October 2011

October I had the focus on finishing the window trim and the Hardieboard paneling on the solar chimney. I set up a cutting area outside the garage with my trusty diamond blade in the skilsaw. Trim was cut and drilled for long tapcons which went into the stucco surrounding the windows. Actually went pretty quickly once I got into the routine.

The paneling on the solar chimney was a “horse of a different color”. The narrow sections on the south face were easy, and the East and West sides were harder but doable with one set of hands. However the North side was way too risky with just one person and I deferred that for while (see accomplishments for November).

I then started the prep work for the retaining wall planned for building a patio that runs from the outer edge of the screen porch to just past the door emerging from the great room. First step was to dig the trench for the footings and to put the forming boards in place, properly leveled for screeding the concrete when it was poured into the form. I as usual mixed my own concrete and wheel-barrowed to the forms as it was generated, and troweled the footing to give a smooth level base for the wall.

After a day or so of curing, I by now had moved many of my remaining partly damaged cement blocks to pallets adjacent to the footing and began the wall construction. First step as way back in building the main foundation walls, was to level the base layer of blocks, setting them in a mortar bed on the footing. Ater an overnight cure of the mortar, I then stacked the remaining two layers of blocks to get a wall that was 3 courses tall, e.g. 24 inches off the footing.

Now I started up my cement plant again and poured the stacked blocks full of concrete, vibrating it vigorously so no air voids in the wall. This gave me a resultant solid concrete wall. I raked the sand fill that had to be excavated to put in the footings to partially fill the enclosure provided by the retaining wall. Next Summer for the final effort on this. Pictures of the work done in October in the gallery below.

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2 Responses to “October 2011”

  1. Peter Says:

    HI There, I was browsing through your blog and noticed that you have an older 1995 Eurovan camper, in which the AT was replaced with a MT.

    I would like to learn more about how the process went for you. Did you manage to get everything to function afterwards?

    cheers

    • tedspassivesolarhouse Says:

      Hi,
      Yes most everything has worked well. The only thing that has not been successful, is making the cruise control function. Have tried to trace all the connections and replicate the hookup shown for manual CC but it doesn’t work so far. Regardless have had very pleasant major trips all around north america. Last summer a grand tour of national parks in USA and Canada actually not nearly all since there are a lot but major parks from Ontario West all the way to Bellingham WA below the border and the back above the border to the Canadian parks in BC and Alberta.

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