Tuesday 19 July 2011

Thinking about the house...

Originally we wanted to build a straw-bale house, but since we have a house and no money it seems like the most effective way to insulate it and make it beautiful would be to clad the outside with straw bales. The idea is to construct a sort of 'shelf' attached to the foundation and as wide as the bales, and then build the bale wall on this. We would still need to reconstruct the windows and the door (but they need to be repaired at the very least anyway), and we'd need to extend the roof so that it overhangs the walls to protect them from the elements.

This leads me to thinking about the existing walls... Here are a few photos: the East aspect; detail of NE corner; detail of NW corner; and South aspect. By the way, the external dimensions are about 13m x 8m.
 You can see the slight slope and the relatively new (uninsulated) metal roof. Pointing is fairly random. The two larger windows on the left are a bedroom, the little window a kind of scullery behind the kitchen, the tiny 'window' is opposite the front door, and the last window is into a kind of workshop.
 This photo (above) is a close-up of the wall and the eaves, and below is another close-up showing a patch of cement filling in the foundation, and on the North wall you can just make out an old door that's been blocked up, and some not very straight lines of block work...
 The South aspect is much tidier (below) but really if we're designing an eco-friendly house we'd want as much south-facing space as possible

Any thoughts? Do I need to carry out any particular investigations? Do I need any other photos? Or will I be fairly safe developing my building plan as it is? Please leave comments below... Thanks!

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