Author Topic: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY  (Read 69308 times)

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Offline NathanS

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #300 on: September 29, 2017, 02:14:47 PM »
Chipping away at the siding still. North wall and mudroom are done... that was a biggie, this time of the year the dew on the roof makes it hard to be up there. South wall just needs around the balcony a bit, may wait on that to use up scraps as they show up.

I am building attic vents out of red cedar slats, rather than router out for the slats, i just chopped blocks. Came out very nicely, I am building them square and sliding them under the roof trim to angle the tops. I really enjoy this kind of cheating, it looks complicated but kept simple.





The thick foam really does add a lot of work to everything... the trim work especially is very complicated. You are basically building boxes for everything - 3d instead of 2d. The mudroom roof and corner above, that took a day to trim - add to that getting the top of the trim to line up with the bottom of the clapboard layout. With the position of the two windows there I had no space to cheat it across a couple courses.





I held the mudroom roof trim up from the endwall flashing about 4", that zone is always rotten on houses. That trim has a return piece of wood so you can't see the foam when standing underneath.






This is my 120-130 year old clapboard clamp I found on ebay for $8. I have used it to put up 16 footers all the way at the top of the walls, it really makes short work of it. It holds the board in a cradle, which allows you to jam or snap the boards into position.






Also just to mention, the additional foam on the walls is already noticeable. We have had our share of cold snaps - a couple consecutive days lows in the 30s, highs in the 50s. We have yet to need a fire, the house is maintaining 67-70 degrees with cracked windows up and downstairs.

Offline Mike 870

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #301 on: September 30, 2017, 04:22:00 PM »
What brand and color stain are you using?  It looks amazing.  All that extra effort with the foam board will be worth it when you're saving loads of money on heating and cooling.

Offline NathanS

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #302 on: October 01, 2017, 04:30:45 AM »
Thanks Mike, it is TWP stain. The color is Pecan. There are online retailers that will ship 5 gallon pails very quickly. A lot of painters seem to swear by the stuff, it will just fade and need reapplied every 5-7 years - first time probably a little sooner since it is fresh planed wood.

In Ohio I think you can still get the original mixture, the "100 series," which is not the low VOC stuff we are stuck with from Virginia to Maine. Although one thing that I think is kind of nice about the solvents we had is that it dries slower, so you don't really have to worry about lap marks.

Offline dablack

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #303 on: October 03, 2017, 04:22:35 AM »
Again, the house looks great and thanks for the picture on the siding gauge. 

On the house we are in right now, I went with ordinary spray foam in the walls and then a non-vented roof with spray foam between the rafters and then rigid foam on top of the roof deck and finally a silver metal roof.  We are more concerned with staying cool than warm.  Of course, I had zero roof penetrations, so adding the rigid foam on top was pretty easy.  Hanging insulation on an exterior wall still gives me pause as an engineer.  Those fasteners holding it on always have gravity working on them and the center of gravity of the insulation is an inch or more away from the house.  Then the rain screen and THEN finally the siding.  I think you have done an amazing job and you will be crazy toasty in there, but I still go back and forth!  I think the next house will be double wall.  Double wall will simplify the siding, windows, and doors.  No boxes to build.  Then with the large wall cavity between the walls, plumbing and wiring will be SO easy.  No drilling studs at all.  Then the only boxes you have to build are on the inside and all your windows will have a little 12" seat.  I'm just "typing" out loud at this point. 
I think you have done a text book job with the "outsulation" and this thread should be used on how to do it right.  After seeing how perfectly you have done it, I'm still not sure if I would go that way or double wall.  I guess I have a couple of years before I have to decide!  Thanks for all the detailed pictures.

Austin

Offline NathanS

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #304 on: November 16, 2017, 05:24:05 AM »
Austin, thank you for the kind comments. You have probably seen what they are doing in Alaska - the REMOTE guide shows they are doing 6" of 'outsulation' in two layers with staggered seams. They will then put cement board over the rain screen, not sure how heavy that is, but my clapboards weigh almost nothing. One thing I picked up in that guide was to 'pre sag' the screws, shoot them in at a slightly upward angle. Made sense to me.

