Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Roof III

One cold day whilst I was doing some engineering (more on that later), the sun came out from behind the clouds and shone brightly on our little cottage. Soon after, I heard a sound that now makes me cringe each time I hear it. Drip, drip, drip. The sun was strong enough to melt the snow that was on the roof and it was dripping in between the panels of OSB.

I decided it was time to cover the roof. Not exactly a job I wanted in the middle of winter. Nonetheless, it needs to be done. So I borrowed a harness from work and I bought some roof jacks (sometimes called roof brackets). This is how far we've gotten.
 The shingles we have are a polymer faux slate. They require the entire roof to be covered in ice and water barrier. It's more expensive than regular roofing felt, but it's also more water proof. At first the goings were pretty slow, but I quickly learned that I needed a couple more sets of roof jacks. Once I bought more and mustered up some bravery, things started to speed up a bit. It's still a lot slower than a roof you can stand on, but we'll get it done.

The ice and water barrier needs to be tacked on with roofing nails when the temperature is below 40 degrees. Once the temperatures warm up it will adhere to the OSB.

Odds and [Beam] Ends
The engineering I was talking about had to do with attaching the beams to the concrete walls. I think it is a little overkill, but since we paid an engineer to design our roof I suppose we should probably listen to him.

The beams are clipped to the wall with 1/4" steel brackets that I had made up at the local steel fabricator. There is one on each side of the beam. They are through bolted with 5/8"x7" bolts and bolted to the wall with 5/8" wedge anchors. This "little" job was tedious and I'm glad it's done.

Also, I plumbed in a propane heater to warm our hands and feet.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Windows and Doors

We installed the first floor windows and doors. I was surprised by how easy the windows were and how uneasy the doors were. I had never done windows before, but I had done doors before. I dislike installing doors, but they are in.

Before putting each unit in, we sealed it with a polyurethane caulk.
The windows came with an integral nailing fin used to attach it to the window buck. We used normal galvanized roofing nails.
We shimmed the windows and doors in the areas that the directions suggested. When doing the doors, we used the shimming to make sure the door jamb was square and plumb. That proved to be tedious, and thus my distaste for installing doors.
This is how it looks with them all installed. In the spring we'll paint the doors to match and we'll also put trim around everything.
You'll notice that the windows have a bluish tint to them. That's the Low-E coating that I inadvertently ordered. Normally people are happy with Low-E. It helps to keep the heat outside out and the heat inside in. That's all well and good, unless you were counting on the sun to help heat your house in the winter. It's called passive solar design and there is much more to it. I'm no expert but the basic principle is to let the low winter sun into southern facing windows warming up a thermal mass such as concrete. To keep the house cool from the high summer sun, passive solar design calls for shading the windows with the use of overhangs or deciduous trees.

Back to the windows. We didn't want Low-E. We wanted clear glass. So today I ordered the upstairs windows the same size as the main floor windows only this time with clear glass. When they come we'll trade the clear sashes for the coated ones. It's an extra step, but I think we'll be much happier with the result.