Tuesday, October 9, 2012

the coop project. #chickencoop

Just when you think you're getting closer there's always little bit more to do; now I'm just battling daylight in the evenings. The coop is looking good and preparations for the front door and finishing touches are right around the corner; very happy with the progress!

[nesting boxes complete.]

[north and rear siding; hen door exposed.]

[fastener edges for rubber flaps.]

[and Barley seeking shelter from the rain.]

Sunday, September 30, 2012

the coop project. #chickencoop

Great weather. Great football. Great beer. Good progress. More lumber and more screws in the chicken coop this weekend.  The south side of the coop is just about wrapped up.  I should be able to install the hinges and fasten down wood strips by mid-week.

[nesting box, hinged lid and upper window facing due south.]

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

the coop project. #chickencoop

Why? Ticks. Bugs. Snakes. Stink bugs. Free fresh eggs. Why not?

After our littlest pup Telli; poor little girl, got bit by a copper head this summer we spent countless hours on the net searching for a solution. As a result, we've started preparing for chickens and guineas next spring.

[plans via Google SketchUp courtesy Barn Geek.]
For the most part, I've followed the plans and improvised when needed.  The plans are basic so it takes a little thinking to work out the details.

[phase 1 :. posts and flooring]

[phase 2 :. rafters]

[phase 3 :. metal roofing]

With the roof on and the hen door framed out, next on the list is building out the nesting boxes, siding and then Steph gets a brand new paint brush. Dad might be coming this weekend and with his handy hands he ought to be able to help me knock out a pretty hefty chunk of the work left on this hen home.

certified. #passivehouse #phius

That's right, it's official, we're living in a passive house.  It's been a summer to test this passive house too.  With highs in triple digits and power outages from Los Derechos, we've just about experienced everything mother nature could through at us with the sun at its highest angle.

[The certificate to prove it.]

Just a few weeks ago we received our Energy Star certificate and HERS index rating (38).  Not that i ever want to leave this mountain, but I'm anxious to know if carrying an energy rating will help sell this house one day.

[Our new home.]

[After Los Derechos.]

I will admit it got warm after 8 days without power but we were still able to maintain 80F interior temps with just the ERV running.  About 5 days into the aftermath, we had the mini split heat pump wired into the generator and we were back to mid 70Fs inside.

Since we moved in we've built a bat box (still vacant), a road sign, landscaped, battled with a snake bite, featured in The Roanoker magazine and now we're working on a chicken coop; the future home of 4 guineas and 4 chicken hens.

[Welcome home.]

[Cover shot.]

As fall sets in and we retire the A/C for the next two seasons, we're looking forward to the energy bills.  Our highest bill this summer topped out at $60 but we're anticipating bills in the mid to upper $30s over the colder months.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

an example. #passivehouse

Simple.  At least that's how this video clip makes retrofitting a home to the passive house standard.  They even live in one of the hotter states in the US.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

getting there. #passivehouse

That's right, we're getting there and we're moving into this passive house on Saturday!  I spent the later part of the afternoon meeting with the security installer and spreading straw.

[A view from the southwest.]

[From the southeast.]

[The dogs are gonna love this!]

[From the northeast.]

Friday, March 9, 2012

interview. #passivehouse

Adam Cohen, our architect, on "The Interview with Gene Marrano" discussing renewable energy and passive house.