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Monthly Archives: October 2009

Site Meeting

Site Meeting: Martin, Neilus and Denis

North Elevation

The North elevation showing the window ope

The view from the window in the north wall.

The view from the window in the north wall.

This is the Cedral Weather-board siding that will be used to finish the outside of The Bothy.  The colour will be natural & it will match some timber cladding existing to the rear of the house.

Yesterday the roof timbers went into place and Martin was busy cutting out the window opes.

The HF Beam is just visible through the roof timbers

The HF Beam is just visible through the roof timbers

The timber frame is in place and the window opes have been formed.

The timber frame is in place and the window opes have been formed.

Now that the front and rear timber framed walls are in place it is possible to see the reason for the shape of The Bothy which matches the existing building.

Now that the front and rear timber framed walls are in place it is possible to see the reason for the shape of The Bothy which matches the existing building.

Last nights gale came & went & the only impact on The Bothy was a pool of rain-water on the concrete sub-floor this morning.  With the bank holiday weekend coming up quickly Martin, Neilus and Denis worked hard today to get the huge rear wall standing and also to substantially complete the front and north side of the unit, which are now standing straight & level.

We had a letter from City Hall Planning Department this morning to let us know that the enforcement file which had been opened on foot of a complaint has now been closed.  They are satisfied that the extension is single story and is exempt from requiring planning permission.

Part of tomorrows work is to study in some detail the output of a detailed conversation that I had with Nigel at www.mysolarshop.co.uk yesterday & I anticipate that a few more telephone calls will be had before we decide on the exact format that the AC/DC system will take.  Currently we are examining the possibility of including an inverter that will switch and charge the battery bank from the grid during times when the available solar energy is low or non existent.

Martin & Denis working today on the front wall, with the huge rear wall visible to the top left hand side of the shot.

Martin & Denis working today on the front wall, with the huge rear wall visible to the top left hand side of the shot.

“And now the Shipping Forecast issued by the Met Office, on behalf of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, at 1130 on Monday 19 October 2009. There are warnings of gales in Portland Plymouth Biscay Fitzroy Sole Lundy Fastnet Irish Sea Shannon Rockall Malin Hebrides Bailey and Southeast Iceland.”

Therefore the bits of The Bothy completed to date are well strapped down this evening:

Steel Straps secure The Bothy

Steel straps secure The Bothy

Gale Warning


The rear wall of The Bothy was made yesterday on the floor and then stood in position to have battens, insulation and siding fitted.  The wall looks very tall right now but will in fact match the rear wall of the existing building.  It will of course be somewhere in the region of 3.4meters high and, at Martins suggestion, it seems like an excellent idea to install a rolling library ladder in order to take advantage of the higher space for shelving.

The Rear Wall

The Rear Wall

The internal composition of the wall, before the siding is added.

The internal composition of the wall, before the siding is added.

We are in the process of designing and assembling the components that will help to power The Bothy using solar energy & so far we have taken taken delivery of two one hundred watt solar panels, a control unit and some cabling from www.mysolarshop.co.uk.  Having finally got my head around the fact that the ceiling of The Bothy will be about 3.5 high at the rear and approximately 2m high in the front it seems that a ceiling fan will be useful.  This will help to move air in the summer in order to keep the space cool and, importantly, will also move air in the cooler weather in order to ensure that the whole space benefits from the heat being generated by both the work area equipment and by the ham radio equipment.  This will of course be a DC unit which makes particular sense in the summer, using solar power to help keep the space cool.

John Ronan has been in touch and has e-mailed me more useful information, this time about the Current Cost Envi which measures electricity consumption.  His blog shows some very interesting graphs generated via a PC.   I suspect that once I have had time to look at what he is doing in more detail that one of these things will become an essential piece of equipment for the house and for The Bothy.

The Timber Superstructure Begins to be Formed

The Timber Superstructure Begins to be Formed

While Martin and Denis worked today and timber and a damp proof course has now appeared on top of the concrete up-stands, Mike from Ash in Surrey took a break from having a pop at Gordon Brown on Radio 5 Live to get in touch to ask about the transport links to The Bothy.  There are in fact no public transport links available or indeed required for this little workspace as the front door of The Bothy is precisely 14 paces from the back door of the house.  The journey will take us through the recycling center to the rear of the house and then into a landscaped area, the main feature of which is the retaining wall and new planting bed created from the arisings of the recently demolished stone shed.

The next stage of the project is to prepare a paving and planting scheme for this route, which will be as sophisticated and detailed as the design for The Bothy itself.

The Bothy Design Drawing

The Bothy Design Drawing

Today the postwoman brough the first snail-mail to the Bothy

Today the postwoman brought the first snail-mail to The Bothy

Now that the first letters – there were two – have been received addressed to The Bothy, even while it is still in construction – it somehow brings the project to the next level of reality.

On Friday last we had a visit from an inspector from the planning department at city hall.  He had a good look at the project on the ground and went back to his office, as far as I can tell, happy that the project forms an exempted development.  Thinking about this over the weekend, planning inspectors just don’t turn up at peoples bothys unless they have received a call from a member or members of the public.  I just wonder if somebody had been under the impression last week that our little (admittedly five star) bothy was a major development that somehow signals the recommencement of the building boom?  Were they worried that a five story, as opposed to a single story five star bothy was being rolled out?

Mystery Vegetable

Mystery Vegetable

A special mention on this blog, on Twitter and an invitation to The Bothy commissioning party will be awarded the first person to contact me with  the name of the above delicious vegetable grown by Stephanie in The Bothy garden.

Looking at todays weather radar for Ireland http://www.met.ie/latest/rainfall_radar.asp it seems very much like the prediction by http://www.shedworking.co.uk/ that we will be finished by Monday may need some slight revision.  Realistically it looks like there may be another two to three weeks work involved in bringing it to completion.

I had a call last night from John Ronan EI7IG, national coordinator for www.aren.ie with some more great advice in regard to getting the best from the photovoltaic system.  I will of course post details and photographs of progress as we develop the system.

The solar panels, wiring and control unit arrived this morning, well packed and on time as expected from Mysolarshop.co.uk & I will post a photograph of the contents when everything is unpacked and checked.

Meanwhile Martin, Neilus and Denis are taking advantage of the fine weather today to pour the sub-floor:

Sub-floor

Sub-floor