EPDM roof membrane.  Ideally take it about 10 feet out past the building.  Moat - uphill patio on the high side to drain water off before reaching the house, yes.  Get below the top soil to the mineral soil - this will eliminate a lot of seepage.  I would suggest French drains and posts pinned on top the floor of the excavation over a couple inches of concrete and a vapor barrier under the post area.  I have had no problem with posts done in this manner but temp diagonal bracing is req'd before gentle backfilling - no machine tamping.

Rainfall over soil draining down hill off of the house also - yes.  Use dormers, other methods per Mike etc  on the low side to divert water around windows or doors.  Mike wants to see light from all four sides of the house.

3.  The ground 6 to 10 feet or so down where the post bases are should not heave.  It's generally warmer underground.  Check out Lodestar's postings also.  He did the PAHS system up north - Minn?

4.  The earth floor should be plenty warm - the cold is mostly associated with the air outside and above the underground house.

5.  I wouldn't worry about seasoning.  The house can move a bit wth no problem as the wood dries.  The logs will drain water a bit after cut and placed on end - another reason for no plastic.







Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Bishopknight on September 15, 2008, 10:38:15 AM
Hi Glenn,

I'm in Maine, Oxford County.

Thanks for answering all my questions.

I found in Mikes book where he suggests "charring" the posts as a means to preserve. Sounds labor intensive though. ( make a campfire and lightly roast the post ends until black?) Have you tried that? I wonder if wrapping the posts in garbage bags after charring would be ok. Otherwise, I agree with you, just put them in a post hole, add gravel and some concrete blocks to sit on, then backfill... but why gently?

I'll probably use some 12" galvanized spikes for mounting the girder to the posts. I tested a 10" spike out on saturday and that sucker held 2 logs NICELY!

Most of all, there is something exciting about doing this stuff, its addicting :)


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 15, 2008, 07:28:40 PM
Charring the posts only makes the bugs think you brought them a barbecue lunch in a plastic bag.  I did that too. d*

 I would suggest getting 1/2 or 5/8 rebar and cutting it into 16" lengths and using it for nails.  Drill a hole same size as the rebar with a 16" ship auger using a heavy 1/2 inch reversing drill - clean the chips a couple times with the auger - drive the rebar spikes in with a 4lb or so hammer - it will be tight and it will not come loose.  I try to drill to get about 8" in each log.

I would suggest not putting the posts in a hole-- drive a 30" to 3' or so 5/8 or 3/4 rebar spike into the ground leaving about a foot above your floor grade.  Depends on your soil - mine is like concrete so I had to use a jackhammer to do that. 

Backfill from each side carefully to keep from making your house crooked.  Believe me-- you don't want to try to dig that out by hand after pushing the building sideways.  Work one side a bit then the oppossite side to keep it straight -- don't over excavate if you can help it -- just more loose weight to push the house sideways. 

Be prepared to accept rustic tolerances.  - They will show up and who ever saw a tree grow totally straight anyway? hmm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 15, 2008, 09:03:55 PM
A couple more views of the subterranean shop.  Note that these poles (bottom) are placed on pins drilled into the ground with a rotohammer and drilled into the pole bottom to keep them in place.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000082.jpg)

The tunnel is visible in the  center  - yet to have the top covered and the piled up earth removed from it. d*

I'm going to use it to get up by the pool with the Bobcat for a final bit of earth moving and leveling for the roof and Hot Tub area.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000084.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Bishopknight on September 18, 2008, 11:07:31 AM
Interesting.

I see, so you are somewhat advocating an above ground pole barn type of design with the spikes holding firmly the posts in place.  Obviously the weight and backfill will prevent it from shear loads.  And then a little gravel between the post and the ground should prevent rot to a lesser degree. Then the normal psp methods probably apply. 1 1/2" thick boards on the outside of the posts with polyethelene on the outside of those, correct?

btw, thanks for your help,
BK
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 18, 2008, 12:03:16 PM
Yup, that could describe it.  Earthquake bracing is provided by the backfill as you say.  That prevents a portion of the post from being underground and rotting - shrinking in length as the bugs eat the bottom.  This was a later option mentioned by Oehler and used by me as my ground was solid rock in many places and the rest was very hard claystone.

The only posts I had a real problem with rotting off was the 3 that were buried 30" or so charred and wrapped in plastic-- they rotted off and bugs got them, so I recommend the pins and temporary bracing until backfill is installed.

The gravel or fairly dry packed concrete for full bearing of the post even if a bit crooked- set the post on fairly dry mixed concrete over a piece of plastic to prevent moisture wicking up through the concrete.

I would also recommend the French Drains going gravity out to daylight on the low side.  I didn't do much in that regard but it could have prevented one moisture problem I have in a corner.  If I had religiously followed Mike Oehler's instructions I likely would not have had that problem but I was aware it was a possible problem when I did it and didn't consider it to be major.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on September 18, 2008, 03:57:59 PM
Yup soil and wood in direct contact with each other is a bad idea.  Probably been better off to put a PVC sleeve around them and seal off the top to keep water out.  Big post require a big sleeve like a 18" water or sewer pipe.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 18, 2008, 07:31:10 PM
I don't trust any plastic around posts.  Moisture stays in there like a rain forest or terrarium n being recycled back and forth through the plastic walls, and if fungus starts to grow it will drag water in if there i any earth contact.  I'm a chicken now. 

(http://i261.photobucket.com/albums/ii45/Nls1st/62.gif). 

I think the water that got into my plastic was from the logs themselves.  They were rather green and since then I have noticed that water actually runs out of the end of the logs after cut and stood on end when green.  The area they were in was dry yet all 3 rotted even when they were not exposed to moisture.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: quittrack on September 19, 2008, 08:59:32 AM
Hey BK, I'm having that same issue with "unconventional thinking."  I'm looking at a PSP design myself. Problem is Im in northern Missouri so we have very wet weather (especially this year)

Glen, I've been watching this thread for awhile. Love the pictures! I'm sure I'll pick your brain a lot as this idea moves forward.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 19, 2008, 09:24:31 AM
w* to the forum, quittrack.  Glad to have another of us here.

Are you in hilly area there?  This can even be done on the flat if you berm it and make drainage around it.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: quittrack on September 19, 2008, 12:08:23 PM
I was leaning more toward a hilltop and make sure I have enough overhang on the poly and french drains to make the water go away before it has a chance to soak in. I'm putting a LOT of emphasis on the drainage. So much so that I'm planning to build above grade and cover. ranther than cut into the hillside.

With 36" of precipitation annually (this year more like 50") I have to worry about the water table being that high sometimes. So I'm planning on digging a trench all the way around the site and burying gravel and plastic drain tile a few feet below grade to give myself some relief if the water table gets too high. In essence I have to plan for flooding, whereas several of you others don't. In Maine, I'm assuming that you have the same sort of issue as myself.

The benefit that I have is lots of access to local hardwoods.

My dad had some swampland cleared of trees and the logger that did it made a nice neat pile of maple trees, about 16" in diameter and 45-50 feet long. Our hills are covered in red and white oak, occasional black walnuts, black locust, osage orange, and a lot of what we call swamp or burr oak. We also have an inundation of smallish cedar trees that get as large as 14 inches at the base, but are viewed as more of a pest than anything else (extremely prolific). As you can see we have no true softwoods besides the cedars, and most of them dont grow large enough to be used for anything much. I've also been told that the red oak is no good for this particular application because they smell like urine in a closed environment. In short I'm long in hardwoods and would be able to use woods that a lot of you would drool over, simply because we have an excess of them and normally burn them for firewood. Well we look at clean pine lumber that way here.


My particular building site is primarily red clay and what we locals call "white oak" soil (the oaks have stripped most of the surface fertility out of the soil so there's only a few inches before you hit clay, and its pretty hard). Other than maybe brickmaking or terra cotta pots, this soil doesn't have a lot of uses.

I'm on part of my family farm (4 generations) so resale doesn't matter at all.

Im thinking for posts, after reading what you guys are saying about rot and insects, that I'm going to bore holes and pour piers to set my posts on, that way I can minimize my contact with the earth as much as possible.

Hope I can learn a lot from this forum.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 19, 2008, 12:29:31 PM
Check out information on Osage Orange.  Nearly unable to be destroyed.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on September 19, 2008, 01:28:47 PM
Sort of like Locust.  Some fence post have been in the ground for years exposed to the elements and they are still solid.     
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 19, 2008, 01:31:24 PM
I think Osage could be an answer if you still wanted to bury some or all of the post bottoms.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: quittrack on September 20, 2008, 07:32:57 AM
Check out information on Osage Orange.  Nearly unable to be destroyed.

lol

Nearly unable to be worked with too ;D

Osage orange has kind of a limited natural range so not a lot of people come into contact with them. On the west coast I'm betting you've never seen any up close. The wood does have its advantages, but there are a couple of things that work against it to make it it unsuitable (at least ot me) for this type of application.

We cut it for fenceposts around here. It will last 40 years in the weather if you are lucky so I'm not worried about that. It has a beautiful yellow colored heartwood, and a hardness of something between steel and granite. However, it has three or 4 points against it, for me.

The first is the odor. The reason the bugs don't like it is the resin it contains is kinda noxious. This same tree produces a fruit that around here is either called an osage orange (tree's namesake) or hedge apple. I don't know what they contain chemical wise, but they're used as a kind of natural pest repellent.

The second is the previously mentioned hardness. This is the hardest of hardwoods. I once cut a trailer load of posts when I was young and stupid. Using an 038 Stihl (I think) it took something like three minutes of HARD cutting to saw through an 18" post. After two of those, you have to stop and sharpen your saw.

