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New build in North Wales - Llanarmon Yn Ial

2016-09-01 08:31:15

Another Artichouse build started early this week (week 35) in North Wales. This bespoke log home has been designed by the customers themselves. After examining the customers' drawings, we were able to give them a quotation with our contents.

Erw Nant Elevation

The design has ~158m² of warm area on the ground floor, an 18m² loft + a sundeck in front of the south elevation. 

Ground floor plan - bespoke log home

Week 1 - The log walls

The foundation is an insulated slab foundation with ground floor heating built in it, wooden floor boarding will be installed on the loft.

Foundations log packages

The foundation is complete and waiting for the first logs.

Foundations and first logs

The first round of logs is being installed. Anchoring the logs to the foundation is a crucial step and has to be done with great care.

Log walls have been built

Day 2 of the build: all log walls have been built. Premachined window and door openings make the build that much faster at the building site.

Log frame from the inside

Day 3 of the build: also the window & door t-jambs have been installed. the windows & doors cannot be installed directly to the log frame as the frame settles with ~1-2cm/1m. The t-jambs are insulated with a sealant and a small settling space is left above the windows & doors. The settling space is filled with an elastic insulation to ensure airtightness.

View of the day

View of the day - just astonishing!

 Log frame and the Welsh landscape

The sun is shining, one could not wish for a better weather.

Week 1-2: The timber framing and Post & beam structure

Day 5 Tyvek & timber framing

The carpenters have been working on the internal timber framing and post & beam structure. A layer of Tyvek is installed on the internal side of the logs, after that the timber framing can be installed with sliding brackets. As the log walls do settle a bit, our sliding brackets are the standard method for installing the timber framing to the log walls. 

Timber framing & post & beam partially built 

The timber framing was reinforced with a post & beam structure as the customers will install a rainwater harvesting system to the attic. Also, the attic above the master bedroom will be a useful storage space once finished.

Day 5 - party tent & timber framing 

As the majority of the post & beam structure will be hidden inside the plastered walls, our designers used visible beam fasteners. In our Artic Frame designs and other post & beam structures we use hidden post & beam fasteners. This way, only the sturdy laminated wooden structure will be visible.

Day 5 - intermediate floor/attic floor joists

As the ground floor timber framing is complete in the master bedroom, the intermediate floor/attic floor joists could be installed as shown in the photo. Building works will continue on Tuesday morning (tomorrow) when the rest of the Artichouse contents will arrive to the building site.

Week 3 - the roof structure

First floor joists but what about the view <3

As all the posts have been installed, the beams will follow. These together will create the most imporant load bearing lines for the house, givingsupport for roof rafters .

Ridge beams and an amazing contrast

 All laminated ridge beams installed, the lenghts varying from 3,3 to 10 metres. The majority of roof rafters are also notched to the correct roof angles and installed in place.

Roof rafters installed, beautiful weather again

There are three differently angled gable roofs and a half-hexagonal roof over the sunroom. With good builders there will be no issues in building complicated roofs. The lush forest gives a beautiful contrast and creates an impressive surrounding for the house. 

A view from the other side, south elevation

The south elevation - impressive while under construction, looking forward to seeing it finished.

Weeks 4-5 - more timber framing, roofing & internal works

 Week 4 4 - fascia boards and roof battens installed

On week 4 all the rest of the external wall timber framing was finished. The roof structures were also built and covered with the roof underlay. The gable ends were also clad with veneer to compensate the wind loads imposed on the building. 

Week 4 1 internal timber framing with nogging & POSI-joists

Internal timber framing is now also installed and waiting for the fitting of electric cables & insulation. The underfloor heating pipes are neatly hidden inside the framing.

Week 4 5 loft and attic forming up

Looking from the loft (to-be) one can see how much space will be left for the attic. There will be large rainwater harvesting tanks above the kitchen and dining area. POSI-joists on the loft are great for running electricity and plumbing from one end of the house to another. 

Week 4 6 roof to be covered with slates, beautiful views

One last gable end to be timber framed, then all main structures are finished. 

