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Tom Phillips

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since Apr 01, 2014
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Recent posts by Tom Phillips

Anyone use this sort of truss system with timber framed walls?

Steel Barn Trusses
Any idea if pit run gravel would be suitable for rubble trench, assuming it was rinsed to get rid of fines?
3 years ago
I think I'm going to stick with my original plan. I've got to stop second guessing everything. Like I said, too much time to think, impatient to get out there and "DO"!
So....having to recover from back surgery is not good for me. It gives me FAR too much time to think, rethink, and second guess all of my plans for building our new house in the coming years. Thus, this thread. I thought I had everything worked out and planned, but then my mind got to wandering and wondering. These are just some thoughts I had concerning the possible use of wood pilings for a foundation, and how it might/might not work with other elements I've been considering. Here's the elements:

  • Black Locust (would have to be bought as I have none on my property), 8-inch minimum diameter, 6-8' spaced grid, charred and soaked in some sort of natural preservative, buried a minimum of 4' into the ground (holes back filled with tamped gravel) and providing a minimum of 2' elevation for the house frame.
  • Timber frame consisting of hardwoods available on my property. These are admittedly NOT rot resistant, but as the frame of the house would not be directly exposed to the elements.
  • Plastered strawbale in-fill for outer walls


  • And here are the questions:

  • Is it stupid to trust my future home to sit on a wood piling foundation, even if it is "treated" Black Locust?
  • Will the 2' of elevation be sufficient?
  • Any concerns using the non-rot resistant timber for the frame as long as it is not exposed to the elements?
  • [list]What about the weight of the strawbales? Will pilings be able to handle this?

    Sorry for all the questions, thanks for indulging me, and thanks to all for any input you can provide.


    well, since I already put one strange/possibly terrible idea out there, I figured why not ask about some other strange, possibly terrible idea. I've also thought in the past about doing a partially earth bermed/sheltered structure, but didn't want to use too much concrete and have heard that stone foundation walls tend to leak.....so what about something like this? Terrible idea? Better/easier way to earth berm with stone? Again, please be kind. These are random thoughts/ideas that, once again, may admittedly be terrible.
    3 years ago
    Thanks to both of you for the responses Chad - I actually have done some research on shallow frost protected foundations, and that will likely be the solution I pursue....to be honest this was just one of those things that popped up when I was sketching plans and thinking too much.
    3 years ago
    Now don't be too hard on me....this may well be a terrible idea.

    So my understanding of the frost line depth for foundation, gravel trench, etc. is that drainage or protection down to frost line is needed to prevent moisture from getting under the foundation of your structure, then freezing and thus causing frost heave that can move/damage the entire structure. I had a thought: could you combine a shallow stone stemwall with a thin, reinforced concrete shell on the outside of it that goes all the way down to the frost line to prevent moisture from getting beneath the shallow stone portion? Attached is an image of what I'm trying to explain. Again, could be a horrendous idea, so please be nice (but honest). I used cob for the sake of having an example.
    3 years ago
    I've been looking at various options for what to use in a rubble trench foundation. One thing available locally at a fairly low price is asphalt millings. Now I really don't know much of anything about asphalt millings, so I'm wondering if anyone can fill me in....any chance of using this for a rubble trench foundation?

    Thanks!

    Tom
    3 years ago
    Looking at it with fresh eyes this morning, I can see how the divider would not work. So correct me if I'm wrong, but the big advantage to the Veritas is the levels that help to keep the pencil a constant distance away from the guiding surface? Also, Jay, I would love to hear more about the pencil/washer method you mentioned. I apologize, for some reason I just seem to have a mental block on scribing in general. I'm sure I'll be smacking my forehead later.
    Question: for scribing poles in timber framing, is there really that much advantage to buying something like the Veritas Log Scribe over something like this:

    http://www.amazon.com/Grizzly-H5887-Length-Divider-16-Inch/dp/B0002U8BYA/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1444070462&sr=8-9&keywords=16%22+divider

    I know it's not a huge deal to pay $100+ for a good tool, but I'm just not sure this time if it's really worth it....what say ya'll?

    Thanks!

    Tom