The 57 acres that comprise Cedar Ridge Farm are located in the beautiful rolling hills of South Central Kentucky. My wife, our four children, and I are on a homesteading adventure as we work toward increased self-sufficiency. We grow much of our own food and enjoy being in touch with the agrarian roots of our lives.

One of the major projects we have undertaken is the building of our own home. The house we're building has three major distinguishing features: 1. we're building it without incurring any debt; 2. it is a timber frame structure; and 3. the exterior walls will be plastered straw bales. We live debt and mortgage free, and building our house with that approach makes perfect sense. Large timbers in a home possess a beauty and project a sense of strength, stability, and warmth that we want in our home. Straw bale walls provide insulation and make ecological sense. This blog is a record of our home-building project.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Boxing in along foundation wall and some floor framing

On Sunday, I bought some lumber from a local guy. He buys semi loads of building material returns and then uses it for his own construction projects and to sell. boxing on foundation wallHe had some 2x8, 2x10, and 2x12 boards ranging in length from 10’ to 22’, most being 16’, that I paid $5 per board for. I bought 40 boards, most of it being 2x10s.

Yesterday, Jon and I ripped the 2x10s down to 8 inches in width and used them to box in around the house on top of the foundation wall. We needed to rip them since I had designed theboxing on back and east side height of the foundation wall and sill plate to be 8” below the floor level of the timber frame, matching the depth of the beams I used. The porch floor framing will butt up against this boxing on the outside, floor framing above root cellarand we’ll use 2x6s on the inside between the box and the wall to frame the floor for under the straw bales.

We also began framing the floor above the root cellar yesterday. We used 2x10s ripped down to 8” from the timber frame to the outside root cellar wall. The straw bale wall will run along the outside edge above the root cellar. I left an opening for the stairs to the root cellar. floor framing with opening for stairs to cellarWe’ll have a sewing room/study above one part of the root cellar and part of the utility room above the other end.

Based upon the number of 2x lumber that I have left, I believe I will frame the floor for the kitchen and mudroom similar to the framing I’m planning for the porch. I’ll post about that as it happens.


curdy said...

Darryl, you are making great strides with the house and I'm sure it can be exhausting at times either physically, mentally, or both. I just wanted to cheer you on and hopefully give you a boost whenever you may need it.

dp said...

Thanks for cheering me on, Curdy! Sometimes the project seems so overwhelming. At those times, I have to focus on the specific task at hand.

curdy said...

Any updates on the passive cooling set up you had thought of before? I was wondering if you had put those pipes in the ground you had mentioned before.

dp said...

No updates on the cooling system, Curdy. I continue to think about it, but it's not a high priority at this point in time. I expect that we will be able to let the cool air that comes off the hill behind the house in the evenings to flow through and cool things off overnight. Then, we can close up the house during the day, keeping the coolness inside and the heat outside. The passive cooling system is doable as a retrofit if desired.