Anyhow, the siding has been done for about a month now. I am going to wait until next spring to have the electrical service disconnected to finish the gable on the one side.







I finished the balcony railing and decking as well. I put down white oak for deck boards - good enough for boats, good enough for me. I made the railing out of eastern white cedar, the top and bottom rails I ripped a 30 degree hat so water will not sit on them. The deck itself is also pitched all the way out. We had leftover rebar from the foundation, so I cut to length and drilled them into the rails. I ran pressure treated furring strips from the end of the deck all the way to the door threshold, I screwed them into the cantilevered portion, and on the inset portion where it is sitting on metal I caulked tar paper on the underside so they were not in direct contact. Otherwise the inset portion the deck just floats - feels sturdy because white oak weighs about as much as concrete. Lots of other details too, extending the subdecking out beyond the siding, bending the metal for proper water drainage... I even found a bent piece of deckboard for the end piece so it has a nice rounded edge - of course no one will ever notice that except for me. Didn't take a ton of pictures because I just wanted to get the thing done.





Even without gutters and all the roof runoff you can sit out there in the rain.



Now I am getting ready to do the kitchen. We are trying to decide between doing the house in Ash or Cherry. Doing a small lot order makes the wood so inexpensive, it really is just coming down to how we want the house to look. We get so much sunlight I am leaning to Cherry to darken things up a bit. Also am planning to do a cast in place concrete counter in the kitchen which will change how the cabinets need to be built a little bit.

The other thing I'm researching is installing a ductless minisplit. I will likely buy the hvac tools and install it myself. Doesn't seem that complicated, and the HVAC companies we've talked to want like $2,000 to basically shoot some nitrogren into some lines and then create a deep vacuum.

Offline Rys

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #305 on: November 16, 2017, 06:27:14 AM »
Love the balcony!    [cool]

Offline Mike 870

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #306 on: November 16, 2017, 01:08:19 PM »
Looks great.  Iíve done a couple central ACs and a mini split.  It really was not difficult.  Now granted we didnít do a nitrogen pressure test, but Iíve had a bunch of systems professionally installed over the years, and the ďexpertsĒ never once did it either.  In fact the last guy didnít even use a micron meter, just let the vacumme run and called it good.  That was the one that put me over the edge.  I would watch them do it, see how quick and easy it looked so I bought an HVAC textbook and now I do my own.  If youíve figured out how to build the rest of your house, pretty sure you can install a mini split.

Offline dablack

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #307 on: November 20, 2017, 10:49:05 AM »
Lots of great minisplit installs and talk of the tools needed over on http://ecorenovator.org/forum/

Just go over the geothermal / heatpump section.  Lots of guys have installed their own units. 

Offline NathanS

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #308 on: November 30, 2017, 12:46:18 PM »
Thanks for feedback on the minisplit. It's good to hear that Mike's done it, and the forum looks like a good resource too.

The house has been very efficient. So far this week we are averaging out to around 65-67F having one fire a day - burning 4-5 pieces of partially rotten pine I found in the woods. Highs in the 30s or low 40s and lows in the 20s. We've been getting sun this week, and that on its own will raise the temperature 3 or 4 degrees during the day.

Time is also short lately. I probably won't get to the minisplit until next year, this winter I would have liked to have it to prevent the house from freezing if we're away for a few days here or there.

I have cut most of the plywood for the kitchen counter where the sink will go. I am going to pour a 2" concrete slab for the counter, probably $60 of concrete vs $60 per square foot for the stuff from the store. Can't argue with that. I am planning to steel trowel it all day to burnish the heck out of it.

Once all the boxes are built and installed I'm going to bulk order the hardwood to trim out the whole house (trim, kitchen, stairs, doors). Probably something like 500 board feet of 4/4 and 200 board feet of 5/4. We are going to go with Cherry - been back and for on this. We can get the cherry planed top and bottom, and one side jointed for $2.32 a board foot... that seems just crazy cheap to me... We will probably spend more in the kitchen on plywood and hardware than the Cherry. Around $1700 all in. Ash would be around $1250.

