Peter DeJay

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since Aug 10, 2011
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Recent posts by Peter DeJay

Yes, the dimensions are for max allowable width and heights for travelling on public roadways. Granted, you probably have a few inches you could fudge out as you would probably have to really be pissing off the sheriff by the time he busts out his tape measure,but also it can be tricky driving a trailer that is full width if you don't trailer much. If you plan on hardly ever moving it you can probably get away with it, but the dimensions are meant to represent the max any part of a trailer can be.
7 years ago
I really like my Bogs brand boots. They are insulated, fully waterproof like galoshes, but flexible and form fitting for better feel. They come in a high and low top version, with different print options. I actually wear the "womens" style because i like the hand cut outs on the sides, easier for pulling on. They are about 80 or 90 bucks versus the 20 for rubber galoshes, but after you use them for a day you will consider them well worth it.

Another brand I have heard about but haven't used is Muck brand. I think they are similar but even more form fitting/insulated/ comfy. Those are especially popular in Alaska.
8 years ago
Like most things, there is more then one way to go about something. Every person you ask will have different answers. Here are my relevant thoughts to your situation:

When your property has a well and septic on it, you can get away with so much more as far as eccentric building styles. There are ways around having them but they will scrutinize other things more so.

Yes, if you ask someone to quote you prices for those things they will give you general figures, usually higher. Wells are harder to get around as far as doing them yourself or for cheaper, but septics yo can do most of the work yourself. You might need an approved installer to do the final connections or to do a final inspection, but you can certainly dig the field and runs yourself, and probably do most of the work yourself.

The cost of wells is dependent on the depth. If you know you have a good shallow water table then a well couple be as little as $5000.00

It is possible to get away with a composting toilet in some places, but again, they will be a bit more leery of other projects you do.

Power is a tricky one as there are monthly charges associated with having power even if its not being used. Also, if you have a well, naturally you need a ready supply of power. Solar of course is an option, depending on resources. As someone said, you can have a "temporary" power pole set up, as if for a construction site, but the issue with that is it has a time limit on it. If you arent actively constructing they might start to question it. On the other hand, if you do have a building that you are actively constructing, you can probably stretch it for many years.

There must be a way to have a power hook up as if you were going to have a mobile home, i just am not personally familiar with the process and requirements.

Where do you live? Do you know much about local restrictions?

8 years ago
I'm having a hard time envisioning your predicament, as well as your vision. It is for stuff like this that the adage "a picture (or drawing in this case) is worth a thousand words". Without being able to fully grasp what you are trying to do I, and perhaps the others on here, advise extreme caution.

In my mind the PSP model is a stand alone design. The posts in it are meant to hold up its own roof, not a whole other story. Unless you know of structures Oehler has used his design as a basement for an upper story, I can't advise using it in such a capacity as you desire. For someone on such a tight budget, experimenting with so many unknowns with no worst case scenario capital just doesn't add up to me. I'm sure a more "conventional" approach would be easier, faster and cheaper, such as incorporating the additional beams as permanent, and using larger posts, lally columns or concrete piers. I think you could do a concrete perimeter and still back fill it so you have an earth berming effect on your root cellar.

I understand the desire to use exciting alternative and natural building practices, but most of them don't incorporate well into remodeling, as they are usually whole house systems. There is something to be said about a seamlessly updated classic house using standard techniques. Being a builder, only you know your capabilities and vision for your structure, so best of luck however you proceed.
8 years ago
While bringing supply in under the house certainly is ideal, its not the only option. I would use PEX from as far down as possible at the well or whatever the point of origin is. I would want a continuous length ideally, so it runs uninterrupted from well to inside the house. Where it comes up out of the ground and goes into the house I would insulate with foam pipe insulation, then box it in with a surrounding of 3" polyiso to be safe.

PEX is purportedly crack proof, but for the main supply in I would go ahead and do what I could.

Have you ran the piping through the house yet? Plumbed fixtures, etc?
9 years ago
I would put spigots on the bottoms, if they aren't already there, and just connect them with hoses on the bottom.
9 years ago
I don't have experience with adobe floors yet, but in my experience with concrete, as well as clay plaster, compression is key. I've seen the difference recently in 2 separate rooms between concrete that was only screeded and one that was trowel finished. The trowel finish has no cracks, while the screed only developed long cracks. Same with clay plaster adhering to a wall.

The other thing that I thought of was drying time. Did you allow it to fully cure an all levels? Its possible that if the under layer wasn't fully dried, moisture was migrating up into the top layer and possibly getting trapped under the sealer. How soon did you fire up the radiant floor? What was your mix ratio and ingredients?
9 years ago
While having help and making allowances and compromises to accommodate that help is one thing, doing something you don't or shouldn't do will not make for a happy long term relationship. Remember, YOU have to live with this structure, not him.

It is just not realistic to cut and mill material from your land in the same year you plan to use it. That's asking for all sorts of trouble. I gotta say too, oak studs are just not going to work. Oak is a hard ,dense and brittle wood that doesn't usually have very straight grain, which means checks and cracks that separate the grains will have drastic structural consequences.

I'm really not trying to discourage you from utilizing your own resources, which is awesome that you have. I'm just trying to be realistic. Good luck on your endeavors.
9 years ago
First I want to clarify that most framing lumber is actually douglas fir, not pine. I've only ever built in Oregon but I'm pretty sure that's a national standard.

I agree with White Cloud. The material strength is pretty irrelevant when we are talking stud size. Its only in timber frame dimensions that Oak's strengths become more apparent. I think of timber framing and stud framing as similar, just different spacing. A timber post is like having 5 or more studs in a single unit.

It makes much more sense on almost every level to mill the oak that you have on site into either large timbers (less milling work, less waste, better structure, higher resale) and build a timber frame house, or mill it into a wood floor or maybe cabinet lumber. Or mill it and sell/trade it for the type of building structure you want to do.
9 years ago
I've heard lots of good things about silicate paints, also known as waterglass.

" A waterborne, single component inorganic coating material for masonry wall surfaces. Silicate Mineral Paint penetrates the substrate and cures by an irreversible chemical bonding process, forming a microcrystalline structure which cannot peel or blister."

Its suitable for porous and semi-porous surfaces, and remains breathable. I plan on using it over my exterior lime plaster and any cob/adobe/clay plaster I do. The brand I've heard about is called Keim.
9 years ago