The trees (at least around here) are squat, ugly little trees with nothing straight over 4 or 5 feet long. I guess its the weight of the wood, but they tend to bend down toward the ground when they get any height. I am personally growing a small grove in a secluded back corner on the same farm which I am pruning in the winter to ensure straight growth, but they are just saplings. And I'm not talking about a slight bow... Im talking a 9 foot section doing a complete 180 degree turn. Might be cool for an entranceway arch or something like that, but by and large they are just too crooked for most applications for me. Sorry, I like (somewhat) straight lines.

They have thorns. (need I say more?)

Being so hard and dense has made them somewhat brittle. I've seen them used as piers for a small bridge, and all of the posts that carried weight split from top to bottom. (now granted I don't know how much weight the bridge carried at any one time...) The have AWESOME lateral strength, but don't carry weight too well up and down. I guess they're just too hard to be flexible once they dry. That is my primary concern actually. I can work with something that is difficult to fabricate (hell, this house is difficult to fabricate), painful to work with, and a little strong to the nose (although it does keep the bugs away), if it weren't for that splitting. Im sure if I looked long and hard enough I could find suitable posts in straightness and size to use, but that bridge just keeps popping into my memory. I wish I knew whether the splitting was caused by compression, or just by lateral flexing due to uneven pressure because that might make it a different case altogether...

But the story changes a bit because Black locust (commonly known as the 2nd best post wood) posts were used to replace the split osage a few years later and it lasted until the bridge was replaced altogether by a concrete and steel structure some 20 years later.

I dunno... sounds good on paper. The old timers around here tell me that it isn't suitable for structural members, and all seem to have a different reason why. I think they were just told it wouldn't work by their fathers years ago and just assumed the reason later.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 20, 2008, 07:50:20 AM
There are only a couple Osage Oranges near me obviously imported by the old timers in Gold Rush days.  They were so odd I studied up on them a bit.  Apples that look like green brains.  I have found the thorns.  It has the ability to be a vine of sorts in hedge rows or a tree if out more by itself.  It was used as impenetrable fence before barb wire and some say it was the inspiration for barb wire.

Splitting a lot of times doesn't weaken the post - the strength is in the cross sectional area.

Don't put a lot of faith in stories of what is suitable for structural wood and what is not.  In general, most wood if kept dry will remain as sound or sounder as it was green, I find.  I find more  that it is what is considered as commercially suitable for structural is what they are talking about without knowing it.  Not what is fine for rustic building.

The bull pine around here is spurned by early everyone who doesn't know the truth, but I found it makes the best trailer bed boards by those who know and I found a barn that is about 100 to 150 years old built entirely of it according to the rancher who owns it.  So much for the un-knowing's assumptions and stories.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 20, 2008, 09:28:04 PM
Got a bit more done today.  Set a treated bridge timber for holding a rammed earth floor.  Not enough money for concrete and an earth floor is fine for under a lot of my tools such as the press.  I need to move the big lathe into the shop in the morning.

Behind the bridge timber will be an open gutter.  Later I may fill it with gravel for a French drain but for now I will leave it open.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000091.jpg)

I drilled through the timber then rotohammered into the rock and claystone  to fasten the timber to the ground at grade level on the top.  Inside it will be filled and compacted to grade so the tools will be on the dry surface well  above the water drainage around the edges in the gutter.

I have an existing French drain to daylight around the older part of the shop that the gutter will tie into as well as having it drain out to the east also..

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000092.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Bishopknight on September 22, 2008, 09:14:42 AM
I just found this link to a free online version of mike oehlers, $50 and up, underground house book. Don't know if he authorized it or not though.

http://www.scribd.com/doc/5702329/-underground-house-book

If you like the book, please purchase a copy directly from Mike!

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 22, 2008, 10:28:51 AM
I would encourage not just the book, but his videos also --if you are serious.  He goes into a lot of hints , detail, instruction and things not included in the book also. 

I mean, crimoney -- you're getting a whole house for $50 --- It couldn't hurt to spend a bit more to learn more about how to do it properly.  :) 

I have had about a half dozen requests for me to write a book in the last 6 months, going into further details on this.  Latest request a couple days ago.  I keep thinking about it but haven't got past research on how to do it and the start.

Yesterday I brought in the fill to get the floor back to grade after removing the giant boulders and claystone with the jackhammer and Bobcat.

I wet it down for a start on compaction.  This morning I raked the top smooth for the compactor and put the rocks from the top into the French drain gutter to help keep it opened and to be easily removed if necessary.  The big rocks I tossed to the side for walls - the support behind th pole etc. between it and the ground (In case I accidentally bump into it with the Bobcat... me? ???

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/HarborFreightplatecompactor.jpg)

Above is the Harbor Freight Plate Compactor which I have used in a lot of places and am quite happy with -- B&S I/C engine.  It was $599 when I bought it. 





Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 23, 2008, 09:57:44 AM
My miner friend came over and helped me get the lathe unloaded from the trailer and into the shop yesterday - we drug the press out to the fairly well compacted corner where the plate compactor is above.  It will be easy to use there and does not require a concrete floor.

The lathe is about 2 feet longer than I thought.  14 feet long, it goes clear across 1/2 of my shop concreted area.  I guess I will put it at an angle to make it usable and give me room to walk around it.  Still repairs to make on it too and figure out a motor for it.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 27, 2008, 08:32:23 PM
I had to go to our other place and put a roof on the renters house so to keep from wasting the trip I took the trailer and brought back a stack of roof sheeting, and my other car.

My friend Whitlock went along so he could look at my impressive junk pile in the back of my shop in Kerman and help me in trade for me helping him. 

He said since his wife has seen my junk pile....er .... I mean....stored natural and unnatural resources, she now doesn't bother him about his...and that was just the one in Mariposa... not the one at the old place.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/RoofSheetingand1919DodgeRoadster.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on September 28, 2008, 06:27:52 AM
Is that going to be the batmobile? I guess the color is right.  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on September 28, 2008, 08:30:48 AM
That is a good idea, Scott.  A 1919 Dodge Brothers Batmobile. 

I have some 20 mil plastic that I can make a plastic cape for Sassy out of.

I just noticed --- If you squint your eyes to where they're barely open and look at the picture very hard, it almost looks like a bat. [crz]
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(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/RoofSheetingand1919DodgeRoadster.jpg)
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What are you doing...it doesn't really work.   I was just messin' with your mind. d*


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: OldDog on October 02, 2008, 03:09:08 AM

I can see it now, when Glenn gets done it will have a front loader, and a winch boom on the back! ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on October 02, 2008, 05:44:11 AM
I can't help thinking of that old movie chitty chitty bang bang.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 02, 2008, 08:23:17 AM
I am actually considering converting one of my Dodges to run on wood.  They would be ideal to run on wood gas.  It would just be an add on unit.  I'd beat the Oil companies then. d*  :)

That car took first place in a car show - Peoples Choice --  There were lots of cherried out cars there, but the 1919 Dodge as is still took the prize.  I washed it but no detailing and under the black spray can paint job the rust has been taken off with a wire brush and sander by the previous owner.  I told the viewers that it still had the original dirt on the engine.

The story of Pancho being shot in the same year and model 1919 Dodge Roadster.

http://www.hsgng.org/pages/pancho.htm

El Paso Law Enforcement

http://www.rustygunbarrel.com/pancho_villa_lived_and_died_by_the_gun

Someone's Flikr photo of Panchos car in the Chihuahua museum

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/panchobullets.jpg)

Quote
"Don't let it end like this, tell them I have said something." The last words of Doroteo Arango Arambulam also known as Pancho Villa, the last Mexican Hero.

A group of seven riflemen fired 150 shots in just two minutes into his car in Parral, Chihuahua. 16 bullets in his body and 4 in the head. Brilliant last words! I mean... the man got 4 bullets in the head and he was still able to speak!

Quote
A few years later, on Friday July 20, 1923, Villa, accompanied by an entourage of his elite guards, “Los Dorados (Golden Ones)” picked up a consignment of gold with which to pay his Canutillo ranch staff and was driving through the city in his black 1919 Dodge roadster when a group of seven riflemen fired 150 shots in just two minutes into his car. In the on slot of shots, 16 bullets lodged in his body and four more in his head. Pancho Villa had lived by the gun and died by the gun.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on October 02, 2008, 08:32:48 AM
I like that- Stored natural and unnatural resources [cool]

That is neat old car. It might rain on saturday do you have it under the car port yet ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 02, 2008, 08:36:34 AM
Not yet-- I just told Sassy one rain would simply wash it off. ::)

I need to get into the lower level of the garage and clean it out a bit.  I still have a few giant boulders left from when I built it in there ....and some stored un-natural resources. heh
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on October 03, 2008, 02:57:12 PM
I am actually considering converting one of my Dodges to run on wood.  They would be ideal to run on wood gas.  It would just be an add on unit.  I'd beat the Oil companies then. d*  :)
There's a good Yahoo "WoodGas" group Glen, Have you seen it ?

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 03, 2008, 07:24:43 PM
I heard of it once and never did join --- then it exited my mind....  Guess I better look it up.

Thanks, Steve.

http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/WoodGas/

http://www.woodgas.net/


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: apaknad on October 04, 2008, 04:05:13 AM
glen, mother earth news did this exact thing w/a p.u. truck along time ago. i remember reading about it. i still subscribe to MEN.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: apaknad on October 04, 2008, 04:44:34 AM
i sent you an e-mail on the wood gasification article glen. let me know if you get it. don't know how to post it here. the article is from MEN, may/june 1974.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 04, 2008, 08:30:45 AM
Thanks Dan.  I will check it out.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 04, 2008, 08:50:55 AM
Didn't get it, Dan.  Try again.

Here is a wood gas update from MEN.

http://www.motherearthnews.com/Green-Transportation/1981-09-01/Wood-Gas-Update.aspx
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 04, 2008, 07:58:50 PM
Looking for more power for our electric system.  The new fridge while very nice eats a lot of juice.  Winter will help, less water pumping but less power also.  Fixing the solar panels to the proper angle will help, but I want more.

