Brad was invited to speak on a panel about the use of local wood in building at the recent NESEA Building Energy 19 conference in Boston.
Working through the winter introduces all kinds of difficulties, but every once in a while, it’s not so bad shoveling snow.
This is a small vestibule and kitchen bump out for one of the nicest homes that I’ve ever been in. The house is not fancy, filled with expensive finishes, or terribly ‘high-design.’ It’s just a collection of amazing spaces. It’s a real privilege to work here.
Here is a project that we worked on this year. We gut remodeled the space, added two bump outs, inserted two new timber trusses, and covered the gable with glass curtain wall.
Lots of scribing and cutting going on in the shop for the Mountain Top Arboretum project.
Custom sawing and scribing of some funky timbers.
We've been working on a large timber frame gambrel barn, cut entirely in white oak timbers. Design by Uncarved Block and engineering by Fire Tower. We'll keep adding pictures, and it will be going up soon.
We're very excited that Uncarved Block was awarded the timber framing contract for the new Mountain Top Arboretrum Education Center in the Catskills of NY. Architecture is by Jack Sobon, and shows his characteristic funky curvy framing. The whole frame will be scribed. All 23 species present in the Arboretum will be used in this timber frame.
We were hired to just install the European tilt turn windows and curtain wall on this project. We mentioned this curtain wall system back in 2015 here The tilt/turn windows were installed in board-formed concrete walls, and they were HEAVY.
I designed this little cruck timber frame many years ago, as an exercise for the Heartwood School apprentices in scribing. I literally pulled the cherry and pine logs out of the firewood pile. Heartwood and UB raised the frame at several fairs and trade shows, and we always stood out from the crowd.
Lots of outdoor work lately. We've completed the deck and porch framing and finish. We framed the deck with galvanized steel joists, which are strong, fast (they're pre-cut), straight, and won't warp like large section PT lumber. The decking will be thermally modified ash from western Mass. The porch and deck roof is painted tongue and groove 2x6 over native cherry rafters. The hips over the deck are irregular (meaning that they are not 45 degrees in plan view), so the jack cuts are different on each side.
An update on our current project. Exterior trim is complete, including the 70 foot long porch fascia (perfectly straight!). I'll post some pictures soon of the cherry porch and deck rafters.
We had a preliminary blower door test at the house, before the insulation (dense-pack cellulose) was complete. The blower door is a very direct measure of how air tight the house is. We had a great preliminary number of 465 cfm or 0.58 ACH50 (air changes per hour at 50 pascals pressure difference). That's pretty impressive with 48 windows in the house, and beats the incredibly stringent Passive House standard of 0.6ACH50.
I also put some pictures in of the elliptical ceiling in the upstairs hall. We made ribs of 12' MDF, and sheathed it in 1/4 plywood. We very slowly bent 1/2" sheetrock to the radius (they don't make 1/4" that long). The ellipse comes in tangent to the wall surface, so it blends in perfectly.
Lots of activity on the job. Framing is complete. The interior air barrier (Intello) and service cavity are complete. The entire house is off of the electric grid, so we're running all of our tools off of PV. Dense-pack cellulose in the 12" double stud walls and 18" cathedral ceilings is complete. And windows and doors are in. While the sheetrock is being done, we'll be outside starting the south porch and west deck.
Chopping the tenon reduction by hand.
Here's a little geometrically-designed timber framed gazebo that I designed.