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Old 10-07-2010, 08:21 PM   #1
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


Ok, here's the deal - I live in Oregon. I am a poor man, but bery capable and clever.
I can build whatever I need/want with shotcrete one way or the other.
In my area (classified,lol) I do not need a building permit for retaining walls 4ft or less high, or for 'accessory' buildings less than 200 sq ft and under 10ft high.
I can do a lot with this - the problem? I need good, strong sheds (Shotcrete/permanent), but area building codes demand I build a house (avg 600 sq ft min., etc etc) before any 'accessory' buildings.
This is a problem. I am super poor, but can do a whole lot with very little.
I cannot afford to build "their" house, that I don't want anyway (alternative building methods), and I cannot afford to buy even a small mobilehome (trailer, RV, etc not allowed).

I need to get around building codes any way I can!
I live alone, have no intention of renting/selling/etc. and intend to retire and die of old age on the property I will be buying.

- Looking for good ideas/suggestions/etc...

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Old 10-07-2010, 08:34 PM   #2
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


.


You need to figure out to utilize what you have access to to build what you want and comply with codes. If you get caught with an illegal building, the municipality in charge can fine you or even raze the building. Where would be be then.


and if you are so broke, how can you build anything with shotcrete?

what do you currently live in?

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Old 10-07-2010, 10:12 PM   #3
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


You can get around the structural and other prescriptive code requirements if you have a professional consult and sign the plans. - That is the easiest and cheapest way to do things without waiting and fighting for months or years. There are many building done with shotcrete and similar systems, so it is not impossible.

If you want to fight some of the general, safety and livability provisions of the codes in general, that is a bigger problem and
I wish you luck and courage to see everything you have done leveled by order of the courts. Promises do not mean much to a judge since people can change their mind and open up a new world of problems.
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Old 10-08-2010, 10:27 AM   #4
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


It's really fundamental and comes down to how a democratic government works.

You ask the city council (or whoever enacted the regs) for a change in regulations so that you can build the way you want. Explain why the regs should change and how it would benefit the community. For example, explain that your smaller house is beneficial to the environment, explain the trend toward smaller houses and why their regs requiring 600 square feet are dated. Present positive constructive arguments for all the codes/regs you need changed to do it your way. If they are hesitant on any or all of the changes ask them if they would grant just you a one time variance so that you could build your way and demonstrate the value of your proposed changes.

If they still turn you down, try to understand why. If you disagree then campaign for representatives who agree with you so that they can change the law.
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Old 10-08-2010, 02:20 PM   #5
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


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Originally Posted by concretemasonry View Post
You can get around the structural and other prescriptive code requirements if you have a professional consult and sign the plans. - That is the easiest and cheapest way to do things without waiting and fighting for months or years. There are many building done with shotcrete and similar systems, so it is not impossible.

If you want to fight some of the general, safety and livability provisions of the codes in general, that is a bigger problem and
I wish you luck and courage to see everything you have done leveled by order of the courts. Promises do not mean much to a judge since people can change their mind and open up a new world of problems.
I will very likely do just as you have suggested!
I am still looking for as many good ideas as I can find, but in the end, after the sum of all I can gather or come up with myself, this will likely be a part of the final plan.
Thanks again!
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Old 10-08-2010, 02:30 PM   #6
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


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Originally Posted by nap View Post
.


You need to figure out to utilize what you have access to to build what you want and comply with codes. If you get caught with an illegal building, the municipality in charge can fine you or even raze the building. Where would be be then.


and if you are so broke, how can you build anything with shotcrete?

what do you currently live in?
I do not intend on necessarily building anything that would actually be "Illegal" - but there are always options, little-known cracks in the system, different ways of doing things, and that's what I am looking for.

RE: "and if you are so broke, how can you build anything with shotcrete?"

Its not about being broke, its about having a very tight budget, and doing as much as I can with it.
- Are you kidding?!? - Shotcrete has got to be the fastest, cheapest, strongest way to build anything!
I can also use a lot of native resources, such as processing the minerals in the groud itself, depening on its composition. If the soil is hard and clay-ey, I can use a hybrid adobe mix to make bricks or blocks for a core, then shotcrete over them a few inches thick.
With this type of 'soil', or especially if the land has a sandy soil, then I can process it, and use a portion of it for the shotcrete slurry itself.
If the land is solid rock, -hey! I ahbe a great foundation at least! If the soil has too much organic matter, then it can be processed into good planting soil, and I save money on that down the line.
Its all about taking lemmons and making lemonade.
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Old 10-08-2010, 02:38 PM   #7
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


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Originally Posted by jogr View Post
It's really fundamental and comes down to how a democratic government works.

You ask the city council (or whoever enacted the regs) for a change in regulations so that you can build the way you want. Explain why the regs should change and how it would benefit the community. For example, explain that your smaller house is beneficial to the environment, explain the trend toward smaller houses and why their regs requiring 600 square feet are dated. Present positive constructive arguments for all the codes/regs you need changed to do it your way. If they are hesitant on any or all of the changes ask them if they would grant just you a one time variance so that you could build your way and demonstrate the value of your proposed changes.

