We’re in!

January 15, 2008

A bit of a gap since my last update but things have been rather absurdly busy. We’ve moved in with a few weeks to spare before baby number two arrived. He and mum are doing well if not getting much sleep.Here are some photos of it now complete.  I’ll continue to update with how it is to live in along with details of the heat pump and rainwater harvesting in action – there are already a few teething problems (with the house systems – not the baby).                                            Rear living roomStreet ElevationDining room0519luke102.jpg


Windows arrive – but what’s the colour?

April 24, 2007

We were expecting the windows and kept getting told that the German factory weren’t able to give a precise delivery date. In the end they were only a week late but when I saw them on site it was obvious they were the wrong colour. We ordered light grey and they were dark.
Happily they actually looked better if anything so we decided to keep them.
In fact they look great.
Unfortunately the glass roof for the second floor conservatory didn’t arrive which prevents the render going on at the back. Some of the window cills and aluminium trims were still to be made up which stopped the render at the front being installed. The delay in the render delays the scaffolding coming down.
Oh, and half the windows have tiny imperfections in the glazing which needs to be replaced. Thankfully this can be done from the inside and doesn’t affect the programme. And the timber louvres are also still somewhere in Germany.
Ah, the joys of the construction industry.
Attached is a pic looking from the rear at second floor conservatory.

2F rear windows

And one of the 1F bedroom window
1F bedroom window

Where oh where oh where the windows?

March 22, 2007

All was proceeding reasonably smoothly, with the Contractor pulling out all the stops in readiness for the arrival of the windows on Thursday 15th March. Needless to say on Wednesday, chasing up an arrival time I discovered they were not coming at all. In fact there still seems to be no clarity on when they might arrive. It’s the lack of information that’s totally maddening.
Having been awarded the contract on the basis that they had confirmed the delivery date for week beginning 12th March I am less than impressed. The only saving grace is that we haven’t paid them a penny to date so if they continue to mess around we will go elsewhere.
The window are made from sustainably sourced spruce, with high performance glazing and are manufactured in Germany by Seufert Niklaus. Here’s a link to their website:
Latest ETA is friday this week. We will see……
Sample window

Walls going up

March 4, 2007

The internal walls are nearly studded out in timber with netting being added to take the lambs wool insulation before walls are enclosed in plasterboard. Good progress is being made on site in preparation for the windows arriving week beginning 12th March.
Here’s a pic of the living room at the rear, showing the double height space with the clerestory windows.
Rear reception walls

Underfloor heating

January 29, 2007

So it’s cold, there are no walls, windows and only a bit of roof – it’s time to warm things up by installing the underfloor heating.
All the pipework for the upper floors with timber floor construction were put in on friday with the ground floor and rear mezzanine to follow.
First the sheeps wool natural insulation was fitted into netting between the joists and then the metal transfer plates were fitted to receive the underfloor heating pipework.
Each loop was pressure tested to 5 bar and left connected to the manifolds carefully positioned at ground, first and third floors. The main plumbing and the heat pump installation are to follow but at least we can now put the subfloors down.

Underfloor heating

Progress on site

January 24, 2007

Forgive me it has been many days since my last post. Life and work had taken over somewhat and I haven’t found the time or waking hours to update the blog until now.
So what’s been going on? We have a main Contractor on site, the steelwork is in, floors are in and the roofs are almost on.
The underfloor heating pipework for the upper floors is due to be installed on Friday.
Here’s a picture of work in progress: a snap from the rear scaffolding at second floor level. More to come soon.

Welcome to Luke’s eco self build blog

May 21, 2006

Welcome to my blog of a building a new low Carbon house in West London. It’s an account of the process and the trials and tribulations of this self build and an attempt to provide a resource for others trying to do the same. Please feel free to comment and add any relevant information.

some of our other work is on our website http://www.pitmantozer.com

Front ele sketch