Year: 2011

Building shelves to fit under the stairs

My first proper foray into DIY carpentry at the barn has been constructing a shelving unit to sit under the stairs. The shelves are required to provide storage, box in the under-stairs area and muffle the sound from the under-floor heating pumps. The timber I chose was basic off-the-shelf stuff from B&Q - planed smoothed softwood boards. My original intention was to paint or stain the wood so the appearance of the untreated wood wasn't of great importance. However, once finished I'm relatively happy with the finish of the wood and the gentle contrast between the whitened oak of the…
Read More

Smile

This blog has taken a bit of a kicking recently from big brother Google who came along with his 'Panda' and gave us right going over. (For the uninitiated, Panda is a rolling update to the algorithm Google uses to produce search results that has been creating uproar across the web for most of 2011). Traffic to the site has halved since the middle of October when the impact of the update began to bite. I find that quite upsetting and discouraging - for me the main reward of running a blog is feeling you're communicating with your 'audience'. When…
Read More

The anatomy of a roof

Laying bare the basics of my roof structure through an annotated diagram that a layman like me can better understand, the aim of this post is to answer the question...what are the component parts of a roof? Based on the roof of my barn, a pretty simple A-frame / truss structure as (badly) pictured below, my anatomy of a roof diagram follows. From Before Or view in 3D: The diagram shows a basic A-frame roof, with angled rafters, a single tie-beam for each pair of principal rafters and horizontal purlins. You can also download the anatomy of a roof Google…
Read More

Can you tell what it is yet…?

I took this picture a few weeks ago at a favourite spot... From bochgoch The picture is taken up through the centre of the keep at Dinefwr Castle, one of the seats of the kings of Deheubarth. Beautifully circular, striking when you consider it's over 800 years old (although I'm not sure exactly how much restoration CADW have carried out and I seem to recall that the Victorians or their contemporaries messed about with the castle a fair bit turning it into more of a folly than a stronghold, so what we see here is probably considerably younger than 800…
Read More

The anatomy of…

Anyone who has ever experienced my struggling for a correct structural term, name of a tool or other fine point of building terminology will understand why I thought writing an 'anatomy of...' series was a good idea. This series of posts will be about laying bare the basics of building through annotated diagrams so that a layman like me can better understand and use the vocabulary of building terms. If you've ever asked yourself what exactly is a purlin, a stud wall or a trickle vent then hopefully I'll start to provide some answers... There'll be a bias toward the…
Read More

Carpentry

Over the last couple of years I've kept on returning to the question of carpentry. Not in a general sense, but specifically in relation to my ability to turn my hand to the following projects: Build shelves under the stairs, Box in the thermal store and build a cabin bed in the second bedroom, Build a high level, long, wide shelf in the kitchen, Put up shelving in the utility room. ...OR the alternative of hiring a professional. A steady accumulation of tools over the period (chisel, hand saws, a circular saw, jigsaw and sander then most recently a router…
Read More

Passive Solar Heating Systems – ideas

As I've posted previously: A direct gain system is one where the main means of thermal gain is through direct heating of the thermal mass by solar radiation entering the building through windows and being absorbed by the thermal mass. An indirect gain system is one where solar radiation is captured and stored in a component of the building that has a high thermal mass and from there released to areas within the building that require heating. That's all well and good, but what does this mean in practical terms, how do we design our buildings to maximise solar heating?…
Read More

Building Progress ~ October 2011

In like a bullet this month, no messing about... My tile-topped boxing-inin the bathroom (wooden frames, with painted sides and a slate and mosaic tiled top) has grown and expanded - it now runs between the sink and toilet, then further across to the 'other' side of the toilet. Three square feet of vanity case storage! I just need to finish painting, fixing and smartening them up a bit. Getting the back-lit mirror working in the ensuite... has been a big failure so far... I'm keeping away from that job for the time being. Grrrrr electrics. The fencing around the…
Read More

Feed-in Tariffs subsidy to be cut by more than half

Looks like the out-break of PV panels scaling up the roofs of my neighbours houses may be facing a hurdle to further progress. As reported late last week in the Guardian 'the [subsidy] rate will be reduced from 43.3p per kilowatt hour of solar electricity to just 21p'. This information was contained in a PDF file on the Energy Saving Trust website that seems to have been leaked published prematurely and was removed shortly after publication. The current subsidy rates will last until at least the 8th of December - so if you're thinking of getting panels installed, the time…
Read More

Before #5… Second Bedroom, phase 2

I've posted before and after pictures for the second bedroom previously, but I'm considering the boxing-in of the water tank and building of a cabin bed as a second phase of development in its own right. From Barn Conversion 2011 From Barn Conversion 2011 I'm afraid that it's pretty messy in there as it's still being used as a dumping ground. The cabin bed will run along the length of wall shown in the second photograph with wardrobe doors on the left to allow access to the tank then the entrance to the bed to the right of that, about…
Read More
No widgets found. Go to Widget page and add the widget in Offcanvas Sidebar Widget Area.