I found a treadmill at a garage sale yesterday.  $40 and that's good.  I'm not going to walk on it though.  I'm gonna tear it's heart out.  The motor in a treadmill is usually a DC permanent magnet motor which can also be a generator.  [crz]

I got that one and today at the SPCA permanent yard sale there was another one.  I asked the lady how much and she said it was just in her way - take it, so I got another one.  One is 1.5 HP and the other is 2.5 HP so now I have something to play with and see what kind of power I can make with them. [idea]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: apaknad on October 05, 2008, 05:44:12 AM
yeah, sorry, i got a notice that the e-mail didn't go through but it looks like you have the info i was trying to send you. ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 05, 2008, 06:50:00 AM
Thanks anyway, Dan.  I studied a lot on this iin the past, then lost interest then did it again - built some of it then stopped. Some day I'll do it - more good info comes out every so often.  From WWII we know it works.  A guy in Eureka, CA at the Blue Ox Sawmill did one on a Pinto teaching school kids about it..
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 15, 2008, 06:28:27 AM
Some of the sheeting in the pix of the car above - under it- is now fastened to the top of the roof to make my clean rainwater collector.  More as I can get a break to get to it. 

Currently I'm installing a livestock water system on a mountainside and across a ravine.  Not much time to work for me...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2008, 07:32:22 PM
OK... didn't get anything special done today but did get up to my good friend and our member, Harry51's place to pour concrete with him.  There was to be a bit of a wait to put plastic on for the cure as we poured late, so Zach and I went to the store and got steak and beer to prepare it for a barbecue.

After services we did the ceremonial lighting of the barbecue near the pool and had our dinner at the pool of the underground complex.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000167.jpg)

Video to follow.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on October 17, 2008, 07:40:06 PM


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000167.jpg)



  That should git -er goin eh :o

 You didn't show the firemen that did you?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 17, 2008, 07:46:55 PM
heh .... the whole mountain in the back of the pix to the left and 2/3 of Harry's place is already burned.  What harm could I do -- set my own place on fire? [rofl2]

Time for that live action video and Harry's recitation of my old dead Catholic uncle's blessing of the food. rofl.  I wonder if Andrew knows that one? hmm 

It actually is for real... that was what he said as we prepared to eat at my grandmother's after working on the homestead remodel in about 1960 or so.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/th_P1000164.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/?action=view&current=P1000164.flv)

Note -- sorry to look like the missing link but Sassy told me to cut my beard so I had to let it grow..... [crz] d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on October 18, 2008, 08:01:34 AM
Using that device a rare steak would be what? 12 seconds??
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 18, 2008, 08:07:53 AM
I'm not sure if it would last that long, but fortunately I just light the Oak and Charcoal with the flame thrower. rofl

The steaks are (sometimes) cooked at a somewhat slower pace.  Last night was good.  They were on about 10 minutes and came out medium rare. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on October 18, 2008, 08:25:16 AM
Nice spot there Glenn. The sun going down on the hills behind you looks good. Our days of shirt sleeve weather at sunset are about 10 weeks gone. We're getting more and more lucky to see the sun at all.

Was that taken with the Lumix in movie mode? I just got mine out to try it and it seemed to do a pretty good job. We didn't have any pyrotechnics though.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 18, 2008, 09:09:44 AM
Yes - that was the Lumix in Movie, taken by Zach.  He works with me on Mike's bigger house project and fills in at Harry's on concrete pours.

We will still be very nice here in the days - near 80F and likely near 50's at night.  The hill behind is where I am currently putting in a livestock watering Station about 1/3 of the way up on the side - 40% grades where I'm working crossing a gulch with a cable to support a 2" pipe from the spring to a storage tank.  From there it goes up the mountainside about 160 feet to a stock tank using a solar powered pump.

Viewed from my driveway, here is Carla's ranch and my equipment and the below water tanks are at the end of the brown squiggly road going up the mountain to the trees on the right upper center of the picture.  I rebuilt the top section of road and all landings, animal access areas and cable anchor points with my Bobcat and trackhoe to have a work area and place to turn around.  The pipe support cable goes about 20 feet above the gulch and is around 100 feet long.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/carlasranch.jpg)




(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/tanksoncarlashill.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: John Raabe on October 18, 2008, 02:29:03 PM
Cool project and it's work right there in the neighborhood.

Kind of nice waking up in the morning and looking out on all of your creations! God-like work if you can get it... ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 18, 2008, 06:13:58 PM
It is nice, and I'm working on trying to get more work around here rather than steel in the big cities-- might even make it.

We can see the San Joaquin Valley on the other side of the underground complex.  I used to tell Sassy I liked to sit there on the top of the mountain and look down on my loyal subjects. :) [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on October 18, 2008, 06:46:49 PM
Glenn is that charcoal starter OSHA approved?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on October 18, 2008, 06:51:20 PM


Glenn is that charcoal starter OSHA approved?



 When your King of your own kingdom like Glenn you seek nor need any approval  c*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 18, 2008, 07:11:21 PM
rofl

It's O'SHT approved. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: PEG688 on October 18, 2008, 07:15:47 PM




It's O'SHT approved.



 Groan !  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 18, 2008, 07:50:12 PM
I thought it was pretty good, PEG. d*

While I'm here, here is a shot of the cable and anchors on the above job (winch anchor on this end -- made from junk).  There is a pond and spring across the ravine about 100 feet behind the white pipe, where we will get the water from.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/cableandanchors.jpg)

...and yes... I did hand stack about 3000 lbs of rock to hold the anchor in place on this side.



Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 25, 2008, 08:48:20 AM
Well - it's time to trim that beard in the top picture.  The hair is growing 360 degrees around my head.  Company is coming.

Sassy told me my beard reminded her of a gray toilet seat with a face sticking out of it, so I guess I will trim it. [crz]

Yes folks, this model is available in standard or elongated. ::)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on October 25, 2008, 08:51:18 AM
It is amazing  ::) rofl [scared]  maybe we should submit it to the Guiness Book of World Records  ???

I actually thought it looked more like the harness around the ox's neck... 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on October 25, 2008, 11:25:32 AM
It is nice, and I'm working on trying to get more work around here rather than steel in the big cities-- might even make it.

We can see the San Joaquin Valley on the other side of the underground complex.  I used to tell Sassy I liked to sit there on the top of the mountain and look down on my loyal subjects. :) [crz]

Hey Glenn I live above you and I know you won't be loyal so like I tell the wife  "$hit flows down hill" [toilet]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: apaknad on October 25, 2008, 11:29:02 AM
OH GOD GLEN, that's a mental picture i never ever wanted. :o i need a drink now and i am getting off this computer to go watch the michigan, michigan state game.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 25, 2008, 09:12:25 PM
Whitlock, I'm not worried until you move into your cabin.  Currently your flow is toward Whitlock Creek. :)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 25, 2008, 09:12:47 PM
OH GOD GLEN, that's a mental picture i never ever wanted. :o i need a drink now and i am getting off this computer to go watch the michigan, michigan state game.

Sorry about that Dan. It's not pretty is it? hmm
.... but then again you'll be stronger for having endured it. [crz]

...or some philosophical crap like that.... did that help, Dan? hmm ....maybe another drink to forget....

but then they say that you can never un-look at something ....it will always be there...maybe even a bad mental picture. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 26, 2008, 04:31:58 AM
Started to put this in Whats for dinner but thought I better move it to here as it was likely to mess up the topic. 

So --- our special dinner guest finally arrived at the Underground Command Center.

I didn't want to say too much until I was sure things were going to work out ...and they did.  Whitlock and wife showed up for a barbecue and the mystery guest arrived on schedule as planned.

We had the ceremonial lighting of the barbecue and the mystery guest was really impressed.  I trimmed my beard so did not catch my face on fire...that's a good thing, eh? hmm

We had barbecued steak and tri-tip - what the heck is that you say? [crz]

I don't know - its some weird California name tfor some cut of the cow that comes in some kind of small roast that is pretty good barbecued over a good hot oak fire.

Here it is from Wikipedia. 

The tri-tip is a cut of beef from the bottom sirloin primal cut.[1] It is a small triangular muscle, usually 1.5 to 2.5 lbs. (675 to 1,150g) per side of beef.

 In the US

In the United States, this cut was typically used for ground beef or sliced into steaks until the late 1950s, when it became a local specialty in Santa Maria, California, rubbed with salt, pepper, and spices and cooked whole on a rotisserie or grilled. (The tri-tip is still often labeled "Santa Maria steak".) Most popular in the Central Coast region of California,[1] it has begun to enjoy increasing popularity elsewhere for its full flavor, lower fat content, and comparatively lower cost.

Sassy made lots of other good stuff to go with it - salad - toasted bread- corn- rice and more.

Oh yeah and now that other item.  Have trouble getting your input from our favorite member in the financial world? hmm.

You know -- that one with the great barbecue recipes out of Texas? 

Our good friend had to come here to see if I really was crazy...and if Sassy really was that much better looking than I was. [crz]



Know who it is?  hmm

muldoon....that's who.  We had the honor of having muldoon drop in for the weekend - at least a good portion of it. :)

Mr. and Mrs. Whitlock, muldoon and Sassy and I had a great barbecue and got a good bit of time to shoot the bull.  In the afternoon we went down to look at some of the gold mining area where I let my dogs get all wet and splash water and mud all over muldoon when they got back in the Jeep.  Luckily he's a good sport and we had a great time. :)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/muldoonandgk.jpg)

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/sassyandmuldoon.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on October 26, 2008, 08:02:40 AM
Glenn you were up at 5:30 ???
Good friends Good food what more can you ask for [cool]
Glad to have meet Muldoon wish now I would have picked his brain more d*Oh'well there is allways forum time.

