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Old 02-24-2013, 07:34 PM   #2356
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Shu, over here, we have had a few sunny days, one day of snow, and I read yesterday that we only have 1/8th the rain we normally get! Will be an interesting stretch from here until summer, Robins have returned, Daffodils and Croci, up and trees starting to bloom. Have to get back to finishing the downstairs bathroom! Will go out and source those LEDs you used, like em a whole bunch, and need something like that now, to complete my job.

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Old 03-16-2013, 11:11 PM   #2357
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I was on the road the last couple weeks, so no progress. Greg came over today and got me back into the project. He insulated the tub, we recycled the packing material from the urinal. I set some more electric cups and mounted the water pipes. I sure hope I got them in the right location. Plumbing is not in my comfort zone. Here are a couple pic's. dorf dude...
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:17 PM   #2358
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Bonjour Dorf .,

There one thing I know you will probly cuss a little for last couple day I got hit with pretty strong snow storm and I am pretty sure you may got hit pretty hard as well.

I did got almost half meter worth of snow in my area ( Merde ! ) crazy ?

How much did ya got hit in your area ?

As far for the bathtub now that is heckva a nice idea now you are tempting me to do the same thing with my tub as well. I am planning to remodel my house soon not sure when yet.

Merci,
Marc
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:53 PM   #2359
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Bonjour Dorf .,

There one thing I know you will probly cuss a little for last couple day I got hit with pretty strong snow storm and I am pretty sure you may got hit pretty hard as well.

I did got almost half meter worth of snow in my area ( Merde ! ) crazy ?

How much did ya got hit in your area ?

As far for the bathtub now that is heckva a nice idea now you are tempting me to do the same thing with my tub as well. I am planning to remodel my house soon not sure when yet.

Merci,
Marc
The last couple weeks have been bitter cold, down to -14C. Lots of snow. More coming with freezing rain. We got a couple really nice days about a week ago but that didn't last. I'm ready for Spring. I want to work in the tent but no heat, yet. Thanks for following, dorf dude...
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Old 03-18-2013, 11:33 AM   #2360
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Another wall finished! Almost done then I can tile . Here's a progress pic. dorf dude...
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Old 03-19-2013, 12:35 PM   #2361
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Getting further. The metal trim was powder coated black by Matt. I goofed up on the measurements when I built the wall. I had to cut the first row of tiles by 1.5 cm. I got it close but you have to think in 3 dimensions or else draw it all out. I prefer to work with my hands and eyes. Here's a quick pic. dorf dude...
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Old 03-19-2013, 10:28 PM   #2362
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The construction on this job is the traditional method that is common in most of the world that has centuries of proven durability and economy. It is a "heat sink" with many benefits.- It is not like a "short term" lightweight frame structure with very little mass and real thermal resistance. A heavy, massive structure works much differently than one created by "pink panther" users that have little thermal, moisture and structural stability and more durability/mold moisture problems.
There are two issues with this, one is, most people in the USA don't live in one house for 30 or 40 years, gone are the days when a family built ahouse, farmed the land and had generation after generation all living in the same house and passing it down the line. In the USA most people change jobs and careers as often as they change their underwear, they don't view a house as a HOME or shelter, they view it as an "investment" to live in and sell for more, move on to a bigger house for a few years, sell it and move on to yet another one.

Very few houses or buildings in the USA are older than around the mid 1850s, in a city like New York City I can only think of at most a dozen buildings that date to around 1810 or 1820, you will not find anything left from the 1600s and 1700s it's all been destroyed to modernize, build bigger, or due to fires.
I've seen huge mansions on 5th Avenue built of marble, cut stone blocks, fine woodwork, ornate gothic ceilings and the whole nine yards- destroyed in less than 30 years because they wanted either a taller building or a more modern one.

Here's the 1870 Stewart mansion, faced with white marble, it was demolished in 1901- just 30 years after it was built:



A building like that was built to last 500 years easily, it, and all it's neighbors in midtown Manhattan were all destroyed by the 1940s, most of them were barely 60 or 70 years old.

Modern construction in the USA reflects this, shoddy cheap OSB (oriented strand board for those who don't know what this is, it's a cheap mixture of sawdust and glue) used, fake brick veneer glued over OSB walls. No one really cares other than to get it built fast and cheap, because after a few years it's "outdated" and falling apart anyway, besides, the original owners are already on their third house forward anyway, with their first one long forgotten and someone else's problem.

Moisture: in the OLD days, when these German houses were built, they were like all old houses back then drafty, and leaky, but heat was cheap and they didn't know any better.
In the USA coal was king, coal was CHEAP, everyone burned coal, so much so that the brick and stone facades of buildings in the cities turned BLACK, no one cared if the furnace or fireplace was only 25% efficient because they could just shovel in more coal.

