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Pearl Sutton
Posts: 98
Location: Zone 6a, on the edge of 6b
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chicken food preservation goat
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Hi all
I am having a house built (just the structural part that I can't do easily by myself) by a builder. He's a great guy, specializes in ICF (which is what I want) and generally very knowlegable. We are butting heads over the weight of a mass heater on the foundation. Does anyone know an old school mason who can tell me exactly what foundation modifications need to be made to the basement to support the weight of a mass heater on the main floor? I don't think this is complex, maybe I simply don't understand his words, or he mine. We are starting with me saying "look, you HAVE to learn about mass heaters, no, it's NOT a fireplace or a buck stove." I think if he learns this stuff he'll be able to increase his skills and value as a home builder, but I don't have the right words/numbers/techniques to tell him in a way he understands.

I assume I'll have to put pillars of some sort to support it, need to know what I can and can't do, and why so I have intelligent data for him.

I don't know how much data about my design y'all want to hear, basically a fairly small masonry heater, or rocket stove (not sure what to call it) that heats a thermal mass wall (just like heating a bench)(the wall also gets solar gain on it) and I'd LOVE to have an oven/cooktop on it. I'd also LOVE to hook some of the house normal heat and cooling (heat pump) output into the thermal mass wall to keep it stable temps... I don't think this is too complex. If nothing else, if I can get him to do the foundation sturdy enough, I'll build it myself, but I don't want the concrete foundation cracking.

Purple message me if you want, or reply here, I really need help, and since we are breaking ground in about a month, really need advice soon Apologies for that, I thought this was not a problem until the other day, when we started beating heads on it...

Links to website or books that might help would be appreciated also I'm trying to finish up my move, and am slammed for time/energy, but will read as much as I can.... I have read a lot on design, but not seen much on foundations.

Thank you for any help
 
Glenn Herbert
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Location: Upstate NY, zone 5
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I would think he could understand a comparison of "like foundations for a masonry fireplace and brick chimney", since that is the kind of load you would be talking about (maybe two of them, depending on the details of your plan). A traditional spread-out RMH bench could have loading that could be carried directly on a slab without extra footings, but transferring the load down to a basement floor means it would become more concentrated. A mass wall sounds like it will be similar loading to a regular exterior load-bearing wall, and just adding the footings for another wall seems like it would be straightforward.
 
Pearl Sutton
Posts: 98
Location: Zone 6a, on the edge of 6b
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chicken food preservation goat
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Oooh, I like that!! Thank you!!

It's hard to translate between alternative and more normal building when your brain only speaks alterntive/alien
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
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