Thanks form the both of us :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 26, 2008, 12:30:38 PM
Goofy cat woke me up - opened the door and went prowling around.  Shes too old and dumb to be out in the night.  At least the dogs keep the coyotes and other predators away now.  This is the wild wild west. Cat's only used to last a few days to maybe a year and a half before becoming dinner around here. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: muldoon on October 26, 2008, 06:08:39 PM
Thanks again for the invite up glen.  I had a great time seeing the place and goldmines in the area.  For others, I was shipped up to California for about a week and a half for work and Glen very graciosuly offered to put me up for the weekend so I could get out of the city for a little visit (personally I was very grateful for the chance to re-balance myself mentaly away from the city).  Much needed and appreciated. 

You sure have a neat place, I have been looking at these thread for nearly a year and frankly your pictures just dont do it justice, you just have to see it to believe or understand it.  I drove up this dirt road and when it petered out I looked around and didn't really see a house.  But it's there and once inside, it's just keeps going and going.  Open a door and there's a suspended bridge to another level or stairs up to the shop, or a walkway to the garden, or underground tunnel in the making to the pool area, or the woodshed and garages, it's quite simply something to see.  Sorry I kept asking about the roof, I still don't get it.  its a parabolic corkscrew?   ???  d*

Kathy - sorry we didn't get to talk much, but the gold in those hills was calling.  :)  Hopefully there will be more time next time before you have to jet off for work. 

Harry and Matt (and wife) - again - nice to meet you guys, I'm looking forward to seeing your progress on your projects and hearing back with where your at over time. 

I did take a bunch of pictures (http://www.loopy.org/pictures/index.php?gallery=Mariposa), you can also watch the slideshow here (http://www.loopy.org/pictures/index.php?gallery=Mariposa&image=DSCF2934.JPG&action=slideshow). 

Thanks again for everything, especially the hop flowers, gonna make a "dirty ass mountain dog heffeweizen" with it. 
(gee I hope that name isnt already taken) 

(http://www.loopy.org/pictures/galleries/Mariposa/_thumbs/640x480-DSCF2990.JPG)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 26, 2008, 07:23:56 PM
Thanks for the kind words, muldoon.  Even when you can see what all of it looks like you still think of it as cool.  That is a great sense of looking at the potential of something when there is still so much to be done.  Some day I will get motivated again and even get a bit more done. 

Yes -- those are not piles of junk.  They are unnatural resources. ::)

I hope the beer turns out well.  I haven't brewed it in years but you may get me started again some day.... and no - I don't think that name has been taken and Spike would be honored to be your Mascot.  Sorry about the mud... rofl

Sometimes I don't even get the roof... but the section that twists over the 12' horizontal axis is a hyperbolic paraboloid - a name I have trouble remembering, and at the north end of it it joins the edge of a corkscrew roof where the rain water flows clockwise from top to bottom to drain to the ground.  The lower end of the corkscrew joins the north edge of the paraboloid which also drains at the same combined valley. 

There ...obviously that will clear it all up. hmm

I have currently been in a bit of a slump wanting to get some prospecting done and having to take lower paying jobs to keep things going as the bigger more generous ones peter out with the economy- so less time I feel like working between them....but I do occasionally get motivated.

muldoon, you are a true friend, a great guy, and it was an honor to have you visit the Underground Command Center.  You of course were welcome to stay as long as you wanted --

Permanent? hmm

We'll dig a hole for you.  Thanks so much for thinking enough of us to care to stop in and feel free to drop by anytime.  The rope bed under a foot and a half of dirt and horse manure is waiting for you. [crz]

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on October 26, 2008, 07:33:11 PM
Nice photo tour muldoon. I may have to make it out there someday just so I can tell my grandkids about the real wild west. I've been to CA several times but I never saw that part of it.  :P
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 26, 2008, 07:53:42 PM
We like to consider this the best part.  Nice pictures of my wiring, muldoon. d*

I know how to do it right and that's all that matters. rofl

Note that all cords used in the making of those pictures are UL approved and the entire system is protected by safeguards for everything in the Trace inverters.  Overvoltage, undervoltage, shorts, overcharging, all safely shut the system down.  A fire axe is laying around somewhere for quick disconnect in emergency.  d*

We like to think this is the best part of California, Scott. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on October 26, 2008, 08:17:46 PM
Note, Scott, --- I failed to mention that the bed is under the roof and the horse manure is on top of the roof in the garden... [rofl2]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: akemt on November 10, 2008, 12:14:02 AM
Glenn, can one build an underground house in a rainforest with high watertables?  And by rainforest I mean 150-200 inches a year (we got Oregon's annual rainfall in three months this year!) and the water table roughly 6"-1' down.  Of course, we have full-on mountainside wooded lots here, which I'm hoping can help with the water issue.  Cheap is good, and I'm willing to be drastic.  Wouldn't mind people not knowing I'm building or even where my house is without being led to it.  ;)  Including the friendly government folks. 

I Love the "$50 and up underground house" book and greenhouse ideas from what I've seen so far.  I've looked over their website...I'll have to buy the book!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 10, 2008, 07:26:21 AM
I'm glad you asked, Catherine.  It can be done if you take the water problem into consideration, because if there is a problem under the ground you will just do it above the ground making your own hill and garden or landscaping on top to make it disappear into your own park like setting.

If you are on the hillside I don't see water standing under the ground that close.  Maybe I'm missing something in your information though.  If it is just water flowing under the organic ground cover on top of the mineral soil , then that is common and happens here too.  I get up to 50 inches here on the mountain so am not that dry for California either.

If it is a true water table you would be able to put a pump in it and it would refill from the bottom -not surface runoff.  That would be a case for doing it above ground and berming it as well as covering it.  You need shoring lumber - 1" for a 2 foot roof span or 4' wall span.  2" (1 5/8 standard lumber) for a 3'10" (4' is close enough with beams -purlins under it) roof span or an 8' wall span.  This is assuming your soil supports itself pretty well on the walls.  If you find excessive bowing cut add a support post in the mid span.

If the above is the case you would want to make a walkway uphill with a ditch on the inside of it to drain the water away before it gets to your cabin site.  An uphill patio would take care of the rest and give you a way out of the back along with a way to get light into the cabin. 

You don't need anywhere near as many logs - just for the post, girders and purlins.  The girders are the largest at about 12" dia. while the posts can be as small as 7" and the purlins 8" dia.  Please feel free to ask more questions.

Note that the EPDM liner is the way to go for the roof membrane now.  It can even be pond liner.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on November 10, 2008, 09:56:16 PM
Went to Glenn's today to lend a hand 8)


Glenn looking at one of the black helicopters or chemtrials when he should of been paying attention to the sawmill d*

(http://i455.photobucket.com/albums/qq278/Minermatt/Glenns003.jpg)


Ya Right heh


(http://i455.photobucket.com/albums/qq278/Minermatt/Glenns001.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 10, 2008, 09:58:23 PM
They shouldn't have been distracting me.  It was the governments fault that I cut my jumper cable. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 10, 2008, 10:06:59 PM
I can explain about the sign.   [noidea'

I didn't steal it and put it up at my place.

It was down near another neighbors place.

He came up to visit while I was away.  :(

When I came back ..... there was the sign. d*

He said he got tired of looking at it and thought with all the trouble I had fighting authority during the fire that I deserved to have it.   heh


Really..... like.......dude.... I couldn't make this stuff up.   [slap]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on November 11, 2008, 09:29:01 AM
Glenn you going to put your boards today d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 11, 2008, 10:01:49 AM
I forgot about them -- think I have to try Carla's pipeline first - hopefully Fresno tomorrow - possibly tonight I may work there a little.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: akemt on November 14, 2008, 09:17:36 AM
Glenn,

Can you give me some information (or link me to it if it already exhists) about building costs for your place?  We'd do everything ourselves and could get the logs and perhaps some rough-cut lumber ourselves for nothing but labor, but things like car decking would have to be purchased.  I am just wondering about the cost comparison to countryplans-style stick framing. 

Thanks!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 14, 2008, 04:19:55 PM
I scrounged most things, Catherine, but I had to buy some logs as I didn't have them  on the property.  I also bought plastic -nails etc.  I sawed my own boards.  I estimate that I spent around $5000 without the electricity and plumbing. 

We have around $25000 in the solar and wind I think.  It is hard to nail down the numbers here because I scrounged a lot of stuff and did a lot of labor or had a few guys that worked with me help once in a while.  I owned my own excavating equipment and crane truck so was not out money for it.

Depending on your needs and scrounging ability along with your natural resources - it could cost anywhere from a few hundred to $20000 or more.  Use an EPDM roof (pond) liner to eliminate many potential problems.  I think there is still a cheap source in Oregon.

Lets see what your needs are and figure something up for you.  Sketch out a floor plan keeping in mind things may change depending on your property.  Normal modules of Mikes engineering are 8'x8' or 8'x10'6"  Many can be combined to make bigger rooms with  posts in them.  I also have a way to get a larger space for a great room running braces diagonally - up to 21 x 16 less area taken by posts.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 16, 2008, 11:20:22 AM
Upgrade to the Kitchen this weekend mandated by Sassy.  As Whitlock put it  "Early American Settler" style....





with screws.... [crz]


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/newkitchenshelves.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on November 16, 2008, 11:37:07 AM
Needed more storage  :)  I still have to sand & finish the shelves, but gives me more counter space & shelves.  The discoloration in the floor area was under a small set of shelves that I moved into the master bath - will need to refinish the floor - I kept looking for shelves that would fit between the toilet & wall by the clawfoot bathtub - something kept telling me to not buy anything that I'd soon have what I needed for the area - the shelves I moved out of the kitchen fit perfectly in that spot  8) 

BTW, the roses are from the garden...   ;D

I even made DH some cinnamon rolls  c*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 19, 2008, 06:51:59 PM
After Sassy's finish job, a similar picture to compare,

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/shelves3.jpg)

y otra lado....

