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Thread: New technology to me...

  1. #1

    Default New technology to me...

    What I like about this forum, is there are so many smart people, I can rely on for information. Like the intro?

    I need some advise.

    I have just about had it with the Left Coast. Since I am working on my last job before retirement, I have the advantage of some experience setting up a Bug In Location/retirement home. I even know where to locate this place, so I can maximize my chances of being left alone by both unwanted guests and government.

    Plenty of acerage: Check
    Water: Check
    Ability to grow food: Check
    Will support livestock: Check
    Can see people coming onto the property: Check
    Neighbors watch out for each other and are not nosy: Check
    Can connect to the grid, if I so choose: Check
    Permits possible to build a house: Check
    House will be of type: DUH... Help!

    A stick home is the easiest solution, because every contractor that knows how to swing a hammer can build one, and the potential for sweat equity is very high. Stick homes can be efficient, but they need some spendy design features to become very energy efficient. In my research I came accross these Insulated Concrete Forms. Some of them have great potential to be DIY and since they are styrofoam, even an old man like me can lift them. Here are a couple links. I am interested in what you people think.

    http://www.quadlock.com/
    https://buildblock.com/
    We learn from history that we do not learn from history. Georg Wilhelm F. Hegel

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    East TN Smokey Mountains
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    4,958

    Default

    I did a bit of research into ICF few years back.
    Had a good friend that used them in Orlando (hurricane proof).
    Definite advantages, but seemed to me pretty pricey, but like I say was few years back.

    We have built several structures using surface bonding.
    Basically you just stack blocks and smear it on like stucco.
    Waterproof and much stronger than laid up block.

    Still have to lift concrete blocks and I hear ya on the getting old and decrepit - I am 65 now.
    But since there is no skill involved we just hire local young folks.
    https://www.quikrete.com/productline...dingcement.asp

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Lakeside, CA
    Posts
    1,065

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    Quote Originally Posted by GR82BPREPD View Post
    I have just about had it with the Left Coast.
    House will be of type: DUH... Help!
    A stick home is the easiest solution, [/URL]
    Howdy from another Left Coast dweller.....Although I am not familiar with ICF, there are other options open to you. I built our BOL getaway home in the desert and decided after much research and pondering to build a Pole House....look these up, they have many pros and few cons (maybe depending on where you settle). Yes a slab/stick home is more understood and basic in construction layout, but is not necessarily easier to insulate nor cheaper to build. We have recently been looking at getting some acreage in N AZ too, just in case it gets unbearable here. 40 acres for $20k at 5500 ft elevation. There I think I would build a container home, I've already drawn a plan up and they are cheep and easy.....a problem to insulate though, but I think I've got that figured out. Also, forget the Grid Hookup, really not necessary any more...solar is sooo efficient and inexpensive now, the payback is so fast

    I think it really depends on where you will be building: Rain? Snow? Frost heave issues? Flooding? Type of soil? All of these and more will help you/us to decide which type of building is best for you.
    Do you have any ideas yet?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Central Texas
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    Kinda off topic in a way but a couple of weeks ago I drove through the northern half of Arizona on up to the four corners. My wife was riding shotgun and kept pulling up Zillow. LOTS of affordable land, you just need to be aware of what natural resources are and are not available. That area certainly got my attention.
    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    South East US
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    The wife and I are in the process of clearing land and building. We have narrowed it down between two choices. ICF and shipping containers.

    ICF cost is more costly than sticks and bricks, but their is something really comforting about 12” rebar reinforced concrete walls... dang. Since we are looking at fending off hurricanes we are leaning towards this.

    Shipping containers. If you do this make sure you get the “high cube” ones.


    On topic of solar look at lifePO4 batteries. You can build a pretty incredible bank by wiring the headway 38120 batteries.
    Vox Populi!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Lakeside, CA
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91CavGT View Post
    Kinda off topic in a way but a couple of weeks ago I drove through the northern half of Arizona on up to the four corners. My wife was riding shotgun and kept pulling up Zillow. LOTS of affordable land, you just need to be aware of what natural resources are and are not available. That area certainly got my attention.
    Yeah, sure got my attention too when a friend of my wife's told her about it. Inexpensive, remote yet less than an hour from a largish town, good 4 season climate, and sitting on a huge aquafier. An old huge ranch from the cowboy days split up into 40 acre parcels.

  7. #7

    Default

    ICF's were looking good to me as well. I was going to use roll up shutters, like the ones used on store fronts, as storm shutters for the house. Except one. which will be 2" thick Lexan so I can look out and see the storm. I like the 1 foot thick concrete as well. The other plus I saw was bugs. They don't make termites that like concrete.

    Hurricane and zombie proof!

    JK about the zombies, all.
    We learn from history that we do not learn from history. Georg Wilhelm F. Hegel

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Lakeside, CA
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    And don't forget strawbale houses. A buddy of mine up in eastern Oregon built one offgrid and it is a fine house.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    South East US
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    Straw bails are really cool idea if your area will let you. Hurricane, earth quakes... ect
    Vox Populi!

  10. #10

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    The story of the three little pigs comes to mind, when I am looking for building materials.

    I have seen straw bale, rammed earth, and tire type homes end up compromised because of a lapse in maintenance regimen. In hurricane territory, straw bale construction would concern me.

    They start out marvels of efficiency and hold heat/cold remarkably well. The construction costs are very low, but getting permits for one, might be problematic in hurricane country.
    Last edited by GR82BPREPD; 07-23-2018 at 04:28 PM.
    We learn from history that we do not learn from history. Georg Wilhelm F. Hegel

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