Week 4 7 battens for slate and the countryside

The roof is now ready for the roofers!

Week 6 - Gable ends, external wall insulation & roofing

Wooden house roofing, slates, gable ends

Another week went by and the building works advanced rapidly.

  • The work on the sunroom was started and completed - excluding roofing
  • Cladding was installed on the external side of the gable end walls & the cladding was treated
  • All external walls were insulated 
  • Plumbing & electricity works were continued

The slates look like standard slates, but are actually IKO-slates. 99% recycled composite slates which look exactly like standard slates. They weigh 80% less than the standard ones, are easier to install, easier to carry to the roof & maintain after installed. This product is a good example of not having to make sacrifices to build sustainably - these even cost less than standard slates.

A Velux-window will be installed to this North elevation roof above one of the bathrooms - a vaulted ceiling and the Velux will bring a lot of light to the room.

Week 7 - roofing continued, window trim finished

Week 6 1 - bespoke log home, roofing, velux

The roofing is 95% finished and looks absolutely amazing. The Velux was also installed above one of the bathrooms. The installation kits are very handy these days, including the flashing and also the frame insulation as a standard with Artichouse deliveries. 

Week 6 2 window trims, tescon vana tape 

The sunroom was built completely with a timber frame structure & external wooden cladding (log panels) instead of logs. The smallest logs would have been less than 300mm long, being impossible to manufacture at the factory. However, the wall will look exactly like a log wall with the Artichouse log panels. There are a total of three different kind of external wall structures in this building because of the complexity of the design. 

All windows are now installed, also the window trims have been finished. All joints between the windows and wall framing are of course sealed with a weathertight tape. Artichouse always deliveres all windows and doors with a factory applied surface treatment. The main reason is the quality of the factory treatments - this way we can guarantee a flawless and durable surface treatment for all our windows and doors.

Next week we will have some photos from the interior - the majority of walls are already plastered!

Weeks 8-9 finishing the Artichouse kit, kitchen fitting, electricity etc.

Week 7 10

As the timber framing and external cladding of the design was completed, the windows & doors could be installed. All windows and doors arrived fully finished - only the handles needed to be attached after fastening the windows & doors the the timber framing. At this stage also the Rockwool has been installed in the insulation cavities and most of the internal walls plastered. 

Week 7 1 

The kitchen (to-be) with the entrance to the sunroom on the right hand side. The joists will be left visible in the kitchen ceiling, the rainwater harvesting system water tanks are located above this room. The intermediate floor was strenghtened with glue laminated beams because of the 250 litre tanks.

Week 7 2

The pine staircase and a structural post. The stairs will be covered to avoid any scratches during the building of the house. The pine stairs, windows, structural wood an paneling in the living room will look nice together - giving the space an unanimous look.

Week 7 3

Current view from the hallway towards the kitchen. Leaving some of the structural timber always does the trick and will look beautiful once all the surfaces are finished.

Week 7 4

The south wall was completely clad with log paneling. This planed panel is of the same height as the logs on the external walls - they also match nicely with the window architraves. 

Week 7 6

View from the kitchen towards the living room - the view from the large windows will be amazing! 

Weeks 10-11 - Final touch 

The main parts of the Artichouse kit were built in 8-9 weeks, after that the progress of the building site was mostly dependant on the local trades. Here are some photos after the final touch of the Artichouse builders. Mouldings and small fittings could only be finished after the electricians and plumbers had finished their job. 

Week 8 2

The south wall - quite a feature!

Week 8 3

The loft railing is also made of pine and finished with a light varnish. Narrow doors will be installed to the loft to gain access to the attics on both sides of the house.

Week 8 4

 View from the loft - floor material is also Finnish pine. 

Week 8 8

The round window brings a lot of natural light to the loft.

Week 8 9

The light color of the pine staircase goes well with the white walls. The small window with safety glass acts also as a light source.

Week 8 5

A frosty morning with the house looking over the valley.


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