NOW however, when it costs hundreds of dollars a month to heat the ever increasing sized McMansions with 4, 5 and 6 bedrooms and 3 car garages people seem to "need" these days, every little leak around windows and doors adds up to a lot of money wasted heating the sky, as a result houses today are almost sealed fishtanks to keep out all the infiltration of cold air. Today we have gas burning appliances such as gas stoves, water heaters and furnaces that put out a lot of moisture, we have electric and gas clothes dryers, dishwashers, hot showers, humidifiers and more all putting lots of moisture into the sealed fishtank where it has no place to go but through the walls where it hits to cold exterior sheeting, aluminum or vinyl siding and condenses into ice.
Next we have construction that doesn't allow ventilation from the walls into the attic, blocked or no soffit and eave vents and the result is mold, mildew, moisture damage, rot. Add to this a roof that leaks a little, a washing machine that malfunctions and leaks 20 gallons of water into the house etc

Houses back in the old days were SMALL, a few hundred sq ft at best in footprint, my house built in 1930 was about 900 sq ft, today that size is a "starter" home or cottage.

Mass is fine but solid brick walls have near zero R value, the hollow clay blocks are better but every web that touches inside to outside is a "short" where there's no hollow cavity between.

Quote:
I defy anyone to define where the warm side and cold side on the wall is on this type of structure since the interior may be the warm side from January to March and the interior could be the cold side from April to August or September.
Which side of the wall is warm and which side is cold will reverse with the seasons, it doesn't matter really, since insulation's job is to SLOW DOWN the transference of energy no matter which side it comes from and whether its hot or cold energy, but most of the moisture that hits COLD surfaces comes from inside the house going thru the wall to the exterior which might be zero degrees. In the summer, even if it's humid and you have the A/C on, the room temperature is doubtfull it will get below 68 degrees F and it will be drier indoors anyway since the A/C dehumidies the air, the moisture from outside @ 85 degrees coming in and hitting the inside wall @ 68 degrees is hardly worth mentioning, certainly nothing like the reverse where the temperature difference could be 80 to 100 degrees and the moisture turns to ICE in the walls.

What I find interesting in this project I'll comment on more when I finish browsing the 120 pages of this thread! but this is real interesting to see the use of hollow clay blocks, our colleague who started the thread refers to them as "brick" but here in the USA they would be called hollow terracotta (or clay) blocks, and these were in use extensively in the USA back in the 1800s, especially around 1900 when skyscrapers were going up and these blocks were used in floors as well as partition walls because they were lighter, and fireproof
In fact one old building next to the World Trade Center site which suffered a lot of damage on 9/11 survived the big fires inside it burning for a long time, because it's walls and floors were made with this clay block!

I also like the tile roof and will comment more after I finish the whole thread in a day or two.
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:45 AM   #2363
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Thanks for the comments. The big debate over "Heat Sinks" could go on for days. I'm living proof that this solid mass concept is working fine. My home is very warm, constant 23C, 74F, and I'm using minimal energy to heat it. In the summer it is nice and cool too. The pellet stove heats in 2 ways, 85% of the energy goes into the storage tank and then heats the slab. 15% radiates into the room. We have had a pretty extreme winter this year, still going, check the news. I just bought my 4th ton of pellets and that will get me through with some to spare. Total cost of 980 Euro. Lets compare that with anybody's gas or electric bill. The comments I get from visitors is that it is so comfortable and warm inside. In summer the heat stays outside if I keep the shades drawn during the day. Thanks for following and I enjoy your comments. dorf dude...
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Old 03-20-2013, 01:23 AM   #2364
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The pellet stove heats in 2 ways, 85% of the energy goes into the storage tank and then heats the slab. 15% radiates into the room. We have had a pretty extreme winter this year, still going, check the news. I just bought my 4th ton of pellets and that will get me through with some to spare. Total cost of 980 Euro. Lets compare that with anybody's gas or electric bill. The comments I get from visitors is that it is so comfortable and warm inside. In summer the heat stays outside if I keep the shades drawn during the day. Thanks for following and I enjoy your comments. dorf dude...
Have to head to bed, but before I do... Your system is real good with the storage tank, and the solar, that's the way to go.

My house is about 1,000 sq ft total living space, but I also have a full basement which is heated. I have R100 +- insulation in my attic, the majority of the heat loss in a house goes up through the roof, so if the attic is super well insulated that's a big plus.
I added a wall inside the original exterior walls, the walls are about R21.

