Hey everyone, my name is Zac and I am documenting the build of my underground house, I hope I can figure this stuff out like posting pictures and the sort. I am A little ways into this but I should be able to get you all caught soon. Anyways I just wanted to let you know I was joining the forum.
Here is a pic of the excavation and some crew that is helping me to debark the logs and set posts, girders and perlins. They are Amish, so you won't see many pics of them. My friend Rudy is taking all the pictures. and there is a lot.
These here are the posts I am going to use, they are cedar. I bought them from a guy about 20mi north of me for $50 a piece delivered. The next pic is a picture of some of the oak perlins that we cut and debarked and are ready for use.
Dragging to the pile and some fresh ones ready to go. I don't think I mentioned that I am using wood from my own property for all the Girders and perlins. Also the house is going to be a 50'x50' with a 10' offset. It is sitting on a north facing hill and will have a 3/12 pitch. There is a lot of stuff I haven't mentioned. I will get to it eventually.
Road to my house and entering on the east entrance. I had to use a machine to set the posts, girders, and perlins. most of the girders are over a ton. I am trying to build this house as eco friendly as possible.
Ohhhh, my gosh! I am so jealous that you have all that help and equipment! My ex and I built our underground house without the aid of stuff like that. Ours started out 14 x 28 ft and we added on for about 18 years We used Mike Oehler's $50 and Up Underground House book. I am looking forward to watching your progress!
Wendy the Wanderer formerly a Vermonter, now in the NY Adirondack Mountains
yes, thank you for posting! rookie question #1: why debark the posts? I have pondered whether to debark or leave bark on many times and I can not figure out what the advantages of debarking are, though I intuitively lean toward removing the bark.
Looks like you have the makings for writing a book there or at least a really good magazine article. The beautiful location, great house materials, and experiences working with the Amish - I am sure they will have a lot of good input on how to build a solid structure that will last forever. I look forward to following this thread.
kazron, the logs do need to be debarked because bugs and other stuff can live under there and you don't want to bring that into your house. Another reason is they look incredibly better. The logs are easy to debark as long as the are freshly cut. If you wait even one day, they are much harder. (at least for Oak) We found that flat nosed shovels worked the best and 3 people could debark a big 20 footer in about 15/20 min.
Oh, and like i said, Rudy will be taking over the posting and the pics here real soon. He just moved here from Nashville area in his bus and now lives on my property. He has posted a lot on another forum about his bus build and is an excellent writer. I told him about permies. He had already got a good start on his bus forum about my UH and other fun things that have happened and been built since he has been here. Oh, he is a musician too. I'm not ready to post a link, but if you would like to see a awesome video of him playing guitar then look up (Rudy Harley has guitargasim) on youtube. He is looking forward to this forum and will be posting my build in great detail with hundreds of pics very soon. Thanks for the interest.
Is he on schoolies.net? I have a bus on there but haven't posted lately because, though we are finished, we are not using the bus.
Seemed like a good idea at the time, and it was great to travel in, but for some reason we just haven't used it. I think we decided the motorcycle was more fun. I still want to hit the outer banks with the bus before we give up on it though. Maybe this winter.
I really enjoy this thread. Have you thought about starting a blog and just using your blog postings over here? That is great to know that flat shovels work best; more tips like this would be fantastic!
Jason, this is the first time I have ever posted anything on a forum. Should we start this as a blog? How would more interested people be able to follow my build? Rudy will probably know where and how to start things up. He will be taking control in a few days or so. He has over 200 pics or so.
Yes, I would suggest to start this as a blog, especially if Rudy knows how. This is very exciting and I am sure a lot of people would start following this. Try blogspot.com or blogger.com. I am not a blog expert, however I am sure someone can help you get started as it is really simple once you understand the basic functions.
If you start a blog you can link your blog here on this thread so people can then follow it there.
I have not found a blog in regards step by step underground house, timber framing, and natural building as this is. Wonderful.
Hello, all you fans of alternate building methods. My name is Rudy.
I have known Zac for many years. Last year, Zac wanted me to move here to help him with this underground house he is building. Alas, I was not ready to leave where I was living at that time
Two months ago, I had finished the preparation of the 1973 Blue Bird bus I live in, and was able to drive the 500 miles from Tennessee to Missouri. I do have a chronical of the bus build that has over 350 photos and explanations.
This show and tell, however, will be about the building of Zac,s large and beautiful structure that will soon be buried within the safe confines of Mother Earth.
I have been assigned the duties of photographing and describing the progress.
A neighbor, Goatboy, named so because he has many goats, donated his time and tractor this day to build a dirt ramp so that his tractor, and other tractors could get to upper level of the hole.
Goatboy (Gary) is kind enough to also bring his tractor here to set the beams (logs) on top of the posts when the time comes.
Other neighbors are also donating their time and machines to this project. They all are excited about being part of it. They don't even ask to get paid.
Unfortunately, Zac will have to rent a big machine to dig the holes for the posts. He is also paying the Amish crew to cut down trees and de-bark them. The oak trees will be the beams that sit on the posts.
Here's Gary's tractor at work. It is a Ford with a three cylinder diesel engine. It is a four wheel drive.
The Amish crew arrives. Their main job, presently, is to cut down oak trees on the property and de-bark them. They will be used for the beams that sit atop the cedar posts.
You will only see these two photos of them as it is against their religion to "pose".
I told the leader of the crew that I would be chronicling the building of the underground house with photographs of the progress.
I also told him that I would respect his wishes to not photograph them.
I asked him where he got those hats. There is a store that sells Amish clothing. I am going to get one of those hats. I hope they will sell one to a non-Amish guy. Perhaps I will just give the guy some money and let him get one for me.