Friday, April 27, 2012


Structral Insulated Panels, or SIPs are touted as a great green alternative. They're thick, they're built in a factory so there's superb quality control, and they let you put the walls up quickly. There's very little thermal bridging, and they use far less wood than conventional framing. So what's even greener? SIPs with straw as insulation, or bioSIPs.
It's an intriguing idea. I'm going to tour the EcoHome in Niagara next week, to see if it's for us.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Yeah, it's been pretty quiet around here.

Coupla reasons for that. I've been busy working, and we're not building yet. But the bigger reason is that I've run into an unexpected reality: I'm not sure I want to share everything about building our house on a public blog.
There's a lot of personal stuff that goes into planning a build -- things like finances, and family squabbles, and personal assessments of builders ("did you count your fingers after shaking that guy's hand?"). So I've opted for silence.
But now I'm rethinking the blog, and thinking about using it as a place to muse on building in Muskoka, rather than on my building in Muskoka.
See, in the past year I've had an awful lot of interesting conversations with people who want to talk about building. Architects and builders, of course, but also lawyers and photographers and writers -- people who are just interested in what's being done and what can be done.
I was toying with the idea of having a Beer n' Building party, but I figured that wouldn't be fair to the people who actually know stuff -- we'd all be glomming on to the builders and architects to pick their brains. A bit like having a What's Your Ailment party and inviting doctors and sick people to attend.
But a virtual party, on the other hand....
A chance to chat about cool projects, interesting building ideas, and maybe some disasters. (Have you seen the Muskoka airport terminal? Did nobody tell them that the window could be centred?)
So I'll start the conversation, but feel free to chime in.
Bring your own beer, though.