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Let the Finishes Begin

This week was a busy one on site as we really began our push on exterior and interior finishes. Inside, the local cedar tongue and groove that will serve as our ceiling and some wall sections began to be installed. It will have to be done in sections to allow us to blow the cellulose insulation effectively. The lower pitched sections on the east and west will be done first, then insulated before we can carry on moving towards the peak of our cathedral ceiling. The wood looks really great up and we are going to refrain from applying any finish to it since the natural beauty of the wood will speak for itself.

On the outside, the shingles really began flying up on the south side of the building. We are using natural paints to finish the cedar shingles and it is allowing us to create some really great designs. On the north gable a large sun will welcome visitors and on the south a few bands of warm colour will tie the scheme together nicely. It is really great to see a glimpse of what the finished product will look like and we are hoping the Camp and kids will like it as much as we do.

As you can see from the first picture, the brick wall also was completed. It really turned out well which is a credit to those who took part in it’s construction. The other project that that finished early in the week was the hempcrete south wall. That was the last wall system to be completed so we officially have a closed in space now (minus doors and windows).

We are also at the point in the build where many of the mechanical systems arrive for installation. Arrivals this week included the rain water storage cistern and the geothermal system. The only source of water that we will be using is precipitation so the tank to house it is rather large. It was lowered into its hole to the south of the building and back-filled to the existing grade which is still quite a bit lower than the finished level. It was then insulated with the same silverboard that surrounds our foundation and is beneath the floor. The pump and filter for the system actually are fixed to the tank which is great since it will increase the amount of space in the office/mechanical room. The vertical geothermal tubes run down vertically 100 feet at the northwest corner of the building. They went into the deep holes along with grout to ensure that maximum contact between the copper pipes and surrounding earth is achieved which will maximize the efficiency of the system. The tubes were then connected to the tank and the rest of the radiant floor system via a conduit tube below the floor that has been in place since the first weeks of the project.

One other project of note that has begun inside is the installation of recycled cotton/denim insulation in the framed cavities between the pre-fabricated straw bale panels. As you may recall from previous entries, these gaps between panels house window and door openings so there isn’t too much space to fill around them. The insulation was chosen because it is both recycled and much healthier to work with than most of the alternatives available on the market. The one drawback seems to be that it can be challenging to cut to the appropriate sizes but the benefits certainly outweigh that downside. Please check out the hundreds of other photos in our photo album and continue to join us on Tuesday’s for tours.