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.

Thursday, 31 January 2008

January 31st - Water, water everywhere...

... and Jeez, I need a drink. Arrived at the build late morning to discover to my horror that we'd not closed the patio doors, and the gales in the night had blown them open and flooded the living room. Piles of sodden cardboard and a huge puddle on the oak boards. Some of the joints have swollen and the floor is now very bumpy. Swore colourfully for a few minutes then got stuck into sorting the mess. Soaked up what I could with cardboard, in the absence of towels or mop, then plugged a halogen heater in and left it for the day. By knock-off it had dried to a surprising degree. The joints are still wet and swollen, and it'll be a nervous wait to see whether it will all flatten down as it dries out.
To continue a soggy theme, Jim turned up to commission the heating system. We switched on the water and immediately discovered a few minor leaks, mainly in the waste from the basins and cisterns, where I had assumed that the washers would form water-tight seals, but where Jim says standard practice is to augment them with silicon. We then set about filling the radiators. All was going fine until I tried to bleed the towel rads in the bathrooms. It turns out that somehow the radiators in both bathrooms, the lounge and the master bedroom are completely unconnected to anything except each other - with no connection to any water supply! Bit of a disaster, and I had visions of having to open up the ceiling in several places to try to sort it all out. I was sitting with my head in my hands in the shower room (well - almost) when I suddenly realised that if I could link that towel radiator into a flow / return circuit in the tank cupboard immediatly behind it, it should solve the problem and get all four going. That is, assuming all four are connected together.
I had to speed home at 6, as John Donnelly, a running pal from Glasgow who helped with the straw-baling back in September, was turning up for a couple of days. Tomorrow will be quite crucial, and could be either a triumph of a nightmare. Not sure how much kip I'll get tonight...

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