Offline NathanS

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #309 on: January 11, 2018, 04:59:48 AM »
Thought I'd post an update, things go slower with a 7 month old.

I built about half of our lower cabinet boxes (all 3/4" plywood and most partitions doubled up) and poured in place a concrete countertop on them. I poured it 2" thick so I had space for 3/8" rebar in front and behind the cast iron (heavy) sink. By the way, my first time with a porcelain sink and find it a lot easier to keep clean than stainless steel... stuff 'sticks' to it less.

My personal opinion, I think there is a lot of snake oil out there for doing a concrete countertop. I just used premix concrete, like 5 bags? So around $20, leftover remesh, and plywood. I don't know, it seems like every time you look how to do something there is someone that has just taken it about 5000 steps and dollars too far.

Anyhow, I love my lasers... what time saver. I bought a cheap one from amazon after the Bosch failed, seems to work great.


Hiding the plywood base with a 2x4 lip dropped 3/4". I used 3/4" plywood for the base, I think 1/2" would have been stiff enough.



Reinforced and ready to go. The sink cutout, I used cardboard to make my template then cut boards and pocket screwed together. Rounded the edges with a jigsaw. Our sink sits on top so it didn't have to be perfect.







I like the end result. I did make a booboo when pouring though. I troweled the surface too early, which caused the very thin top layer to be too weak. I had to buy a harbor freight polisher and polishing pads at another $100 total. Sanded it out, made a portland slurry and applied with drywall knife, then resanded to 6000 grit. Came out good, but troweling too early added several additional hours of labor.




We also completed the first renovation...  ;D

The fridge just takes up too much space no matter where you put it, so we sunk it into the pantry. Our kitchen counter space will over double now, and the house just feels so much bigger and open. The pantry still has a lot of storage, it is actually probably the right width for one of those pantry types that have big drawers you pull out. Because we furred the ceiling drywall out we were able to snake 1/2" pex and electrical over for the fridge... we still got ice cubes.

This is probably the one advantage to living in an unfinished house, you can make decisions on experience instead of trying to plan everything all at once.






I have been working on the downstairs bathroom now.



Offline dablack

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #310 on: January 11, 2018, 05:10:09 AM »
Looks good!  I like the simple and over built approach to the countertops.  Looks really nice and I think the polish was a good idea even if you didn't want to do it.  Did you put on any kind of sealer or are you going to wax them or anything? 

Also, your construction stairs are much nicer than mine.  I have misc scraps as the treads and it really bothers people.  Plus, no rail on mine so people feel really uneasy. 

Offline NathanS

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #311 on: January 11, 2018, 05:37:37 AM »
Thanks Austin. I used Miracle Sealant Porous Plus. It is a penetrating sealer that is safe for food. Seems ok so far. One thing is for sure the counter is going to get abused. If it stains, it stains. I also wanted to be able to put red hot pots and pans right on it. I wondered with wax is what will the hot pan do to it.

With it being concrete, and having the pads now, I can always resand it once every couple years if it gets too stained up or ugly.

I put the rail on the stairs because I kept getting the same reaction from visitors. Hopefully not too many more months before things start getting clad in wood. I think March or April will be warm enough to start making stair treads and doors etc. I want to do wainscot all the way around the downstairs too.

Online SouthernTier

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #312 on: January 11, 2018, 08:25:33 AM »
Do you have a link for that laser level?  Was it this one:  https://www.amazon.com/Tacklife-SC-L01-Self-Leveling-Horizontal-Cross-Line ?

Thanks.

Offline NathanS

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Re: 20x34 2-story universal in upstate NY
« Reply #313 on: January 11, 2018, 08:56:51 AM »
That's the brand. I got SC-L02 though, it's rated a bit more accurate.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01N21XU73/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

It is so easily worth the purchase. I use them all the time. Bosch did send me a replacement for the one that broke. But with modern (maybe it's always been this way?) equipment, you pretty much always need 2 of everything. So I will keep the Bosch for if/when this one breaks.

You could even use these as a transit, you just have to wait until dusk or do it at night. I used it to establish the bottom trim around our house.