Filling the site up

The hole dug for the house was deeper than what will be internal and external finished floor level.

The garage roof also has a large chunk that will have topsoil and then grass.

Ahead of that, now that there’s a loo in the house, the site chemical loo has been taken away:

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First a chunk of top soil went on the garage roof and other areas that are going to be slate paving were filled in:

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In the courtyard, the ground source heat pump pipes needed to be connected up to their manifold:



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Before more material fills up the site:

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and a bit more to the front:

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Claire, the ‘illumina’ lighting expert

Yesterday I had a site visit by Claire Pendarves from Illumina ( www.illuminalighting.co.uk) to look over the room sizes etc. to refine her lighting ideas and suggestions.

It’s crazy, I expect to go out and buy a light that fits my taste. The more I read up and spoke to others about lighting, the more I realised it would transform or potentially waste all the amazing work to date (and planned).

Claire dives straight into considering every space, the different planned uses, the links between areas, the circuits, the lighting limitations (eg size of ceiling voids, or exposed coastal location for outside lighting) and used my lighting scrap book to show me installed work she’s done, photos of lights and a plethora of fittings from her Tardis car boot.

Even though Claire arrived at 10am, and left at 3:30pm, I think she let me off lightly in terms of toning down the talk of lumen’s, the level of white and a bunch of other technical considerations that are second nature to her.

Have a look at her Websites for work she’s done for others:

Dolphins for my first morning

Yesterday I moved all my stuff into the new house.

Most of it has gone into the garage that now has a lockable side door.

So it was my first night in the new house & this morning a pod of dolphins swam northward, playing a bit in the small waves.

I also didn’t realise that where the sun gets up at this time of year, means a dawn glow from the front bedrooms.

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Pebbles is still getting used to the move. She wants to be where I am, even though on the bedroom balcony there was a nice cool, early afternoon, breeze off the sea.

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Moving the earth (at the front and rear)

Well the man well known for saying he could move the earth for anybody except his wife has been along with a couple of different diggers and mini dumper trucks etc.

Suddenly the mounds at the front and back are all levelled out so that you can park at the front and back.

Not long ago, outside at the back looked like:

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and now it looks like:

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With earth going where the veg patch is going to be:

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Feeling blue (garage floor)

So that I can move out of my current house, where the sale is going through, I need somewhere to store my stuff.

So I brought forward some progress on the garage, that already has the main roller shutter.

The debate was resin floor or polished concrete. Both of which would give a smooth, easy to clean surface that should stay dust etc. free.

Time scale I couldn’t find a supplier who could polish the floor in time, and I did like the idea of a bright blue (to tie in with the blue GRP Yprado window and door frames.

They first polished the concrete back to take off the top layer where the water comes up through the concrete as it dries out. This exposes a good surface to key the resin too. They also have to have a smooth floor so that the resin is an even thickness for how it sets.

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Then after a painted on compound and some infill’s of some shallow dips (2 to 3 mm) were dry they poured on the resin, that then got smoothed out with various tools:

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Given the planned move this week, the letter box has also been temp put up !

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Mechanisation Vs Manpower

The ground source heat pump machine was delivered and put, by pallet truck into the garage. So level’ish with the road for the truck it came off.

But I need to clear the garage to finish the inside before it can be finished off and then filled with my stuff as I move out of my current place (being sold) and the house isn’t yet ready.

The heat pump is over 140 kg and about the size of 2 kitchen units. It doesn’t have that many edges to grab and the stairs it needs to go up or down (if it’s taken around the back) are narrow, so it’ll be hard to get people around it.

I had 6 maybe 7 people lined up to be on site on Saturday at 9:30 am until Simon (thankyou) called that he was going to borrow a battery driven stair lifting machine.

With that, some fun moving pallets, blocks, bits of wood (often as chocks), the trailer (thankyou Jock) the 2 of us got it in the house !

The machine lets you mechanically be on one stair, extend to the next stair, lever lift off the one stair etc.

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An example of a built up platform of blocks and pallets. The machine would then lift itself up onto this. We’d secure it, angle it back and get it to “stair lift” lift the heat pump up to the top of the stack. Then we had to turn it by 90 degrees to get in the door (as being visualised !)

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Garage progress

With the most recent items first, there is now a garage door & the membranes are going on the garage roof for the slate paving and grass areas:

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Drilling has begun

The ground source heat pump is going to extract low grade heat from the ground, and concentrate this into high grade heat in the form of hot water for taps, then under floor heating then the hot tub.

There will be 3 bore holes down which liquid is pumped to be warmed by the heat of the ground, up to a bit short of 100m down !

Lowering & driving the drilling rig down the rear stairs:

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The drilling head:

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Drilling, with all the dust, which was a lot more than I expected.

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Dust on the solar panels that are going to need a clean (or for it to rain so they self clean, apparently).

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A growing pile of dust by the drilling rig. This later turned to slurry as the drill got to a depth where there was ground water. 2014-05-15 09.06.20 (2)