The Hansen House Part 10: The Exterior

After the tar paper was installed on the exterior of the Hansen House, the next step was to install the venting network for the siding.  Venting behind siding is necessary to prevent the major problems that could arise from trapped moisture. Hansen Progress_01-18-13 014 The venting material is cor-a-vent sturdi-strip which runs vertically and cor-a-vent SV-3 which runs horizontally along the exterior of the walls.  The sturdi-strips and SV-3 are crush resistant extruded polypropylene core with fluted airways that provide maximum airflow.  The SV-3 has an enhanced insect screen to prevent insects from getting in behind the siding. Hansen Progress_01-18-13 006 Hansen Progress_01-29-13 002 The siding is the HZ5 product line of HardiPlank.  The HZ5 products are a special substrate composition designed to perform in climates with freezing temperatures, seasonal temperature variations, snow and ice. Hansen Progress_01-18-13 006 Hansen Progress_01-18-13 002 Timber bark is the color of the siding with arctic white trim and soffits. Hansen Progress_01-29-13 022 Hansen Progress_04-03-13 004 The Hansen House has 3 variations to the exterior which give it a unique look.  As you approach the house you encounter the stone wall which is a continuation of the original and existing architecture of the farm. Hansen Progress_04-03-13 002 When you walk around the to the front the stone fades away to classic siding. Hansen Progress_04-03-13 002 Hansen Progress_04-03-13 004 This continues along to the side porch. IMG_8087 Once you get to the back and side of the garage, the siding makes the final transformation into vertical board and batten. Hansen Progress_01-29-13 009 Hansen Progress_02-05-13 002 Hansen Progress_02-05-13 003 The soffit and trim are HZ5 product line in arctic white. Hansen Progress_01-29-13 004 Hansen Progress_01-29-13 007 Hansen Progress_01-18-13 017 Hansen Progress_01-29-13 005 The cupola, where the whole-house fan will be installed to exhaust hot air from the house and for air circulation, has the same siding, soffit and trim as the rest of the house. Hansen Progress_01-29-13 010 Hansen Progress_01-29-13 017 The main roof of the Hansen House is shingled while the porches and overhangs have standing seam metal roofs. IMG_8085 Hansen Progress_01-29-13 003 Hansen Progress_04-03-13 004

Introducing The Hansen House

Introducing the Hansen House – HJLCMS’s newest project. On June 1st HJLCMS broke ground on our newest project in Chester County, PA, the Hansen House.   This is one of the several projects HJLCMS has going on during this busy spring and summer.   In line with the mission statement of HJLCMS, this project will be built around sustainable systems incorporating the highly energy-efficient green technology standards we at HJLCMS hold ourselves to. In the early stages of planning and siting the Hansen House, HJLCMS and the Owners performed a careful evaluation of the solar access, water resources, vegetation, soils and other important natural areas of the site.  The information they gathered helped to guide not only the actual location of the house but also some key design elements of the house.  For example, the house is designed to utilize passive solar heating, day lighting and natural cooling.  Because of this careful planning, there has been minimal site disturbance and all the topsoil will remain on site to be used later in the construction process. Make sure to check back soon for our next post on the Hansen House!

Under Construction – KSQ Barn/Carriage Shed Update 2

HJLCMS has been very busy finishing up the KSQ Barn/Carriage Shed. The last update ended with the exterior being prepared for the siding and the installation of the standing seam metal roof. However, before the siding could go on, the windows had to be installed and the electric had to be run. Once the windows were in and the electric had been run, the siding could be installed. The material for the exterior finish is rough sawn board and batten for the first story and a cedar shake for the second story, upper gables and cupola. While this was going on, one of the HLTF crew members was building the cupola in our shop. The cupola was then transported to the job site where it was finished with cedar shakes and standing seam metal roofing.  This cupola is not solely ornamental, as it will function as passive climate control as well as house the ventilating fan. The cupola was then flown into place with the crane. Check back for the next update.