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/shelves2.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Curtis on November 19, 2008, 07:07:03 PM
Looks nice!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on November 19, 2008, 07:31:58 PM
Is that some of the gnarly pine you spoke of?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 19, 2008, 07:34:43 PM
Thanks, Curtis.  Some day when you are old and crazy this could be you.... :)



Yes Don.  They call it Bull Pine commonly around here.   They grow every way but straight.  This was from about a reasonably straight 16 foot section 20 inch or so dia log..  It had been down a year or so and had a bit of poor wood in it, but very colorful.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on November 19, 2008, 07:42:26 PM
Bull pine or Digger pine. They grow crooked as a dogs hind leg. Once made into lumber you better get it nailed down or the boards will walk off.
They have large edible pine nuts.
Not many people call them Digger pines anymore,I guess it insults the Digger Indians?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 19, 2008, 07:56:38 PM
Digger insults the Indians, Whitlock, but I do hear it called that once in a while.  It wouldn't be bad but in the old days the Whites around here considered it derogatory so I guess that's what it became. 

I think it was just in reference to them hunting and gathering acorns - other food from the natural resources.  I have had friends come and show me some of the thinks of interest around us including how to make beads from the pine nuts.  My grandson loves the Indian History and we had a nice get together here where some of them came over and sang tribal songs and played the flute for his visit.  They even brought him gifts.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Curtis on November 19, 2008, 08:01:08 PM
Thanks, Curtis.  Some day when you are old and crazy this could be you.... :)



Yes Don.  They call it Bull Pine commonly around here.   They grow every way but straight.  This was from about a reasonably straight 16 foot section 20 inch or so dia log..  It had been down a year or so and had a bit of poor wood in it, but very colorful.

I'm on my way. Haha.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 20, 2008, 07:54:50 AM
Thanks, Curtis.  Some day when you are old and crazy this could be you.... :)



Yes Don.  They call it Bull Pine commonly around here.   They grow every way but straight.  This was from about a reasonably straight 16 foot section 20 inch or so dia log..  It had been down a year or so and had a bit of poor wood in it, but very colorful.

Continuing the confusion...

The wood gets so hard in dried areas that I have actually seen sparks fly off of the blade on the band saw in the day time.  I had hit one hard knot on the log cutting the caps off slightly dulling the blade. 

After thinking that was it I decided to see how far the blade would go and with the diesel spray and lots of water, I think Whitlock said we made 260 board feet.

Replies to this may be posted on the other thread. [rofl2]

Actually I was feeling guilty for not posting anything in the other thread so put it there too, but I posted a different view here also. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on November 20, 2008, 11:26:16 AM
Talking about a fire starter.  If you can find a few bull pine knots to throw in the stove they will light with only a match.  Don't put too many in at one time or your stove will look like a foundry. ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 20, 2008, 06:17:44 PM
Our old Round Oak stove is very efficient with under fire- mid fire and over fire air.  It starts easy and if you use dry bull pine cut small it will just about jump out of the cabin by itself.  It will heat it up in a very short time.  I havent cut any for starter wood though - I need to get some cut but it really builds creosote in the pipes as they exit underground. 

Anybody know any good uses for creosote granules?

Keeping it cut small and burning hot keeps it to a minimum but sometimes I get a bit lazy. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on November 20, 2008, 06:27:26 PM
Our old Round Oak stove is very efficient with under fire- mid fire and over fire air.  It starts easy and if you use dry bull pine cut small it will just about jump out of the cabin by itself.  It will heat it up in a very short time.  I havent cut any for starter wood though - I need to get some cut but it really builds creosote in the pipes as they exit underground. 

Anybody know any good uses for creosote granules?

Keeping it cut small and burning hot keeps it to a minimum but sometimes I get a bit lazy. [crz]

Flaked creosote is also useful to start the fire with.  Put a handfull in on top of the kindlin.  Keep the stove doors shut though until it get burning good.  Always look for pine knots when around pine.  Another old fire starter was to soak corn cobs in kerosene and then allow them to dry.  Lights easy.   
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 20, 2008, 06:34:33 PM
Cool.  I have one stack of pipe about 8 feet tall with a cleanout at ground level.  The creosote falls to the cleanout and piles up - it's a capped T, so easy to clean.  It is at ground level by the garden.  I put a stove pipe brush in at that point and pull it through to the stove with a rope keeping a dust pan, bucket and shop vac there to catch the rest. 

It is pretty easy to do but I have to do it about 3 times per year.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: dra on November 21, 2008, 01:49:05 AM
Been a while since I last stopped by to look in on your progress.

I am in envy of your sawmill. I'd LOVE to have something to turn the massive quantity of cedar and pine I'd have to clear on the land to make a decent house sight into the lumber to build with.

As it is, i'm debating doing an experimental hobbit hole with Cedar logs. I've got a number of standing and fallen dead trees in excess of a food in diameter that are bone dry, but sound.

I know that cedar will be ok for the verticals, but i'm slightly leery of using them for rafters. I know how easy it is to get the stuff to break. Do you think I should cut some pine for the roof, or would 8"-12" cedar logs hold the kind of weight that this kind of construction has to put up with?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 21, 2008, 07:45:32 AM
I don't know where you are located, but the cedar will work fine if you just reduce the loading on the roof.  The tables in Mikes book were rated at 2 feet of dirt and a foot of water.  He suggested reducing the load to 18" of dirt but in other places he said 6" was enough cover.  I agree and would keep it at 6" to 18" as I have on my place.

I have lot of Incense Cedar rafters as well as pine.

Keep the girders to 12" or more - rafters 8" nominal but Mike said not to have a cow about it if some were a bit small as there was a good safety factor.  Reduce loading as mentioned.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: dra on November 21, 2008, 10:14:01 PM
I'm up in Nevada county. It's...roughly the same terrain as you have, but at a higher elevation. A lot more trees.

Thanks for the advice.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 22, 2008, 07:12:19 AM
Please feel free to ask anytime.  Nice area with lots of history there.

Once again. EPDM is the recommended roof membrane now per verbal from Mike.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: akemt on November 22, 2008, 10:35:22 AM
Alaska rainforest girl again looking for price estimates (really rough is just fine).  180" of rain a year is normal, along with high water tables on flat areas.  FYI, there are some hillside lots here and some flat ones, none of which we yet own, thus the earlier confusion.  Sorry about that!

You'd asked me to make a floorplan sketch.  I feel a bit like I'm thinking inside the box.  Stick-framing is cheaper built in squares and rectangles/squares are simpler to build so that is what I went with not knowing the lot we'd be using or knowing what works best with this building method.  Though, dh best be getting it for me the book for Christmas...  Anyway, with all our young kids at home and homeschooling (4 kids, oldest is 5 1/2, youngest is 2 months), I planned for the smallest place I'd go with without a need to add on later.  I don't know if adding on later would be as difficult and messy as I'm currently thinking, though, and if it isn't as bad as it sounds we could cut one slice of the below grid dimensions off of the small side, making the grids more of a square and thus cutting the initial cost.  Anyway, with 8 x 8 sections we could get what I'd want out of a 4 x 5 grid of them (4 x 4 if with plans for a later addition).  With 8 x 10' 6 we could easily fit in a 3 (10'6 side) by 5 (8' side) grid (3 x 4 with later addition).  I can work easily within the posts/grids for a floorplan.  I'm just looking for structure/dry-in cost comparisons right now.  Electric, finishes, and plumbing can all come later.

Our basic needs for a stick-built can fit in a 20 x 34 with bathroom, large kitchen, and family area down and 3 lofts for sleeping up.  Then I wouldn't feel an immediate need to add on, but could still get the structure built with a year's savings at our current pay level.  I don't know if that helps, but that's basically what our needs are for a house.  3 sleeping "rooms" with space for 2 each, a main living area (that can convert to dining with a table with leafs or wall-mounted fold down...something of that nature), a big kitchen, and a bathroom.  A storage/pantry will be necessary at some point but can be a stand-alone structure or addition.

Our house that has been for sale for over a year now is supposed to close this next week :) and then we can start really taking out all our medical and consumer debt.  We're already down by half, the house sale will then cut us down to a quarter and the last credit card we should be able to knock out within a few months.  Then we'll be saving for building costs and the down payment on land.  I tend to research the cheapest and best options and then make a plan for it.  Having some kind of a date/dollar ammount to shoot for to get out of my mother's house would be a good motivator to save!  [crz]  Just let inflation and my husband's pay not freak out too much before then.   d*

Thanks for your help and input, Glenn.  Sorry I'm so long winded!
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 22, 2008, 11:38:44 AM
So many variables - are you familiar with a spreadsheet, Catherine?  I sent you a link to a Google Doc I made for you to help figure this and easily change it. 


Here is a link to a generic one showing how it is set up.  Not a working model.

http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?key=ptYRe_ctDvOsI1pK_FRb9fA

As far as I know to get a working model I have to send you a link so if someone wants to play with it let me know
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 22, 2008, 12:24:37 PM
Costs can vary a lot by your skills - what you hire out - what equipment you have or rent - hand work - etc.  If the cost of heavy equipment is high then you may want to consider stick built as that size is a lot of dirt to hand dig and equipment time could run quite a bit.  If on the other hand you acquire a backhoe - the picture changes - log placement is another consideration.  Equipment means pretty fast and relatively easy.  Safety needs to be considered - falling logs hurt or kill so a safe way of placing them must be had.

The spreadsheet can compare many ways and do the calculations for you.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 23, 2008, 06:28:49 PM
Whitlock is currently indisposed.  His computer quit working.

I told him to bring  it to the Underground Command Center and under the glaring interrogation lights in an undisclosed location he has torn it into a million pieces.  Hopefully he will make it back some day.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/mattscomputerrepair.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Bishopknight on November 27, 2008, 06:18:02 PM
I just saw the slideshow pics from muldoons visit. Impressive is an understatement. I love the cob walls and wood logs. Amazing.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on November 27, 2008, 06:41:01 PM
Thanks Sean.  Crude but functional. :) 

Muldoon's visit was one of the highlights of our summer.  He's a great friend.

