The big deconstruction

Principle 12: Creatively use & respond to change

You may remember, from earlier posts, that I was looking at relocating the original building. After removing the lining from inside the building, we got a better idea of the condition of the structure. And it wasn't as good as I would have hoped.

While all of the framing timber is hardwood, which was good, there were signs of termite damage in parts of the frame. We could have still used it, replacing the damaged sections, but we decided that it would be easier to dismantle the building, and reuse the timber in other parts of the new structure. We will use termite-treated plantation pine for the framing instead.

Termite damage

The tools of deconstruction, and the results...


Battens and weatherboards.

Framing timber and tiles

An audit of the materials from the deconstruction (see more here) of both the house and the old carport deconstructed earlier:
  • 200 metres of floorboards (150mm x 20mm) @ $7.00p/m = $1400
  • 150 metres of battens (25mm x 50mm) @ 60c p/m = $90
  • 390 metres of weatherboards (170mm wide) @ $2 p/m = $780
  • 300 metres of hardwood (35mm x 90mm) @ $2 p/m = $600
  • 175 metres of hardwood (45mm x 90mm) @ $2.75 p/m = $480
  • 45 metres of hardwood (45mm x 75mm) @ $2 p/m = $90
  • About a dozen large sheets of corrugated iron @ $2 p/m = $72
  • 9 cement sheets (1200mm x 2700mm) $?
  • 750 concrete tiles $?
  • 6 sets of louvered windows $?
  • Lots of trim and smaller bits of timber $?
Total hours worked: 116
Materials valued at $3512 (not including tiles, cement sheet, windows or bits & pieces)
That's about $30 per hour return on labour.

Considering the cost that would have been incurred to demolish and dispose of the materials, deconstruction has proved here to be a cost-effective alternative to demolishing. Deconstructing also reduces transport costs, materials in landfill, and the need for new materials - lowering the overall carbon footprint and reducing waste.


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