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Posted by Tim in North Pole, AK on 10/26/2014

I've been awfully busy with a new job, flood damage control, and knocking out the most important stuff before snow falls, and it already has. My laptop crashed so I don't have pictures of a few things but I'll show what I got. This summer was the wettest summer in recorded history here and it wreaked havoc with our building plans. We had flooding in the crawlspace most of the summer that caused us to put in French drains and sump pump down there, install soffit, fascia, then gutters to get the water away from the house. Then I excavated a couple drainage ditches to help move the water further away from the house. After all that was under control, we were able to install our last windows in the master bedroom, bonus room, and master bathroom. We also put in the last radiant heat zone and poured concrete on top. We installed the front door and exterior lights on the front of the house. 98% of the foam on the outside is done too. We hired a mason to build the block foundation and core for our masonry heater, then faced and finished it ourselves. The masonry heater burns a lot cleaner than wood stoves and fireplaces because you burn a really hot fire once a day, burning all the creosote-causing gases in the firebox. The exhaust takes longer to exit the house as it goes through several channels before it goes up the chimney. The wood requirement is also less because you're not feeding a fire around the clock. This design is a Swedish contraflow. More info on how they work can be found at the Masonry Heater Association webpage http://www.mha-net.org/ Now I'm taking a short break before I get back into the swing of things. Enough of that, to the pics!

Tim

Photos

Block foundation before filling the cores and slab pour on top
Core half way built, with water coils in place
Core built most of the way
Core built and braced for seismic reinforcement. Cardboard in place for an expansion gap.
Working on the facing with my son. We got rock by getting a permit from the State of Alaska to gather rock from a material site.
Coat hook on the side before it's cleaned up with muriatic acid. Those cleanout holes get covers.
All done except for tile grout on the back wall and a tiled hearth.



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