Now if I'd just get it in gear and finish more of it.

If you haven't seen it the first page- first paragraph links to about 126 pix and a slide show from early days.

Here is another link in case you don't want to go back that far-

Click on the picture to start the show.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/th_2353.jpg) (http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/?action=view&current=3bd6d9b8.pbw)

Check the pix to the right of the show in Photobucket or...

also a direct link to the pix...


http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/Underground%20update%202005-01-30/

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 02, 2008, 05:56:06 PM
Changing the front of the greenhouse a bit and putting another layer of plastic and dirt over some of the house where I kind of half a$$ed it in the past.  This time I happen to have some 20 mil left over from Mike's job.

Whitlock came over and gave me a hand or pushed or something and we actually got a lot done. d* 

Tore out tons of rocks and railroad ties and removed the drip system in that area.

Startng to get the plastic down - If I could just find my staples. hmm
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: DIYJandS on December 04, 2008, 08:36:56 AM
Grea job! I love this.  I'm new to this site and I must say I'm very impressed and inspired.  Thanks for sharing and I look forward to having my own project to share soon.  :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on December 04, 2008, 09:14:30 AM
 w* to our forum  SustainabilityNow

We try to help each other out and have some fun while doing it.

 :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 04, 2008, 10:40:02 PM
Glad you enjoy the site, SustainabilityNow.  Not all are as crazy as us and live underground like gophers, but we do find a few once in  while.  Good grubs and roots too. :)

As Whitlock and I were working on the roof changes a couple days ago we pulled enough vegetables for a good pot of turkey soup...except that we are both tired of turkey....  I can't believe how long one of those birds last...  [hungry]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 05, 2008, 07:25:05 PM
Roof changes delayed a bit by a rush treasure gathering trip.  People like to give me things... in this case pay me to take them, as it was on an estate sale and had to be removed. 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/D6.jpg)

Scrap price is too low and it hasn't run in 18 years so Whitlock and I loaded it onto the trailer with the Bobcat.  The previous owner covered expenses to remove it.  I got it for the labor we had to do to move it.  I think I can get it running but had to get it out so no time to try earlier.

He also gave us the misc. old machinery in the field for moving it.  Treasure.  This includes the Northwest that goes with the dragline bucket -- I'll have to see what I can do about that.


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/treasure.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Homegrown Tomatoes on December 06, 2008, 05:37:27 AM
Glenn, you must have that same gene where people like to give you stuff.  I've got it too; comes in handy sometimes.  When I was in college, all the international students used to unload all their school supplies and housewares, camping gear, etc. on me when they had to return to their countries.  Hopefully you'll get it working one of these days.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 06, 2008, 07:06:36 AM
Thanks, Homey.  Probably because I walk around with holes burnt in my clothes by welding? [crz]

I know it is handy though. 

I never go to negotiate a job in New Blue Jeans and a New T-shirt though.  They may think I am affluent, (or is it effluent hmm) and not want to offer as much pay.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 09, 2008, 07:56:06 PM
Speaking of clothes, I put on a fresh new clean pair of blue jeans today and that caused me to have a problem... d*

If I had never put on new jeans, my John Deere would not have wanted to spew oil all over me. [crz]

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000390.jpg)

Like.... how are you s'pose to drive one of these things anyway? hmm


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000391.jpg)

When I was driving truck we always used to try to keep them dirty side up....


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000392.jpg)


or, was it down?  hmm


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000393.jpg)


Dang oil just kept spewing all over my new pants....good thing I didn't have my seat
belt on and was able to get away from it....  d* d* d*

Note that I did stay in the operator area and held on to the roll bar.  Jumping out , besides being impossible would have meant getting squashed beyond repair.  Seat belt -- I usually always wear it on dangerous missions.  Heck - this was an easy one.  They say most accidents happen near home.  Possibly it would be a good idea for me to move soon.  ???


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000394.jpg)


I guess we have to chalk this one up, to operator error, failure to see the rock hidden by the bucket, failure to asses the size of the rock and the softness of the ground on the low side.   [noidea'


(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000395.jpg)


At least it was easy to get back up.... before I pulled off the track -- had to right it with the crane and pull it ahead with my one ton 4x4 to get it off of the rock and make it stay vertical.



(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/P1000396.jpg)


So, how was your day?  [waiting]




Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 09, 2008, 08:06:49 PM
My day was spent helping you [rofl2]
Just glad you didn't get hurt [cool]

 Take care,W
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: ScottA on December 09, 2008, 08:08:46 PM
Laying down on the job. I did that once on a Case. Pick it up and get back to work, all you can do.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on December 09, 2008, 08:13:48 PM
Fall down... go boom.  :(

Glad you are okay. One thing you said prompted me to say something.

Quote
I did stay in the operator area and held on to the roll bar

I have a 4 wheeling acquaintance who did that once when the Jeep he was in tipped over. Fortunately because the roll bar was encased with thick foam rubber his fingers were only bruised by the rock that stopped the Jeep from rolling onto it's top. Other wise he could have lost several fingers.

The moral is to wear the seat belt and have something other than the roll over structure to hang on to.  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 09, 2008, 08:20:50 PM
You got it, Scott.  Didn't even bother me. d*

Thanks for the help, W.   Hope I kept you entertained... [rofl2]

Right, Don.  Should have been wearing the belt.  At least the pipe was big enough to keep my fingers back.

I did not do so much as even get a scratch - bump or anything. Landed right I guess and it was rather slow as I had just crossed another rock, successfully  and had just glanced back to look at it.  Since the rains, the ground is softer than usual and conditions here on the mountain are not always ideal anyway.

Better assessment and a bit less haste is in order. d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on December 09, 2008, 08:40:00 PM
Most 4 wheeling roll overs are slow motion flop over events too. Not all, but most I've seen.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on December 09, 2008, 08:45:01 PM
Gonna have to get you a gimbaled seat.  Jeez Glenn! Lucky dog you are.  The marriage of steel and human tissue is a onesided affair.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 09, 2008, 09:10:15 PM
considerations, there are people in California who enjoy it though.... ::) rofl

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 09, 2008, 09:17:53 PM
This was a crazy day [scared]
But all in all it turned out the loader wasen't hurt and neather was Glenn.
As a matter of fact he was laughing about it.


Now can we get back on track :)

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on December 09, 2008, 09:48:51 PM

Now can we get back on track


Why?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 09, 2008, 09:56:55 PM
I pulled the track off with the crane when we tipped it back up and pulled it forward with the Dodge, hence necessitating getting it back on track.  rofl

It was pretty easy to do with the crane truck.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 16, 2008, 08:54:52 PM
Worked over at Glenn's moving his lathe and cleaning up the shop. I don't think we broke or fliped anything over today [waiting]
Afterwards Sassy had us over for dinner she made eye of newt soup with bats wool, lizard legs and beans Other than being green it was very good heh heh


Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 16, 2008, 09:12:54 PM
Whitlock is motivating me -- then after things are organized we may even be able to accomplish great things too.

Cleanup today was started so we could have room to make a tripod for tomorrow for lifting 2000 lb reinforcement beams to the ceiling of the old Masonic Lodge - now 6th street Cinema in town.  Why can't we just straightaway do the job we wanted to without all of the other things we have to do first? hmm

Here I am putting the beams in the building 8-6-08

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/sixthstbm.jpg)

Yup - caught the stack on an Oak tree.  bent it back with the crane. d*


...and yes the meal was good.... and boy...can that Flutterby girl ever put away the Cherry pie, ice cream and whipped cream on top.... rofl
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 16, 2008, 09:37:56 PM
good thing Sassy's key board is out or she would surely be giving me a hard time ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 16, 2008, 10:18:05 PM
She already said that -- guess I should try to fix it again. 
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 17, 2008, 10:45:35 AM
Well, Glenn got my computer fixed, now I can type again  :)  Thanks DH  :-*

And Whitlock, you are lucky I can't remember what I was going to say last night  d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 17, 2008, 06:34:07 PM
Did I get lucky or what :-\
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on December 17, 2008, 07:30:04 PM
Whitlock we probably all lucked out. ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Sassy on December 17, 2008, 07:47:58 PM
 ::) ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dog on December 22, 2008, 01:52:22 PM
Hey Glenn...glad you were alright with the spill the JD took. The pics are great. Your home is beautiful as it's always evolving. I'm especially fond of the building inspector.  :D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on December 22, 2008, 02:02:27 PM
Glenn, I don't know why this thought popped into my head today, but have you ever tested for radon?

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dog on December 22, 2008, 02:49:09 PM
Where rocks are radon sometimes follows.
Just check it out to be on the safe side. It's probably fine. You survived that fire! I love how you made friends with the Fire Dept. It fits! 8)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 23, 2008, 07:40:55 PM
Thanks, Dog.  I checked and in general it seems all of our county was within safe limits from what reports I could find. 

The Fire department people were great.  I hear that some of the Sheriffs were great-- some were jerks - some in between -- just like real people I guess. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on December 24, 2008, 03:49:29 AM
Glenn that is probably a good assessment because contrary to most peoples thoughts they are just "real people" who have a profession and are just trying to make a living like us all. But many of them forget they are real people.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 24, 2008, 06:05:34 AM
Good point, John and I have to agree, most are pleasant to meet and talk to and I think in most cases when the chips are down and we are in need of help nearly all of them would put their lives on the line for us. 

The conflicts we get into with them are not really a reflection on their character, but more likely in my case during the fire it was more of a hastily thought out policy implemented in the best manner they could in the short time available, with most of them having the best interest of the people at heart. Their leadership was backpedaling at the first meeting, realizing their policy had been overbearing.

The other conflicts could be, if we were really in the wrong, criminal or a few of them were corrupt.

