Saturday, September 06, 2008

More About My Log Cabin

The bulletins are almost finished (early for me!), the sermon is sketched out. I've done bunches of work on the Charge Conference Reports -- so more about the Log Cabin.

Bob Timberlake is a company I am considering for the studios on either side of the main house. (See this link as well.) Or this company (it even has a drawing.) I am also considering using this company for Phase 3 of my homebuilding adventure, which be a series of guest houses where people could come and retreat -- I'm thinking clergy and sermon planning type retreats at first. The guest houses would be based on something like this, small with just the basic necessities. This is a Bob Timberlake design. He does a really nice rough hewn look with random spacing between the logs so that it will blend in well with the recycled timbers of the main house. This little cabin has a bathroom, a tiny kitchen area, a fireplace and a sleeping loft. It will be cozy without being fancy.

I want the main house to be a classic "Ell" eventually. We will start with a little cabin that will be the eventual main kitchen. I am looking for insulated roofing systems -- and very energy efficient windows. It will have a full basement -- this is where the master bedroom will be to begin with, along with my "1950's" office area and a small but functional bath. I want a real slipper tub here with a nice vanity made of a recycled old piece of furniture. I want a reproduction "Crapper" toliet (high tank) with a 2.5 gallon flush (water sparing). I would also like, tucked under the stairs maybe, an energy efficient and water sparing stacked washer and dryer. The upstairs will be one big room "1850's" style -- the kitchen will resemble this picture. Farmhouse sink -- either stone or porcelain, a small refrigerator that uses ammonia for a coolant and is dual powered -- electric with auto switchover to LP gas. That way I can be off the grid and if I run out of electricity, the food doesn't spoil. I don't need a big refrigerator. I think that having too much food that has to be refrigerated around is decadent and wasteful. The stove will either be LP, electric with the old fashioned look or genuine wood burning. I will purchase wood or cut it myself and use the ashes in the compost pile or garden or use them to get lye.

Underneath the studio on the left, I am going to put all the "guts" for the solar power and other systems. I will also have storage and a storm shelter. I want to float a concrete floor of about 6 to 8 inches above the basement for the main floor and stain it and seal it with poly. The basement of both structures will be earth sheltered for energy efficiency. I am going to lay down the mother of all vapor barriers, though, to prevent radon and black mold.

The main house will be recycled logs from one of various companies. I have found this one, and this one, this one in Georgia and this one. Believe it or not, there are multiple companies that do this. Phase 2 of the construction will occur when the LH and I are ready to live in the cabin full time. I will put an "extension" onto the house that will be two stories, to complete the "Ell" shape. I want this portion to be something like this picture, except I would like it to be a real Dogtrot -- where there is a large main hall between two log "pens." The original cabin will become the kitchen and "keeping room". The master bedroom downstairs will become a guestroom; the sleeping loft will become a sitting area. The office will remain where it is. I will add a reproduction large refrigerator from this company. I LOVE the look of this refrigerator -- it is frankly gorgeous. I think I might order something for my current house from them. For stoves, I have two choices: restored or reproduction. I am leaning toward reproduction. The two storied addition will allow for a dining room. This will be space for all my lovely antiques that we have inheirted from my parents/g'parents and the LH's family. I want a gray wash on the wall and a very dark floor. There will be a living room/family room on the main floor as well and two bedrooms upstairs. I will connect the loft to the upstairs landing in the hall.
There is a necessary orderliness to all this. In order:
  • Purchase land. Cheap with a nice slope off to the NE, river/running water on part, a hill for the shack on another part.
  • Drill for water, build well house and install pump.
  • Survey for placement for buildings; need southern exposure on back side of house for solar panels/shingles.
  • Concrete pour number one -- the driveway landing, foundation and basement slab for the first cabin, foundation and slab for the left-side studio/garage. This will be the time to lay down the piping for the radiant floor heating/cooling.
  • Septic system, attach to electric grid, installation of LP tank.
  • The site is ready for the travel trailer -- place on cabin slab or driveway landing and hook-up to utilities.
  • Purchase Garage kit and assemble as a studio with a concrete floor (second concrete pour and second set of radiant heating pipes). Put French doors and transoms in Garage door opening. Install solar systems and geothermal heat pump. Plumb for very small bathroom upstairs and stub in downstairs. Use purchased steel/iron spiral stair case. Drywall bathroom. Put in loft for sleeping. This structure can be now used for storage and sleeping, if desired.
  • Move trailer -- now first structure HAS to be used for sleeping; small dorm refrigerator -- hot plate for cooking.
  • Begin construction of first log cabin. (There is a whole list of things here.)
  • At completion, move in! This first build will be used as a "retreat home" or "vacation home." The studio can be partially cleared, but still have tremendous value for storage.
  • Build shack and antenna farm for LH during this time. He may desire it up on the hill; he may want it next to the house.
  • Phase 2: Build "Ell" when it's time to do so -- complete studio. A carport of structural timbers will be placed in the optimal placement.....
  • Phase 3: Little Retreat Houses.
Eh, yeah. Maybe I think about this too much.

Edited: This is a wonderful website. There is no contact information; I think I'll snoop a little to get an email addy.

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