Strawbale House

This blog is intended to chart our progress through the self-build process, from half-hearted plot-hunting through to completion of the build. The twist is that we're building the house from timber and straw (hence the blog title).

Click on the image at the end of each post to see that day's photos.

Sunday, 14 October 2007

October 13th - Waterfall window

Mal's last day on site, and a very significant one. He rang and woke me at 7:30, from outside the kitchen door. A quick cuppa and a hot bacon roll he'd picked up on the way, and we were off. The task for the day was to fit the waterfall window, the parts for which finally arrived yesterday.
Within minutes the instructions had been discarded, as they had been written for installation where the vertical elements of the assembly would be set back in the wall with an external reveal. As we're using timber cladding, the windows will sit proud, with the cladding running into the side of the frames. For the first hour or so I was little more than a willing but clueless assistant, trying to keep up as Mal worked out the necessary steps in his head as he went along. After a while I could see how it was all going together, and was able to anticipate the next step. I was extremely grateful that Mal was there, as I would have been in a bit of a hole without him.
The big articulated timbers that support the middle of the assembly have a lovely solid look and feel about them, and as it all took shape it grew into a fabulous feature in an already gorgeous room.
We'd set the aperture up assuming the window would be set back in the wall a bit, so once it had all been fitted we had to frame up a section above the pitched elements and sark it before we could start on the flashing.
Around lunchtime, Jack, a faithful friend of and participant in the project turned up from Liverpool with my parents in tow. It was good to have him back on site, and great for my folks to see in the flesh an endeavour they'd only been able to follow each evening on this blog.
The afternoon was well advanced by the time we started on the flashing. Here I had the advantage of familiarity, having fitted all the previous rooflights single-handed. With frequent recourse to the instructions, it all went together very smoothly, and by about 5pm we had it all ship-shape and weather-tight.
With the exception of the heating system, this was the last big phase of the build that I was unsure about tackling myself, and having knocked it off so satisfactorily with Mal on his last available day put a very happy seal on his enormous contribution. Without his knowledge, drive and enthusiasm the build quite simply wouldn't have got out of the ground.

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