When all is said and done I find that nearly all of them will respond well and treat us well when we treat them well.  Yup.... just real people. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dog on December 24, 2008, 09:08:57 AM
I come from a long line of law enforcers and law breakers. My experience has been that some individuals unfortunately abuse the power they've been given which can often lead to hostility towards authority. Myself included at times. Many sign on to serve and protect and do so with strong conviction. Others abuse. I believe this is because inside they are truly weak people at heart. I'm not much for corruption. This is why one day I will live "off the grid"...in some resemblance of peace...
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 24, 2008, 04:49:14 PM
Seems that is a honest view of it, Dog. 

I was also a trucker for a few years so was getting pulled into weigh/inspection stations many times a week and it seems like it cost me money monthly.  I couldn't exactly call that abuse, but it sure generated revenue for the system at my expense.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 26, 2008, 11:36:12 AM
Hey Glenn,
How's the weather ?

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 26, 2008, 03:53:14 PM
The water's fine, Steve, come on in.... [waiting]

OK -- so it's a bit cold - froze and broke a plastic hose fitting today but not too bad.  Currently 41.9f out.  Partly sunny for the next week it looks like.  You dropping in?  I'll put on the coffee. [crz]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 27, 2008, 02:11:52 AM
We were over a couple of weeks back - drove all the way across Texas to see our land in NM - and back 23 hours later...

BBC News is full of how much snow is falling in the West - we get paralysed by ONE inch of snow here - schools shut 'an everythin' - figured you might be buried more than usual ?

Have a good 'un - and a happy New Year.

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 27, 2008, 08:49:55 AM
We had 10 inches earlier - most went away soon - last few and some ice for about a week.  Still a bit here and there.  Mountain passes here on less than major roads are closed for the winter.

We have mostly 4 wheel drive except for the big truck which is pretty good but stays parked in the worst of it.  Once off of the mountain there is not much problem.

That is a long trip, not even including the flight, Steve. d*

Best to you, family, and GB for the new year.  :)  Just realized --- I meant Great Britain - not George Bush.  [waiting]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 27, 2008, 09:32:12 AM
We have mostly 4 wheel drive except for the big truck which is pretty good but stays parked in the worst of it.  Once off of the mountain there is not much problem.

Hi Glen,

We got a 4wd too....Meet Bob the 101. Wish we had the snow for him. There was a good dump here - while we were in the USA  :(

(http://lh4.ggpht.com/_ol4snISu5EI/SLUOYS35XxI/AAAAAAAAAGc/TQgMg6S2MQQ/s800/dscf3552.jpg")
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on December 27, 2008, 10:41:57 AM
You are going to make Glenn start drooling. ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 27, 2008, 05:45:36 PM
I love that truck... [waiting]

It would be great around here. :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 28, 2008, 04:53:17 AM
I love that truck... [waiting]

It would be great around here. :)

He is a 101 Forward Control Landrover - designed and tested to carry 1.5 tons up a 60 degree slope. Originally designed to pull the Army 105mm field Howitzer. And he's 35 years old ! BTW Landrovers always end up with names - we have Bob, Wendy and Oliver  :-[

We take him off-roading here as often as we can - and he wipes the floor with most modern 4x4s - but he is rather basic.....

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 28, 2008, 07:02:03 AM
Now I'm really jealous.... I didn't really realize Bob was actually yours.... d*

Bob is a handsome fellow, and 60 degrees.... wow. [scared]

Do you have quite a bit of 4 wheeler area there? hmm

(http://lh4.ggpht.com/_ol4snISu5EI/SLUOYS35XxI/AAAAAAAAAGc/TQgMg6S2MQQ/s800/dscf3552.jpg%22)

Had to bring Bob up here too.   :)

Looks like Robin Hood country.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on December 28, 2008, 07:14:11 AM
I don't know. 60 degree without tracks?   ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on December 28, 2008, 07:19:34 AM
Seems mighty steep. Maybe he'll show us a picture?

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 28, 2008, 07:29:24 AM
I would think possibly with a firm footing like our clay when it is not wet but damp or some of Don's dry rock climbs. 

Around here if the clay is wet, you can't stay or drive on a 10 degree slope- it simply wraps the mud around the tires.  The front end of the deisel delivery truck slid sideways the other day on maybe a 3 inch angle over 8 feet..

The same clay when well drained  in a day or less drying would allow a very steep climb.

BTW - I moved my 1000 gallon diesel tank up here from the other place - decided to get some for equipment and future during our little price break.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 28, 2008, 07:49:56 AM
I would think possibly with a firm footing like our clay when it is not wet but damp or some of Don's dry rock climbs. 

Definitely dry tested ! There are some photos I can dig out from the club archives I expect (http://www.101club.org ). There are great ones somewhere of the things being tested running FULLY submerged, and the poor bugger who must have spent the previous six hours driving one round the test track looking less than amused and very wet failing to smile at the camera.

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 28, 2008, 08:03:23 AM
Looks like Robin Hood country.

Not far by your standards ! - 60 miles or thereabouts to Sherwood Forest from where we took the pictures.

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 28, 2008, 11:45:58 AM
Pix would be cool, Steve if you get a chance- I have to do some work before Maid Marian gets back, or I would look them up.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 28, 2008, 12:18:32 PM
Pix would be cool, Steve if you get a chance- I have to do some work before Maid Marian gets back, or I would look them up.

I've asked the lads if there are some of the commissioning trials photos I can have - there's a nice one of a braking test with the thing on its nose....

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 28, 2008, 07:25:04 PM
Cool, Thanks, Steve... I actually got some work done today.  :)

I'm building my own solar tracker as I don't want to buy a commercial one.  Too Expensive.  I have been collecting junk for it for a while now but needed some heavy pipe that Whitlock and I picked up last trip plus some 1 1/2 square tubing to mount the panels on. 

It will be approximately 8' x 10' so has to be pretty substantial as we sometimes get strong wind here on the ridge.  It is centered over the middle column in my shop about 6 feet above the roof to the center pivot point.

It will use propane to power a hydraulic cylinder to track the sun East /West.  North/South  I will likely start out tracking manually. [waiting]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dog on December 28, 2008, 07:34:57 PM
Glenn this is so cool what you are doing! This stuff should made affordable so that rest of the world can get on board with power sources that make sense and are in practical and affordable. Keep on keeping on :)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 28, 2008, 07:42:52 PM
Thanks, Dog.  I'll post pix as I get farther along -- I need to be successful first. :)

It is a pretty simple system I read about in Mother Earth News years ago.

http://www.motherearthnews.com/Modern-Homesteading/1977-11-01/Mothers-Super-Simple-Solar-Tracker.aspx

They used Freon R-12 which is expensive and hard to get.  I will convert mine to propane which is cheap and easy to get.

More info here  http://www.fieldlines.com/story/2006/4/26/01022/1699
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 28, 2008, 07:44:43 PM
Cool, Thanks, Steve... I actually got some work done today.  :)

I'm building my own solar tracker as I don't want to buy a commercial one.  Too Expensive.  I have been collecting junk for it for a while now but needed some heavy pipe that Whitlock and I picked up last trip plus some 1 1/2 square tubing to mount the panels on. 

It will be approximately 8' x 10' so has to be pretty substantial as we sometimes get strong wind here on the ridge.  It is centered over the middle column in my shop about 6 feet above the roof to the center pivot point.

It will use propane to power a hydraulic cylinder to track the sun East /West.  North/South  I will likely start out tracking manually. [waiting]


Hey Glenn I can rent you my old dog he moves with the sun.You can tie him to the panels until you get the cylinders working.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 28, 2008, 07:50:38 PM
Sorry, Whitlock, but I know your old dog.  [idea]

He is a great old dog, but he moves so slow I don't think he'll be able to keep up with the sun all of the time. [waiting]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: considerations on December 29, 2008, 05:33:55 AM
"Hey Glenn I can rent you my old dog he moves with the sun.You can tie him to the panels until you get the cylinders working."

 rofl

I wonder how many cats would be an equivalent, then again, a herd of cats? 
Never Mind.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 29, 2008, 06:21:13 AM
My experience with cats is that they go in whatever direction the darn well please... [waiting]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: phalynx on December 29, 2008, 11:21:44 AM
Unless you make them mad,,, then they go on your pillow.....   ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on December 29, 2008, 05:30:44 PM
Glenn I saw this and thought about you. Maybe a little nutty but here you go.

ACORN COFFEE
Giliø kava

1 l (1 quart) acorns
1 l (1 quart) milk

Dry freshly picked acorns at room temperature for a couple of days. Shell and cook in milk until soft, about 45-60 minutes. Remove acorns from milk and blot dry, saute in a dry skillet until golden brown. Grind scorched acorns and store in a tight container. 
To make acorn coffee, take 1 part water, 2 parts sweet cream or milk. Place 3 teaspoons acorn coffee in boiling water, boil 2-3 minutes, whiten with milk or cream and add sugar to taste
 

Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 29, 2008, 11:02:58 PM
Glenn I saw this and thought about you. Maybe a little nutty but here you go.

ACORN COFFEE
Giliø kava

1 l (1 quart) acorns
1 l (1 quart) milk

Dry freshly picked acorns at room temperature for a couple of days. Shell and cook in milk until soft, about 45-60 minutes. Remove acorns from milk and blot dry, saute in a dry skillet until golden brown. Grind scorched acorns and store in a tight container. 
To make acorn coffee, take 1 part water, 2 parts sweet cream or milk. Place 3 teaspoons acorn coffee in boiling water, boil 2-3 minutes, whiten with milk or cream and add sugar to taste
 





Man I bet that is some bitter coffee heh
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 29, 2008, 11:07:52 PM
Cool, John -- I didn't gather my acorns this year but hope to do it next year -- too many htings going on.  It sounds like the milk likely leaches the tannins out so it won't be bitter.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 29, 2008, 11:11:59 PM
Unless you make them mad,,, then they go on your pillow.....   ???

Hairball, Phalynx....hairball.... she tried to cough up a hairball on my pillow yesterday -- I yelled, "Oh no you don't", when she started coughing, ran to get her and took her to her room, and scared it back down.