If they still turn you down, try to understand why. If you disagree then campaign for representatives who agree with you so that they can change the law.
What you suggest obviously comes from experience, or at the very least, sounds very smart. However, it also sounds potentially problematic and difficult, as I would not expect a whole lot of cooperation from people I would predict to be bureaucrats of whatever stripe.
But I do like what you say, and to whatever degree, I may just have to adapt and do something like this.
Between your suggestion, and what 'concretemasonry' suggested, I am very inspired!
Much of what I want to do would be experimental, and what I want to build has more to do with constructive recreation and a type of hobby-farming than anything residential anyway. But, as I said, they want a residence first, so I have to have something to pass as a "residence" so that I can get on with all the real work.
- Thanks again!
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Old 10-08-2010, 03:39 PM   #8
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


when talking to code officers, breathe more, talk less, and NEVER insist on the last word
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Old 10-08-2010, 03:50 PM   #9
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


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Originally Posted by shotcreteman View Post
- Are you kidding?!? - Shotcrete has got to be the fastest, cheapest, strongest way to build anything!
.
I can go with fastest. strongest; arguably so but depending on all factors involved.

cheapest? Not a chance. It is probably one of the most expensive methods of construction.

If shotcrete was the least expensive, it would be commonly used in low cost housing. It isn't and there is a reason.

I have to ask though; do you work for a shotcrete applicator? Shotcrete is not typically a DIY project due to the equipment required.

one thing you tossed out: shipping containers. They are readily available in good condition for not a lot of money. Depending where you are located in Oregon, there is a likelihood of some being quite close.
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Old 10-08-2010, 05:02 PM   #10
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


When you are in Oregon and want to do it your way, there is no other mentality or changing it.

Some times their "green" is a little different color.

Dick
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Old 10-08-2010, 06:27 PM   #11
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When you are in Oregon and want to do it your way, there is no other mentality or changing it.

Some times their "green" is a little different color.

Dick
you could be right. I have some relatives out there and I am sure they would agree with you.
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Old 10-09-2010, 03:16 PM   #12
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cheapest? Not a chance. It is probably one of the most expensive methods of construction.

If shotcrete was the least expensive, it would be commonly used in low cost housing. It isn't and there is a reason.

I could do a whole lot of explaining here, but log story short, I have checked it out up one side and own the other, studied it, spoken with people in the trade, etc etc.

It requires fewer tools and types of tools than conventional construction, I already explained about using native materials which saves a lot of money, cement is not that expensive to begin with, etc.
YES... it is not only the best for what I want to do, but is in fact cheaper, is not complicated, and if done right, is stronger than, and will out-last any conventional wood construction. It is incredibly adaptable, and can easily be formed into shapes and structures that would be an absolute nightmare if I even tried it with conv. methods.

- As far as cheap - you should study youtube videos on how they are using shotcrete type mixes to build in 3rd wolrd countries - in some cases they literally build a basic house out of insulation board, and then spray the shotcrete onto it, building a whole small house in only hours. - Granted, plumbing, electrical, etc must be taken into consideration, but thyat would be true of any construction method.

Shotcrete beats all hands down on al accounts.
I have yet to see a true down-side to it that outweighs any other construction method.
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Old 10-09-2010, 04:04 PM   #13
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Now you've raised my curiousity shotcreteman. How do you shoot shot crete cheaply? I thought those pumps cost thousands.
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Old 10-11-2010, 04:16 PM   #14
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


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Now you've raised my curiousity shotcreteman. How do you shoot shot crete cheaply? I thought those pumps cost thousands.
Shortest answer: Internet research, and Youtube is VERY informative - search for shotcrete on Youtube.
Check it out - you'll love it.

Not-so-short answer:
#1: Large (consumer level) (gas-op) compressor (almost always certainly less than $1000, maybe as low as $500)
#2: Either a usual, expensive valve/nozzle, a Tirolessa valve/nozzle, or even a home-made valve/nozzle.
( Tirolessa goes for well under $300, home-made for probably less than $50)
Other misc. hardware, sush as hoses, etc.

Theory, equipment, and use are really pretty simple.
- The difference? - you have to do a little more labor, as you do not have a constant feed of concrete pumped into your 'gun'. ( A clever person might be able to figure out some gravity-feed set-up) You have to simply scoop up some 'crete with the gun's hopper, spray it, and scoop some more.

I think the biggest concern is making enough crete mix to keep going, but I am planning on working by myself; and if you are working with others, or at least with a friend, one can mix or operate the mixer while the other sprays, and visa-versa. I am working on plans for a triple mixer using 3 50 Gal blue drums, run by a moped or small motorcycle/engine. Empty drum gets moved to end of line, two more, while maybe the last one gets re-filled with mix ingredients.

I have even seen an operation in either Mexico or some third-world country, where they were literally tossing shovel-fulls of dirt through a sieve/screen and using that to mix with their 'crete - and it looked like it was working just fine.

All you need for most construction is some foundation, some form of rebar frame, and some lath/mesh/expanded steel. I have seen it sprayed directly onto pink insulation foam board and stick without slipping or slumping - which amazed me.

You want a wall that is 6 inches? a foot thick? 3 feet thick? you just give X time for at least partial cure/drying, and just keep spraying layers.

I have also seen it done with "papercrete", and add-mixtures that included latex paint for smoothness, water-proofing, and color; or even recycled/cruched styrofoam for light-weight, partial insulation, and just making the mix go farther.

This stuff is fantastic and I am in love with it.
9/10ths of everything I need to do can be done with it.
- Like I said, just trying to find a way to keep the mix going/coming to get in a full day of work.
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Old 10-11-2010, 04:34 PM   #15
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Getting around building codes; shotcrete; LOW cost


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This stuff is fantastic and I am in love with it.
9/10ths of everything I need to do can be done with it.
- Like I said, just trying to find a way to keep the mix going/coming to get in a full day of work.[
can you link a couple videos where people were crazy enough to try shotcrete DIY?. I gave up after about the first 100 videos.

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