So I guess I wouldn’t be able to make it as a professional blogger if I can’t even manage one post a week.
These last two weeks we’ve concentrated on the front extension. The front extension is made of arches that fit to the dome extension opening and kind of makes the dome look like an igloo. The front of the front extension is open to the elements, making it a large porch. Eventually we’ll screen off the front to keep the bugs out, but for now it’s open. There are four skylights in a “stripe” to allow in extra light since the opening faces north. The front extension was originally designed to be at the same floor level as the rest of the dome. The foundation walls were made to a four foot height instead of six feet like the rest of the dome so less material would need to be excavated from the front. However, do to how the dome is positioned and the natural slope of the ground, the front ground level ended up being at the same level as the rest of the dome. That led us to two choices – either add two feet of soil and pack it down so the extension would sit at the correct height or have the the porch sit two feet lower then the dome. The second choice (which is what we opted for) also had the advantage of breaking the front steps into two sections – a set to get up to the porch, then a couple of steps to get into the house.
The weekend of Aug 23rd we built the 4′ foundation and subfloor, assembled and raised the extension arches, and started on the sheathing. We also met with a vinyl siding installer to measure and estimate a premium quality siding product. It’s going to end up costing double what we could if we installed it ourselves, but it will save us several weekends of work and the rainy season is fast approaching 🙂
The weekend of Aug 30th we added an overhang to the extension to keep the rain off the subfloor, finished the sheathing, and cut and framed the skylights. While that was going on, Sara finished up the rest of the bracketing and framing clips in the crawlspace and mike cut a bunch of plywood to size to close in the crawlspace. We won’t install the plywood until the roof is on so that the crawlspace can dry out from any rains (this weekend Mike vacuumed 55 gallons of water from the crawlspace.)
Next weekend we will finish cutting and framing the last skylight as well as framing and sheathing the three egress windows. While looking through the permits I found out that the back extension needs an attic access door per code, even though there is maybe 100 cubic feet of “attic” space there. We should be able to fit that in next weekend too. If all of that gets completed, we can call in the framing inspector. Assuming he finds no big issues we can start scheduling the roofing and work on the backfill.