Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Air conditioning just in the nick of time.....Mitsubishi Mini Split

Since this will be our main building, our central location, we decided to install Air Conditioning. We were going to put in a window unit, but our windows would not accommodate a large enough unit and we did not wire a plug for one.
So after doing my research I found that the mini-split unit is by far the best for our situation. It is extremely energy efficient, quiet and maintenance free, that is if you get the Mitsubishi system ( /http://www.mitsubishicomfort.com/). This brand is the stand out in its feild.
We got one estimate from a guy that said it was the same unit as this because it had one component that was Mitsubishi. The inferior brands do cost less, but they are problematic. This guy was going to charge us almost the  same to install this other brand and of course was going to repair it when it went bad. What a great deal for him!
 Luckily we found Stanley AC in our neck of the woods. He was honest, reasonable and fast. We went with the 18 BTU wall mount, our room is 22 ' by 40' with 11' to 14 ' ceilings. It cost us $3,200.00 ( $500 of that was the installation cost) for everything,

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Constructing and putting up the shelves in the main house kitchen.

Our recycle guy John found these brackets from a restaurant that had a fire. They are cast iron and very strong. We sprayed them with black matte paint to freshen up the look.
 We got 1 1/4 inch short bolts to screw in where there was not very much room. This was a design flaw that we had to work around. We pre drilled the holes which made it alot easier.

 We installed them on the 2X4 studs for added strenth.
 For the shelving we used 2" X 12" 1940s lumber, cutting another piece 4" to make a 16" wide board.
 After applying the wood glue we clamped them tight every 3 to 4 feet.
 Then we sanded them a very long time.........
 Richard made a template for the cut next to the window so they would all look the same.
 He cut the wood with a saber saw to get the best cut.
 Then he sanded again....
 Here you can see the difference between the raw wood and a varnish finish. Clear coat Minwax was the brand we used.
We installed them screwing them to the wall to secure then.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Planting time and replacing the wire for the blueberries.

 The chicken wire we installed years ago rusted out where ever water hit it the most, mainly at ground level. This is the rusted ball of it.
 We removed the wire and dug the ditch down 12 inches again...
 We replaced it with stainless steel mesh. We will see how long this lasts...
 Here are the blueberries ready to ripen....
 The blackberries coming on better than ever....
 The raspberries just starting to peep through....
 Asparagus winding down...
 Tomatoes and peppers in the far half of the row...
 One lonely squash as a transplant and seeds planted as well......
Strawberries have a good start....

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Putting up the ceiling insulation.....

When we decided to forgo the building of the big house, we knew we had to finish out the shop turned kitchen,living room, dining room AKA Main house , into a more livable space. We had the choice of framing out the ceiling , installing insulation and sheet rocking/ sheet metal finish or retrofitting insulation onto the ceiling. The cost /time difference was hugh , $3,000.00 (3 months) vs  $1,000.00 (2 weeks). The retrofitting is done on existing metal buildings with high ceilings. It will add 19 R   to the existing 10 R insulation we have already installed.
Thinking ahead we had to figure out a system that the 2 of us could do by ourselves and have a good looking finish with no leaks
.First we attached the steel bands to the top of the wall frame. Then we tucked the insulation into the void above the sheetrock straightening out the insulation as best we could so it was even and flat against the top of the sheetrock. Next we screwed in the steel band into the next perlin securing the insulation in place. As you can see there is a flap that will overlap the seam created by the next run of insulation.
To start with I measured the length of the space the insulation will go into, including the void above the sheetrock that the insulation will tuck into. ( the insulation was cut the width of the distance between the perlins by the manufacturer)
Then I marked it with the Insulation saw along the 4 foot T-square.
At the end I left a flap so as to hide the insulation when I installed it.

This was our setup, a roll of insulation ready to be installed laying on the scaffolding.
We had to tape the black plastic on the chicken wire to keep the insulation from catching/tearing on it when we pulled it over the conduit or bar joist.

In the two photos above I show where we kept the insulation up with tie-downs while we secured it with the steel bands.
We installed half of the length of the insulation (20 ft total, 10 ft at a time)
The finished ceiling looks like clouds!!! It makes an amazing difference in the temperature of the room!!!