Under Construction – KSQ Barn/Carriage Shed Update

Hugh J. Lofting Construction Management Services, LLC (HJLCMS) is currently working on completing the construction of a timber framed carriage shed that had been raised by its sister company, Hugh Lofting Timber Framing, Inc. (HLTF).  Once the HLTF crew had completed raising the two-story 24×36 Oak timber frame, HJLCMS took the reins and began enclosing the structure. The frame sits upon an insulated concrete slab, which contains pex tubing for a radiant heat system.  This heated floor along with the tightly insulated walls should allow the homeowner a comfortable working environment even in the dead of winter. The 1×10 Eastern White Pine tongue & groove roof decking was the first component of the built up wall system to be installed on the timber frame skeleton. As the decking was going down, felt paper was applied to protect the roof decking from the elements. Once the roof was ‘dried-in’, the interior finish made up of 1×10 tongue & groove, eastern white pine was applied to the exterior side of the timbers to complete the first layer of the built up wall system. The white pine 1×10 T&G applied to the outside of the carriage shed beautifully highlights the exposed timber frame. Once the white pine decking was in place, the rigid foam insulation was then ready to be applied to the entire structure. The two layers of 2” EPS rigid foam board is the insulation for the carriage shed.  These two layers are staggered to offset the seams, which will help to reduce air infiltration. Lath, which acts as a nailing surface for the exterior siding, is applied directly to the rigid foam insulation. The added air space from the lath is helpful as it allows any moisture that may find its way behind the siding to dry out.  The second story siding will be cedar shakes while the first story will be 1×12 board and batten. In preparation for the cedar siding, the lath on the second story will be installed horizontally across the vertical members creating a breathable lattice framework. The standing seam metal roof is 24-gauge steel with a medium bronze finish. Check back for more updates as the construction process continues.

Off-The-Grid Home

Just south of Annapolis, Maryland HJLCMS constructed an off-the-grid home.  Tucked far back from the road the property enjoys the peace and quiet of farmland views and a backdrop of forest. But don’t let the bucolic surroundings or the craftsman appearance fool you. This new residence is a thoroughly up-to-date, sustainable home filled with cutting edge technology that had a very aggressive mission – provide a modern lifestyle for a family of four while minimizing their footprint on the Earth. This project’s environmental highlights include:
  • Creating a beautiful structure that brings joy for many generations
  • Generate all electricity on-site
  • Source all domestic and landscape water from rainwater capture or on-site resources
  • Maintain all storm water on-site through capture or infiltration
  • Use of local tradespeople and utilizing natural, local and/or recycled materials
  • Minimize construction disturbance and waste
  • Create and maintain a healthy indoor environment
  • Off-the-grid living
HJLCMS and Hugh Lofting Timber Framing (HLTF) designed and built the home to work with the Earth.  “The house is sited to maximize passive solar gain in the winter but is designed to be shaded from too much sun in the summer,” says Hugh Lofting, company president. Concrete floors and a real fireplace, made from Avondale Quarry stone, were used to create a thermal mass to maximize passive solar heat gain. Coupled with tight construction and a seamless blanket of insulation is a solar thermal heating system installed by Radiant Comfort Systems that utilizes the heat energy of the sun to warm the in-floor radiant system.

South facing wall, designed for maximum solar gain

For those few really cold days, peak-heating demand can be met with two wood burning stoves and a geothermal heat pump.

This is where the wood stove now sits.

All three floors of the home contain radiant heat.  The basement and the first floor are hand troweled concrete which is stained then polished. Both locally sourced labor and material were used to help bolster LEED rating points.  Additionally the recycled content of the concrete was traced and documented to gain additional points. Local, yet nationally recognized, company Hyde Concrete was contracted to transform the concrete from a gray slab of material to a finished product with deep tones of color to create a warm atmosphere.

Hand troweled concrete floors

From the warm leather tones in the finished basement entertainment area to the accents in the terra-cotta first floor the polished concrete brings a modern touch to the home.

Stained and polished concrete floor.

The same solar thermal system provides domestic hot water to the home.  The domestic water system is backed up with a propane fired instant hot water system for peak demand. The hot, humid summers of coastal Maryland posed a comfort challenge.  The home is positioned to take advantage of prevailing winds for natural ventilation and is equipped with large, high-efficiency, operable windows throughout.

Positioned for prevailing winds and natural ventilation

The mechanical system includes passive nighttime cooling through the solar thermal panels with a geothermal heat pump as back up. Regardless of the mode of operation, a healthy indoor air is maintained via Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV) that efficiently maintains temperature while introducing fresh air. In addition to using ERV, the home utilizes the radiant system to cool the home.  Radiant cooling along with minimal ducting help control the humidity and allow the home to be comfortable in the summer. HJLCMS utilized a systems approach to construction that reduced site generated waste and construction time while increasing quality control.  The precast concrete foundation wall system from Ideal Walls provides an R-23.5 at the basement walls. The timber frame crafted in the HLTF shop is enveloped by Murus Company Structural Insulated Panels (SIPS) that provides R-40 insulation on the walls and roof. Although there are a number of windows on the south wall for solar gain, windows on the other faces are limited and all windows are high-efficiency Serious Windows, series 700 or 900, providing at least an R-5.6 and SHGC of .21.  Energy modeling shading simulation software was used to determine the most efficient percentage of window area to wall for the North, South, East and West walls. This Off-The-Grid house has exceeded expectations with its performance and intuitive design.  The homeowners are thrilled that their dreams of an up-to-date, sustainable home filled with cutting edge technology have come true without having to sacrifice their craftsman style aesthetic.  This house proves that modern technology can be used in any style home.