Showing posts from November, 2009

Creative Cladding

Principle 11: Use edges and value the marginal

Rather than just use the most simple method to clad the house, that being single sheets, we decided to create some interesting shapes that flow around the building. Recycled battens were used to create a space between the cladding and the reflective foil (as per the roof), and give us a surface to screw to. The line of the curve follows the edges of window and door frames where practical, which was easier to do and also connects the design with the elements that it surrounds.

The window frames were painted before we installed the cladding, so that I didn't need to mask it later on. Just trying to be one step ahead...

Corrugated iron was the material of choice here because of its durability and low maintenance requirements. By running the iron vertically we could work the design on a more horizontal plane, while reducing the need of ongoing maintenance to clean dust from the surface. Using brand-new corrugated iron was not neccessary, …

Cellar / Tank Stand / Cool Cupboard

Principle 2: Catch and Store Energy
The construction of the cellar has been a long process, and is one of the stand out features of the building. There have been lots of enquiries as to what its purpose is from passers-by.

After the slab was poured for the roof of the cellar we began working on a stairway made from bricks. A wall on either side of the stairs was built up first, which was then filled in with a compacted sand base and mortar to lay each step. The steps were built inside the walls to prevent the walls being pushed inward. Reinforced concrete was then poured into the gap between the outer brick wall and the earth for added support.

Quentin levels ground before beginning construction of the stairway to the cellar

Quentin works on the stairs for the cellar

Construction of stairs using bricks on a compacted sand and mortar base

Cellar stairs under construction as viewed from inside

Brick stairway for cellar with reinforced concrete poured for added support one on either side of t…

Termite deterrents

Principle 6: Produce no waste
As discussed in an earlier post, I consider termites to be the greatest threat to the house. I've done further investigation and applied some of my discoveries. I'm not sure how this will proceed through council, but Peter (the architect / builder) sent this letter to council to help address their concerns:

Termite Management
-->Richard Telford chooses NOT to have chemicals in/around his home.
Chemicals for termite prevention remain questionable to health safety, and are not permanent. They require intermittent further applications, and this creates problems. The Termite Management approach for this house is a visual inspection and physical barrier regime, as provided for in the BCA Part - Acceptable Construction Practice. A clear and permanent NOTICE identifying the termite risk and management requirement is to be placed on the completed building. This location is TBA (Building Inspector may advise). The Termite Management System incl…

Making the most of the situation...

Principle 12: Creatively use and respond to change

Our society wastes so much. I'd written about an opportunity that I'd missed out on in December last year when a house was being demolished and I couldn't get access to the site. Houses get demolished quite regularly in our society and most of the material gets smashed up and sent to landfill. It seems that it's 'uneconomic' to deconstruct and reuse materials, but I proved that wrong in the deconstruction of the original building on site - it works on a small scale. Going through all of the red tape to access the site is another matter entirely.

Before I decided to buy the house in Seymour I was involved with a group of people interested in collectively buying the "Town and Country Hotel" which was erected in 1865 as the "Canadian Hotel". The original verandah was removed and replaced in 1939, giving it an art deco feel. It backs onto the gorgeous Goulburn River, with its magestic Red Gums a…