It's Sassy's cat, but it likes me... it has an evil streak - split personality that likes to torment me with hairballs every so often...she used to bite me....  [waiting]

The cat... not Sassy....  d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: phalynx on December 30, 2008, 06:52:26 AM
Ah, hairballs, it's the gift that keeps on giving Clark.... 


Glenn, how does your place look from Google Earth?
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 30, 2008, 08:28:09 AM
Not well enough hidden, Phalynx....

John had it back in the fire pages --- around page 35 of this post I think.

http://countryplans.com/smf/index.php?topic=151.680
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dog on December 30, 2008, 05:54:34 PM
Thanks for the solar panel link! motherearthnews.com
I'm trying to educate myself on this stuff.  ::) So much to take in!

Seeing all the amazing projects you are working on and the way you go about figuring each project out is great.

Thank you for sharing your adventures and practical information! Much appreciated~
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 30, 2008, 06:39:38 PM
My pleasure, Dog.

Since you are interested, I took some pix today and will add them here as I progress on this and improvements are made.

I built a frame and put mounting clips on it to simplify installation of the first 8 panels - as I check out wind loading I may ad more and made that easy to do also.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solarframe.jpg)

I have increased my power about 4x what I was getting with the panels laying flat on the roof.  I put the second set up last night and this morning they were also providing 4 times the power and as I manually tracked the sun today they provided power 4x as long also. 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solarfrontside.jpg)

Even at right after daylight I was getting 10 amps where I was getting nothing to very little for the first few hours.  I had so much excess power today that I pumped water 3 times, or about 450 gallons and still didn't use all of the excess.  The controller shut down the panels for part of the day.

Here is the back.  The post is 6 feet tall and is attached to the center post above the center beam in my shop.  I added web stiffeners to the I beam to transfer the load to the column below -- just as an engineer would specify if I paid one. [waiting]

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solarbackside.jpg)

That puts the base of the post about 12 feet above the shop floor.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 30, 2008, 06:54:11 PM
Here is one from a distance showing the tracker on the shop roof.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solargaragetop.jpg)

The panel area  currently measures around 8'8" x 10'

I picked up the parts today for the propane powered part of the tracker.  About $95 hoses and fittings at the auto parts store.  About $28.00 at the hardware store.  $35 for 20 feet of 1" EMT tubing at the electric supply since copper was $120 for 20 feet and I'm a tightwad.  The EMT will work as good as the copper.  It will use less than $3.00 worth of propane to power it.  [crz]

Keep in mind that I am doing this in a mountain community with locally available products and junk from my scrap pile.  We have 1700 population in our town and 17000 in our county - about 40 miles to the nearest decent sized town.

The value of the tracker is around $2500 if I bought one plus shipping and installation if I paid an contractor, so I am easily looking at a $5000 project if I hired it done... likely a lot more the way things go around here.  [idea]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on December 30, 2008, 07:34:04 PM
I might even be able to pick you out better on Google Earth now with that reflecting.  ;D
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 30, 2008, 07:48:05 PM
Hmm -- now I need camo netting for sure. heh
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Whitlock on December 30, 2008, 08:00:57 PM
Looking good Glenn, maybe you need to get more water tanks 8)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 30, 2008, 08:02:13 PM
Thanks- Just what I need -- another project.... d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Dog on December 31, 2008, 09:42:59 AM
Awesome with the Solar Panels!  :)
Thanks
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: MountainDon on December 31, 2008, 12:32:16 PM
I am awestruck! Dumbfounded!

PV panels elevated, on a post! Up where they are supposed to be, not lying flat on the ground where the dog can do-do on them! Astounding innovative idea!    ;D ;D ;D  What next, Glann?    ;) ;)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: Redoverfarm on December 31, 2008, 12:34:08 PM
Shame on you Dog.

Buy the way what is with the screen name and the screen picture.  Quite opposite ???
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on December 31, 2008, 12:46:55 PM
Arrr... It's driving me nuts....

Don, they were on the roof -- the dog would have to get onto the roof to damage them... but since the roof joins the ground in a few places, they have done that.  Didn't damage anything though...d* 

My dogs love to get high so they go up on the roof... [waiting]

They love to watch things and watch me work.... they are watch dogs.  hmm

Got the cylinder mounted a little bit ago.... I know ...

"Mini me .....stop  h-----g the laser.... perhaps you and the Laser should get a room"

I meant I installed it on the tracker... d*
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on December 31, 2008, 02:13:16 PM
Even at right after daylight I was getting 10 amps where I was getting nothing to very little for the first few hours.  I had so much excess power today that I pumped water 3 times, or about 450 gallons and still didn't use all of the excess.  The controller shut down the panels for part of the day.

Glenn,

Couldn't you load-dump your excess from the panels into your hot water tank ?

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 01, 2009, 12:47:45 AM
I have an on demand propane water heater, Steve,  but I do dump load it into the water pump so water gets stored in the tank up the hill 80 feet elevation above the cabin.  I also time 15 minutes of pumping at intervals of about 2 hrs to keep the power from getting wasted.  Water pump pulls around 2400 watts.

I go a lot done yesterday but it's late so I will have to post pix tomorrow.  The propane reservoir/heat tubes are made and  mounted and I widened it all 26" wider before mounting the tubes to allow for more panels on it.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on January 01, 2009, 02:57:34 AM
I have an on demand propane water heater, Steve,  but I do dump load it into the water pump so water gets stored in the tank up the hill 80 feet elevation above the cabin. 

Hi Glen,
Big thing here in the UK for eco-plumbing is the "Thermal store" - a whacking great tank (100 USG ?) of water which is heated by whatever you have, solar, heat pump, woodfire whatever. The energy is sucked out by an in-line heat exchanger sitting in the tank, piped from the coldwater feed - so you don't actually get the water storing the heat, just the heat - then even low grade heat prewarms the cold feed  to your propane heater - and you save on the gas.

In my climate solar for electrical is a waste of time. Our insolation drops  to only double digit watts/day for affordable panels. Even solar for thermal is tricky to make cheaply enough to get returns in folks' lifetime.

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 01, 2009, 06:39:23 AM
That is a good idea, Steve.  I could probably use an electric heater to use the dumpload on and preheat water.  At this point I had been able to burn most of it pumping.  I was also thinking of more batteries to store more and pump later at night as I am limited by the well on how much I can draw before I suck it dry.

How are you for wind over there?  I know there is a pretty famous guy in Scotland who builds and instructs on wind generators - Hugh Piggot - Scoraig.  He gives out a lot of free info also.  http://www.scoraigwind.com/
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 01, 2009, 06:53:21 AM
OK ... a quick update as the sun is rising and I have to make more progress this morning --

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solarcylinderandbrackets.jpg)

I repaired the cylinder ends - air tested it and made mounting brackets - I decided to reverse it also to put the cylinder end toward the panels - It will give me more power in the morning to return the tracker to the sun and eliminate some of the hose movement and length.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solartrackerplugthreadadapters.jpg)

I made propane tube fitting adapter ends from washers and 1/2 of a 1/4 inch pipe coupling which I cut in half with the band saw. 

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solartrackerbrazeplug.jpg)

I brazed the adapters onto the ends of the 1 inch EMT.  Brass with the gas torch is very strong and almost always leak free with a visual inspection.  It also works well with the galvanization - zinc.  I got a touch of metal fume fever from the fumes yesterday.  Respirator when welding?..... I didn't think I was getting that much....besides - real men don't use them ... right? hmm

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solartrackerpropanetubesfinished.jpg)

The tubes will be a fill point and reservoir for the propane and oil for the cylinder - I'm using ATF - just enough to keep the cylinder oiled - I think.  3 feet up you see a pipe thread with a plug going into the side of the tube.  That is so I can sense where the liquid propane will fill to when I charge the system. [waiting]
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on January 01, 2009, 08:00:24 AM
[/img]
  Respirator when welding?..... I didn't think I was getting that much....besides - real men don't use them ... right? hmm

That's 'cos real men get emphysema. Zinc fume is cumulatively toxic AFAIR ....

Pigott's designs are simple to build, but, with my electrical engineer's hat on  their efficiency is appalling - you could extract 4 times more power, or  make the things much smaller and save materials if you sort out the flux paths.

The biggest single wind farm in the UK is about 3 miles from here -
(http://www.pbase.com/ihor/image/60569222/large.jpg)

Steve
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 01, 2009, 02:11:09 PM
Hmm... guess I better lay off the zinc.. d*

Nice wind farm - similar to ours near the Altamont and Pacheco pass except your scenery is prettier..

Steve, I am planning on some day building a homebuilt wind generator.  Do you know of a decent design or have suggestions?

I have a couple of PM treadmill motors - looks like I would have to step up the speed from the prop to make them work.
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: glenn kangiser on January 01, 2009, 10:51:48 PM
Our view of the airport from the roof top--- Sassy is down under that fog somewhere. [scared]

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/mariposaview.jpg)

I now have the gas reservoirs charged up and it seems it is going to work.  Being so cold out it was a bit slow to respond but after lunch I came back to check and it was tracking the sun.  If it is too marginal, I may go to a larger cylinder.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solarupandrunning.jpg)

Since I am using a high tech design and parts have been made by me on a highly skilled level, I felt it only proper I add a precision variable foot pound counterweight to fine tune the tracker so it would move with ease as it locked on to and followed the movement of the sun.  [waiting]

I extended it out and added the shades and gas tubes, leaving room for more panels depending on how it works in the wind.  I added extra bracing for wind loads tonight as there is a storm coming this weelkend.

(http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d184/glennkangiser/solarcounterweight.jpg)
Title: Re: Glenn's Underground Cabin Update
Post by: steveastrouk on January 02, 2009, 03:17:57 AM
I now have the gas reservoirs charged up and it seems it is going to work.  Being so cold out it was a bit slow to respond but after lunch I came back to check and it was tracking the sun.