I heat with gas, I never turn my thermostat down, it's set around 71 degrees or thereabouts and stays around that 24/7, reading about moisture with your propane heat early on, sounds like an unvented construction heater to me, here all normal gas furnaces need to be vented to the outside, so then any moisture winds up out there instead of the room.

My gas bill which includes the 100,000 BTU forced air gas furnace, gas water heater, gas cook stove runs about $135 a month here during the cold months in Iowa where the winters normally get down to single digits.

One 5,200 BTU window air conditioner comfortably cools the entire house even when its 95 degrees and 95% humidity at times in the summer here.

You might be able to convert these values to compare them to your costs and all.
My electric is a little over 7 cents a kwh and even with 3 computers on 24/7, and the sound system, and all my lights etc it rarely costs more than about $50 a month.

Last month's bill I used 158 therms of gas (therm is 100,000 BTU) which was $135 with the service charge, tax and use.
My electric shows I used 751 kwh of electric @ 7.5 cents, or $65 ( but $8.50 of that is a service charge you pay even if you use nothing)

I use the utilities' free budget billing plan which equalizes out the costs more evenly so you don't get $45 bills in the summer and $400 bills in the winter, they recalculate every 3 months and adjust accordingly up or down, and by the end of the year it's pretty close to what was used.

So my monthly payment is actually $103 for gas and electric, and all taxes, that's about as cheap as it gets!

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Old 03-20-2013, 02:36 AM   #2365
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7.5 cents a kilowatt! I pay almost 5 times that, 34 cents. That's why so many people are putting up PV panels here. I have an alternative plan it the back of my mind. Now if I could only find the time.... Thanks for following. dorf dude...
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Old 03-20-2013, 01:40 PM   #2366
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Some more tiles up. I had to raise the top of the bathtub frame to allow a single tile perimeter around the sides. You will see it in the next couple days. Now the tub is too high and I will have to add a step for getting in and out. It might be a good chance to get artistic. We'll see. I built a cubical in the tub frame. I will use it for toilet paper and cleaning supplies. Here's a pic of the progress. Tomorrow will be a lot more visual progress. dorf dude...
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Old 03-20-2013, 02:33 PM   #2367
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$0.34 a kilowatt? Wow! After our recent aggregation program went into effect, we are paying $0.0483/kilowatt (plus distribution fees and taxes, for a total of $0.0732/KW). In fact, at work we were looking to switch all the city streetlights to LED. Once the aggregation program dropped the cost of electricity, we can't justify the cost of the program as the savings in electricity will not be enough to cover the increased cost of the bulb over their usable life.

At $0.34 though, every light in the city would be LED, that's for sure. I now see why you have put so many LED fixtures into your house. At your rates, my last ~$125 bill would be nearly $500 for the month! I'd be unscrewing 3 of every 4 lightbulbs!

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Old 03-21-2013, 12:55 AM   #2368
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At $0.34 though, every light in the city would be LED, that's for sure. I now see why you have put so many LED fixtures into your house. At your rates, my last ~$125 bill would be nearly $500 for the month! I'd be unscrewing 3 of every 4 lightbulbs!

My brother is getting ready to build a shop/apartment. I talked to him about LED's for lighting. It would be cost prohibitive. But the property sits on a bluff with a great potential for a wind generator. That will pay off in spades compared to the savings with LED's.
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Old 03-21-2013, 01:38 PM   #2369
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Last wall is up Tub base is sealed, tiles going up. I might actually get the tub in on Sat. My vision is finally becoming real. Looking better than expected. Here is a pic. dorf dude
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:40 PM   #2370
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$0.34 a kilowatt? Wow! After our recent aggregation program went into effect, we are paying $0.0483/kilowatt (plus distribution fees and taxes, for a total of $0.0732/KW). In fact, at work we were looking to switch all the city streetlights to LED. Once the aggregation program dropped the cost of electricity, we can't justify the cost of the program as the savings in electricity will not be enough to cover the increased cost of the bulb over their usable life.

At $0.34 though, every light in the city would be LED, that's for sure. I now see why you have put so many LED fixtures into your house. At your rates, my last ~$125 bill would be nearly $500 for the month! I'd be unscrewing 3 of every 4 lightbulbs!
I am not far behind the dorf dude with electric rates and I do pay anywhere from 0.15 to 0.30 "Cents" per kilowatts depending on the time and the day it used.

Most of my time it useally average about 0.22 "cents" That why I used alot of CFL or new LED if they are pretty well set up.

That rates is based in EDF in France but I know Wisconsin is much lower IIRC about .08 to .10 KWH but I will check on that later to confirm that number.

Merci,
Marc

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