Friday, July 24, 2009

Rapid framing progress

The crew is just going gangbusters on the framing, and Paul has (gently) warned me not to expect this kind of visually rapid progress during all phases of construction. We're not worried about the overall pace of things, so long as we get the house we want. Nevertheless, I have to say that this phase has been extremely exciting.

Here's a few pictures from earlier in the week; this is the south-facing wall of my office after being stood up (as mentioned before, the allowable tolerances on this very critical room are minute, so it's good that they get it going early):

Wow, there's some serious stud reinforcement around the front door:

Looking at the rear of the house; the triple set of windows is in our living room, should be a nice view from there:

My wife and I drove out to the site early this morning so we could look things over together. This was also a good chance to meet with Paul and go over some of the minor questions that needed answers. E.g., should we widen this hallway, what do you think about leaving this room transition with a high-ceiling, how about a pocket-door here, etc, etc. No major problems have arisen, and my wife and I are both thrilled with how the house and floor plan are starting to feel.

We can knock a few thousand off of the A/C bid if we can give the HVAC guys a 9" duct from crawlspace to attic (so that the upstairs rooms can be cooled by an air-exchanger in the basement, as opposed to needing an additional air-exchanger in the attic). That's a lot of incentive to find room for that duct! Currently it's looking like the best spot will be up through my closet in the master bedroom.

I also asked Paul to make sure we save room for some smaller crawl-to-attic ducting\tubing, to make it easy to low-voltage stuff in future. I also have plans to mount my digital weather station windvane on a support pipe on the roof, and Paul's fine with that; I just need to get him the pipe and let him know how high it should be. He also suggested pre-mounting the windvane and pre-running the wires down to the attic, so I won't need to climb back up there some day to do it.

We drove out to the site again after work today, so here's a few pictures of the latest progress. This is a view from the kitchen, looking west through the dining room, entry-hall and finally, my office at the far end:

Right now the crew is focusing on framing everything under the second floor of the house. The kitchen\breakfast area\laundry\pantry area is still not framed, as you can see:

This sequence of events is intentional: this way, they have something to work on while the tubing guys are doing their thing on the second floor. Good thinking ahead there...

We are really loving the look of our "three-oh, six-oh" windows (ie, 3' wide x 6' high). For a consistent look, these are placed at regular intervals all around the house on both floors. With a 9' high ceiling, these nice, tall windows will let in a huge amount of light. While some people like the humongous, super-wide picture windows, I'm not keen on them due to higher heat loss (we have kept the exterior-wall glazing ratio quite low on this house) and expensive $$ pain they cause if\when they get broken.

Here's a view of our new second floor taking shape (I'm standing on a very high ladder to take this picture):

A view from my office, looking thru the master bedroom toward my wife's closet on the left (it's huge) and the master bathroom on the right:

The door to my office from the entry-way was planned as a measley 2' 8" wide door...I'm a big guy and prefer big openings. So I asked Paul if this could be made a 3' door instead. The problem then was that the bottom stair landing would protrude past the edge of the door. Before we left this morning, Paul said he would see what he could do. This is really looks like he found a way to "push" the stairs further away from my office door, without letting the stair stringers protrude into the (visible) ceiling below:

And from the other side:

Looking from the living room diagonally back towards my office:

Phew...well that should catch things up.

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